A common mid-day activity among locals and travelers here in the Twin Cities is a day trip to a nearby community in search of something nostalgic, peaceful, and historic. Minnestay has properties in various parts of the state, including Lake Minnetonka, Brainerd, and, of course, North Loop Minneapolis. You’ll never run out of mid-day fun in the Twin Cities, but there are a handful of day trips from Minneapolis that are well worth the short detour. 

Day Trips from Minneapolis: Orchards, Horse Racing, and Beer

The team here at Minnestay hand-selected three day trips from Minneapolis that perfectly encapsulate the true allure of the “suburbs.” While these destinations aren’t often considered suburbs, they’re technically a part of the metropolitan area. They collectively play an integral role in the tourism industry, particularly for those that appreciate small-town charm, scenic drives, and downtown shopping.


Stillwater has it all: breweries, high-end shopping, ice cream, historical significance, picturesque architecture, and natural beauty. The restaurant scene is tough to beat, as is the 1931 lift bridge that allows boats to freely motor through the wide St. Croix River, which acts as a border between Minnesota and Wisconsin.


Essential stops: Lift Bridge Brewing, Mad Capper Saloon & Eatery, Pinch ‘n Rub Spice & Tea Hub, Tin Bins Cafe, Tremblay’s Sweet Shop, Warden’s House Museum, Ziggy’s on Main


Shakopee was once a quiet river town along the banks of the Minnesota River. Over the years, it has become an entertainment hub unlike any other in the state, thanks to Valleyfair, Canterbury Park, and nearby Mystic Lake Casino. The annual Renaissance Festival and Halloween-inspired Trail of Terror also attracts tens of thousands of visitors.


Essential stops: Badger Hill Brewing Company, Bravis Modern Street Food, Canterbury Park, Minnesota Renaissance Festival, Stonebrooke Golf Club, The Landing, Trail of Terror, Valleyfair


The lovely village of Jordan remains one of the most romantic day trips from Minneapolis, with its sprawling apple orchards, peaceful hillside trails, and quaint downtown appeal. The Candy Store is obviously a massive hit, regardless of your age, and the town recently welcomed its first brewery.


Essential stops: Carasim Coffee Shop, Jordan Supper Club, Louisville Swamp, Minnesota Harvest, Minnesota’s Largest Candy Store, Roets, Sand Creek Adventures

Lake Minnetonka House Rentals

It’s worth noting that Hastings and Taylors Falls narrowly missed this list. Both St. Croix River towns are well worth the journey east. You’ll notice that the best day trips from Minneapolis typically rest near a water source, typically a river. But don’t overlook Lake Minnetonka, a west suburb delight with a wide selection of luxury homes along the sandy shoreline. With nearly 23 square miles of surface area, Lake Minnetonka is a boater’s dreamland. Luckily, Minnestay has three opulent lake homes near Mound and Spring Park, all of which are sure to wow your guests. We also have a fleet of luxury estates, city lofts, and penthouses in or near the heart of Minneapolis. Please give us a call today at 612-216-5511 to get matched with a vacation rental that suits your group’s size, style, and budget.