Minnesota is known for its lakes but narrowing down where exactly to go when you’ve decided on a visit there is difficult. There are so many places of interest worth considering. A good place to base yourself is near Park Rapids and especially in the Park Rapids Lake Area which enjoys excellent accommodation and dining options, plenty of lake access, and numerous outdoor activities too.
Let’s dig a little deeper into what awaits you in the Park Rapids area of Minnesota.
Itasca State Park
The Itasca State Park takes full advantage of the mighty Mississippi River with the headwaters accessible within the park. The state park is the oldest and a favorite of many locals who return annually. It’s just 22 miles out of Park Rapids to the north. The park attracts over half a million tourists every year that are interested in enjoying the wilderness, lake views, and water-bound activities.
Anyone who loves getting out on the water in a canoe or other watercraft, or swimming near shore will feel right at home here. The pine-filled forests surrounding the lake areas are protected and help to clean the air while the wildlife is left alone in these parts. The Itasca State Park is considered the best park in Minnesota and is not to be missed. The visitor’s center provides maps and other useful information for first-timers to orient themselves upon arrival too.
There are plenty of lodgings available in the Park Rapids Lake Area, but not all of them are beautifully appointed or ideal for families. One that certainly fits the bill is the Half Moon Trail Resort. It is designed as a family resort with a swimming pool, planned kids’ events to give their parents some R&R time, and plenty of other organized activities in the daytime or early evenings too.
There’s ping pong for avid players who can get on a winning streak, board games to play with friends, and spacious decks to sit out while looking out over the peaceful Boot Lake in the distance. There’s seating at the shore of Boot Lake, or for people who prefer to hang by the pool, loungers are available to take the weight off. You can also keep up with the latest news because internet access is provided through the resort too.
There’s a wide mixture of local activities to participate in. Along with organized ones at your chosen resort, there’s plenty of fishing on the lake shore (you’ll need a fishing license but children 15-years-old or younger with a parent who have a license skip the requirement for one). Also, there’s organized hunting in the area for the truly adventurous.
For outdoor and active types, plenty of hiking trails await your heavy boots. Put the mountain bike on the car’s roof rack because the biking trails will challenge the most adventurous of riders. Also, if you like to take in a round of golf occasionally, bring your clubs because there are several courses not far from Park Rapids to play a round with some friends or your partner.
While a trip to Park Rapids in Minnesota is often chosen by couples who like to stay active, there’s so much activity both on shore and on the water that solo travelers also visit to enjoy the resplendent outdoor options here. You’re also free to be as active or sedentary as you wish too.