St. Paul is the capital of Minnesota state. It gives off an old frontier town vibe with its rich history and laid-back atmosphere. The military made it a post back in 1807 and later became a port called Fort Snelling. The area rapidly turned into a major stop for riverboats and a center for trading and commerce. You can check out many historic attractions, amusement parks, and museums in this city. Read through this list of the most beautiful places to see in St Paul!
1. Summit Avenue
With over 450 historic mansions, Summit Avenue features the biggest and longest collection of Victorian buildings in the United States. These mansions house the millionaires of St. Paul from the mid 19th century until the first part of the 20th century.
In 1855, Reverend Edward Duffield Neill built the first home on the summit. Other pioneers started building their homes by 1859, rising the count to six.
The Stuart House, by David Stuart, remains to be the only one standing today out of the original six houses. You can stroll along the avenue and appreciate the architectural styles and designs of the Victorian Era embodied in these houses.
2. Minnesota History Center
The Minnesota History Center features the rich history and culture of the state. You can find exhibits that present topics from civil war to climate change, and how they affected the state.
Most notable pieces include the full-size replica “Jenny” airplane hanged from the ceiling of the main hall and the Gale Family Library with its series of changing exhibits on the state’s history.
Apart from those, you can also check out the workshops, lectures, different activities tailored to all ages, and seasonal events in the center. The Great Hall offers excellent views of the Minnesota State Capitol Building, something that you should not miss out on your visit. Truly one of the most beautiful places to see in St. Paul!
3. Cathedral of St. Paul
The Cathedral of St. Paul remains as the city’s most prominent landmark. It is the starting point of the long stretch that is Summit Avenue. Visitors can marvel at the beauty of this Classical Renaissance-style temple in the downtown area. Completing the interior took another thirty years from when it was opened in 1915.
The cathedral hosts regular concerts all year round which includes performances by the Minnesota Orchestra, organ performances, and choral concerts. One known fact about this cathedral is that it resembles the St. Peter Basilica in the Vatican, making it a popular pilgrimage site for many devout Catholics.
4. Como Park Zoo and Conservatory
Como Park Zoo and Conservatory house a broad selection of animals in their natural habitats. This includes lions, snow leopards, spider monkeys, gorillas, zebras, and sloths. You can also find marine animals like seals, sea lions, and penguins, as well as reptiles like the Galapagos tortoise and anacondas.
The zoo also features great attractions for everyone including a giraffe feeding station, a special frog habitat, and an educational gallery that covers topics such as conservation and sustainability.
Beautiful gardens are also of abundance in one of the most beautiful places to see in St. Paul. You can stroll around the water gardens, the beautiful garden, the orchid house, and the bonsai collection. Como Town is an amusement park sitting just next door to the zoo, they are must-see attractions popular for their zip lines and many exciting rides.
5. Fort Snelling
Fort Snelling stands as a prominent reminder of its frontier days back in the early 19th century. One of the oldest and most beautiful places to see in St. Paul, this limestone fort served as a northernmost military outpost of America in its early days.
Its location- the meeting point of the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers, made it a strategic place for the military to put a post and a significant trading place. Given its history, archaeologists started the excavations in 1957 and continue until now.
The things that they found provide an idea on the lives of both the military and civilians who lived in and around the fort. You can see these archaeological finds in the restored buildings and museums around the area.
6. Science Museum of Minnesota
This museum features hands-on displays that allow visitors to experience boarding a Mississippi River towboat, walking under a dinosaur, learning about the human anatomy, and creating your own tornado. One of its highlights is its massive dinosaur exhibit. You can see the restored remains of a real Triceratops and a glimpse of life-size dinos hunting scenes.
The Science Museum of Minnesota also combines science and history in many of its exhibits, often looking at science from the context of history. You can check out its permanent and changing exhibits all year round as well as the Omni theater which features various films.
7. State Capitol
The marble dome of the State Capitol is one of the most beautiful places to see in St Paul. This prominent architectural feat constructed in 1905 features original decors that can be found in the Supreme Court, House, restored Senate, and at the Rathskeller cafe. Visitors can avail of the guided tours which include a little history of the building, as well as its architecture, decor, and its restoration.
Self-guided tours are also an option here. Attractions that you should definitely check out include the iconic Quadriga – the golden horses that adorn the roof, and the self-supporting marble dome – the second largest of its kind in the world.
8. Landmark Center
The 1902 Federal Court Building houses the Landmark Center, one of the most beautiful places to see in St Paul. This massive and picturesque building contains several galleries, function rooms, restaurants, and performance spaces.
The Landmark Center generally serves as a center for culture and the arts with many theater productions, dance recitals, and concerts that happened here. Visitors can also learn about the history and the architecture of the building through its several guided tours. The Landmark Gallery features an exhibit that features the historical events that took place in the building.
Experience the wonders of St. Paul, MN!
Finally, St. Paul features not just historical buildings and museums but also boasts its landmarks that tell the story of this city. Whether you want a quick history lesson or just want to marvel at the beautiful attractions, St. Paul is truly a great place to explore. Don’t forget to include this list of the most beautiful places to see on your next visit in St. Paul.
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