Guide on what to do in Minneapolis? Ten places to visit

What to do in Minneapolis? Don’t we all have our own travel bucket list items? If you don’t have many, you can add Minneapolis to a ‘must-visit place.’ Why? It’s because Minneapolis is one of the most idyllic places in North America. Minneapolis Metropolitan Area is actually the 18th largest in America; it was once famous as America’s Siberia. It’s a great place to wander around with a historic riverfront district on the east side of the Mississippi River. 

A rainbow stretches over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. Photo from Rob Bostad

It is also one of the most technologically developed metropolitan areas with high-tech medical advancements and software companies in the US. Minneapolis, or more preferably the Twin Cities (Minneapolis and St. Paul), has the Mississippi River winding through the city and over to St. Paul and urban lakes surrounded by walking and bike trails. This famous city in the United States of Minnesota has ample water resources, with thirteen lakes, wetlands, creeks and waterfalls, Mississippi river, etc. It is also a historical place for timber trading and has become the world’s flour milling capital. Minneapolis equally harbors the cultural aspects with the symphony, Guthrie Theater, and First Avenue nightclub. Minneapolis anchors strong folk, funk, and alternative rock music and performing art scenes.

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What to do in Minneapolis?

After getting a brief introduction to Minneapolis, you might have a glimpse into what to expect. Let me highlight the key attractions and things to do in Minneapolis.

 1. Explore Minneapolis Sculptor Garden

The perfect blend of the park and cultural life, Minneapolis sculptor Garden is the crown jewel of this city. Forty permanent art installations depict land art based on site-specific sculpture. Since its opening in 1988, the garden has been the apple of an eye, welcoming millions of tourists as it envisions and showcases the Walker Art Center’s famous contemporary and modern art collections. The most famous sculpture within this iconic urban park is the Spoonbridge and Cherry sculpture. The giant spoon, water fountain, spraying that defies gravity, and its delicate placement on top all contribute to drawing people in. This massive sculpture is an unofficial landmark of Minneapolis and St. Paul. It somehow may have its role in Minneapolis nickname of ‘The Mini Apple’ as Cherry looks somehow like Apple. Another special feature of this sculpture garden is free entrance, 365 days a year. If you are visiting the park in the month of June, you may join the two-day Rock the Garden music festival as well.

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Minneapolis Sculptor Garden

2. Visit the City Hall

If you are fanatic about buildings, Minneapolis City Hall serves you right. It is a beautiful and monumental symbol of civic life. Home to an abundance of local history and serving as governmental offices for Minneapolis and Hennepin County, this prominent building was built in the early 1900s. It is a national historic landmark. The building’s clock tower rises above the building and strikes at specific times of the day. Inside is the statue in Rotunda, Father of Waters, which was sculpted from one Carrera marble block.

City Hall

3. Make your attendance at Guthrie Theatre

The Guthrie Theatre has a history of more than 40 years as it was founded in 1963. It is the largest theatre in Minneapolis, presents a three-stage complex, and is situated along the Mississippi River. It produces a wide variety of classic and contemporary shows and plays. The new building made in 2006 showcases the wide images of performing arts on its exterior. Guthrie Theatre empowers Minneapolis with the creative energy of local artists, spectators, and actors producing classic as well as modern masterpieces. Your trip to Minneapolis won’t be complete without an exploration of Guthrie Theatre’s robust art scenes. It is open to everyone all time of the year.

4. Minneapolis Shopping

Explore this populous city of Minnesota with multiple outfit changes. If shopping catches your attention more than parks and museums, the Mall of America awaits for you to step up your style. It is just 15 minutes from downtown Minneapolis and has a set of a fresh mix of new business and locally sourced merchandise. There are more than 520 stores, 60 restaurants, world-class gaming and entertainment ventures, and many other family attractions and nightlife options. Want me to spill you the exciting thing here? There’s no sales tax on clothing and shoe in this largest shopping complex in the US. Hit up the high-end fashion boutiques, go underwater at Sea Life Minnesota Aquarium or enter into the thrilling Nickelodeon Universe to revive your childhood memories.

5. Be inspired by the Children’s Theatre Company

Children’s Theatre Company is a regional performing art theatre, where young adults and adult performers present, educate and inspire multigenerational audiences. Over the last five decades, this company has received more than 11 million people, reflecting its comprehensive platform to be home for all families that mirrors the community. Its learning programs and engaging performances seek to change the canon of work for young audiences. Children’s Theatre Company will evoke children’s imagination, curiosity, and creativity and is a great national leader in high-quality stage performances from tots to teens. 

what to do in minneapolis this week
Children’s Theatre Company

6. Mill City Museum

Built within the ruins of the national historic landmarks, Mill City Museum is a historical society museum in Minneapolis. It is fun to learn about the flour milling business as exhibits are about Minneapolis history, flour milling machinery, and others. You can join the outdoor concert ‘Mill City Live’ in August. You’ll get a chance to ride back in time to explore the city’s rich history and witness the baking demonstrations, experience the Flour Tower, see an eight-story glass façade and view St. Anthony Falls and Stone Arch.  Mill City Museum allows participating in the story of how Minneapolis started on the banks of the Mississippi capturing river energy to produce once the world’s largest flour mill.

Mill City Museum

7. See Minnehaha falls in Minnehaha Regional Park

Right outside Minneapolis lays the natural beauty of Minnehaha Falls. The wilderness water in the urban setting, Minnehaha falls, is 53 feet and has played a critical role in serving the city as a valuable site among Native Americans and running the flour mill during the mid-19th century. Minnehaha Regional Park is home to Minnehaha Falls, statues of Hiawatha and Minnehaha, different hiking trails. Minnehaha Regional Park offers respite from the wind of modernization and a perfect venue to stroll through the pergola garden, dine at Seat Salt Eatery, perform outdoor recreation with its garden, playgrounds or enjoy the live show at Minnehaha Band Stand.  You can feel the oneness with nature in this scenic park where you can enjoy a quick stroll and views of the falls. It’s free and refreshing.

what to do in minneapolis this week
Minnehaha falls

8. See 5000-year-old art at Minneapolis Institute of Art

If you have a craving for art in your day-to-day experience, the Minneapolis Institute of Art will cater to your craving with more than 9000 works of art spanning around 500 years. This art museum brings together the methods of storytelling and ancestral memory to enrich your understanding by collecting, preserving, and availing outstanding artworks from diverse cultures in the world. As a steward of artworks, it fosters empathy and global understanding through the power of art. You can brighten your day perusing the art gallery of Minneapolis Institute of Art devoted to African, Asian, and American cultures. From ancient Egyptian artifacts to European masterpieces, this cultural resource has what you need to get your fix, and it is suitable for all ages. This inspiring wonder has free general admission while special exhibits hold extra costs. It is situated in the south of the downtown area. It is open 10 am to 5 pm, Thursday to Sunday. 

9. Shop until you drop at Nicollet Mall

Nicollet Mall runs through the heart of a downtown area of Minneapolis city. From trendy items to flee-market style items, you can shop around this beautifully laid-out precinct. The mile-long pedestrianized entertainment and retail hub, Nicollet, has a large concentration of restaurants, art displays. Crystal Court piazza is the central feature of this complex. Don’t miss the skyways crossing Nicollet while being indulged in downtown’s core shopping to satisfy your needs and outdoor dining.

10. Chain of Lakes Regional Park

Chain of Lakes Regional Park is called so because it encompasses five different bodies of water. The shorelines of Brownie Lake, Cedar Lake, Lake of Isles, Lake Calhoun, and Lake Mariette each have something different to offer. It circumnavigates the city, other water bodies, natural areas. It is the district of Grand rounds Nations Scenic Byway. There are biking paths, logrolling, beaches, walking trails, canoeing, fishing piers, sailing, playgrounds for kids, etc.

So, if you are wondering what to do in Minneapolis, these are the must-do or see things. Minneapolis welcomes all the visitors with its vibrant culture, art, and multi-faceted ecosystem encompassing lakes, waterfalls, picturesque parks, or shopping centers to let visitors explore the city for notch-high branded items. Explore the striking landscapes; green spaces blended seamlessly into the urban environment of glistening modern Minneapolis city.

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