If the rides at the Mall of America aren't enough, drive out to this full-scale amusement and water park 22 miles southwest of Minneapolis in Shakopee. The animatronic dinosaur park ($5 extra) is a big hit. Save big money by booking tickets online. Parking costs $16.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Minneapolis attractions

1. Paisley Park

6.56 MILES

After Prince died in 2016, his family opened his 65,000-sq-ft home to the public for tours. Fans have been streaming to the mod, boxy white mansion ever…

2. Nickelodeon Universe

11.4 MILES

The amusement park in the Mall of America offers around 28 rides, including a couple of scream-inducing roller coasters. To walk through will cost you…

3. Sea Life Minnesota

11.44 MILES

The state's largest aquarium – brimming with sharks, jellyfish and stingrays – is in the Mall of America. Combination passes with the Nickelodeon Universe…

4. Minnesota Zoo

13.18 MILES

You'll have to travel a ways to get to this respected zoo in suburban Apple Valley, which is 20 miles south of Minneapolis. It has naturalistic habitats…

5. Fort Snelling

13.91 MILES

Fort Snelling is the state's oldest structure, established in 1820 as a frontier outpost in the remote Northwest Territory. Guides in period dress show…

6. Minneapolis Institute of Art

14.3 MILES

This museum is a huge trove housing a veritable history of art. The modern and contemporary collections will astonish, while the Asian galleries (2nd…

7. Walker Art Center

14.42 MILES

The first-class art center has a strong permanent collection of 20th-century art and photography, including big-name US painters and great US pop art. On…

8. Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

14.49 MILES

This 19-acre green space, studded with contemporary works such as the oft-photographed Spoonbridge & Cherry by Claes Oldenburg, sits beside the Walker Art…