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On the western banks of the Mississippi River is the city of Winona. East of Rochester and north of La Crosse, Winona is ideally situated to enjoy big-city living near the beauty of the Mississippi River. Winona also lies directly on the border with Wisconsin, meaning that having an RV rental from Winona provides easy access to lots of different sights.
Founded in the 1850s by a steamboat captain, Winona was originally known as Montezuma. The name was changed to Winona after the famous Sioux princess who supposedly jumped to her death from the nearby cliffs. The arrival of German and Polish immigrants along with the expansion of the railroad helped Winona become the city it is today.
When you book an RV in Winona, you'll be surrounded by some truly wonderful sights, including bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River and some beautiful wilderness areas including Merrick State Park. Just across the Wisconsin border, this marshy park covers over 200 acres of land and is very popular for water sports including fishing and boating due to its location within a swampy inlet of the Mississippi River. This park is also an ideal place for nature watchers due to the variety of critters who inhabit the park, including herons, muskrats, and otters. The Coulee Region of Wisconsin is famous for its rolling hills, which provide the perfect backdrop for exploring.
Another gorgeous park to visit when you rent a campervan in Winona is the Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge. Covering a massive 6,000 acres, this park contains many different environments including marshes, forests, and savannas. These different environments make it the perfect place for birdwatchers, with rare and diverse birds including sandhill cranes and yellow-rumped warblers inhabiting the park. A superb way to see the park is in a vehicle due to the park's size, and visitors are encouraged to take a drive along the Great River Scenic Highway, which gives you views across the Mississippi River, as well as some grand vistas across the park.
With so many parks around, it can be a challenge to choose where to go when you rent a motorhome in Winona. However, a nearby park worth considering is the brilliant Great River Bluffs State Park. This park offers over nine miles of self-guided trails through beautiful hardwood forests, up to the top of steep bluffs which give hikers sublime views of the Mississippi Valley below. Another great place to spot some birds, this park is home to hawks, eagles, and more.
There aren't too many RV parks located within Winona. However, one to consider when you rent an RV in Winona is Money Creek Haven in nearby Houston. This park features over 200 grass campsites, some of which provide full hookups, although most provide water and electrical hookups. Max amp electric is supported here, and there's space for big rigs too. The campground is well equipped, and amenities include showers, laundry, and a snack bar. There are a few on-site activities too, and these involve a swimming pool, a playground, and a game room.
If you'd rather be close to the action when you book a camper rental in Winona, one spot located within the city is Prairie Island Campground. This campground offers over 200 grass spaces, half of which provide electrical and water hookups with max amp electric, with the rest of the sites offering no hookups. Amenities include restrooms and showers. Here you'll be located directly next to the Mississippi River providing access to swimming, boating, and other water sports.
When you rent an RV in Winona, there are plenty of places around the city where you grab a bite to eat or do some shopping. Winona's location also makes it a popular tourist destination, so you shouldn't struggle to find anything you need when you stay here. There are lots of attractive places to see around the city, and one worth visiting is the Minnesota Marine Art Museum. Housing one of the largest collections of maritime art in the U.S., this museum is a must visit for any artist or angler. The museum holds work by some of the most famous artists of all time, including Monet and Picasso, and is an enriching cultural experience for the whole family.
One of the most unique places to visit when you rent a camper in Winona can be found in nearby Fountain City. Known as The Rock in the House, this unremarkable riverside property became one of the most remarkable sights in the state in 1995 when a boulder fell from a nearby cliff and smashed through the bedroom wall of this renovated property. Now a tourist attraction, visitors can take a tour of this home and see the 55-ton boulder for themselves.
If you're a fan of cars and toys, then plan on visiting Elmer's Auto and Toy Museum. Great fun for adults and kids, this museum features over 100 antique cars and trucks, dating back as far as 1910. There's also a toy collection containing over 1,000 items ranging from battery-operated toys to Japanese tin figurines. Located in the open and by the Mississippi River, this is a great place to bring the family for a picnic while enjoying this eclectic collection.