Edit ModuleShow Tags

Tour Minnesota Lakes & Rivers on a Stand Up Paddleboard


I’m not the most athletic person. When it comes to summer activities like running after a soccer ball or diving for a volleyball on the beach, I’m more likely to say, “Nah, you go ahead. I’ll sit here in my lawn chair, read my book, and sip my beer.” I’ll lounge on a boat, float on a raft, or dip my feet in the kiddie pool before jumping into a friendly game of badminton or slipping on inline skates.

However, over the past couple of years, there’s one sport that I’ve been dying to try, so much so, I look at myself and think, “Who is this person?” But here I am, thinking stand up paddleboarding looks like an absolute blast. Would you believe me when I say stand up paddleboarding is the fastest growing water sport in the world? It’s true, and the cool thing is that almost anyone can do it. You don’t have to ride the waves like on a surfboard, you just have to stand and paddle. Keeping your balance (and strengthening your inner core) and working your arms proves to be a great workout, for nearly all ages (under 14 years and 100 pounds seems to be the cut off).

Stand Up Minnesota

Photo courtesy of Stand Up MN

Turns out, stand up paddleboarding is a great way to experience Minnesota’s rivers and lakes. We have tour companies that use paddleboards or you can just rent one for an hour and give it a try. (For some pointers, REI offers some great paddleboarding tips and video clips for beginners.)

Stand Up MN is one company that’s taken a cue from this sport’s popularity, offering tours down the Mississippi River, through either Minneapolis or St. Paul. For a few weekends in August, the company is expanding its tour menu to include Taylor’s Falls, the Coon Rapids Dam, and Hastings. All tours have a professional guide (who will take pictures for you!) and are great for beginners and veterans. Those looking for shorter excursions can try the weekday tour, which goes down the Mississippi through the University of Minnesota campus. Stand Up MN even offers sunset tours.

Twin Cities Paddleboard delivers paddleboards to your lake of choice (for groups of four or more, some lakes excluded) and includes an introductory lesson as well. You can also rent paddleboards at Dakota County Parks, lakes Calhoun, Nokomis, and Harriet in Minneapolis, Bryant Lake Park in Eden Prairie, at Lake Lodge Recreation Center in Winona, in the Brainerd Lakes area, and at many of our other 12,000 lakes.

So, what do you think? Are you with me?

Edit ModuleShow Tags

About This Blog

Whether you are a seasoned Twin Cities traveler or planning your first trip to Minnesota, this blog will introduce you to many new adventures to add to your itinerary. From day trips and scenic discoveries to luxurious girls weekends, travel tips, and insider scoops, our editors will give you all the information you need to enjoy your stay Up North.

Learn about the contributing writers.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Travel Blog

Record Store Day: Where to Find Rare Releases in MN

On April 21, rock out at mini-music festivals around the state, dig into gourmet donuts, and collect the rare vinyls available one time a year

Catch the Lyrids Meteor Shower

The meteor shower peaks April 21 and 22, just in time for Earth Day

A Day Trip to Excelsior

Just 20 miles west of the Twin Cities, this waterfront town is complete with charming shops and lakeside dining

Night Art Gallery Is Your Sober Night Out

The Lindstrom art gallery entertains with hors d'oeuvres, tons of art available for purchase, and non-alcholic drinks

Weekend Activities to Satisfy Your Inner-Child

Check out these weekend activities that will have you feeling like a kid again.

Sue Z.'s Charitable Check-In: April

Sue Z.'s picks for philanthropic food events in April will have you supporting women chefs, sipping crafty cocktails, and celebrating Cookie Cart's 30th birthday

A Day Trip to Waconia

Enjoy great views, dining, and craft beverage destinations in this West Metro lakeside town

11 Easter Egg Hunts: From Flashlights to Geocaching

Yes, there's an annual adults-only Easter egg hunt in Rochester—and another for dogs, and another with geocaching, and another that drops them out of the sky. Check out more of the best egg hunts around Minnesota.

Rock Climbing in Minnesota

Rock on this spring at climbing gyms and favorite outdoor spots around Minnesota

5 Natural Wonders in Minnesota

Mother Nature takes the best selfies

Bad Axe Throwing Opens Minneapolis Location

Axe throwing makes its debut in Northeast Minneapolis—and it's not as dangerous as it sounds

Visit Award-Winning Minnesota Distilleries

Tattersall Distilling, J. Carver Distillery, and RockFilter Distillery are all worth the trip

Sue Z.'s Charitable Check-In: March

Sue Z. picks Cochon555 as her philanthropic food event this month

5 Must-See Minnesota Public Gardens

Visiting these botanical wonders are sure to make your daisy
Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags