This beautiful park just 5 minutes from downtown Minneapolis. When checking out the waterfall, you can head down and explore the cave behind the falls. If you're looking for more activities, this park provides access to easy trails for hiking, running, and snowshoeing along the creek as well as an extensive system of biking trails.

Named after a legendary Indian princess, Minnehaha Creek cascades over a cliff in these dramatic falls just minutes from the downtowns of both Minneapolis and St. Paul. A favorite place for summer picnickers, the falls are beautiful all year long. They are strongest in June after the Spring rain, but winter transforms the falls into an icy tower.

For hikers or snowshoers, take the stairs down to the base of the falls and you'll find a trail that follows Minnehaha Creek down to its confluence with the Mississippi River. This trail is most notable for its white sandstone cliffs and small caves and the shallow lower creek is a great place for families with young children to swim and explore the creeks many tiny islands and channels. On your way back up, make sure to take the rather treacherous path that leads behind the falls for a new perspective.

If you're more interested in cycling, there are bike rentals in the park above the falls. The Minnehaha trails connect to the Minneapolis Grand Rounds, a 50 mile system connecting many of the city's parks.

Try to make it for one of the many free concerts, festivals, or outdoor movies. Pack your own lunch when you go or grab some food and beer at Sea Salt, a seafood restaurant located just a few yards from the top of the falls.

Pack List

  • Hiking shoes
  • Seasonal clothes
  • Camera
  • Picnic/ snacks
  • Water
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Activities Chillin, Photography
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Features
Adult Beverages
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Groups
Handicap Accessible
Picnic Area
River
Romantic
Scenic
Waterfall

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Quick

I was surprised that once we paid parking, we got out the car and froze our butts off to see no marked trails...but to be right at the frozen waterfall. (Literally the walk to the "trail" as less than 1 minute) we crossed barriers and police lines to get to the base of the frozen fall. Once at the bottom, very beautiful sight, however... No excitement other than the icebergs on my eyelashes, eyebrows, and crowds of people putting their children on thin ice for pictures. Be careful!

A Must During The Spring

The sheer power and sight of the waterfall is insane. But don’t just stop there, check out the trails.The vegetation near the boardwalk portion of the trail is a sight to be scene. And I’ve never been, but I’ve heard wonderful things about the seafood restaurant right near the restaurant.

Gorgeous area

Minnehaha Falls is a beautiful waterfall that was only a short walk down some stairs... the hardest part was navigating through the crowds. It was crowded each time I went since there is such easy access to the waterfall. The hike through Minnehaha Falls Park was relaxing and made you feel surrounded by nature, which was surprising to me as it is located in the middle of the city. Worth every visit!


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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