Minnehaha Park#5 in Best Things To Do in Minneapolis - St. Paul
Sprawling along the banks of the Mississippi River, Minnehaha Park offers respite from the fast-paced atmosphere of Minneapolis. Situated about 6 miles southeast of central Minneapolis, the 193-acre park is a popular spot all year round. And the park's renowned 53-foot Minnehaha Falls – made famous by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem, "The Song of Hiawatha" – have played an important role in the city's history, from its status as a treasured site among Native American tribes to having powered a mill during the latter half of the 19th century. Today, the falls attract tourists from around the country, while the park itself offers active visitors a perfect venue for outdoor recreation, including bike paths, volleyball courts and a playground.
Past visitors raved about Minnehaha Park, describing it as "beautiful" and "relaxing." Many said the waterfall was the highlight here, but also recommended exploring the various hiking trails and bringing a picnic.
More attractions are open during the summer, including the Wabun wading pool and the Sea Salt Eatery, but a wintertime visit is still worthwhile for a peek at the magnificent frozen falls. Minnehaha Park is open daily, free of charge, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Free parking is available near the Wabun picnic area, along 46th Avenue South. To find out more information about the attractions within the park, including seasonal hours, visit the website of the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board.
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#1 Minneapolis Institute of Art
Sheltering more than 90,000 works of art that span more than 5,000 years, the Minneapolis Institute of Art is the place to go if you're an art aficionado. Whether you're interested in ancient Egyptian artifacts or European masterpieces by artists such as Titian and Monet, this museum has what you need to get your fix. Recent visitors attest the museum is well-suited for all ages, thanks to the kids scavenger hunt offerered by the museum. Along with the impressive collection of art, travelers are also complimentary of the museum's other offerings, including the Agra Culture Coffee Shop and Cafe.
Located south of the downtown area, the Minneapolis Institute of Art is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (extended hours until 9 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays) and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. General admission is free; special exhibits cost extra. Past visitors advised setting aside at least 90 minutes for your visit, though some recommended breaking up your museum tour into two days. Off-street parking is available in a parking ramp south of the museum. There are also surface lots on the northeast and southeast corners of the museum. If you're coming by bus, the museum is located on Route No. 11. For more information about current and upcoming exhibitions, visit the Mia's website.
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