OH THE PLACES YOU CAN GO
A guide to the top destinations along the Metro Transit Blue Line.
Image by Joe Szurszewski
By Kyle Smelter
Luggage? Check. Boarding pass? Check. Stuffed elephant so you can sleep better at night? Check. Transportation figured out when you get there? *Crickets*. Has this scenario ever happened to you? Be honest, your secret is safe with us. With so much to pen to the to-do list, it’s easy to put some items on the back burner only for them to end up getting lost in the shuffle later.
To lighten the load, we’ve assembled a transportation plan for you along with some highlighted stops to help fill your time here in the Twin Cities. Introducing the Metro Transit Blue Line. Stretching from Target Field to the Mall of America, the Metro Transit Blue Line carves a corridor from downtown Minneapolis to Bloomington with a total of 19 pit stops in between. Even with all those stops, however, it still takes only 35 minutes to get from one end to the other. An all-day pass will only shake your wallet down for $6, so you can spare yourself the outrageous taxi fees. If you find yourself not needing an all-day pass, cheaper pricing options are available, as well. Did we also mention there’s never any traffic? And with trains running every 10 to 15 minutes, getting from one end of the city to the other has never been easier—or cheaper.
Aside from the convenience of using the Metro Transit Blue Line, it can also be your personal chauffeur to some of the best entertainment options in the metro. We’ve highlighted some of our favorites:
Fort Snelling: Doze off, day dream or not pay attention in history class during your school days? No problem! You can recapture some of those lost Minnesota history lessons when you make a stop at Historic Fort Snelling. Constructed in the early 1820s at the junction of the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers, this base played a vital role in the state’s military history from pre-Civil War through WWII, the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, the fur trade and more. Open May through October, stop by for a guided tour or for any of their signature events and special programs scattered throughout their open season.
Mall of America: Perhaps the most iconic building in the state, millions of visitors from all corners of the globe walk through the doors of the Mall of America every year. And it just so happens that it’s the last—or first—stop on the Blue Line depending on which direction you’re traveling. Spend your day shopping at more than 520 stores and attractions, diving under the deep blue at SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium or flying, spinning and finding your inner kid at Nickelodeon Universe, a seven-acre indoor amusement park in the heart of the mall.
Minnehaha Regional Park: It’s not every day you find a large, rolling stretch of green on the outskirts of a major metropolis. During every season out of the year, visitors and residents alike flock to Minnehaha Regional Park to bike, hike, partake in some disc golf and more on the park’s 167 acres. But the star of the show is the park’s towering 53-foot waterfall. On its way to meet up with the Mighty Mississippi, Minnehaha Creek takes a plunge over a limestone bluff and crashes into the rocks below before winding its way through dense forest and emptying into the fourth longest river in the world. Adjacent to the waterfall is Sea Salt Eatery. Once visitors are done exploring the park and snapping pics, they can refuel with some of the area’s best seafood. And don’t forget to treat yourself to some Sebastian Joe’s ice cream for dessert. You’ve earned it.
Target Field: In the heart of downtown Minneapolis lies the confines for America’s greatest pastime and home of the Minnesota Twins, Target Field. Nothing beats catching a game under the stadium lights with a backdrop of the Minneapolis skyline on a warm summer night in the Twin Cities. And come hungry for a taste of Twins territory. The concessions are as mouth-watering as the stadium is beautiful. Chow down on ribs from Butcher & the Boar, gourmet burgers from Red Cow, a Cuban sandwich from Tony O’s, or a good ol’ fashioned hotdog if that’s more your style. Whatever your taste, Target Field is sure to dazzle your taste buds. Whether they win or lose, a baseball game at Target Field is a homerun every time.
Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport: Skip the taxis, Ubers, Lyfts, rental cars and hitchhiking, the Metro Transit Blue Line has your back. Making stops at not one, but both terminals, the Metro Transit Blue Line makes transport from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport to your home-away-from-home (if you’re staying in downtown Minneapolis) simple.
Downtown Minneapolis: If you’re staying in or planning on visiting the heart of the city, you’re in luck. The Metro Transit Blue Line makes five stops throughout the downtown area that are surrounded by numerous hotels, restaurants and other attractions. Want to go catch a baseball game at Target Field? The Blue Line drops you off right outside the gates. Or maybe football and the Vikings are your sport and team of choice? The Blue Line puts you on the doorstep of U.S. Bank Stadium. Looking to go out for a night on the town? The Warehouse/Hennepin Avenue station is literally surrounded by some of the best nightlife Minneapolis has to offer. And when you’re finished exploring, all you have to do is hop on the train going the opposite direction for a one-way ticket back.
For more easy traveling to and through St. Paul, be sure to check out the Metro Transit Blue Line’s sister train, the Green Line.