16 days in Minnesota Itinerary

16 days in Minnesota Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Minnesota trip maker

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Route & dates

16 days in Minnesota Itinerary

Start: Chicago
Fly:  3​h 30​min
1
Minneapolis
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
2
Alexandria
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h 45​min
3
Brainerd
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 30​min
4
Grand Marais
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
5
Silver Bay
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
6
Ely
— 4 nights
Drive + Fly:  6​h
End: Chicago

3
nights
Minneapolis

Minneapolis ©
Located on both banks of the Mississippi River, Minneapolis salutes the state's love of the outdoors with numerous lakes, wetlands, creeks, and waterfalls--many connected to one another by a national scenic byway great for sightseeing.
Do your shopping at LARK Toys and Red Wing Shoes. Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Summit Avenue and Charles Lindbergh House and Museum. Explore Minneapolis' surroundings by going to Minnesota's Largest Candy Store (in Jordan) and Red Wing (Sargent's Nursery & Barn Bluff). There's still lots to do: explore the world behind art at Minneapolis Institute of Art, take in the views from Wabasha Street Bridge, take in the dramatic scenery at Minnehaha Park, and have some family-friendly fun at FlyOver America.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, refer to the Minneapolis trip planner .

Chicago to Minneapolis is an approximately 3.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of subway, bus, and flight; or drive. In May in Minneapolis, expect temperatures between 68°F during the day and 50°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Tue) so you can travel to Alexandria.

Things to do in Minneapolis

Museums Parks Nature

Side Trips

Red Wing, Saint Paul, LARK Toys, Charles Lindbergh House and Museum, Minnesota's Largest Candy Store
Highlights from your plan
LARK Toys ©
LARK Toys
Summit Avenue
Summit Avenue
Red Wing Shoes ©
Red Wing Shoes

1
night
Alexandria

Alexandria ©
Alexandria is a city and the county seat of Douglas County, Minnesota. On the 29th (Wed), see the interesting displays at Runestone Museum, see the interesting displays at Minnesota Lakes Maritime Museum, then do a tasting at Carlos Creek Winery, and finally appreciate the history behind Big Ole Viking Statue.

To see ratings, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Alexandria route planner .

Drive from Minneapolis to Alexandria in 2.5 hours. Expect a daytime high around 66°F in May, and nighttime lows around 46°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Brainerd.

Things to do in Alexandria

Museums Wineries
Highlights from your plan
Runestone Museum ©
Runestone Museum
Carlos Creek Winery ©
Carlos Creek Winery
Big Ole Viking Statue ©
Big Ole Viking Statue

1
night
Brainerd

Brainerd ©
Brainerd is a city in Crow Wing County, Minnesota, United States. Start off your visit on the 30th (Thu): trek along Northland Arboretum and then trek along Paul Bunyan State Trail.

Make your Brainerd itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

You can drive from Alexandria to Brainerd in 2 hours. In May, plan for daily highs up to 66°F, and evening lows to 44°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 30th (Thu) so you can travel to Grand Marais.

Things to do in Brainerd

Parks Trails Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Northland Arboretum ©
Northland Arboretum

4
nights
Grand Marais

Grand Marais ©
Grand Marais is a city in Cook County, Minnesota, United States. Step off the beaten path and head to Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center and Grand Portage State Forest. You'll explore and learn at Sivertson Gallery and Cascade River State Park. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Grand Marais: Grand Portage (Grand Portage National Monument & Grand Portage State Park) and Temperance River State Park (in Schroeder). The adventure continues: admire the majestic nature at Judge C.R. Magney State Park, visit a coastal fixture at Grand Marais Lighthouse, stop by Joynes Department Store & Ben Franklin, and do a tasting at North Shore Winery.

For more things to do and tourist information, use the Grand Marais road trip planning site .

You can drive from Brainerd to Grand Marais in 4.5 hours. Another option is to fly. In May, Grand Marais is little chillier than Brainerd - with highs of 54°F and lows of 38°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Mon) so you can go by car to Silver Bay.

Things to do in Grand Marais

Parks Nature Museums

Side Trips

Lutsen, Grand Portage, Temperance River State Park
Highlights from your plan
Sivertson Gallery ©
Sivertson Gallery
Cascade River State Park ©
Cascade River State Park
Grand Portage National Monument ©
Grand Portage National Monument

2
nights
Silver Bay

Silver Bay ©
Silver Bay is a city in Lake County, Minnesota, United States. Start off your visit on the 4th (Tue): admire the majestic nature at Split Rock Lighthouse State Park, immerse yourself in nature at Gooseberry Falls State Park, and then stop by Great Lakes Candy Kitchen. On the next day, kick back and relax at Onyx Beach, admire the majestic nature at Tettegouche State Park, and then take in the dramatic natural features at Shovel Point.

To see ratings, maps, more things to do, and tourist information, read our Silver Bay trip site .

You can drive from Grand Marais to Silver Bay in 1.5 hours. Traveling from Grand Marais in June, you will find days in Silver Bay are somewhat warmer (69°F), and nights are about the same (46°F). Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Ely.

Things to do in Silver Bay

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Two Harbors, Tettegouche State Park, Great Lakes Candy Kitchen
Highlights from your plan
Shovel Point ©
Shovel Point
Tettegouche State Park ©
Tettegouche State Park
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park ©
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park

4
nights
Ely

Ely ©
Ely is a city in Saint Louis County, Minnesota, United States. Take a break from the city and head to Kawishiwi Falls Trail and Soudan Underground Mine. Museum-lovers will appreciate Forest History Center and North American Bear Center. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Ely: Minnesota Discovery Center (in Chisholm) and World's Largest Authentic Hockey Stick (in Eveleth). There's still lots to do: immerse yourself in nature at Bear Head Lake State Park, make a trip to The Tower-Soudan Historical Society Historical Center, look for gifts at Piragis Northwoods Company, and take in the exciting artwork at Brandenburg Gallery.

For ratings, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Ely trip planner .

Drive from Silver Bay to Ely in 1.5 hours. In June, daytime highs in Ely are 71°F, while nighttime lows are 48°F. You'll set off for home on the 9th (Sun).

Things to do in Ely

Parks Museums Nature

Side Trips

Soudan Underground Mine, Forest History Center, The Tower-Soudan Historical Society Historical Center, World's Largest Authentic Hockey Stick, Minnesota Discovery Center
Highlights from your plan
Kawishiwi Falls Trail ©
Kawishiwi Falls Trail
Forest History Center ©
Forest History Center
Minnesota Discovery Center ©
Minnesota Discovery Center

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