If you’re planning a trip to Minnesota, you’ve come to the right place. As a Minnesota native, I’ve spent my fair share of time exploring all that this beautiful state has to offer. And let me tell you, there’s a lot to see and do here!
But with so many options, it can be overwhelming to plan your itinerary. That’s where a good travel guide book comes in. I’ve used my fair share of Minnesota travel guides over the years, and I’ve found a few that stand out from the rest.
Each time I find a new book, I change up the list a little.
10 Best Minnesota Travel Guide Books
Minnesota Adventure Weekends: Your Guide to the Best Outdoor Getaways
This one could be my new favorite guidebook because of its heavy focus on adventures. The author, Jeff Moravec breaks down each location for the best hiking locations, where to bike, climb, and paddle.
You can tell Jeff loves exploring this amazing state. For those that want to camp, he’s got you covered. Or if you’d prefer to sleep in a bed, he has recommendations for you too. Just because you want an outdoor adventure, it doesn’t mean you have to rough it the whole time.
Minnesota Adventure Weekends
Hiking the North Shore: 50 Fabulous Day Hikes in Minnesota’s Spectacular Lake Superior Region by Andrew Slade
If you are planning on going to the North Shore, you need this book. The author has found every single hiking trail, including all the MN State Park hiking trails.
They describe the difficulty and exactly how to find each of the entry points. Along the way, he’ll point out different points of interest on the trail you don’t want to miss. The book covers all locations from Duluth all the way to Grand Portage.
Hiking the North Shore
Best Hikes Near Minneapolis and Saint Paul by David and Joe Baur
This book changed my life. Filled with over 40 different hikes, they give you detailed info on how to get to these locations. With more than just a map to navigate some of the best places in the Twin Cities to hike.
Trust me, some maps get complicated with multiple routes all coming out of one location, and a little extra guidance is needed. You get detailed info on terrain, hiking times, and points of interest along the way. You’ll find enough hikes to keep you busy for years.
Best Hikes Near Minneapolis and Saint Paul
North Shore Camping by Andrew Slade
Brought to you by the same author of North Shore Hikes, this book does the same but with campsites. They have found all the hidden locations beyond the State Parks. The author has the details on over 60 different campgrounds along the north shore.
He knows which ones work best for the big rig RVs and those that prefer to tent. He also goes into the details of great things to do in the area. It’s the perfect companion for your car.
North Shore Camping
Waterfalls of Minnesota’s North Shore by Eve Wallinga
If you love waterfalls, you need this book. While there are some waterfalls in the Twin Cities to explore, the biggest and most abundant source for them is along Minnesota’s North Shore.
The Author starts at Jay Cooke State Park and heads north through Canada. The book gives you the details on where to park, and how far away the fall is with a hiking difficulty rating.
What was so amazing, was the number of falls that don’t require much hiking at all.
Waterfalls of Minnesota’s North Shore
Guide to the Superior Hiking Trail
If you are planning a trip on the Superior Hiking Trail, you can’t do it without a copy of this book. You’ll find out where all the campsites and watering holes are. What the mileage is between points and difficulty? All the hikers swear by this.
To lighten your load, consider getting a digital version of the book, or take a few pictures of the pages you need on your phone.
Guide to the Superior Hiking Trail
Walking Twin Cities by Holly Day and Sherman Wick
This book is perfect for those that love history and architecture. They have laid out 34 different tours around Minneapolis and Saint Paul. You’ll see lakeside parks, gangster hangouts, and gorgeous mansions.
On your walk, the author will give you some ideas on things to do, like paddle boating. They also give you a little history of the area. What’s great about this guide, is the tours are all free to do.
Walking Twin Cities
60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Minneapolis and St. Paul: Including Hikes In and Around the Twin Cities
Ask any hiker what their go-to travel book is and they will always tell you to get 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Minneapolis and St. Paul: Including Hikes In and Around the Twin Cities.
The author Tom Watson does a great job of exploring all the parks in the area. There is a step by step instructions on the entire hike.
60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Minneapolis and St. Paul
Day Trips from the Twin Cities by Lisa Meyers
This is the book that got it all started for me. The author sends you to all different regions of Minnesota and into Wisconsin. Each of her trips gives you details on the location and what are the not to miss things to see.
The book isn’t limited to the Day Trip either. They provide great recommendations day by day to keep you busy all weekend long.
Day Trips from the Twin Cities
Minnesota Curiosities by Russ Ringsack and Debbie Remick
If you like roadside curiosities and quirky parks of Minnesota, this is your book. Broken up by region, you’ll find a bunch of locations you can’t miss it. From an 8-foot iron man statue to babe the blue ox for your selfie collection.
There is even a Wiener dog hurdles race hiding in the book somewhere. This is a different type of book that will round out your collection and give you a new reason to get out on the road.
Honorable Reads for Minnesotans
Midwest Road Trip Adventures by The Midwest Travel Writers Network
Written by a team of fellow bloggers, this book makes the list of the fun section on Minnesota Destinations. The MN Section covers four regions; Minnesota River Valley Byway, North Shore, Bluff Country, and the King Of Highways Scenic Byway.
There are tips on where to eat, stay and do quarry visits.
Midwest Road Trip Adventures
How to Talk Minnesotan by Howard Mohr
Any transplant to Minnesota needs this book. This book gets the Minnesota culture. Things like how we love to talk in negatives, like “It could be worse” and when best to use the phrase “You Bet” or even better “You Betcha”.
As a native of Minnesota, I found this book to be hilarious. I love it when people can make fun of themselves a little.
How to Talk Minnesotan
WECK Small-Batch Preserving by Stephanie Thurow
One of my favorite Minnesota bloggers, Stephanie Thurow from Minnesota From Scratch just released her second book. She is a master at canning. Her latest book starts with a step by steps on how to can.
Then she gets into the good stuff, the canning recipes. She even has an entire section on Boozy Infusions. This is perfect for the home gardener or Farmers Market Fans.
WECK Small-Batch Preserving
Are you inspired yet?
I hope you found at least one book in this collection to spark your interest for you. If you are taking your Toddler with you on your next trip, make sure to check out: How to make a Road Trip Activity Binder for your Kids.
With so many different ways to explore, there is no way you should get bored. Enjoy exploring with these Minnesota travel guidebooks in hand.
For more great inspiring travel reads head over to my shop’s page by clicking here!