Minnesota plays host to a few national monuments, scenic trails and recreation areas, but Voyageurs, on Minnesota's northern border, is the state's only national park.
Voyageurs is located about five hours north of Minneapolis-St. Paul. A small section of the eastern tip of the park is one of the few places in the contiguous U.S. where you can look south and see Canada.
Voyageurs is remarkable in that more than half of its 548 square miles are water, so leave the trekking poles behind---travel through the park is best by canoe or kayak.
The park opened in 1975 and was named for the fur traders who crossed (or "voyaged" through) the water between Canada and Minnesota to trade. A long history of recreation in the area has left the park dotted with historic buildings such as the Kettle Falls Hotel, which was built in 1910.
The park is open year-round. Average temperatures range from 50 to 80 degrees F in summer and from minus 10 to 20 degrees F in winter. Snow can fall from October through May.
Water-based activities such as kayaking, canoeing, fishing and hiking are supplanted in the snowy winter months by snowmobiling, snowshoeing and ice fishing.