Minneapolis is typically combined with St. Paul to create the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, a bustling city that attracts tourists from the Midwest and further destinations. Whether you are interested in museums, theatre, sports, shopping, or nature, you will find plenty of fun activities in the city. The only problem with visiting Minneapolis is narrowing down the hundreds of tourists sites to the top attractions to fit into your schedule. This list of the top 10 attractions in Minneapolis, Minnesota will help get you started by letting you know the must-see spots.
The Walker is considered a top international art venue and has contemporary design and visual arts exhibits, film screenings, and performances such as music, theater, and dance. The museum opened in 1971 and was expanded in 2005. Throughout the campus, there are 11 exhibition galleries as well as the McGuire Theatre, a cinema, a cafe, restaurant, bar, outdoor terraces, and indoor lounges. It also hosts the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden which covers 11 acres and holds 40 works.
The Mall of America is one of the most popular attractions worldwide and it is right in Minneapolis. The mall hosts 520 stores and 50 restaurants in addition to numerous attractions. To help you save money, Minneapolis doesn't have sales tax on shoes or clothing. You will find attractions for kids and adults of all ages in the Mall, including Nickelodeon Universe, Lego, American Girl, Sea Life Minnesota Aquarium, and movie theaters. Check the calendar during your visit to the area as there are more than 400 events each year, such as World Sumo Champion Exhibitions, the Month of Mom, Toddler Tuesdays, and book signings.
The Minneapolis Institute of Arts is a must see attraction for those of all ages. You can find exhibits and artifacts spanning all continents and all ages, with some items dating back 40,000 years. There are prints and drawings, photography and new media, paintings, sculptures, decorative arts, textiles, and contemporary art as well as specific collections to explore focusing on Asian art, African art, and American art. In addition to the permanent collection, there are also rotating exhibits focusing on a range of topics such as contemporary native artists, anatomy, and photography.
The Orpheum Theatre dates back to 1921 when it was called the Hennepin. Today it seats 2,579 people and throughout the years it has hosted notable acts such as the Marx Brothers, Jack Benny, Fanny Brice, Gone with the Wind, My Fair Lady, and even movies such as Thunderball. Restoration starting in 1993 created the Orpheum that you can experience today. Either go on a theatre tour to learn about its history, architecture, and more or attend a performance.
Another of the top attractions in Minneapolis is the Minnesota Orchestra at their location in Orchestra Hall. The Hall has been hosting the orchestra since its opening in 1974 and throughout then, there have been over 10 million people in attendance at the concerts. The hall is right in the middle of downtown and has excellent acoustics to improve the sound of all performances. The Orchestra Hall does have a menu of drinks and snacks to enjoy during the intermission of concerts as well.
The Minnesota Children's Museum is one of the best attractions in Minneapolis for families with small children. This interactive museum teaches children about all areas of science and more through fun and also offers fun ways to play and build community. Some permanent exhibits include Earth World to look at the habitats in the state, Habitot which lets toddlers explore this environment, World Works for observation and problem-solving, and Rooftop ArtPark which is an interactive art gallery for the whole family. At any given point, there are also visiting exhibits, such as Broken? Fix It.
Nature lovers will enjoy Minnehaha Falls, whose creek goes right through Minneapolis. This 53 foot high waterfall is part of Minnehaha Park, where you can spend a full day relaxing. The park covers 193 acres and in addition to the water falls, it also has statues of Minnehaha and Hiawatha. This is one of the most popular destinations during the summer months. Even during the winter it is a majestic site as the falls freeze, creating a breathtaking wall of ice. While there, take a hike downstream to explore wildflowers and woods or end up by the Mississippi River.
Address: 4801 S Minnehaha Drive Minneapolis, MN 55417
No trip to Minneapolis is complete without a visit to Target Field. This is the home of the Minnesota Twins baseball team located in western downtown. This open-air ballpark is known for its food, atmosphere, view, and seating. It is easily accessible from the rest of downtown so you can fit it into a night out to enjoy the rest of the city.
Dating back to May 7, 1963, Guthrie Theater has long been a popular attraction in Minneapolis-St. Paul. The first play shown was Hamlet under the direction of Sir Tyrone Guthrie, who founded the theatre. In 2006, a new building was built and its exterior walls show large images of memorable past performances. Head to the theatre for a play, musical, concert, or other event. You can also simply visit the theatre when a performance is not on and go on a tour, either a self-guided audio one or a guided backstage tour. There are also architecture tours and costume rental tours, with the latter focusing on the over 30,000 unique pieces.
The Mill City Museum takes a look at the history of the industry of flour milling. It is part of the Washburn A Mill, which was constructed in 1880, when it was the largest of its type. The structure was destroyed in a 1991 fire and today you will find the museum on the ruins with a space spanning 8 stories. Visit this attraction for a look at how Minneapolis led flour production between 1880 and 1903.