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recreation and vacation travel

Mississippi National River & Recreation Area

Mississippi National River & Recreation Area

Used by Native Americans for trade, food, and water long before Europeans visited the ?New World,? the Mississippi River and its watershed is a major contributor to the ecology, culture, politics and economy of the North American continent. To acknowledge this fact, Congress established the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area in 1988. The park?s boundaries enclose about 54,000 acres and 72 miles of river. They describe a narrow corridor of land on either side of the Mississippi from Dayton and Ramsey, MN on the north boundary past Hastings, MN on the south border. Only 35 acres are owned by the Park Service.

These 72 miles are a significant and representative stretch of the Mississippi. They contain the only gorge and waterfall on the main course of the entire 2,350 miles of river. Named St. Anthony Falls in 1680, the falls were later used to generate power for logging, flour milling, and electricity for a growing population. Less than ten miles away, the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers was an early outpost for the American military and an important crossroads for fur traders. Further downstream, St. Paul marked the upper end of steamboat navigation and was the jumping off place for tens of thousands of settlers. And the Vermillion River bottoms are excellent examples of floodplain forest ecology. From visitor centers to trails, from industrial centers Mississippi River backwaters, this park has a bit of something for everyone.

Directions: Plane - The Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport is the hub airport for Northwest Airlines but is also served by other airlines including SunCountry, Delta, Frontier and others.

Car - Interstates 35 and 94 meet in the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area. Locally, county and state highways as well as local streets all offer ways to get to the river for either a view from above or to a local park or visitor center.

Public Transportation - City buses provide transportation within the corridor. Service is especially convenient to activities located near near the downtown areas of Minneapolis and St. Paul.

Mississippi National River & Recreation Area
Mississippi River Visitor Center
120 Kellogg Boulevard West
St. Paul, MN, USA
Visitor Center 651.293.0
Official Website
National Park Service
National Park Service
 • Auto Touring
 • Bike Riding
 • Boating
 • Climbing
 • Educational
 • Fishing
 • Groceries/Supplies
 • Hiking
 • Picnic
 • Restaurant/Snack Bar
 • Water Sports
 • Winter Sports
 • Wildlife Viewing

Other Minnesota Vacation Destinations

Discover America: Minnesota
State Flag of Minnesota Learn more about Minnesota, its history, and resources from the Discover America feature from NCBuy Travel.

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