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Top 5 Minnesota State Parks

Updated: Oct 22, 2020

Known for cold winters, the Vikings, and their lakes, Minnesota is also home to 66 state parks. With 66 options it may be a little intimidating choosing where to visit, so let us make it a little easier by sharing our top 5 favorite Minnesota state parks.

Minnesota is known for cold winters, the Vikings, and lakes. But did you know that this great state is also home to 66 state parks? With so many choices, you may feel a little overwhelmed so here are five of our favorite state parks that we recommend this summer!

“Minnesota is home to 66 state parks, which can be a little overwhelming. So below are a list of 5 of our favorites that we recommend this summer."

Banning State Park

With over 17 miles of hiking along the Kettle River, Banning State Park is a real treat for outdoor enthusiasts. The park has sandstone rock formations and the ruins of Banning Sandstone Quarry as well as a beautiful waterfall called Wolf Creek Falls. Best of all, Big Creek Falls which is also part of the park is only 90 miles North of the Twin Cities, making it an easy day trip.

Glacier Lakes State Park

Looking for a spot that is family-friendly and offers abundant opportunities for swimming? Look no further than Glacial Lakes State Park, which offers views of rolling hills and crystal-clear lake views. Are you short on time? Bring some food and have a picnic at the beach area or drop a line and enjoy fishing from the pier near the beach.

Lake Vermilion- Underground Mine State Park

This is Minnesota’s newest state park - established in 2010, it consists of over 4,000 acres and 10 miles of Lake Vermilion shoreline. The park offers plenty of opportunities for hiking, fishing, and tours of Minnesota’s oldest and deepest iron ore mine. This summer, visitors can stay at any of the 33 new campsites or at one of the park’s three boat-in campsites.

Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park

This state park is by far the most unique of the parks on our list and includes 13 miles of underground caves! The caves were discovered in 1937 and the area gained state park status in 1963. Visitors to the caves can view dripping stalactites and stalagmites as well as underground pools.

Wild River State Park

Wild River State Park is our dog-friendly pick for this week. The park is located along 18 miles of the beautiful St. Croix River and offers several trail options for you and your pooch. Fun Fact! Wild River's landscape was created by the events of the last Ice Age.

As always, our Speedy Blaze start kit is a trusted travel companion for any adventure. You can find our kits at select Speedways and you can always order directly through Speedy Blaze online. No matter where the road may take you next, we hope it is a trip full of good memories!

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