Do I really need a car in Minneapolis?

October 18, 2006 at 7:00 am 2 comments

I’ve usually driven to the Twin Cities, but it’s always been a chore and the traffic there not easy to navigate. It always seemed like the lane I was driving in virtually evaporated without warning and then miraculously reestablished itself further down the road, leaving me scrambling to avoid an exit I didn’t want. So this trip, I decided to fly but skip a rental car. My plan was to see try the new, sleek Light Rail system. I was delighted with the flexibility it gave me and it was a pleasure to ride.

Sandy and I flew into MSP and found our way through the newly renovated Humphrey Terminal to the Light Rail station. First stop, Mall of America. Really quick trip! 500 stores in one place and, by the way, did you know there’s no sales tax on clothing in Minnesota?

From there, we hopped back onboard the train ($6 all-day ticket) and headed to Nicollet Mall – really a major downtown street that has been closed to cars. Another easyOne of many cafes on Nicollet Mall trip. There we found Neiman Marcus, Marshall Field’s, Cole-Haan, Saks’ Off-Fifth and other upscale shopping adventures. Of course, Target’s headquarters and two-story store are located there as well, along with a Marshall’s. Expecting the merchandise at that Marshall’s to be in keeping with its upscale neighbors, we went in but quickly left. Not what we expected!

Because I had such a great Sunday brunch there a couple of years ago, I wanted to go back to Hell’s Kitchen on 10th The sign outside Hell’s Kitchen on 10th off Nicollet Malljust off Nicollet Mall. We had a late breakfast and it was still serving, as the restaurant bills itself, “damn good food.” Try the lemon ricotta hotcakes or the breakfast bruschetta – walnut bread topped with mascarpone cheese. Both dishes were covered in fresh berries. Look for the little hanging sign with the picture of the crow. Looks a little creepy from the outside, but that’s the charm. Wonderful food, breakfast and lunch only.

By the way, Nicollet Mall is filled with restaurants and Another view of Nicollet Mallsidewalk cafes throughout the summer.

A great way to get an overview of a city is to take a tour. The RiverCity Trolley tour was well worth the $15 (with coupon) to see and hear about different areas of the city. You can get on and off along the way.

To catch our Midwest Airlines flight back to Milwaukee (5 roundtrips available each day), we easily picked up the Light Rail and headed back to the airport.

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Got a Minneapolis or St. Paul favorite? Share it to help me plan another MSP girlfriends’ getaway. Just leave a comment.

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Entry filed under: Minneapolis.

Holiday Shop on a Girlfriends’ Getaway — My Special Airfares Make It Happen! Doggie Palooza Leads to Shopping Discoveries

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. themuttprincess  |  January 3, 2007 at 3:36 pm

    MPLS can be easily navigated with out a car. I have to admit the drivers in Minnesota suck, as do our roads. We have 2 seasons here: road construction and winter. And this year they have miserably been combined.

    If you want any tips for Minnesota in general I am a native… LOL

    The Mutt Princess

  • 2. juliemarg  |  February 16, 2007 at 11:32 pm

    Hi Tish

    Thanks for the tip about Hell’s Kitchen. I’ve just posted it at Things You Should Do



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