A Mini Solo Road Trip from the Twin Cities to Mankato, Minnesota.

Autumn Aquarius Minnepolis

The wedding of my beautiful cousin Brittany to her amazing husband Mike brought me out on a rare Spring trip to Minnesota this past weekend. I usually venture out there for the Elder Family Reunion in the Summer, the time of year well removed from the notorious blistering Minnesota Winter.  As soon as we touched down from the plane I felt the crisp Spring air, saw the colorful flowers bursting with life all over the place, and knew it was a grand time to visit for a wedding in Minnesota. I arrived a day ahead of my husband, and had to pick up the rental car but instead of just driving myself 100 miles straight to Mankato, I took the opportunity to have an adventure in the Twin Cities without worrying about what anyone but little old me wanted to do. I stopped at some old favorites and found a cool new one for me to check out along the way. When you find yourself near Minneapolis/Saint Paul, these places are pretty awesome to see:

  1. The Mall of America.

Autumn Aquarius Mall of America

It’s massive and even has a theme park inside! It’s a hop, skip, and a jump away from the airport so it was easy to get to from there. I walked around being a typical tourist snapping photos and people watching.  I also hauled a gift over from San Diego for my cousin when I totally could have just bought it there and saved room in my luggage. They have nearly every store imaginable.  It’s definitely worth spending some time strolling around! If you have more time check out Nickelodeon Universe!

2. Lake Nokomis.

Lake Nokomis Autumn Aquarius MN

Not really sure why I never noticed this beautiful lake before on the drive up, but I’m glad I finally did. It’s a perfect place to walk around, or just sit and admire the sky reflect off the water during golden hour.

3. Matt’s Bar and Grill.

Autumn Aquarius Jucy Lucy

Three words you guys: Original Jucy Lucy.  Yes, it’s spelled “Jucy.” If you have not tried one yet, you are missing out. It’s a delicious cheeseburger with the cheese melted inside the burger patty. SO GOOD. Matt’s Bar is one of two bars that claim to have invented it.

Minnesota’s Largest Candy Store.

Minnesota's Largest Candy Store

Okay, I have to admit I’m cheating a little bit on this one.  Unbeknownst to me, the store was closed for the season when I was in town this time but technically I did stop there! Even if only to find out it was closed. Don’t miss it if you’re in town and it’s open. It is sure to have any sweets you can think of to satisfy your sugar cravings!

I would love to check out more cool places in and around the Minneapolis/Saint Paul area! If you have any suggestions of things I can’t miss, leave them in the comments!

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Jamie is a writer with a passion for adventure, history, and more. When she’s not out exploring the world, Jamie is at home in sunny San Diego, CA chasing sunsets and carne asada fries, preoccupied with research, or invested in a good book and a cup of tea.

9 thoughts on “A Mini Solo Road Trip from the Twin Cities to Mankato, Minnesota.

  1. Como Park and Conservatory in St. Paul is a fun place to visit. I’d suggest a tour of the state capitol building in St. Paul if you’re into history and architecture. Ditto for the St. Paul Cathedral.

    Mankato has a wonderful Sculpture Walk and Sibley Park and Zoo…

    Since you’re a reader of Minnesota Prairie Roots, you can find lots of visiting Minnesota ideas there.

    Welcome to our state! Spring is a great time to visit and enjoy the outdoors.

    1. Awesome, thank you! It was a short visit this time, but I’m planning a longer one next Summer! I’ll be sure to check those places out! I’ve been to Sibley Park! It’s not far from where my family is. Beautiful place.

      I do enjoy reading your blog! I will definitely use it as a reference for the longer trip!

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