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May 2024
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If you have a little more time to explore, this is one of my favorite short day excursions from the twin cities.  Taylors Falls is a little over an hour northeast of the twin cities on the St. Croix River, the border of Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Interstate State Park offers 4 miles of hiking (be prepared for rugged terrain and stone steps) with some really spectacular rock formations.

Franconia Sculpture Park is a bit wierd and I’ve never been in, but if you’re up for some strange art in the middle of a field I believe there is no admission charged.

The St. Croix River is really gorgeous and if you’d like to see a bit more of it than just from the shore you can take a 30 or 80 minute reasonably priced scenic boat excursion on a beautiful river boat.  If you’re more adventurous, canoe rentals are also available.  As long as the wind isn’t against you, canoeing the St. Croix River is a relaxing way to spend an afternoon and you might even get to see some bald eagles.

Finally, my favorite place to eat is The Drive-In, a classic 50’s style drive in with carhops in poodle skirts on roller skates that makes their own rootbeer and great burgers.  Plus, they have an 18 hole mini golf for some pre or post-dinner fun!