Apples are kind of a big deal in Minnesota. Did you know that almost 30 varieties of apples have been developed at the University of Minnesota? These include some of the most popular apple varieties, like Honeycrisp. Why not go see where it all begins – and maybe even harvest some apples of your own – at one of Minnesota’s many apple orchards?
1. Pleasant Valley Apple Orchard, Shafer
This picturesque 71-acre orchard located in Shafer allows you to pick your own apples.
2. Apple Jack Orchards, Delano
This orchard grows 23 apple varieties. Check in before you visit to make sure your favorite apple is ready to be picked. The orchard also has a bakery where you can purchase delicious apple goodies.
3. Aamodt's Apple Farm, Stillwater
Remember those Honeycrisp apples I mentioned? Well, Aamodt's calls itself the Home of the Honeycrisp. In beautiful Stillwater, the orchard offers pick-your-own apples and an apple barn containing 8 different varieties.
4. Afton Apple Orchard, Hastings
This 200-acre farm in Hastings allows you to pick 13 different types of apples. They even have an apple festival during the first three weekends of October.
5. Center Creek Orchard, Fairmont
Center Creek Orchard has over 500 apple trees that grow some of the most popular varieties. You can buy your apples in 5-pound bags, but you can pick your own pumpkin!
6. Pine Tree Apple Orchard, White Bear Lake
Take a scenic wagon ride through the orchard, pick a pumpkin, or visit the bakery for a scrumptious apple dessert.
7. Emma's Apple Orchard, Belle Plaine
This apple orchard just southwest of the Twin Cities allows you to take a wagon ride through the orchard to pick your own apples. The orchard also offers pick-your-own raspberries in the summer, and pumpkins in the fall.
8. Homestead/Moondance Orchard, Maple Plain
This huge orchard has over 8,000 trees. You'll have plenty of apples to choose from when you go to pick your own.
9. Minnesota Harvest Apple Orchard, Jordan
Minnesota Harvest has some of the most unique apples available. Stop in to try one - or all - of Topper's Apples, 15 varieties of apples that you can't get anywhere else.
10. Hidden Cove Orchard, Cold Spring
With 11 different apples to choose from, you may be overwhelmed by the variety at Hidden Cove. Luckily, admission is free. Keep going back until you've tried them all!
All right, Minnesota apple lovers. Do you have any favorite orchards to add to the list?