Minnesota has a wide variety of amusement parks offering fun for the whole family, and which have been a strong part of Minnesota culture for decades. Whether you’re looking for roller coasters, delicious food, or a piece of history, you’ll find it in Minnesota. Let’s take a look at some of the best:
Head south from downtown Minneapolis for a day of roller coaster thrills, Fryer Tuck’s French fries, and live outdoor entertainment - all found at Valleyfair. A trip to this amusement park, with its trove of roller coasters and other gravity-defying rides, will satisfy even the most adventurous kid! The younger rugrats can enjoy the Peanuts Showplace, where they’ll see some classic characters mixing with new friends to create an unforgettable live show. If you’ve got a mini paleontologist on your hands, they’ll want to check out Dinosaurs Alive, an exhibit featuring dozens of life-size, life-like dinosaurs. Valleyfair also has a water park complete with a wave pool, body slides, and a lazy river so you can stay cool and beat the heat. There really is something for everyone!
Stay in nearby Bloomington for convenience, and book through TPI to get the TPI-advantage: an employee-owned company, with guests at the heart of every trip.
Nickelodeon Universe at the Mall of America
A theme park in a mall? Trust us, you’re going to want to check this one out! Criss-crossing through the center of America’s largest shopping mall is the Nickelodeon Universe. This experience is perfect for the tiny tots in your life. There are 27 different attractions, and visitors can also meet favorite Nickelodeon characters like Dora the Explorer, SpongeBob SquarePants, and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Avatar Airbender and Shredder’s Mutant Masher are great for the thrill seekers, while others might prefer to play a round of mini golf. Athletic kids might appreciate the Dutchman’s Deck Adventure Course, complete with an indoor zip line. And if you’re looking for an aquatic adventure, check out the Log Chute. Whenever you or the kids need a break, hundreds of food options, shops, and activities are right next door. You can also purchase carnival snacks at one of the food carts stationed inside the park.
Book a room nearby with TPI Hospitality so you can beat the crowds and make the most of your visit!
Paul Bunyan Land
Roughly two hours north of Minneapolis you’ll find good, clean, old-fashioned fun at Paul Bunyan Land. Named after the mythical lumberjack, this Brainerd amusement park doubles as a campground, so you can stay the night or picnic nearby during your visit. The park itself offers classic rides like a Ferris Wheel, a Merry Go Round, and a Tilt-A-Whirl. There is also the historic Pioneer Village - an interactive museum which offers visitors a glimpse of life in the old days. Travel back in time to the 1800s by visiting an antique schoolhouse, post office, and saw-mill, and marvel at the historic treasures on display. Lastly, there’s something for animal lovers at Paul’s petting barn, sure to keep even the youngest kids amused. And don’t forget: no trip to Paul Bunyan Land is complete without visiting the 26 foot tall talking Paul Bunyan!
Plan a combined zoo and theme park day at Como Town. Located next to the Como Zoo, Como Town is the perfect place to spend the day with a child from ages 2-12. This small but fun-packed theme park has rides ranging from the Tilt-a-Whirl to Bumper Cars. It also includes a splash zone for kids to cool off on a hot day.
Check the hours before you go. The Como Town’s opening and closing times change throughout the year.
The Minnesota State Fair
Each year, as August draws to a close and September opens, the Minnesota State Fair takes over the state fairgrounds. With everything from live animal attractions to fried Twinkies, you will find something for everyone at this annual event.
The rides change each year, making the Minnesota State Fair a place you and your family will want to return to year after year. The Mighty Midway hosts rides for thrill-seekers while the Kidway hosts rides for thrill-seekers in training.
Stay in nearby Roseville to take advantage of all the fair has to offer!