Located on the extreme western shores of the very popular and very touristy Lake Superior is the Duluth Superior Harbor. It is also one of the farthest-inland freshwater seaports and one of the leading bulk cargo ports in North America. The Great Lakes have many harbors, yet this one remains the largest and busiest of them all. On average, 35 million short tons of cargo and approximately 900 vessels visit this port every year and make the world a slightly smaller place by connecting the US and Canada to the rest of the world.
The harbor calls out to thousands of visitors every day to witness the fascinating arrival and departure of commercial ships and lighthouses.
The Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center and Historical Museum, operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, showcase their role in the making of the harbor and connecting channel developments. Scale models, ship artifacts, and even a full-size pilot house replica are displayed. In fact, the Duluth Superior Webcam gives you a live view of the harbor wherever you are.
The Duluth Superior Harbor is situated just 18-minutes away from Jay Cooke State Park. To reach your destination, Get on the I-35 N in Esko from Thomson Road. Follow I-35 N to S 27th Avenue W in Duluth. Take exit 254 from I-35 N and Drive to Courtland St and you should arrive at your destination.
There are no COE campgrounds near Duluth Superior Harbor. However, several public campgrounds allow RV enthusiasts to enjoy the scenic town of Duluth.
Fall Lake campground is part of Superior National Forest and is located a little over two hours away from the Duluth Superior harbor. The Fall Lake campground boasts 64 sites in total, and 54 of them are for RVs with electric hookups. The campground also hosts two group campsites. The maximum RV length in this campground is 40 ft. The campground is surrounded by pine, aspen, and fir trees, providing a shady refuge and one that smells like autumn all the time. Some of the sites can be reserved, whereas others are provided on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Amenities at the campground include accessible flush toilets, accessible parking, accessible pit toilets, campfire rings, canoe rentals, drinking water, group cooking facilities, firewood, playground, showers, picnic tables, and grills/fire ring.
Do you want to get an aerial view of the magnificent harbor below? The Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center offers one of the best views of the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge and the Shipping Canal with its cameras from high up. You can watch the ships from all around the world stop at the harbor, and then leaving the Twin Ports as they navigate through the cold waters of Lake Superior. These Canal Cameras are operated and owned by the US Army Corps of Engineer and with the funds of Lake Superior Marine Museum Association.
When the second tallest Ski Hill in Minnesota is located just 12 minutes away from the Duluth Superior Harbor, you cannot miss it when you're in the area. The Spirit Mountain ski area remains the ultimate family destination throughout the year. In winters, the Spirit Mountain allows the tourists to behold an unmatched view of Lake Superior, St Louis River, and the City of Duluth. The ski slopes, the adventure park, and the trails make this Duluth Superior Harbor attraction worth it.
Canal Park is the centerpiece of the town of Duluth, mainly because of its location right on Lake Superior, a few steps away from the harbor. Where the harbor is strictly for navigation business, the Canal Park allows visitors to grab a fishing pole and try to catch some salmon, steelhead, smelt, or lake trout. Once you have caught some fish, you can enjoy a stroll on the lake walk, or go sea glass hunting along the shores of the Great Lakes.
Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge isn’t just an attraction at Duluth Superior Harbor but is a major landmark of this port city. It is often called one of the top attractions in Minnesota. This Lift Bridge is a movable lift bridge and was constructed in 1901-1905 and modified in 1929. This bridge has only one other of its kind in the world, which is in Rouen, France. The span length is 386 feet, and it weighs approximately 900 tons.
Located six minutes away from the Duluth Superior Harbor, the Great Lakes Aquarium is among some of the very rare aquariums in the US that concentrate on freshwater exhibits. The complex is 62,000 square feet, and all of its exhibits are the real habitats of the Lake Superior Basin. The aquarium also has outreach educational programs for kids.
Another part of the Duluth Superior Harbor, courtesy of the US Army Corps of Engineers, is the Maritime Museum, which attracts thousands of tourists a day to its displays. In fact, records have shown that as many as 6,000 visitors have visited the facility in a single day.
This museum allows tourists to take a journey through the history of the Great Lakes. On the north side of the bridge, the Maritime Museum is situated on top of the unique and conspicuous pilothouse. The COE mission is to preserve the maritime heritage of Lake Superior, as well as the ports and harbors in Duluth.