Park Rapids, MN lies in the heart of six state forests and hundreds of lakes. It is an area whose livelihood relies heavily on tourism, so they truly cater to all their visitors. For anyone who enjoys the beauty of the outdoors or the relaxation of a day on the water it is the perfect vacation getaway. The beauty of the area is truly a sight to behold! The scenery is especially awe-inspiring in the fall when the brilliant yellows, oranges, and reds of the changing leaves fill the forests and in the winter when the trees are filled with twinkling ice crystals that hang from the branches of countless trees. One way many people use to indulge in the beauty of the area is to use the forty-nine mile paved Heartland Trail. The Heartland Trail is a walking and biking trail that starts right in the heart of Park Rapids and is perfect for leisurely walks or bike rides in the summer or snowmobile rides in the winter while taking in all the beauty that surrounds this growing tourist town.
The Park Rapids area is also the home of Itasca State Park. This state park holds the headwaters of the mighty Mississippi River. People travel from all over the world to indulge in the beauty of the park and use the stepping stones to cross the Mississippi headwaters where the river starts its 2,000+ mile journey to the Gulf of Mexico!
The quiet corner of the country that holds Park Rapids really does have something for almost everyone. From a traditional logging camp where visitors can see what life was like for the early loggers to a variety of live musical and comedy theatres, there is something to touch every mind and heart. And, as you might guess for a city surrounded by lakes, there is plenty of great fishing!
With the economy as rocky as it has been vacations are harder to fund but luckily Park Rapids has something for any price range! If your budget is really tight there are plenty of campgrounds for only ten to twenty dollars per night. Or, for those who don’t look kindly on sleeping on the ground, there are well over 75 resorts and hotels in the area. I personally like to rough it sometimes but more often then not I like to have a nice, comfy bed! I’ve spent many nights at the C’mon Inn in downtown Park Rapids because you get a lot of luxury for less than you’d expect. With pillow-top mattresses, a fridge and microwave, and 42-50″ plasma televisions in the rooms the C’mon Inn is just about as far away from camping as you can get and still not break the bank! That is a bit of a plug for them but they truly do a magnificent job so they deserve it!
Park Rapids is a great way to vacation on any budget, whether for a week, month, or just a weekend! If you do travel to that little corner of lakes country make sure to check out Park Rapids’ Main Street where there is parking in the middle of the street! If you ask anyone in town they’ll tell you that the street was made wide so that horse drawn carriages could have room to pass by each other and turn around between buildings and now that extra wide area is used for parking; it truly is a unique sight!