Top 5 Minnesota State Parks to Check Out this Summer
Get in here outdoorsy Minnesotans! Summer is officially here and of course, there's a whole lot more to do than exploring beautiful lakes. So what's the point? Well, it's pretty simple — Minnesota is also home to some super amazing state parks, most of which are sure to make summer awesome. And if you're ready to see some astonishing sights and enjoy some quality outdoor fun, we recommend you check out these 5 incredible Minnesota parks.
And oh, be sure to get one or two of our awesome wood-framed glasses while you're at it! Maybe Isle, Harriet or Dixon! Trust us, you're sure to look great in them!
Now let's check out the parks.
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park
On the North Shore of Lake Superior about an hour past Duluth on Highway 61, you’ll find Split Rock Lighthouse State Park. As you probably expect, the beautiful lighthouse is the central theme of this place. There is a museum, that tells you about the history of Split Rock lighthouse, Lake Superior navigation, has an incredible tribute to many of the fallen ships of our history from treacherous weather on the North Shore. There are also quite a few other things you can do while exploring. This state park boasts miles and miles of hiking trails and a path right down to Lake Superior. There are also spots where you can have picnic or sit and enjoy the view with family and friends. Hint* don’t hesitate to climb into the top of the lighthouse if you want to get totally immersed in the spectacular view of Lake Superior!
Fort Snelling State Park
Fort Snelling Park — an excellent spot in the Twin Cities if you don’t want to pack up the car and travel very far for adventure. Fort Snelling is home to extensive trails all of which are excellent for hiking and biking, and if you’re looking for a great snow activity, there are groomed cross country ski trails throughout the park all winter! Interested in a bit of military history? Historic Fort Snelling has about as much as you can handle, viewing the military cemetery is a breathtaking sight. One of our favorite features in the park is the Airplane viewing area. With the park being so close to the airport, you can lay back with your polarized sunglasses on and watch the planes take off and land from MSP International airport. There are also plenty of other activities for the whole family, pick up a free GPS unit and do some geocaching or bring your Frisbees for an 18 hole disc golf course!
Lake Shetek State Park
Want to explore Southwest Minnesota? Next up is Lake Shetek State Park — a pretty great park that offers multiple lakes for swimming, fishing, canoeing and kayaking. It's also good to know that the park shares close proximity to Loon Island. So of course, you won't be wrong to wear your Loon Sunglasses and take a nice hike on it! And lest we forget, the park offers an incredible opportunity for bird watching from the many camping areas filled with beautiful local wildlife to take in.
Crow Wing State Park
Headed up North to the Brainerd area? Don’t skip out on visiting Crow Wing State Park. Home to the old Crow Wing Town Site, you can surround yourself with Minnesota history from the mid 1800’s. Nestled between the Mississippi and Crow Wing rivers, this town was a true Frontier. Rock Lake Campground is also a great site in the Pillsbury State Forest for camping, hiking and great wildlife viewing. Don’t miss out on incredible fishing in the Mississippi or Crow Wing Rivers or cool Rock Lake.
Temperance River State Park
Last but definitely not the least is Temperance Rivers State Park. Hidden about 2/3 of the way between Duluth and Grand Marais It is, in our opinion, one of the most beautiful parks in the North Shore of Lake Superior! Boasting wonderful vistas and spectacular views, Temperance Rivers State Park is everything you want it to be and more. Hiking, meditating, taking in the fresh air — just perfect! The park is home to the Temperance river where it feeds into Lake Superior making for great waterfalls and views. They may not be as big as Gooseberry falls, but they are just as beautiful with deep gorges and crisp clean water! You’ll also be glad to know that this state park is one of our favorites for camping. Totally worth setting up a tent and Living. Life. Lifted. with your family and friends!
So there you have it! Now it's time to make your pick or better still explore each and every one of them. Have fun!