The Land of 10,000 Lakes offers plenty to see and do for visitors to our state.  But what are the most-popular tourist attractions?  Subjectively speaking, most folks have their favorites but factually the ranking is pretty easy to determine when you base it on attendance numbers.

Explore Minnesota - the state's tourism promotion office - recently announced the 2017 attendance figures for all sorts of tourist attractions throughout the state.  Their survey took into account the numbers from attractions like stadiums, malls, museums, zoos, parks, and other destination places.

The top tourist attraction should probably come as no surprise; the Mall of America in Bloomington easily topped the list - counting 40-million visitors in 2017; the closest attraction was Chain of Lakes Regional Park in Minneapolis, claiming the second most-visited attraction slot at 7,063,500 visitors during the same time period.

Here are the top ten:

  1. Mall of America - Bloomington
  2. Chain of Lakes Regional Park - Minneapolis
  3. Como Park - St. Paul
  4. National Sports Center - Blaine
  5. Central Mississippi Riverfront Regional Park - Minneapolis
  6. Mississippi Gorge Regional Park - Minneapolis/St. Paul
  7. Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center & Park - Duluth
  8. Xcel Energy Center - St. Paul
  9. Target Field - Minneapolis
  10. Minnehaha Park - Minneapolis

Northlanders shouldn't take the fact that Duluth only made the top ten once; when you consider the population numbers and the amount of attractions in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Metro, it's no wonder that the remainder of the list came from that area.

All told, the tourism industry plays a large role in Minnesota's economy.  According to Explore Minnesota, the average yearly revenue amount from tourism for the state of $15-billion.