(In no particular order … )
No. 1: Water Park Of America
Water Park of America Website
1700 American Blvd. E | Bloomington, MN 55425
Not only is it the biggest indoor water park in America, but it is home to Minnesota’s only Flow Rider Surf Simulator. Not in the mood for slides and fast paced action? Float along the lazy river to your heart’s desire. It’s always summer in here!
No. 2: Science Museum of Minnesota
Science Museum of Minnesota Website
120 W. Kellogg Blvd.| St. Paul, MN 55102
Hands-on learning is what this place is all about. Check out dinosaur fossils and physics experiments year-round, or special exhibits like The Dead Sea Scrolls when they roll in to town. Kids and adults will be wowed here.
No. 3: Roller Garden
Roller Garden Website
5622 West Lake St. | St. Louis Park, MN 55416
Nostalgia hits you big time when you are listening to top-40 hits on roller skates. Complete with a shiny, silver disco ball that speckles images of junior high around the rink, Roller Garden is a place to relive and make new memories.
No. 4: Mall Of America
Mall of America’s Website
60 East Broadway | Bloomington, MN 55425
Where else can you go to ride roller coasters, play putt putt, watch a movie and shop ’til you drop — only at the Mall of America. Home to Nickelodeon Universe and Underwater Adventures Aquarium this place could give you a new adventure everyday of the year.
No. 5: Mill City Museum
Mill City Museum Website
704 South 2nd St. | Minneapolis, MN 55401
This museum is built in the ruins of what was once the world’s largest flour mill, and it is now full of fun, baking history. Take an 8-story elevator ride in the “Flour Tower” or pop on over to the “Baking Lab” and partake in delicious demonstrations and sample fresh bread.
No. 6: Edinborough Park
Edinborough Park Website
7700 York Ave. S | Edina, MN 55435
Climb up 37-feet to the top of Adventure Peak, a huge playground in Edinborough Park, as part of almost an acre of indoor adventure. There’s a multipurpose space that gives kids a chance to run around, play with balls or hop in a bounce house. All the trees and plants are perfect for a picnic.
No. 7: Minnesota Children’s Museum
Minnesota Children’s Museum Website
10 West Seventh St. | St. Paul, MN 55102
A mind is a terrible thing to waste, and here, it’s impossible for kids to not learn something new. It’s all about teaching through play and when you are racing boats, learning about the Earth, and exploring what makes us human, it’s hard to be bored. Even babies can’t help but be curious.
No. 8: Park Tavern Bowling & Entertainment Center
Park Tavern Website
3401 Louisiana Ave. | St. Louis Park, MN 55426
You can’t strike out when it comes to bowling, but you can get a strike! If you’ve got spare change, why not take the family out to knock down a few pins. It’s good exercise, and remember, there are no gutter balls when the bumpers are up.
No. 9: Bell Museum of Natural History
Bell Museum Website
10 Church St. SE | Minneapolis, MN 55455
When you can’t get outside to see live animals at a zoo, check out some of the great dioramas of them at the Bell Museum. Families can learn about the wonder of nature through a bog simulator and actually feel animal fur, shells, and antlers in the Touch and See room.
No. 10: Walker Art Center
Walker Art Center Website
1750 Hennepin Ave. | Minneapolis, MN 55403
A hub of arts and culture, this place has it all — Picasso, Warhol, and O’Keeffe to name a few. Amazing artists’ works line the halls and you can even grab a spot to have lunch or take a class. When it’s not rainy, explore the sculpture gardens.
-Alison Lorge is a Web Producer and Blogger at WCCO.com.