the Visit Neighboring States Series
With a population of around 86,000, Duluth Minnesota feels surprisingly small. Built up between a rocky ridgeline and the largest body of water in North America, there is much to do and see in this unique city.
Duluth offers the North Shore’s only sand beach! Five miles of clear water beauty at Park Point just a quick fun drive over the Aerial Lift Bridge.
A parking lot and public access to the beach are located on the left hand side of the street a couple blocks after crossing the bridge.
What separates Duluth from other communities is the outdoor natural landscape. Duluth has 6,834 acres of city parklands and 178 miles of wooded trails.
We had a great time visiting Enger Park and climbing the tower. The views are incredible! There is a charming Asian garden, several nice walking paths and picnic spots.
Duluth has the usual collection of family entertainment with an aquarium, zoo, children’s museum, railroads and entertainment parks. A SCI membership gives free admission to both the zoo and children’s museum.
Lake Superior Zoo hosts the stunning Kingsbury Creek, which sadly experienced flooding a few years back resulting in the loss of some animals and exhibits. That being noted, the zoo is still a fun visit with a fantastic Nocturnal Animal Building, petting zoo and Griggs Learning Center which features lots of hands-on encounters and learning. We spent around two hours visiting the zoo and really enjoyed our time there.
Duluth Children’s Museum has a few unique exhibits like a Hover Chair. The museum is overall smaller than the children’s museums in Iowa and geared more toward preschool aged children, although my first graders did enjoy our hour-long visit. Driving directions can be confusing.
Our family visited Spirit Mountain to ride the Alpine Coaster. While we had fun, our overall feeling was that the price didn’t reflect the value. We probably just tend to lean more toward the free natural experience in the region.