10 INSTAGRAM-WORTHY SPOTS IN MINNESOTA

We want everyone (especially those with a smartphone) to venture outside their comfort zones and discover new places, trails and Minnesota charms.

But that doesn’t mean we can’t steer you in the right direction, to places we already know will photograph well and get you lots of “double taps” on Instagram.

Here are 10 of the most Instagram-worthy spots to add to your Minnesota travels; be sure to use the hashtag #OnlyinMN while documenting your adventures.

1. MINNEHAHA FALLS

Photo by Eric Ward (@littlecoal)

Photo by Eric Ward (@littlecoal)

Minnehaha Park offers an outdoorsy escape not far from the skyscrapers of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Journey here for a mini-wilderness adventure to hike picturesque trails, casually stroll the bridges and sightsee along the streams leading up to the Mississippi River. A bonus, of course, is this scenic waterfall, too beautiful to miss a snapshot.  

2. FRANCONIA SCULPTURE PARK

Photo by Dan Malimish (@malimish_dan)

Photo by Dan Malimish (@malimish_dan)

Northeast of Minneapolis-St. Paul in Shafer, Franconia Sculpture Park gives the iconic Minnesota Sculpture Gardensome competition. With ever-changing pieces of art, artistic activities for kids, and tours, this sculpture garden allows for interaction and your own artistic shots of these wild works.

3. SPLIT ROCK LIGHTHOUSE

Split Rock Lighthouse in Two Harbors offers all the draws of a perfect photo opp and outdoor adventure. With Lake Superior rushing beneath, gorgeous trails and multiple “photography specific” areas, this lighthouse has it all and will easily become one of your favorite pictorial spots.

4. BOUNDARY WATERS CANOE AREA WILDERNESS

You’ll be in awe of the wide range of options (and photos!) the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness can create. Whether you choose to feed your adventurous side or just want to make a day trip, there are 2,200 primitive campgrounds and more than 1,000 lakes and streams, all surrounded by the untouched, striking wilderness. Just don’t drop your phone in the water as you take in the beauty.

5. PAUL BUNYAN & BABE THE BLUE OX

Photo by The Democratic Travelers (@democratictravelers)

Photo by The Democratic Travelers (@democratictravelers)

Travelers and locals alike tag countless photos at the Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox statues, located in Bemidji along the Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway. Visitors hug, take selfies with or strike their own unique pose next to these two giants, making for an easy and unique Minnesota photo opportunity any time of year.

6. MISSISSIPPI HEADWATERS

Photo by Carey Ayn (@careyayn22)

Photo by Carey Ayn (@careyayn22)

The Mississippi Headwaters mark the beginning of the 2,552 miles of the Mississippi River, and deliver on their promise of being worthy of this feat. Located within Itasca State Park, this popular destination allows for fishing, hiking, biking and cross-country skiing, but also offers a more relaxed waterscape and information for selfless reflection on its significance, to create a thoughtful and eye-pleasing experience.

7. RED WING BOOT

Who knew a shoe could create so much cyber traffic? The giant boot at the Red Wing Shoe Museum has inspired countless visitors to snap artistic shots or take pictures of loved ones peering up at it. The museum also offers information on how these shoes are made, the opportunity for kids to play dress up and, of course, the flagship store to pick up your own pair to wear (and take pictures of on your feet.)

8. MINNEOPA FALLS

Photo by Pei Ketron (@pketron)

Photo by Pei Ketron (@pketron)

The Twin Cities aren’t the only place to discover a hidden waterfall. Minneopa Falls in Mankato offers its own travel escapade along the falls and in the park, also home to a new herd of purebred bison. A popular spot for weddings and special events, it is the perfect place to snap some fine-looking photos. In the winter, get a snap of the fantastic frozen falls, or make a day of it in the summer with a picnic.

9. INSPIRATION PEAK

Photo by Jill Hoppe (@jillhoppe13)

Photo by Jill Hoppe (@jillhoppe13)

Climb up one of the highest points in Minnesota and get inspired to capture your best moment yet at Inspiration Peak, north of Alexandria on the Otter Trail Scenic Byway. This spot, although frequently photographed, has long been a hidden gem of the area, but now with so many people snapping pictures of this view, it would be a loss not to see it in person.

10. LAKE MILLE LACS

Photo by Josalyn Dehncke (@josalyndehncke)

Although Minnesota boasts more than 10,000 lakes around the state, Lake Mille Lacs is noteworthy for its size (second-largest in the state), central location (90 minutes from the Twin Cities) and stunning beauty. Top opportunities for tags and photos include: the lake itself (especially back-dropped by sunset), pictures with the huge fish you may catch, or the scenery at the nearby Mille Lacs Kathio and Father Hennepin state parks.

To discover more photo-worthy places in Minnesota, follow @exploreminnesota on Instagram.

Source, images, credits & more information: Explore Minnesota | Miranda Jerabek