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Lake City Minnesota Tourist Attractions

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Lake City Minnesota

Lake City Minnesota tourist attractions include a beautiful historic river town located along the shoreline of Lake Pepin. Lake Pepin is the largest lake on the Mississippi River, over two miles wide and 22 miles long. It forms the natural border between Minnesota and Wisconsin and is located about 60 miles south of the Twin Cities. Lake Pepin is often described as one of the most scenic spots in North America!

Most family vacation destinations in Minnesota include beautiful family vacation resorts, cabins, and dozens of state parks and many other top family vacations spots.

Unique hotels in Lake City include the Willows on The River where every room overlooks Lake Pepin. The Sunset Motel has an outdoor heated pool, a game room and fish cleaning facility. Find the best hotel deals in and near Lake City, Minnesota

Waterskiing Invented in Lake City

It was here in Lake City that Ralph Samuelson invented the sport of water-skiing when he strapped two eight-foot-long pine boards on his feet, and had an airplane tow him across the lake while he hung on to a clothesline rope! Replicas of those skis (the originals were broken), can be seen at the Lake City Chamber of commerce.

Made in Minnesota - Water skis and so many other amazing inventions and products have been created in Minnesota.

Lake Pepin: One of the Best Sailing Areas in the Nation!

Lake City Minnesota


What you can do in, or near, Lake City Minnesota:

  • Go camping or hiking in Frontenac State Park.
  • Birdwatching: large concentrations of bald eagles and an migratory birds make this a globally renowned birding area.
  • Stroll the river walk, a 2.5-mile pedestrian walkway with a beautiful view of Lake Pepin and the bluffs.
  • Take a ride on the Pearl of the Lake Riverboat. This is a replica of an 1880s paddlewheeler.
  • Swim at the Lake City public beach or the municipal pool.

Many annual festivals and events take place in Lake City. Here are some of the best:

  • Water Ski Days held in June in honor of Ralph W. Samuelson who invented the sport of water-skiing on Lake Pepin in 1922.
  • Johnny Appleseed Days is a fall celebration of Lake City's local apple economy, and abundant fall harvest of apples.
  • Wild Wings Fall Festival and celebration of wildlife, nature and fine art.
Lake City Minnesota

A Monster in Lake Pepin?

The legend of Pepie the Lake Monster comes from numerous sightings of an unexplained creature surfacing from the depths of Lake Pepin. These sightings have taken place from both ship and shore. So far, none of these sightings has confirmed the existence of a new species! That may change in the next few years as many people try to obtain evidence of Pepie's existence! Read more about Pepie

State Parks Near Lake City Minnesota

Frontenac State Park - How to Get to Frontenac State Park: Drive approximately 10 miles southeast of Red Wing on Highway 61 or 5 miles northwest of Lake City, then 1 mile north on County Road 2.  

Other State Parks in This Region of Minnesota: Afton State Park > Fort Snelling State Park > Nerstrand-Big Woods State Park  


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Minnesota State Parks: From Afton to Zippel Bay