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With lovely prairies and riverbanks to the north and charming craggy woodlands to the south, it comes as no surprise that Minneopa State Park leaves such a positive impact on its visitors. Mankato campers, determined anglers, seasoned hikers, and nature lovers of all kinds love to visit the vast 4,643-acre park to enjoy the environment, watch bison dash across the fields, and explore the nooks and crannies of the park.
The park’s name has a lot to do with its main attraction, Minneopa Falls. The word minneopa in the Dakota language roughly translates to "water falling twice."
Minneopa State Park is a perfect destination to spend your holiday, especially if you love camping in nature. You can search for an RV in Blue Earth County, or in either Eagle Lake or Nicollet, both of which are located around a dozen miles away from the park. The park is just a few miles away from the town of Mankato, which makes it convenient for RV campers to find a gas station or a market nearby.
Hop onto the hiking trails and enjoy the sights of the magnificent waterfalls, tallgrass prairie across Minneopa Creek, oak savanna, and hardwood timberlands along the riverbanks. The trails are around four and a half miles long and go around the falls and over a limestone pathway to the beautiful valley.
Make sure you take your time to soak in the different landscapes and observe the wildlife as you're passing by. Many songbird species build their nests in the trees and near the coast of the state park. Migratory species also tend to drop by on their way to warmer areas. Those who love birdwatching will have their hands full here. Some of the birds you should have no trouble spotting throughout your stay include the western meadowlark, the eastern bluebird, the yellow-shafted flicker, red-winged blackbirds, and bald eagles.
The state park is rich in history and has a few historic sites, like the windmill at the end of Mill Road. Many guests love to snap photos of the historic sites and antiquities. If you're an explorer and a history buff, this might become one of your favorite state parks.
Minneopa State Park's campgrounds have more than 60 sites; however, only six sites have electricity hookups. Campground amenities include a picnic shelter, volleyball area, golf course, showers, toilets, seasonal dump station, and drinking water. You can reserve a site either via phone, or you can make a same-day reservation on-site.
All in all, the RV campgrounds at Minneopa State Park offer decent accommodations with a number of fun amenities that will improve the quality of your stay.
One of the main perks of camping at Minneopa State Park is being close to a big town. Mankato has lots of shopping and dining options. You can find places with classic American cuisine, pizza, and burgers, as well as Mexican, Japanese, and Indian, restaurants.
Uncover a portion of Mankato’s history by visiting Hubbard House. This magnificent estate is a stellar example of French Second Empire architecture and tells the tale of R.D. Hubbard. If you're lucky, your visit might coincide with one of the house's many events, like the Old-Fashioned Medicine Show, Victorian Lawn Party, or Hubbard House Christmas.
For an in-depth overview of the contemporary local artists and their crafts, make sure you visit the Art Center. In addition to a great number of art exhibits, you'll also find a gift shop here, where you can purchase souvenirs like hand-blown glass, ceramics, jewelry, and much more.
If you're traveling with little ones, treat the kids to a fun day at The Children’s Museum. They're sure to love the museum's events, programs, and hands-on play experiences.