Exploring the Twin Cities as a family 

Spending time in nature has numerous physical, mental, and emotional benefits for people of all ages; such as boosting our mood, reducing stress or anger, improving physical health, boosting concentration, and connecting with community. Minnesota is home to a plethora of natural spaces and places to explore all year long! 

Children are natural observers, wonderers, and explorers and live in the moment. Take their lead! Stop and watch ants marching, blow on a dandelion, and go at their pace - even if you only get a few feet down the path. Adults can sometimes approach experiences with an agenda, for example, wanting to complete an entire hike or reach a destination along the hike like a waterfall. We would like to challenge you to go at your child's pace, follow their lead, and delight in the beauty found all around us that children are so good at noticing and marveling at. 

Our Favorite Local Parks to Explore 

Here: West Metro

  • Staring Lake Park (Eden Prairie)

  • Richard T. Anderson Park (Eden Prairie)

  • Richardson Nature Center (Bloomington)

  • Lowry Nature Center (Victoria)

  • Purgatory Park (Minnetonka)

  • Wood Lake Nature Center (Richfield)

  • French Regional Park (Plymouth)

  • Birch Island Woods (Eden Prairie)

  • Hyland Park Reserve (Bloomington)

  • Lone Lake Park/Bryant Lake Park (Eden Prairie) 

  • Wolsfeld Woods Scientific and Natural Area (Long Lake) 
  • Gale Woods (Minnetrista)
  • Lake Rebecca Park Reserve (Rockford)
  • Minnesota Landscape Arboretum (Chaska) 

Near: Twin Cities Metro 

  • Murphy Hanrehan 

  • Cleary Lake 

  • Lebanon Hills

  • Minnehaha Park

  • Eastman Nature Center

  • Theodore Wirth Park

  • Oakdale Discovery Center

  • Tamarack Nature Center

  • Hidden Falls

  • Battle Creek

  • Dodge Nature Center

  • Fish Lake Regional Park

  • Oliver Kelley Farm

  • Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge

  • Boom (Stillwater) 
     


Far: Greater Minnesota/Wisconsin

  • Willow River State Park (Hudson, WI)

  • Lake Maria State Park (Monticello, MN)

  • Afton State Park (Afton, MN)

  • Interstate State Park (St. Croix Falls, WI)

  • Boundary Waters Canoe Area (Ely, MN)

  • Split Rock Lighthouse State Park (Two Harbors, MN)

  • Superior Hiking Trail (Duluth, MN)