Minnesota

Minnesota Travel Guide

At 450 acres, this urban retreat is about half the size of NYC's Central Park, but it has more to see, with a zoo, conservatory, amusement park, golf course, and beautiful lakeside trails.

Why It’s Cool: As America’s longest continuous urban public parkway, this circular 50-mile asphalt path includes nine miles along the Mississippi River.

Arrange a guided trip with Wilderness Outiftters, the area's top tour operator for Minnesota's sprawling northern wilderness.

Insider clout: For VIP American clients in need of top security for a trip to East Africa, Fundora arranged to charter the private helicopter of a prominent politician in Rwanda for their use. "It's the best one in the country," she explains. Years as agent: 12.

You'll find owner Gary Goodman at his desk at the front of the store, where he dispenses encyclopedic knowledge of his 40,000-volume out-of-print book collection.

Led by head baker Tammy Hoyt, the team at this independent neighborhood bakery crafts homemade breads and pastries using high-quality ingredients and traditional, labor-intensive methods.

A scenic spot for a little shopping or a bite, this May-through-October venue occupies the Mill City Museum train shed not far from the Stone Arch Bridge spanning the Mississippi River.

Depending on the season, nearly half of the merchandise in this eclectic gift shop is made by local artists, showcasing original home accessories, handmade bags from vintage fabrics, and jewelry, including the stained-glass pendants with hand-pressed flowers made by the brother and sister team kn

The Spread: True locavores haunt the 167 stalls of St. Paul's downtown Saturday market, and for good reason: every farmer and producer selling here comes from within a 75-mile radius of the city (a top 10 vote-getter for markets in our AFC survey).

Pack a picnic, bring a blanket, and park yourself in the grass for a performance of samba, swing, reggae, or even a Neil Diamond tribute band. Shows are at 7:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, or at 2 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. on Sundays, June 1 through September 16.

The Chamber Hotel's sassily patriotic RWFB Bar - a.k.a. the Red, White, and F***ing Blue bar - has a sultry vibe.

Among the 14 screens at the Theatres at Mall of America is a VIP theater (for adults 21 and up) with small tables and bar beverages. A 3D-viewing theater features 30 D-BOX motion seats.

Since the Walker’s new addition opened in 2005, it has become just as well known for its eye-catching architecture as for the art inside.

Affectionately known as the BLB, this vintage-style bowling alley with a full bar and an adjacent theater for concerts, films, and plays draws a crowd every night of the week.