Let’s face it. The realization that you’re going to have to do a layover generally doesn’t come as the best of news. With a Minneapolis layover, however, you should count yourself as being lucky. This is a vibrant city with lots going on and you are close enough to the downtown area to be able to get in and out very easily.
Once you reach Minnesota's largest city, you'll have a smorgasbord of things to do and attractions to see. The city is known for its parks and outdoor spaces but there are also places to see both visual and performing arts, and you won't have any trouble finding a great restaurant.
On a Minneapolis Saint Paul International Airport layover, the first thing you are going to want to do is to find a reliable luggage storage facility in Minneapolis itself, so that you aren’t obliged to haul your bags all over town.
The Minneapolis airport offers all the transport facilities that one would expect with any modern international airport. For real ease of access, the light rail transit is probably your best bet. Accessible from both terminals, trains leave every ten minutes and take only twelve minutes to get into the downtown area.
6 hour Minneapolis layover
Effectively, six hours is quite a short Minneapolis layover, but because of the easy transport facilities from the airport, you will be able to get into town and do a bit of exploring whilst leaving yourself plenty of time to get back and catch a connecting flight.
The Walker Art Centre was established in 1940 and features art and performances from many different disciplines. Regarded as one of the foremost art centers in the country, you will regret it if you don't pay a visit now that you have the chance.
Nearby, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden offers some fabulous creations for you to admire. Covering 11 acres, and with more than forty exhibits on display, this garden is the perfect place for you to stretch your legs and take in some fresh air before heading back to the airport.
- It can be tempting when on a short layover to just bite the bullet and hang around in an airport lounge. With Minneapolis so accessible that would be a mistake.
- Walker Art Centre is a renowned facility and can easily be combined with a visit to the Minneapolis sculpture garden.
- Allow enough time to get back to the airport and board your flight without stress.
8 hour Minneapolis layover
Don't make the mistake of thinking that your layover means that you have eight full hours to play with. With collecting your bags, storing your bags, getting to and from the airport, and clearing those interminable security checks, you are going to have less time than that.
Still, an additional couple of hours in Minneapolis means you can see a little bit more of the city. Heading back into downtown from the Walker Art Center gives you the opportunity to see the city from the Foshay Museum’s observation deck. The 31st floor of this historic tower is the perfect place to get views over Minneapolis and the surrounding area, and it’s a quick stop that ensures you’ll make your next connection.
- Get a great view of the city at Foshay Museum Observation Deck.
- Drop off your bags at a Minneapolis luggage storage before writing to the top of the tower.
10 hour Minneapolis layover
If you are an outdoor enthusiast, you will probably be quite surprised to learn that you can easily experience some of the great outdoors not far from the Minneapolis airport. The Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge is easily accessible by Metro and offers you recreational activities that are quite unusual on a layover.
This wildlife refuge extends for an incredible 70 miles up the Minnesota River and covers 14,000 acres. It was designed to protect fish and migratory birds from the onslaught of modern development. Once there, you will have the opportunity to choose from hiking, biking, or even snowshoeing during the winter months. If you’re lucky, you might catch sight of a golden eagle or a coyote.
It's rare to have the opportunity for a really rural visit on a layover so this might be one to take advantage of during the stopover.
- Keep an eye on the time because a ten-hour layover doesn’t translate into ten hours of adventure.
- Outdoor activities are always welcome after hours cooped up in planes and airports.
12 hour Minneapolis layover
You may be on a long layover, but you still have a limited amount of time in which to get to grips with this complex city. One great way to get a feel for a city in a hurry is to take a guided tour. There are many advantages to this. For one thing, you're exposed to expert local knowledge, and secondly, you are spared the trauma of having to try and locate the most interesting sites and destinations in a short period of time.
Minneapolis offers a wide range of tours. There is a self-guided river tour where you can listen to audio commentary as you go at your own speed, but there are many others including downtown food tours, craft beer tours, and history tours. Pick one that suits your taste and when it's over, you should have enough time on your hands to pay an in-depth visit to one or two of the highlights you touched on during the tour.
If you happen to be a baseball fan, then you’re probably going to want to think about visiting Target Field. Your layover may not coincide with an actual game, but that doesn’t mean that there won’t be something for you to enjoy. For starters, there are ninety-minute guided tours that take you to many areas that you might not normally gain access to, and there are also often other events taking place which might be interesting to observe.
- Guided tours offer a quick way to get the feel of the city under expert guidance.
- Target Fields is an iconic ballpark that always has something happening.
- Even on a long Minneapolis layover, keep an eye on the time and allow yourself a relaxed return to your connecting flight.
24 hour Minneapolis layover
An overnight Minneapolis layover will afford you the opportunity to see a different side of the city to the one you would see on a shorter layover. If you are booking a hotel, be sure to choose one that allows easy access both to the city and to the airport. With Minneapolis’s reliable transport system, this shouldn’t be too much of a problem.
The number of ways to pass a night in Minneapolis is virtually innumerable. You could easily take in a show at one of the comedy theatres. The Huge Improv theatre is a community-sponsored operation that puts on events six nights a week using local artists.
If the performing arts really aren’t your thing, then why not treat yourself to a night out at one of the city's many spas? A yoga session, relaxing massage or an hour or two in the sauna will leave you feeling relaxed after your flight. One spa even offers a salt room where you get to smother yourself in Himalayan salt.
You will, of course, want to enjoy a meal at some stage and here you are going to be spoilt for choice. Traditionally, Minnesotans tend to err towards comfort food and Swedish meatballs are a favorite, as is any dish cooked with the local Walleye fish. That said, you will still be able to choose from everything from Mexican to Vietnamese and be assured of a delicious evening meal.
- An overnight Minneapolis stopover offers a wide-ranging choice of entertainment and food.
- Choose a hotel that offers easy access to those areas that you most want to explore.