How does summer go by so fast every year? The best way to take advantage of the warm weekends we have left is with a great summer day trip that’s short on distance but long on adventure, and will leave you with some great memories of summer 2020 (and we all need that, don’t we?) Here are 5 Fun Last-Minute Summer Day Trips we think will do all of the above, and can be squeezed in before the leaves start turning.
Just a half-hour from Minneapolis, Stillwater is a great place to visit all year round. But in the summer months, it is particularly fun because you can take advantage of hot air balloon rides, biking, and exploring on foot with gorgeous surroundings. And because Stillwater is on the St. Croix River, there’s plenty to do on the water as well from kayaking to fishing. Along with many shops and restaurants, this town has a lot to offer to couples and anyone just looking for a quick summer getaway. There is just so much to do in this town, you can check out more here.
Excelsior is a great option because it’s a small town that offers things to do for both nature lovers and those that appreciate shopping and the like. From restaurants and shops to swimming and biking, this small town is 30 minutes from Minneapolis, and a great coastal retreat around Lake Minnetonka.
Exploring Hudson is another great summer day trip option. In the final weekends of the season, it’s worth a stop at this river town in Wisconsin. Those that love antiquing and appreciate an outdoor walk can equally enjoy this spot which also has a nearby park, beach, and playground. Music enthusiasts might want to head there before the weekend to hear bands play live music on Thursday evenings.
Located on the Mississippi River on the border of Minnesota and Wisconsin, Lake Pepin is unique because at first glance you see a beautiful waterway, but it’s much more than that. The highway around the lake leads to many villages with shops, bistros, and wine bars, making this great for those that enjoy the great outdoors, as well as those that need some retail therapy or a great meal. The 70-mile drive around the lake makes it an ideal day trip.
FUN FACT FROM WIKIPEDIA: Lake Pepin is known as the birthplace of waterskiing.
If you love to hike, consider a trip to Taylor Falls. Interstate Park is just that—in two states (Minnesota and Wisconsin) and even the novice hiker can enjoy the walks that you can explore.
You can also go to wineries in the area. Wild Mountain Winery has suspended tastings due to COVID-19, but you can get wine by the glass or bottle and enjoy the rest of their live music Saturdays, which goes through October 10th. Check out their website for more info.
For more warm-weather adventures, check out our picks for summer date night ideas!