Here in Minnesota, new restaurants and attractions are being added all the time, especially in the larger cities. While these new places are great to visit, they lack the history that permeates some of the state’s oldest attractions. Next time you’re feeling nostalgic for old Minnesota, check out these 12 places. They’re full of that old-school charm that will bring you back in time. Take a look:
1. Fisher's Club
Supper clubs are some of the most quintessentially Minnesotan places you can possibly visit. There are
many supper clubs across the state
, but Fisher's Club is one of our favorites. Dating back to 1930s, this lakeside spot in Avon is full of history. Stop in for a walleye dinner and to enjoy the view. You won't regret it.
2. Itasca State Park
Did you know Itasca is Minnesota's oldest state park? It was founded in 1891 and contains some of the most iconic scenery in all of Minnesota. The most iconic by far is the path across the headwaters, complete with the famous sign indicating the distance from the Gulf of Mexico. Generations of Minnesotans have posed for a photo op here, making it one of the most "old Minnesota" places you can visit.
As one of the oldest towns in the state, Stillwater has to make the list. Its charming downtown looks like something from a storybook, with historic buildings that house thriving local businesses. There's always something going on in this beautiful, old river town.
4. Snake River Fur Post - Pine City
In the small town of Pine City, the history of this fur post stretches much further back in time than even the oldest Minnesota restaurants. The post was established by European fur traders in 1804, growing to be a busy area for fur trade. The post was forgotten until the 1960s, when artifacts from the original post were discovered. Today's post is a replica of what once stood here, and it's an excellent way to learn some of Minnesota's earliest history.
Here's another river town with a long history. Platted in 1854, it is one of the oldest towns in Minnesota. Stroll down the downtown streets to take in the historic architecture that lines them. You will be taken back in time to a time when life in Minnesota was a lot more simple.
6. Jax Cafe
Jax Cafe dates back to 1910, and it's still going strong. People flock to this Minneapolis restaurant for its old-school charm and outstanding food. Anything you order is bound to be delicious, and you'll be able to revel in the comfortable atmosphere of this family-owned staple.
7. End-O-Line Railroad Park & Museum
Way back in the 1800s, when rail transport was big, Currie, Minnesota, was the end of the line for the rail service that passed through the area. Though the railroad activity is long gone visitors can still walk the original rails, see 19th century locomotives, and check out the original turntable. It's a fascinating look at Minnesota history that is not to be missed.
8. Historic Forestville
Another excellent place to take in Minnesota's earliest history is Historic Forestville, now a part of Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park. After you check out the cave - it's a must-visit spot - head over to the old town. You'll cross a charming bridge, check out old buildings, and get a sense for what life was like for Minnesotans over 100 years ago. What better way to see old Minnesota up close?
9. Lindey's Prime Steak House - Arden Hills
Lindey's is a restaurant that, for people in the know, is a must-stop spot. Why? Its unpretentious setting and incredible food make it a friendly, homey spot to grab a bite to eat. The restaurant's vibe will take you back several decades to a time when the dining experience was much more simple.
10. Soudan Underground Mine State Park
An ode to Minnesota's mining history,
Soudan Underground Mine State Park
is the spot to go for anyone interested in one of Minnesota's earliest thriving industries. Not only is it surrounded by beautiful natural scenery, but it is full of the tools and machines used to mine the Iron Range - including an actual mine. It's an interesting dig into Minnesota history that you will not regret.
11. Archer House River Inn
This gorgeous Northfield, Minnesota, hotel has been around since 1877! When you visit, you'll walk the same hallways as hundreds of hotel guests over the past 140 years. From the exterior to the gorgeous furnishings, the Archer House is about as "old Minnesota" as you can get.
12. Hubbell House
One of Minnesota's oldest restaurants, the Hubbell House has been around since 1854. The old building is still a stately sight in downtown Mantorville, and the interior is full of antiques. When you're done staring in awe at your historic surroundings, you'll notice that your plate is full of delicious food. The Hubbell House has a character not often found in newer establishments, and for that reason it is one of the best places in the state to experience old Minnesota.
Have you been to any of these places? Which would you recommend? What would you add let us know in the comments below!