Famously possessing over 10,000 lakes, its a mecca for those who love outdoor recreational pursuits like kayaking, paddleboarding, canoeing and boating.
It also boasts hundreds of miles of trails through dense woodlands, rugged cliffs, picturesque meadows and scenic rivers, which are perfect for hiking, biking and horseback riding in the summer, and snowmobiling and cross-country skiing in the winter.
For residents of the city of Nisswa, which lies within the Crow Wing County of Minnesota, the state provides plenty of opportunity to explore the great outdoors.
If you fancy making the most of it, outlined below is a selection of 5 state parks near Nisswa which we highly recommend you check out.
Map of State Parks Near Nisswa MN
Here is a map of the Minnesota state parks covered in this post:
List of State Parks Near Nisswa
The five state parks near Nisswa showcased below can be reached within a 3.5 hour drive from the city.
This makes them great destinations for a day trip, and as they all have camping facilities, you will be able to stay for a few nights at any of them as well.
1. Red River State Recreation Area
Location: 515 2nd St NW, East Grand Forks, MN 56721
Residing a 3 hour and 30 minute drive northwest of Nisswa, the magnificent Red River State Recreation Area is the furthest state park on this list away from the city. But it is well worth the journey there.
Nestled on the banks of the Red Lake River, as well as the Red River of the North, the park comprises of 1,200 spectacular acres.
A perfect spot for fishing, swimming, kayaking and paddleboarding, the park features plenty of hiking and biking trails through thick forested areas. In addition, there is an abundance of wildlife to spot, whilst photographers will enjoy plenty of sights that are well worth snapping.
The campground here is relatively new, accommodating 113 modern campsites that include 85 electric sites – most of which have offer full hookups with water and sewer.
2. Charles A. Lindbergh State Park
Location: 1615 Lindbergh Dr S, Little Falls, MN 56345
A lot closer to home, just a 50 minute drive south from Nisswa lies the Charles A. Lindbergh State Park.
Situated on the fringes of the town of Little Falls, this 569-acre Minnesota state park once belonged to the famous aviator Charles Lindbergh.
It features a fascinating restored 1906 house, as well as a brace of other buildings, including a museum, that is well worth checking out.
Nestled on the Mississippi River, the park has plenty of lovely picnic spots to enjoy. It also is a popular destination for hiking and skiing through scenic woodlands of grandiose white and red pine, oak and aspen, as well as prairie.
The park is also popular with anglers, while canoeing or kayaking through the Pike Creek is enjoyed by many too.
The campsite here has 38 sites with showers, flush toilets, vault toilets and a dump station. There is also a group camp that can accommodate up to 30 people.
3. Mille Lacs Kathio State Park
Just an hour’s drive south east of Nisswa you will find the Mille Lacs Kathio State Park.
A stunning National Historic Landmark that boasts over 9,000 years of archaeological and human history, there is plenty to explore here.
One of the main highlights of the park is the 100 foot tall observation and fire tower that showcases magnificent views of the surrounding landscape. There is also a fabulous swimming beach here as well as canoeing, or row boating, down the Rum River, or a couple of picturesque lakes.
Bird lovers will also enjoy the opportunity to spot the likes of bald eagles, osprey, waterfowl, coyotes, beaver, loons and deer. While hikers can check out miles of forested trails.
The campground here has 70 drive in sites which include rustic, semi-modern, electric and walk-in sites, as well as 4 backpack sites, a group camp and horse camp too.
4. Glendalough State Park
Located a 90 minute drive west from Nisswa, the Glendalough State Park is a great place to rest and relax from the pressures of everyday life.
Named after the Irish glacial valley ‘Gleann Da Loch’, whose name translates to the ‘Valley of Two Lakes’, the park is a haven for those who enjoy water based recreational activities.
Encompassing one of the largest stretches of unspoiled lakeshore in the state, it covers over 9 miles of waterway, which makes it perfect for kayaking, canoeing, boating, paddle boarding and fishing.
During the summer months swimming and picnicking opportunities abound around two sandy lakes, while the Glendalough lodge, which was renovated not long ago, highlights the history of the park.
Onsite you will find 22 camping sites. There are also 4 cabins too, as well as a group camp that can house up to 40 people.
5. Sibley State Park
Offering something for all the family the Sibley State Park lies a 2 hour drive south from Nisswa.
The main drawcard here is hiking up the stately Mount Tom which offers sensational panoramic views of a patchwork of farmlands, forests, lakes and prairie knolls.
Beautiful Lake Andrew provides excellent opportunities for fishing, swimming and boating, while a designated waterway route also allows canoeists and kayakers to venture out to nearby Swan Lake and Henschien Lake.
Comprising of a range of ironwood, oak, green ash, red cedar, maple, aspen and basswood trees, the forest here is perfect for hiking and photography. It also houses plenty of wildlife including white-tailed deer, ruffed grouse and coyotes.
With 132 campsites available, in addition to a modern group center and horseback camps, there are plenty of accommodation options onsite too. While the park also boasts a number of stunning picnic areas, as well as fun interpretive programs throughout the year.
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