Staycation to-do List for Fall in MN
The Fall is truly one of the best times to be in Minnesota. It's no longer unreasonably hot, not yet freezing, and, let's face it: we're foliage spoiled. Minnesota trees look so stunning throughout the fall season, turning vibrant orange, pink and red. You can catch an evening reflection of oranges and reds over a lake or you can bike through a stunning autumn-colored park. If you really want to embrace the spirit of Minnesota in the fall, here are a few suggestions for your fall bucket list.
1. Pick Your Pumpkin
Minnesota is home to some awesome seasonal experiences at Apple orchards and pumpkin patches. There's nothing more fall than getting outside, embracing the chill in the air, and walking around picking apples and pumpkin patches.
Minnesota is the birthplace of some of the best kinds of apples, like honeycrisp! Embrace this seasonal, delicious, local fruit. Pick up a peck to bake into pies or just eat slathered in peanut butter.
This year, I went to Afton Apple, where you jump on a hayride to go pick your apples and pumpkins. It was great fun but there are orchards all over the place: check out Pine Tree Apple Orchard in White Bear Lake, or Victoria Valley Orchard in St. Paul.
2. Visit a distillery
As the weather gets cooler and we retreat indoors, we also reach for a little something to warm us up... and there are so many awesome local distilleries in Minnesota, that that thing might as well be a beer (or a cocktail).
Most of our amazing local distilleries have bottles available in local liquor stores, but it's so much more fun to pop in and see where the alcohol is made! Many of them have tours on Saturdays or even cocktail making classes, so you have the opportunity to learn a little bit about your favorite libation.
If you're up in Duluth, let Vilkre Distillery change your mind about gin (unless you already like gin...they'll just confirm that gin rocks). They have free tours daily at 5:30. Down in the cities, check out Norseman, which has Saturday tours and occasional "cocktail laboratories," or Sociable Cider which has tours on Saturdays in exchange for a food shelf donation.
3. Go for a hike (while you still can!)
Get outside before it's too late! That sounds dramatic, but, of course, if you live in Minnesota, you know I'm serious. While there are plenty of outdoor activities available to you once the snow hits the ground, fall is arguably the best time to get outdoors in Minnesota.
Is there anything better than wandering around Minnesota's wonderful parks and trails in the fall? Go for a hike, walk, run or jog while you still want to get outside for your workout, because you've got a long winter on the treadmill ahead of you.
Find the falls at Minnehaha Regional Park, or find a park or trail in your neighborhood--it's probably not far away!
4. Get Cozy at a Coffee Shop
When the temperature drops and it's no longer iced coffee season, all I can think about it wrapping my hands around a nice warm mug of coffee or tea. A mug of something warm is the epitome of coziness.
Luckily, Minnesota has a ton of coffee shops, so no matter where you live, you aren't far from a cozy mug of coffee. The fall is a great season to check out one of the Twin Cities awesome local coffee shops, like Spyhouse Coffee or Quixotic Coffee. They're as photo friendly as they are delicious.
Of course, be green and bring your own mug or stay a while with one of their non-paper cups.
5. Find a Lake
Sometimes, I see "land of 10,000 lakes" as a challenge-- how many can you explore?
While we may associate our lakes with summer kayaking, swimming and boating, they're still lovely come fall. In fact, catching a sunrise or sunset over a lake is the perfect was to start or end a beautiful fall day. Just be sure to bring your camera, because water reflecting orange and pink sky makes for a wonderful shot.
What's still left on your fall in MN bucket list? Let us know in the comments and then run out and get it done while there's still time!
About the writer: Darcy Coulter is a content writer, journalist and the travel blogger behind Sparkle in her Suitcase. When she isn’t writing, she’s probably planning her next trip, or at least her next meal. She loves jalapeños, podcasts, and spending summer days on a Minnesota lake.
Photo Credit: http://www.brydengivingphoto.com/