What to see in Minnesota?
At the first place of a long list, together with the several nature parks, the 12.000 lakes, the historical trails, the Mississippi River sources, the old and charming little cities of lumberjacks and the captivating Twin Cities there’s it, the attraction number one: the Mall of America.
The biggest mall in the United States, even better than the Western Hemisphere, as the thousands of people working in the stores, in the attractions, in the restaurants, in the hotels and in the active and organized team running it with success state proudly.
Trust me, calling it only mall is an understatement. Definitely an understatement.
The Mall of America (as I wrote in another article some days ago) is a boundless container of experiences, besides shopping and funs, lifestyles and gastronomic varieties recalling the traditional cuisine as well that one of the different ethnic groups in the state.
An experience to try, in all senses.
The Mall of America is in the Bloomington suburb near the Minneapolis Airport and at a few light subway stops from the Town Cities.
It develops over a 390.000sqm area welcoming almost 50 million visitors a year, 92% Americans and 8% international. There are even 500 stores (clothing, shoes and accessories are strictly tax free) and among them there are the very famous Macy’s, Nordstrom, Bloomingdale’s and Kiehl’s, the historical brand of body products created by a druggist of the east Village in New York in 1851, today known all over the world.
More than 30 restaurants, 4 levels of communication trenches, two wide “squares” for events and concerts and the biggest aquarium in Minnesota, the Sealife Mall of America.
And even a Lego Imagination Center, a colored mountain of LEGO little bricks (accessible to everyone) with a lab to stimulate creativity, a cinema with 14 rooms, a miniature golf course, a nice chapel for weddings with clothing rent, in case you have desire to marry at the moment – The Chapel of Love – and the cherry on the cake…the Nickelodeon Universe.
The biggest indoor playground in the United States (just to keep to the “size” subject with the Mall of America).
It’s an incredible place, and boundless, of course. It was born in the middle of the 1990s as Camp Snoopy in honor of Peanuts, the characters of the comic strip writer Schultz, who came from the very near St. Paul. Today – following the loss of the rights to use the Peanuts’ images – it is the uncontested reign of SpongeBob, Lego and American Girl Doll Store with more than 24 attractions (almost all accessible with a cumulative ticket of $29.90): rollercoaster, cableways, giant carousels, themed paths for families with children and multimedia shows.
What’s my favourite one?
Certainly FlyOver America.
I confess it, the attraction I loved most.
It was opened at Easter 2016, the only one in the whole United States. It allows to enjoy – in every sense – the United States in an unusual and special way, like you never saw them.
Try to imagine “flying” in 4D through parks, plains, glaciers, islands and the most suggestive point of the USA coasts. Think to do it accompanied by wind, clouds, by the sprinklings of Ocean water, by cold weather, by hot weather and even by smells…like you were exactly in those places.
From my words to the short clip kindly allowed by FlyOver America is a flash.
All the magic, the charm and the captivating beauty of our States for you.
Fast your seat belt. Let’s go.
FlyOver America is opened every day from 9am to 6pm. The shows start each 15 minutes.
Admittance tickets are $12.95 for children and $16.95 for adults. Trust me, it’s worth it.
The Mall of America is easily reachable from Minneapolis, from the Airport and from Saint Paul, thanks to the light line of the Hiawatha subway: the stop is on the Blue line and it is named after the mall.
In the area it exists a wide choice of hotels where to stay overnight: the area is served very well and it is fit also for longer stays to visit both Minneapolis and Saint Paul and their neighborhoods.
I had the pleasure to stay overnight in the very new J.W. Marriott, adjoining and linked directly by a convenient entrance inside the Mall of America.
Bright and cared in details settings, wide rooms and furnished with every comfort, very good intercontinental breakfast in the lounge at the last floor, access to SPA and to the swimming pool and the value added of a service absolutely faultless from arrival to leaving.
Furthermore inside the hotel there’s one of the best restaurant in Bloomington, the Cedar+Stone, Urban Table where it’s possible to taste the typical dishes of Minnesota – I will talk about it soon – created exclusively with products of local farmers.
The ideal place as starting point to discover the Mall of America and maybe go as far as the Twin Cities, the wonderful neighboring lakes.
And as far as the Mississippi River mouths, why not?