"City of Waters" Top 5 Page for this destination Minneapolis by goodfish

Minneapolis Travel Guide: 955 reviews and 1,746 photos

After several years of covering our vacation spots, it occurred to me that it was time to write about the place I call home. Vacation for most of us means leaving town so it's easy to forget that your stomping grounds just might be a destination for other travelers? Doh. That said, I've been tucking the camera into my pocket whenever we trot off to do something fun, and looking at my city with the eyes of a visitor. My Other Half is amused.. and thankfully long on patience as he does a lot of standing around while I'm playing Shutterbug.

Minneapolis credits its existence to the only waterfall on the Mississippi River: St. Anthony Falls provided the power for extensive lumber and grain milling in the 1800 and early 1900's. Flour production, specifically, became the predominant industry which fueled the growth of the prospering community and earned it the nickname, "Mill City." While the great mills are a thing of the past, the riverfront near the falls has been revitalized and preserved as a popular recreational area and historical monument to this city's roots.

But water, water everywhere is what makes Minneapolis unique. In addition to the mighty Mississippi there are at least 22 lakes within the city proper, and too many to count if you add inner and outer-ring suburbs and those of our twin city, St. Paul. Some of them are circled with biking/walking paths, some can be canoed, kayaked, sailed or have swimming beaches, still others are great angling spots, and the biggest of them provide all of the above.

I live in one of the fringe communities and count myself lucky to have the wide-open fields that remind me of my native Iowa plus the amenities of a metropolitan area all within shoutin' distance of the driveway. This upcoming winter (2013-14) I'll be doing quite a bit of updating on these pages to add new restaurants /things to do, edit some older tips, and replace some low-res photos with better versions as I acquire them so bear with me!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Lots of outdoor activities, inexpensive, diverse, good local theater and music
  • Cons:Long winters, sketchy public transit, not much downtown for kids
  • Intro Updated Oct 19, 2013
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Reviews (90)

Travelogues (1)

Comments (29)

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Jun 7, 2015 at 8:39 AM

    Kate, I very much enjoyed meeting you and your husband in Aachen and Maastricht.
    Here on your Minneapolis page you have updated all but four of your "Things to Do" tips, and added a few new ones, since I last looked in 2012.

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Jun 7, 2015 at 8:53 AM

      Thank you for visiting, Don, and we very much enjoyed meeting you too! I DO need to update some these pages one of these days, and I'll be coming to visit your pages once I get a handle on new reviews from this past trip!

  • Rich62's Profile Photo
    Oct 19, 2013 at 5:55 PM

    Loved your review of the Minneapolis IKEA store. Your comments were spot-on. We have used the IKEA in Round Rock, TX, and thought that was huge, until we saw the new IKEA in Denver. wow! I love the cartoon directions for assembling furniture; they give a much clearer view of how to attach part A to part B than 90% of the written directions one encounters elsewhere.

  • riorich55's Profile Photo
    Oct 19, 2013 at 4:48 PM

    Great Autumn Colors on that main photo. Off to see Blood, Sweat and Tears in my hometown of Naperville tonight.

  • angiebabe's Profile Photo
    Oct 6, 2013 at 6:31 AM

    no wonder he has to wait so long! if it was me id be at least all day lol! stunning!

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Oct 6, 2013 at 7:20 AM

      I am very lucky indeed. It's funny you should make that comment just now as he's downstairs cussing up a storm. We just moved and we're trying to book some flights? The system is giving him fits because it doesn't recognize our new address: we live in one suburb but our actual billing address is to a post office in ANOTHER suburb. ARGGGGG!

    • angiebabe's Profile Photo
      Oct 6, 2013 at 8:15 AM

      yes eesh...that sort of thing usually tears at most of our even little pateince! but hopefully it will sort as usually billing address for card payment and address for residence being different is still acceptable? as long as billing address for card is correct for card...

  • wabat's Profile Photo
    Oct 6, 2013 at 6:02 AM

    Kate, just finished your things to do tips , will be back for more. I always like to see how members write up their home towns... ... Your tips are great... Well written and informative..

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Oct 6, 2013 at 6:16 AM

      Thanks so much for the kind words, Albert. I have some updating to do on my pages (some of the photos go back to when we could only post low-res snaps on VT) but I try to do that whenever I've had the camera along for new photos. :O)

  • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo
    Feb 22, 2013 at 1:28 PM

    absolutely beautiful main picture - city of waters :) vibrant colours :)

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Feb 22, 2013 at 1:32 PM

      Hi Norman! Gosh, thanks for that. I took that on the absolute last nice day of autumn last October, and used a vivid setting to give the leaves a little extra punch! :O)

    • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo
      Feb 22, 2013 at 1:38 PM

      great job! you're an artiste :)

  • glabah's Profile Photo
    Jan 8, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    I should probably do the same with my Portland page in terms of a complete revamp. Alas there areoy so many hours in the day.

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Jan 9, 2013 at 1:50 AM

      Always the problem, isn't it? Then there there's all the periodic wiping of businesses closed, rechecking links....

  • riorich55's Profile Photo
    Jan 7, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    And the fact that you are doing this is part of my misc forum question today!

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Jan 7, 2013 at 2:25 PM

      Haha - I saw that! I'm needing to get after my Minneapolis stuff: old photos, need to check all the links, lots of stuff in the can....

  • Jeannette1's Profile Photo
    Nov 2, 2012 at 4:59 PM

    Beautiful photo, Kate. It deserved to win.

  • pfsmalo's Profile Photo
    Nov 1, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    That's a really lovely pic Kate,you can say you have to be lucky and be in the right place at the right time, but you still have to "see" the pic and press the button at the right time, brilliant and beautiful.

    • goodfish's Profile Photo
      Nov 1, 2012 at 5:59 PM

      Thank Paul. Coming from a REAL photographer, that's pretty special.

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