Although winter weather can fall below freezing, and heavy snowstorms are frequent, there is still plenty to do in the coldest of climates. Many seasonal festivals and contests feature winter sports, such as skiing, dogsledding, and even ice fishing. However, the fiercest competition has to be Christmas shopping in the biggest mall in the U.S., the "Mall of America." Summer seems understated in comparison, with warmer temperatures and outdoor activities that include camping, hiking, and fishing.
- high season: June to August, December
- low season: January to March
- shoulder season: April to May, September to November
Summer is warm and dry, with afternoon highs of 84 degrees in July; while winter highs hit 21 degrees in January. Heavy snowfall accompanies the colder temperatures of winter, especially in February. Temperatures start to rise again in the middle of spring.
High school sports tournaments in March, and the Winter Carnival (late January through early February) attract large numbers of people. July is filled with events, such as Fourth of July celebrations, the Taste of Minnesota festival, and the Minneapolis Aquatennial.
Some northern Minnesota lakeshore resorts close for the winter, but many places remain open year-round.
When to Save
Prices are lower during the shoulder seasons, but the greatest discounts are offered in the winter. For a high season vacation, consider staying in one of the outlying suburbs for cheaper rates and availability, as local conventions put hotel rooms in high demand.
When to Book
For a lakeside resort getaway in March or April, book in early January. Make reservations in the early summer for fall vacations, particularly for visits to Duluth and the North Shore area of Lake Superior.
Information provided by Explore Minnesota Tourism.