One good thing about being Minnesotan is enjoying the fall colors that come with the colder weather every year. With such beautiful colors of the fall leaves, it is no wonder that a weekend drive to view the scenery is a popular activity. Because Minnesota is such a big state, there are also a large number of places to go for seeing the fall colors. Areas of mountains, forests and lakeside beaches all offer different landscapes and come with their own unique beauty. Travel to any of these places to see some of the best fall colors in the country.
Afton State Park
6959 Peller Ave. S.
Hastings, MN 55033
Afton State Park offers the best landscapes of Minnesota in one area. Hike to the top of the bluffs overlooking the St. Croix River and look down on the beautiful fall colors. There are also miles of trails for hiking or horseback riding that run through prairie landscapes and lush wilderness areas. Watch the river on the beach of the St. Croix where you will also have a perfect view of the changing colors across the river. Families can spend the day enjoying the outdoors at Afton State Park where there are picnic areas and a visitor’s center for ideas on where things are located in the park.
35295 Minnesota 64
LaPorte, MN 56461
At the very edge of Paul Bunyan State Forest lies a quaint winery that offers seasonal joys to those traveling up north. Forestedge Winery has created craft wines made of fruits other than grapes. Its wines are seasonal and offer a taste of fall to those wishing to sample fall flavors such as the apple wine. There is a picnic patio for visitors to sit and enjoy the serenity of the forest and the fall colors. Visit this winery that is set back in the woods and caters to nature lovers and guests from all over.
North Shore Scenic Railroad
506 W. Michigan St.
Duluth, MN 55802
Glimpse the changing colors of the landscape from the window of an historical train. At the North Shore Scenic Railroad, the lakefront line has been restored to take passengers along the north shore and through downtown Duluth while learning about the history of the area. A longer ride takes visitors deep into the north woods where one can enjoy the lush forestry of Minnesota. The train runs from May until October and offers packages that include 90-minute rides, a six-hour trek or a dinner package.
Blue Mounds State Park
1410 161st. St.
Luverne, MN 56156
A unique landscape to experience the fall colors lies in southwest prairie country at the Blue Mounds State Park. A backdrop of the red Sioux quartzite cliff marks the state park that incorporates many acres of prairie land. The fall colors range from gold to purple at Blue Mounds State Park, whether you are viewing the prairie grass or the fall flowers that grow wild. Bison, deer and many varieties of birds can also be spotted on your tour of the prairie. Bring a camera because there’s sure to be some fantastic shots waiting to be captured.
Superior National Forest
8901 Grand Ave. Place
Duluth, MN 55808
On the northeast tip of Minnesota, the Superior National Forest is a vast area preserved and protected by the state. For those who wish to add a bit of outdoor recreation to their fall tour, the Superior National Forest allows some of the best hiking, fishing and canoeing in the country. Go deep into the forest in the fall when temperatures are cooler and there are less bugs out to ruin your trip. The Superior National Forest won’t disappoint if you’re looking to see some beautiful colors this fall.
Andrea Wodele is a freelance writer who has lived in the Twin Cities for eight years. She loves covering all things Minnesota and her work can be found on Examiner.com.