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That's So Minnesota Road Trip: Taylors Falls

This charming little town on the St. Croix borders on the beauty of Interstate State Park

TAYLORS FALLS, Minn. — It’s a little over an hour from the Twin Cities but a totally different world in Taylors Falls. Whether you go for a day trip or a weekend excursion, from September to mid-October the town is one of the most beautiful in Minnesota.

“Living in Taylors Falls is sometimes like living in a fairyland. It’s beautiful year-round,” said Amy Frischmon who represents the town on the Chisago Lakes Visitor Bureau.

The air does seem a little fresher, the urge to get outside tugs at your sleeves and the natural beauty of the area is unmatched, “This time of year is spectacular. The fall leaves, the river. It really doesn’t get any prettier than right now.”

A good place to start is Interstate State Park, where the only dilemma is whether to do the Minnesota side or Wisconsin side. Hike or bike the many trails, take in gorgeous views from the cliffside and don’t forget the bottomless pit, a 60-foot pothole thought to be the deepest in the world.

When it’s time to fill your belly, walk down the main drag till you see the big root beer mug which has been rotating at the Drive-In Restaurant since 1961. Owner Wade Vitalis recommends pairing an American classic with a creamy frosty mug of root beer, “Our burgers are our own grind that we’ve worked on over the last 20-years to get right, so I’d say the burgers are the most popular order by far.”

While you’re enjoying that tasty burger, pick up an iron and play a few holes at the full service mini golf course, “We thought it was a great opportunity for families, for mom and dads and for kids to stop in Taylors Falls, get out an eat and play a little golf.”

After sinking a few putts, get on the water to take in the fall colors and sights in an authentic paddlewheel boat. The trip meanders through the beautiful dells of the St. Croix. There’s wildlife and many natural rock formations including the most significant, a large stone cross from which the St. Croix River received its name.

Back in town get a feel of the mid 1800’s. Tour Folsom House and look at the oldest Methodist Church building still being used in the state. There’s more history down the road with the oldest one-room school in Minnesota and right beside it, the Old Town Jail. A questionable location back in the day but now it makes a perfect spot for the Bed and Breakfast it has become.

Here are our 11 things to see and do in the Taylors Falls area:

1 Interstate State Park

2 Taylors Falls Scenic Boat Tours

3 The Riverwalk Trail

4 The Drive In Restaurant

5 Folsom State Historical Site

6 1852 Town House School

7 The Old Jail Bed and Breakfast

8 Historic Downtown

9 Heritage Park

10 Methodist Church

11 Wild Mountain

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