Best Twin Cities Attractions for a Fall Weekend Getaway

Best Twin Cities Attractions for a Fall Weekend Getaway

Best Twin Cities Attractions for a Fall Weekend Getaway

Now is a great time to visit or revisit the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul.  While Minnesota is often associated with friendly people or fun on the lakes, the state is also becoming known for its diverse activities and as the perfect destination for a weekend (or more).  Whether looking for a world-class art scene, the biggest and best mall in the country, serene nature or all of the above then be sure to put the Twin Cities high on your list.  Here are some of our favorite endeavors in the area.

1. Mall of America

The Mall of America has always been a draw for serious shoppers, bargain hunters, and adventuring families alike. In October 2015 the Mall’s finalized Expansion Project reveals an adjoining luxury hotel, The JW Marriott, as well as unique upscale retailers and restaurants. Fashion hunters will love the new Armani Exchange, Kate Spade New York, Michael Kors Lifestyle, and BCBGMAXAZRIA, as well as world-class department stores Nordstrom and Macy’s. Unwind and prepare to look gorgeous with an invigorating package at the mindful flower-based Aveda Progressions Spa, or hang out and people watch at one of over 20 buzzing happy hour or dinner locations. End the day laughing with friends at the House of Comedy. Traveling with the family? Kids will love the Nickelodeon Universe theme park, SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium, LEGO, or the new Minnesota Children’s Museum. Hard-to-please tweens and teens? No worries! MOA boasts indoor mini golf, flight simulator, movie theaters, and a bowling alley.

2. Saint Croix River Valley
Just a short scenic drive from the Twin Cities, the Saint Croix River Valley is one of the most beautiful places to witness the changing colors of autumn. Surrounded by a forest, dramatic cliffs, waterfalls, and a winding river, it is also a unique geological and educational site, with visible lava formations and the world’s deepest glacial potholes. Outdoorsy types can hike, kayak, and camp well into October, while day-trippers can take in the view while relaxing with dinner and drinks on an authentic paddleboat cruise. Winter travelers will enjoy local cross-country and downhill skiing or snow tubing. Looking for a fun old-timey experience? Taylors Falls offers “The Old Jail Bed and Breakfast,” a former jailhouse converted into a B&B!

3. Guthrie Theater

In the heart of Minneapolis, the Guthrie Theater was founded in 1963 and has become a premier national center for theater. Rebuilt in 2006, Time called its gorgeous blue $125 million space “a 21st-century dream factory” with three stages and amazing views of the city. The Guthrie is known for profound intimacy between actor and audience, and even offers behind-the-scenes tours Friday and Saturday mornings at 10:00 a.m., where theater buffs will see the stages, costume shops, and rehearsal rooms. One of the unique architectural features of the Guthrie is the “Endless Bridge,” one of the longest cantilevers in the world, which stretches more than half a block from the building. Foodies will love Sea Change at the Guthrie, a sustainable full-service seafood restaurant and raw bar, with menu designed by James Beard Award-winning chef Tim McKee. Have a little time before the show? Walk around downtown Minneapolis and take in the skyline.

4. Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel
Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel is the place for gambling the Midwestern way, with a modern bingo hall featuring Late Night Cosmic Bingo! Of course there are also slots, blackjack, and pull tabs, and Mystic’s on-site hotel offers the perfect place to crash and unwind. Staying at a different hotel, or playing all day at the Mall first? No problem – Mystic Lake’s free shuttle buses make more than 50 stops throughout the Twin Cities, and operate throughout the day and evening. Many people come to Mystic just for the amazing food and drinks – the Casino features eight bars and restaurants, including Mystic Steakhouse, a premier Twin Cities steak experience. Mystic is also known for being a concert and show destination, with appearances by Stevie Nicks, Kenny Rogers, Penn and Teller, Last Comic Standing, and Broadway hits like Cirque Dreams. Mystic is owned and operated by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community.

5. Tap Rooms and Brewery Tours

Beer devotees know Minneapolis and Saint Paul as the up-and-coming sight for unique craft beers and remarkable tap rooms to drink them in. There are more than 50 breweries with tap rooms around the Twin Cities, with a space for every mood: historic industrial warehouses, minimalist hipster hubs, comfortable wooden lodges, or casual patios with fire pits and live music – it’s all fun and a great way to meet the locals. But seriously good beer is the focus, with locally sourced ingredients, experimental and seasonal taps, and even places to brew your own beer. The best part about taprooms are the experts right on hand to talk about what you both love and recommend a sampler. Like what you tasted? Take a growler home to share. Don’t know where to start? Local brewery tours visit multiple breweries each night!

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41 Comments

  • Reply
    Robin Rue (@massholemommy)
    Sep 9, 2015 at 6:41 pm

    I have heard so much about the Mall of America. It is definitely something I would love to check out for myself some day.

  • Reply
    sicorra
    Sep 9, 2015 at 7:37 pm

    Going to the Mall of America has been on my to do list forever. One day I will make it there for sure.

  • Reply
    Jennifer Clay
    Sep 9, 2015 at 7:38 pm

    These places sound like a lot of fun! I would love to visit the Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel! I have always wanted to go to a casino.

  • Reply
    Jessica Beal Harlow
    Sep 9, 2015 at 8:18 pm

    Living in New England, we have some beautiful foliage in the fall and lots to do that lets us enjoy the outdoors this time of year. I’d love to see Minnesota someday and take in everything it has to offer too!

  • Reply
    Elizabeth O.
    Sep 9, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    What a treat! I love the list, it’s perfect for a good quality time with a best friend or significant other.

  • Reply
    tara pittman
    Sep 9, 2015 at 10:29 pm

    I have been to the Mall of America. Such a fun place.

  • Reply
    Claudette Esterine
    Sep 10, 2015 at 3:33 am

    I must go back there – adding to my bucket list!

  • Reply
    Jonathan Key
    Sep 10, 2015 at 3:45 am

    These sounds like a lot of fun. I’d like to visit Mall of America. Great giveaway!

  • Reply
    204 Park
    Sep 10, 2015 at 4:44 am

    I’d love to go to the mall of america, we have west edmonton mall which I’ve heard is the closest to it so I’d love to be able to personally compare 🙂

  • Reply
    victoria
    Sep 10, 2015 at 6:02 am

    Love all of these places. I would love to go to the Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel i love to try the modern bingo there and eat to the Mystic Steakhouse.

  • Reply
    Ourfamilyworld
    Sep 10, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    These places sound amazing. I would love to see all this for myself someday.

  • Reply
    Mykidsguide
    Sep 10, 2015 at 1:16 pm

    Everything seems so nice to go to. Either with a bunch of people or with your SO!

  • Reply
    Jeanette
    Sep 10, 2015 at 1:36 pm

    I used to live in the Twin Cities. We went to the Mall of America a lot, with the amusement park in the middle and an aquarium in the mall this mall really has something for everyone!

  • Reply
    Liz Mays
    Sep 10, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    I can’t believe I haven’t been there in my life yet other than through the airport. I have GOT to get to Mall of America!

  • Reply
    lisa
    Sep 10, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    All of these places sound great to check out. I have always wanted to go to the Mall of America…it sounds like the ultimate in shopping!

  • Reply
    Jasmine Espinal
    Sep 10, 2015 at 6:36 pm

    Mall of America is my fave to shop!! I use to live around there and use to go all the time

  • Reply
    Chubskulit Rose
    Sep 10, 2015 at 7:59 pm

    I have never been to any of these but the Saint Croix River Valley sounds beautiful to visit.

  • Reply
    Tee
    Sep 10, 2015 at 8:18 pm

    I would love to visit the Twin Cities during the fall. My husband would certainly vote to visit the breweries while I’ll be sure to visit the Mall of the Americas. Thanks for providing this helpful list of attractions.

  • Reply
    Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle
    Sep 10, 2015 at 9:15 pm

    Mall of America is absolutely astounding in its hugeness. I’ve been there, and I was totally blown away.

  • Reply
    Jennifer Van Huss
    Sep 10, 2015 at 9:32 pm

    I have never been there and didn’t realize there ware so many fun things to do! I’ll have to keep that in mind next time I’m planing a mini vacation!

  • Reply
    Ricci
    Sep 11, 2015 at 3:11 am

    I’ve never been to the twin cities!! You make me really want to go though!!

  • Reply
    Valery Brennan (@ValeryBrennan)
    Sep 11, 2015 at 5:02 am

    I’ve never been to the Twin Cities! Of course the Mall of America is on my must-see list (how could it not be?!) but I wasn’t familiar with the others. Thanks for the awesome suggestions!

    xoxo
    Valery Brennan

  • Reply
    RonRon
    Sep 11, 2015 at 8:05 am

    Great places and cities! Thanks for sharing them up!

  • Reply
    Annemarie LeBlanc
    Sep 11, 2015 at 9:20 am

    I would love to go to the Mall of America. I have heard so many nice stories about people who were able to see it and experience it.

  • Reply
    Tatanisha Pitts-Worthey
    Sep 11, 2015 at 10:29 am

    These places sounds grand and definitely would be a lot of fun. I’ve seen Mall of America, but only in photos! lol I would love to come there someday!

  • Reply
    upliftingfam
    Sep 11, 2015 at 3:32 pm

    I’ve always wanted to go to mall of America. I haven’t ever been to the twin cities and think it would be fun to visit.

  • Reply
    Cara (@StylishGeek)
    Sep 11, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    Great suggestions…but they are all so far from me. Maybe when I visit. Always curious to see the Mall of America. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jenni E. {Sweet Pennies from Heaven}
    Sep 11, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    We’re actually heading out for an early fall vacation this coming week! Twin Cities sounds like a fun stop!!

  • Reply
    Tom
    Sep 11, 2015 at 9:21 pm

    I would love to visit the Twin Cities soon. I will be using this list when we do!!!

  • Reply
    The Pink Caboodle
    Sep 11, 2015 at 10:59 pm

    This is a great list! I have to visit all these places!

  • Reply
    Dina
    Sep 11, 2015 at 11:22 pm

    I’ve never been to the twin cities. I’ve heard it’s got a lot going for it. This is a great list.

  • Reply
    Bonnie @wemake7
    Sep 12, 2015 at 1:11 am

    I would love to go to the Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel. We kind of have something like that here but probably not as nice as that one. Thanks for this list.

  • Reply
    Manu Kalia
    Sep 12, 2015 at 7:37 am

    I got my eyes on the Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel. With a free shuttle buses I think it can save a lot.

  • Reply
    Nickida
    Sep 12, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    Mall of America is on my list of have to visit places. I’ll get there soon.

  • Reply
    HilLesha
    Sep 12, 2015 at 7:39 pm

    I have never been to the Twin Cities before, but I’d love to visit there someday. Maybe within the next couple of years!

  • Reply
    Shannon P
    Sep 12, 2015 at 8:41 pm

    This is a great list! My husband and I are thinking of a trip over there and this is great to know!

  • Reply
    gratefulheartyoga
    Sep 13, 2015 at 11:57 pm

    Minneapolis was so cool when I visited! I definitely want to go back and spend more time in the city!

  • Reply
    Jason Young
    Sep 14, 2015 at 7:18 am

    Great ideas for a good time in Minneapolis. I’ll book mark these for the next time I go.

  • Reply
    Renee
    Sep 14, 2015 at 7:50 pm

    I haven’t ever been but Mall of America is on my top bucket list. These are all great tips for people going to travel there. Thank you for sharing great tips! ♥

  • Reply
    Karlyn
    Sep 14, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    Very attractive place!! I’ve never been there yet hopefully this year.

  • Reply
    Peachy @ The Peach Kitchen
    Sep 30, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    Thanks for compiling this list of attraction. I will keep this in mind should I visit one of these cities someday.

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