Dubbed the City of Lakes, Minneapolis is dominated by lakes, waterfalls, creeks and wetlands including a portion of the Mississippi River visited by thousands of tourists every day. Tourism in this beautiful city is also driven by various festivals and recreational destinations for the family.
Minneapolis Attractions – Major Family-Friendly Sites
Valleyfair! Family Amusement Park in downtown Minneapolis has over 75 classic rides and 20 new rides at its new Planet Snoopy theme park. It also has Soak City Water Park, which has water slides and different kinds of swimming pools. Also one of the major Minneapolis attractions and the biggest indoor theme park in the United States, Nickelodeon Universe has seven acres of wild rides, restaurants and special entertainment productions and performances. Kids get a chance to meet their favorite Nickelodeon characters including SpongeBob and Dora on selected dates. Some Minneapolis attractions for the family involve educational tours of former Native American settlements such as St. Anthony Falls, christened in the seventeenth century.
Minneapolis Events – Festivals and Fairs
Some highlights of winter activities in Minnesota’s largest city are Winter Carnival and Winterfest, both of which are heavily charged with music, beer and good old Minneapolis dishes in large servings. Locals look forward to Minneapolis events in the spring such as the Spring Awakening, a free event held every year to showcase unique floral sculptures and arrangements. Foreigners are encouraged to experience the May Day Parade, held along Bloomington Avenue. The Minnesota Renaissance Festival is celebrated in the fall, usually from mid-August to late September. This is one of the biggest Minneapolis events every year, featuring more than 275 crafters and 700 entertainers. Over 120 food booths are set up throughout the festival.
Minneapolis Art – Galleries
The city’s growing art industry has led to the expansion of exhibit space in various galleries, most importantly the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, making the city a hotbed of creative masterpieces. The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, a government-funded museum, can be visited free of charge and its permanent displays are open for photography. About 5,000 years of world history represented by 80,000 items are found in the museum. The Walker Art Center’s architecturally innovative exterior is as impressive as its collection of modern art. One of the “big five” contemporary art museums in the country, this Minneapolis art center has displayed works in performing arts, film, and visual arts from the likes of Salvador Dali, Twyla Tharp and Joseph Cornell.