Guides

Short getaways in Minneapolis – contemporary art, shopping and world-class theater

Hotel search

You’ll never see it all on a short getaway in Minneapolis, but this guide will make sure you see the best. Book a Minneapolis hotel and discover this Midwestern American jewel.

Minneapolis short getaway day one, morning

Depart your Minneapolis hotel for the Walker Art Center, one of America’s finest contemporary art museums. The glass-and-steel asymmetrical building is almost as striking as the artworks. Inside, walk beneath the dangling arms of geometric mobiles and explore room-sized installations before losing yourself in edgy multimedia displays. Across the street, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is punctuated with 20th-century artworks and horticulture plantings. Spoonbridge and Cherry, the garden’s most famous sculpture, is a Minneapolis landmark.

Start: Walker Art Center
Nearest bus stop Lyndale Avenue South at Vineland Place

Afternoon

Hop a city bus to the north side of the Mississippi River and Minneapolis’ Boom Island Park, crisscrossed by walking paths and offering an ideal vantage point to photograph the city’s skyline. Boom Island is also home to the Minneapolis Queen, a paddlewheel riverboat that transports visitors along the Mississippi to the St. Anthony Falls and Minnesota’s historic Riverfront District, once home to the world’s largest flour mills and storage silos.

Start: Minneapolis Queen Paddlewheeler
Nearest bus stop Second Street Northeast at Eighth Avenue Northeast

Evening

Minneapolis’ Riverfront District’s restaurant row serves up the comfort food the Midwest is justly famous for—and so much more. Historic brick storefronts house everything from sushi restaurants and casual pubs to steakhouses and fine-dining venues. Afterward, enjoy drinks on a riverfront patio, watching the sunset glint off Minneapolis’ high-rises and the Mississippi River below.

Start: Riverfront Distric
Nearest bus stop Second Street Northeast at Eighth Avenue Northeast 

Minneapolis short getaway day two, morning

Begin day two of your Minneapolis short getaway with your shopping list in hand at America’s most impressive venue — The Mall Of America. With 520 outlets, from specialty shops to department stores, shoppers never run out of places to scour for souvenir or spots to gift-shop. If shopping doesn’t appeal, spend the morning exploring the mall’s entertainment options. Movie theatres and miniature golf compete for visitors’ attention with the Underwater Adventures Aquarium and Nickelodeon Universe, the nation’s largest indoor amusement park. 

Start: Mall of America 
Nearest light-rail station Mall of America 

Afternoon

It’s an easy ride via light-rail from the Mall of America to the Mill City Museum, which sprang from the ruins of the world’s largest flour mill. Displays explain the process of making baked goods from wheat to flour to loaves, and exhibits recount Minneapolis’ role in feeding the continent. 

Start: Mill City Museum 
Nearest light-rail station Downtown East/Metrodome 

Evening

End your Minneapolis short getaway with a visit to the city’s Warehouse District. What was once an industrial area has been transformed into a buzzing hub. From chic cafés to comedy clubs, from theaters to nighspots, here’s where Minneapolis comes to kick back and relax. Snack on Spanish tapas or chow down on wood-fired barbecue before entering one of the neon marquees and catching a play or concert. 

Start: Warehouse District 
Nearest light-rail station Warehouse District/Hennepin Ave