With the cold weather finally settling in here in Minnesota, it seems like a great time to hunker down and stay indoors for the next few months. But with the holiday season upon us, it’s actually a great time to do just the opposite. Christmastime in Minnesota is the perfect opportunity to get out and explore the state. With parades, light displays, and more, each of these 11 great Minnesota Christmas towns is a truly magical place to visit this time of year.
As one of Minnesota's cutest towns, it should be no surprise to anyone that it does Christmas so well. Numerous events make the holiday season in Stillwater truly magical. Hometown for the Holidays is a great way to enjoy the lights in downtown Stillwater. You can also visit Santa, get great deals in local shops, and even spot carolers wearing Victorian costumes singing around town.
2. Little Falls
Little Falls is known for its special holiday tours of historic homes and museums. Each of the four tours offers gorgeous lights and cozy Christmas decor. Check it out in Little Falls between November 25 and December 4.
Buffalo is a small town with a big love of Christmas. On Saturday, December 3, enjoy a lovely Christmas celebration that gets the whole town involved. Retail stores will offer treats, carolers will come out to sing, and the local theater will even show a holiday movie - free of charge!
Winona is a town with
tons of Christmas events to choose from. The Trester Trolley offers tours of the neighborhood lights. There are also Christmas lights tours of houses, Nutcracker showings, concerts, and more. If you love Christmas, you'll love Winona.
Montevideo certainly keeps up in terms of light displays. An annual lighted Christmas parade draws in plenty of visitors. Another great attraction is Christmas in the Village, featuring sweet treats, horse-drawn carriage rides, an old-fashioned radio show, and more. Check it out this year on Saturday, December 3.
6. Pine City
Pine City has a great holiday parade that wows locals and visitors alike. This year, the parade is on Saturday, December 3. There is also an annual holiday light contest between businesses and homeowners. The impressive displays are available for visitors to tour throughout December.
Rochester has several great Christmas attractions, making it a fantastically magical places to spend the holiday season. Tour the Mayowood Mansion while it's decorated in its Christmas finery, meet Santa at Here Comes Santa Claus on November 25, or check out the Festival of Trees on November 25 through 25.
8. Grand Rapids
The WinterGlo Festival on December 2 through 4 kicks off the Grand Rapids holiday season with a magical fireworks display, a Santa Claus sighting, sleigh rides, treats, and more. Later in the month, see
The Nutcracker or participate in Rock N Roll Christmas. Not bad for a town with just 10,000 people, right?
Anoka may be the Halloween capital of the world, but they've got plenty of Christmas cheer as well. The annual Christmas tree lighting event includes bonfires, a visit from Santa, and horse-drawn carriage rides - all leading up to the big Christmas tree lighting. Check it out this year on Saturday, December 3.
A lighted parade through downtown Owatonna kicks off the holiday season on Thursday, December 1. But that's not all. The Hometown Holiday Weekend lasts until December 4 and includes cozy holiday traditions like decorating cookies and drinking hot cider.
We couldn't mention Christmas and not put Duluth on the list. Bentleyville is consistently rated one of the top Christmas attractions in the Midwest, so it definitely deserves a shoutout as a magical Christmas town. Four million lights - some timed to music - plus a view of Lake Superior? You don't want to miss out. But that's not all Duluth has to offer. Try the
Christmas City Express
for another look at Duluth during Christmas.