Minnesota summers can sometimes be just as grueling as the winters (as we Minnesotans like to lament, “it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity”). Thankfully, we’re good at finding ways to either enjoy the rising temps or beat the heat. If you’re visiting this summer and feeling the burn, try out one of these ways to cool down.
1. Minnesota Zoo: When you think of zoos, you think of the outdoors. However, our zoo has several air-conditioned areas, like the Tropics Trail, Minnesota Trail, Penguins of the African Coast, and Discovery Bay. You can also catch a flick on the IMAX screen. Plus, the kids will love the splash pad in Central Plaza near Russia’s Grizzly Coast.
Photo by Todd Buchanan
3. Indoor waterparks: Between Waterpark of America in Bloomington and the waterpark at The Depot Minneapolis, kids of all ages can enjoy some wet and wild fun. Traveling in out-state Minnesota? Head to places like Arrowwood in Alexandria or Edgewater in Duluth, and many more.
4. Soak City at Valleyfair: Waiting in lines for roller coasters in 90 degrees doesn’t necessarily sound like fun. However, floating on a lazy river or riding a raft down a water slide? That sounds perfect. Plus, Valleyfair has several other water rides to keep you cool all day long, and waiting for a roller coaster soaking wet is a lot cooler.
5. Beaches: Because we’re (kind of) acclimated to the heat, you’ll still find us enjoying the outdoors at the local beaches. Join us!
6. Mall of America: With roller coasters, an aquarium, tax-free shopping on clothes and shoes, high-class dining, and a great nightlife scene, Mall of America is a perfect place to spend a hot day.
7. Museums: For a little air-conditioned culture, we have nearly 60 museums in the Twin Cities and more than 600 in the state. So whether you want contemporary art at the Walker, historical pieces at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, family fun at the Minnesota Children’s Museum, and everything in between, visiting our museums is an excellent way to cool down.
Big Ginger at The Local
Photo by Todd Buchanan
8. The movies: Going to a movie isn’t necessarily a top thing to do while traveling, but if you’re game, we have some stellar movie theaters in town. Find indies at Lagoon, popcorn with real butter at the Riverview, or VIP seating and cocktails at Theatres at Mall of America or Showplace ICON in St. Louis Park.
9. Lynx WNBA game: The ladies of the Lynx are the reining WNBA Champions, so head to the Target Center to watch them charge the court.
10. Sip cocktails: If you want to brave a patio or just cool off with a drink indoors, I suggest a Big Ginger at The Local, The Liffey, Cooper or Kieran’s, a Bootleg at Brit’s, a tiki-themed beverage at Psycho Suzi’s in Northeast, or an inventive cocktail at Chino Latino in Uptown.