Top 5 Reasons to Visit Inver Grove Heights

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Inver Grove Heights

Discover why Inver Grove Heights should be your next destination! From our welcoming hotels to diverse attractions, dining experiences, and proximity to the Twin Cities, there’s so much to explore. Immerse yourself into outdoor adventures and uncover the vibrant charm of Inver Grove Heights! Below are our Top 5 reasons to Visit Inver Grove Heights.

 

1. Attractions

Inver Grove Heights is a haven for entertainment seekers, boasting an array of attractions to enjoy. Experience the thrill of axe throwing at PerpleBunny’s Axe House and bowling at local hotspots like Drkula’s 32 Bowl & Pub, providing exhilarating fun for friends and family alike. Another must-visit destination is Nowhere Entertainment, offering 13 holes of mini-golf, escape rooms, arcade games, and seasonal haunted houses. Just next door is Open Window Theatre; view their upcoming shows by visiting our event calendar. They often sell out for a reason – bringing stories to life in an immersive experience that promises an unforgettable show. Inver Grove Heights is also home to Gertens Garden Center! They are Minnesota’s Destination Garden center. If you’re in a shopping mood or want to take in the wide variety of plants, you will be in awe. Come and experience all the attractions that Inver Grove Heights has to offer!

2. Outdoor Recreation

Hit the trails and embark on scenic nature walks through forests and alongside serene waterscapes, offering glimpses of native wildlife and vibrant foliage. For a refreshing adventure, venture to the banks of the majestic Mississippi River, where riverfront parks offer opportunities for nature walks, biking, riverside relaxation, and dining. Cyclists will delight in the city’s extensive network of biking trails, including the renowned Mississippi River Trail, which offers picturesque routes along the river’s edge, with highlights such as the historic Rock Island Swing Bridge. Whether you’re seeking serenity in nature or thrilling outdoor adventure, Inver Grove Heights has parks and trails for a memorable experience in the beautiful outdoors.

3. Proximity to the Twin Cities

Inver Grove Heights boasts a prime location just minutes away from the vibrant urban hub of the Twin Cities. Situated strategically in the southern suburbs of Minneapolis and St. Paul, this charming city offers residents and visitors the best of both worlds. With convenient access to major highways and public transportation, commuting to downtown Minneapolis or St. Paul is a breeze. Whether it’s catching a game at Target Field, exploring the renowned Mall of America, or enjoying the cultural attractions along the Mississippi River, the Twin Cities’ endless opportunities for entertainment and adventure are within easy reach from Inver Grove Heights. Yet, despite its proximity to urban amenities, Inver Grove Heights retains its own distinct identity, with serene parks, bustling local businesses, and a tight-knit community atmosphere that sets it apart. It’s the perfect balance of suburban tranquility and urban convenience, making Inver Grove Heights an ideal place to visit.

4. Local Dining Scene

From cozy breakfast spots to enticing coffee shops, exotic international flavors, and indulgent Juicy Lucy, Inver Grove Heights offers a culinary journey that tantalizes taste buds and satisfies cravings. Dive into the dining experience with options for dining in, takeout, or enjoying a meal on the patio, and some restaurants offer stunning views of the majestic Mississippi River. And with the exceptional service from our local restaurants, every dining experience is elevated to a whole new level of satisfaction. 

5. Cozy & Affordable Lodging

When planning your visit to Inver Grove Heights, finding a cozy and affordable hotel is easier than you think. Fortunately, our city offers four wonderful hotels that provide comfortable accommodations and convenient amenities at budget-friendly rates. Here are some options to consider: AmericInn Hotel & Suites by WyndhamHoliday Inn ExpressMicrotel Inn & Suites by Wynham and Coratel Inn & Suites by Jasper.

Book Your Inver Grove Heights Vacation!

We hope you consider Inver Grove Heights for your next family, couples, or friends’ getaway! Book your stay with us. For more information on trip planning, fill out our contact form to get added to our monthly e-newsletter.

Top 10 Fall Activities in Inver Grove Heights

Pine Bend Bluffs Fall Season Inver Grove Heights

Fall is here, and there are so many things to do and experience in Inver Grove Heights. Our charming town offers a relaxing and cozy feel when staying in one of the four affordable hotels. Need a reason to book a fall trip? Check out the top 10 fall activities to do below!

Vikings U.S. Bank Stadium
Photo Credit: VisitIGH

Catch a Fall Vikings Game at U.S. Bank Stadium

Want to see the Vikings play at home? Choose from one of the four affordable hotels in Inver Grove Heights and book your stay.

Nowhere Escape Room
Photo Credit: Nowhere Escape Room

Experience the Nowhere Haunted House

Get your ticket for the Nowhere Haunted House. Choose your scare level. Options include Sunday lights on a kid-friendly tour, Saturday low-scary, the Nowhere Haunted House Main Halloween Experience, or the Nowhere 18+ nights. Nowhere Haunted House also has escape rooms, minigolf, and an arcade.

Oktoberfest at Mississippi Pub
Photo Credit: Mississippi Pub

Oktoberfest celebration at Mississippi Pub

Celebrate Oktoberfest on Saturday, October 7th, from 3:00–10:30 p.m. at Mississippi Pub. Enjoy authentic German foods, a variety of beers, games, live polka music, stein hoisting, and a best-dressed contest!

Swing Bridge, Inver Grove Heights Minnesota

Biking or Walk the Historic Rock Island Swing Bridge

Rock Island Swing Bridge was built in the 19th century and was used as a toll bridge until 2011. It was reopened for as a historic landmark. Take a bike ride or stroll along this beautiful trail with views of the Mississippi River.

AMC Movie Theater in Inver Grove Heights
Photo Credit: AMC Movie Theaters

Catch a Halloween Movie at AMC Inver Grove 16

It’s the season for spooky and scary movies. Currently playing at the AMC Inver Grove 16 are The Nun 2, Hunted Mansion, Meg 2, Talk to Me, and Christine’s 40th Anniversary. To see showtimes and other movies playing, visit their website.

Fall Golf in Inver Grove Heights

Golf at Inver Wood Golf Course

Grab a group of friends and head over to Inver Woods. This course offers 27 holes and sits on 275 acres of rolling, wooded terrain. The championship course offers 18 challenging holes with features that utilize the area’s natural geography, such as multi-level fairways, multiple tee stations, varied-shaped U.S.G.A. greens, and picturesque par three holes that challenge your golf game as well as your senses.

Bowling at Drkulas
Photo Credit: Drkulas

Bowling at Drakula’s 32 Bowl & Pub

Family fun can be found at Drakula’s 32 Bowl! This family-owned business is a local favorite for its bowling, arcade area, food, and drinks.

Celebrate Fall at Gertens
Photo Credit: Gertens

Gertens Garden Center

This fall, check out Minnesota’s destination garden center. Gertens offers everything you need for your outdoor space, including plants, soil, mulch, gardening supplies, hanging baskets, and more. Plan your trip and enjoy a stroll around their large store with so many options.

Heritage Village Dog Park
Photo Credit: VisitIGH

Heritage Village Dog Park

If you’re traveling with your pup, don’t forget to stop at Heritage Village Dog Park. This park is an off-leash park with areas for both big and small dogs. There is also a large bone to take a cute photo of your dog next to.

B52 Burgers + Brew
Photo Credit: Traveling with the Brunette

Grab a Bite to Eat!

Inver Grove Heights is home to unique dining spots for American, Asian, Italian, Mexican, fast food, or a sweet treat. There is something for everyone. See the full list of options on our Places to Eat page.

Book your fall getaway to Inver Grove Heights! We welcome you to explore our town and all it has to offer.

Fun Fall Weekends in Inver Grove Heights

Swing Bridge, Inver Grove Heights Minnesota

A Fun Fall Weekend is calling your name! Fall is the perfect season to embrace outdoor activities and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. In Inver Grove Heights, there are plenty of options for fun-filled weekends. Whether you’re a biking enthusiast, attending Inver Grove Heights Days, or simply looking to relax on a restaurant patio, this guide will help you make the most of your fall adventures in Inver Grove Heights.

Swing Bridge, Inver Grove Heights Minnesota

Recreational Activities

Explore the scenic Mississippi River Trail by taking a bike ride. This paved riverside trail stretches approximately 13 miles, connecting Inver Grove Heights to neighboring communities. Along the way, admire the picturesque scenery and make a stop at Swing Bridge Park to enjoy the stunning view from the walking pier that extends 680 feet over the Mississippi River.

For those seeking a more challenging biking experience, the newly opened Mountain Bike Trail at Vista Pines Park offers an intermediate-level trail with rollable jumps and berms. It’s a great option for avid cyclists or anyone looking for an exciting biking adventure.

Fall Golf in Inver Grove Heights

If golf is your preferred recreational activity, Arbor Pointe Golf Club and Inver Wood Golf Course are excellent choices. Arbor Pointe Golf Club is a beautifully laid-out Executive 9-hole course located amidst the trees and rolling hills of the Arbor Pointe Residential Development. Inver Wood Golf Course, on the other hand, offers 27 holes spread across 275 acres of wooded terrain. You can choose between the challenging 18-hole championship course or the 9-hole executive course, or play them both! Additionally, Inver Wood Golf Course has a driving range designed to simulate on-course conditions, providing a realistic practice experience. Both courses are open to the public, and you can easily book tee times online.

For a different kind of outdoor activity, try your hand at disc golfing at North Valley Park. The park features an 18-hole disc golf course with beautiful views, hilly areas, and wooded sections. It’s suitable for players of all skill levels, and you can purchase daily or seasonal passes online.

Pine Bend Bluffs
Photo Credit: Visit IGH

Admire Fall Foliage

Immerse yourself in the vibrant colors of fall and head to North Valley Park, one of the 27 parks in Inver Grove Heights. This 58-acre park is filled with wooded areas, providing ample opportunities to witness the stunning autumn hues. You can also make use of the available picnic tables and grills for a delightful autumn picnic.

Another fantastic spot to appreciate fall foliage is Pine Bend Bluffs Scientific and Natural Area. With its 200-foot bluffs, this location offers one of the best views of the Mississippi River in its natural state within the Twin Cities metro area. The hiking trails provide a perfect opportunity to observe fall colors and local wildlife.

Fun Fall Weekend Events

Inver Grove Heights has an exciting lineup of fall events that you won’t want to miss!

Inver Grove Heights Days Car Show
Photo Credit: Inver Grove Heights Days

IGH Days: Celebrate everything Inver Grove Heights has to offer at IGH Days! This community celebration takes place from Wednesday, September 7 to Sunday, September 11, 2022. It’s a fantastic opportunity to enjoy a wide range of activities suitable for families, couples, sports enthusiasts, food lovers, and more. From entertaining events to delicious food options, IGH Days has something for everyone. While many activities are free of charge, some may require an IGH Days button for access.

Oktoberfest at Mississippi Pub
Photo Credit: Mississippi Pub

Don’t miss the 7th Annual Oktoberfest at Mississippi Pub in Inver Grove Heights! This lively event on October 1, 2022, from 3:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. brings the spirit of Oktoberfest to life. Enjoy delicious German foods, a variety of beers, and live German music all day. Join the fun with competitions like the stein hoisting contest for women, men, and co-ed teams. Dress up in your best dirndl or lederhosen for a chance to win. This family-friendly event is free to attend and celebrates the rich traditions of German culture.

B52 Burgers + Brew Rooftop Pation
Photo Credit: B52 Burgers + Brew

RESTAURANT PATIOS

Take advantage of the lingering warmth by grabbing a seat on one of the local patios and enjoying outdoor dining in the fall. Here’s our Top Seven Patios in Inver Grove Heights.It’s the perfect time to savor the crisp air while indulging in delicious food and drinks. Whether you’re looking for a rooftop patio with panoramic views or a cozy spot surrounded by nature, Inver Grove Heights has an array of options to suit every taste. Soak up the sunshine and relish the autumn ambiance while treating yourself to a memorable dining experience on one of the charming fall patios in the area. Grab a seat at a local patio while the weather is still warm.

Summer Events in Inver Grove Heights

Inver Grove Heights Days Car Show
By Stacy Brooks

Save the date for a summer full of fun events in and near Inver Grove Heights!  Enjoy the great outdoors with family-friendly activities, take spin into the past with a hangar dance or classic car show, sample food truck eats, and more.

Upcoming Summer Events in Inver Grove Heights

Fishing at Simley Island Park in Inver Grove Heights
Photo Credit: Inver Grove Heights Parks & Rec

Huck Finn Fishing Derby 

Saturday, June 10, 2023, 9:00am-11:00am

The annual youth fishing tournament at Simley Island Park will feature prizes for the largest fish, smallest fish, and most fish caught, plus all participants receive a fishing goodie bag.  Register in advance online.  

Hangar Dance at Commemorative Air Force Minnesota Wing
Photo Credit: Commemorative Air Force Minnesota Wing

CAF MN Wing Spring Hangar Dance 

Saturday, June 10, 2023

Party like it’s the 1940s at the Commemorative Air Force Minnesota Wing’s Spring Hangar Dance.  Enjoy big band music, a free swing dance lesson, aircraft tours, and food, and wear WWII-era clothes for a chance to win a prize.

Terrific Tuesdays 

Tuesdays, June 20-August 1, 2023, 10:30am

Enjoy free family-friendly entertainment at Oakwood Park.  This year’s schedule includes concerts, storytelling, and educational programming.  Stick around after the concert to explore the park’s trails or play at the playground.

Back to the 50s Weekend
Photo Credit: MSRA Back to the 50s Weekend

Back to the 50s Weekend

Friday, June 23-Sunday, June 25, 2023

Over 10,000 classic cars will converge on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds for a retro fun-filled weekend.  In addition to automobiles, the event includes music, a swap meet, craft fair, and model car contest.

Dive-In Movie 

Friday, June 23, 2023, 5:00pm-7:30pm

Combine an evening of swimming with a screening of Pixar’s Luca at the VMCC.  The movie will be screened on the water park pool deck, and popcorn will be provided.

Movie in the Park 

Friday, July 7, 2023, 8:00pm

Watch The Secret Life of Pets 2 under the stars at Oakwood Park.  Before the movie starts at dusk, there will be pre-movie entertainment, a bounce house, games, and ice cream available for purchase.

Food Truck Days Inver Grove Heights
Photo Credit: Visit Inver Grove Heights

Food Truck Days 

July 20 and August 17, 2023, 4:30pm-7:00pm

Savor dinner or a snack from several local food truck vendors at Rich Valley Athletic Complex.  There will also be music, entertainment, and family activities.

Giant Slide at Minnesota State Fair
Photo Credit: Minnesota State Fair

Minnesota State Fair 

Thursday, August 24-Monday, September 4, 2023

Deep-fried food, entertainment, livestock, shopping, rides—Inver Grove Heights is closer than you think to the Great Minnesota Get-Together!  Whether you want to rock out at a Grandstand show or try the zaniest new foods, it’s sure to be a fun time.

Inver Grove Heights Days Car Show
Photo Credit: Inver Grove Heights Days

IGH Days

Wednesday, September 6-Sunday, September 10, 2023

The annual celebration of all things Inver Grove Heights includes a parade, family activities, and so much more.  Check out the IGH Days website for the most up-to-date information.

In addition to summertime events, save the date for a stay in Inver Grove Heights!  Inver Grove Heights hotels offer excellent value and are conveniently located to downtown St. Paul, the Mall of America, Minneapolis, and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  Enjoy amenities including complimentary breakfast, free parking, pools, and more.  Book your stay at these Inver Grove Heights hotels today!

[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Hit the Links in Inver Grove Heights

Inver Wood Golf Course
By Stacy Brooks

Hit the links in Inver Grove Heights!  Inver Grove Heights is a great golf destination for golfers of all types and abilities: you can play 9 or 18 holes at beautiful local courses, go disc golfing, or try out foot golf.  Afterwards, celebrate your victory (or console yourself after a defeat) with a delicious meal at one of Inver Grove Heights’ dozens of local restaurants.

Disc Golf, North Valley Park
Photo Credit: Visit IGH

Disc Golf at North Valley Park

With scenic views and four different skill level-based routes, the Disc Golf Course at North Valley Park is fun for beginning and experienced disc golfers alike.  The 18-hole course includes wooded areas and a pond.  

A pass is required to use the course from May through September and can be purchased online.  Daily passes are $5 and season passes are $30 for residents, $40 for non-residents.

After you finish your disc golf game, sample international cuisine at one of Inver Grove Heights’ local restaurants.  iPho2 serves Vietnamese specialties including pho, banh mi, noodle salads, and bubble tea.  Taqueria El Girasol is great for Mexican food like birria tacos, burritos, and enchiladas.  At LW’s Bierstube, feast on German fare such as bratwurst and weiner schnitzel, plus American pub favorites.

Inver Wood Golf Course
Photo Credit: Visit IGH

Golf and Foot Golf at Inver Wood Golf Course

Inver Wood Golf Course’s 27 holes are spread across a scenic setting, with rolling, wooded terrain.  The practice center has a unique design, with two fairways, greens, and bunkers to provide an “on course” feel to the driving range concept.  Tee times can be reserved online.

Foot Golf at Inver Wood Golf Course
Photo Credit: Star Tribune

Inver Wood also offers foot golf, a soccer/golf hybrid that’s a fun outdoor activity for golfers and non-golfers alike.  The game is played on the golf course, and players kick a soccer ball from the starting tee to the hole.  You can opt to play an 18-hole or 9-hole round.

Inver Wood is conveniently located to Iwa Sushi, which is a local favorite for top-notch sushi and hibachi meals.  If you’re looking for a quick bite, Oyevida Lifestyle Cafe offers healthful sandwiches, salads, and flatbread pizzas.

Arbor Pointe Golf Club
Photo Credit: Arbor Pointe Golf Club

Executive Golf Course at Arbor Pointe Golf Club 

One of the top short courses in Minnesota, the 9-hole course at Arbor Pointe Golf Club is a convenient way to play a challenging round of golf in a beautiful natural setting (maybe even spot some wildlife!)  The par 31 course features water on seven holes and extensive bunkering.   Tee times can be reserved online. 

Enjoy a post-game round of drinks at Inver Grove Brewing.  In addition to local craft beer, there’s a full bar and a food menu with elevated pub fare including brick oven Neapolitan-style pizzas, burgers, pasta, and more.

This golf season, plan a getaway to Inver Grove Heights!  Inver Grove Heights hotels offer excellent value and are conveniently located to downtown St. Paul, the Mall of America, Minneapolis, and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  Enjoy amenities including complimentary breakfast, free parking, indoor pools, and more.  Book your stay at these Inver Grove Heights hotels today!

Explore the Great Outdoors in Inver Grove Heights

Attractions Rock Island Swing Bridge

If you’re looking to spend more time in the great outdoors this summer, Inver Grove Heights is the perfect destination. With miles of scenic biking and hiking trails, recreational activities, and a host of restaurants offering alfresco dining options, this charming city has something for everyone.  

Rock Island Swing Bridge
Photo Credit: Visit IGH

Whether you’re a casual rider or a seasoned pro, Inver Grove Heights is a hidden gem for avid bikers with its extensive network of trails and picturesque surroundings. One of the most popular routes is the Rock Island Swing Bridge, a former railroad bridge converted into a pedestrian and bike path. This iconic structure provides breathtaking views of the Mississippi River and is a popular spot for photos. Another must-see trail is the Mississippi River Greenway, which stretches 10 miles along the riverfront, offering riders a mix of paved and unpaved paths. For those seeking a longer ride, the Mississippi River Trail  offers a scenic 26-mile stretch from Inver Grove Heights to Hastings. Additionally, Harmon Park Reserve Mountain Biking Trail provides a thrilling off-road experience, with a 4-mile loop that winds through dense woods, rocky terrain, and challenging obstacles.  

Inver Wood Golf Course
Photo Credit: Inver Wood Golf Course

With a variety of courses and activities available, Inver Grove Heights is a great destination for golf enthusiasts. The Inver Wood Golf Course is a popular option, with its 18-hole championship course featuring rolling hills, tree-lined fairways, and water hazards. In addition to traditional golf, Inver Wood also offers Foot Golf, a combination of soccer and golf that is fun for all ages. Another nearby option is the Arbor Pointe Golf Course, which offers a challenging 9-hole course with beautiful views of the surrounding area. For those looking for a different kind of golfing experience, the North Valley Park offers a disc golf course with challenging holes set amidst a scenic natural setting. 

Salem Hills Park
Photo Credit: MN Bike Trail Navigator

Thanks to its abundance of stunning parks and outdoor recreational opportunities, Inver Grove Heights is a paradise for nature lovers. Salem Hills Park is a favorite among locals, with its winding hiking and walking trails that offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. Similarly, South Valley Park boasts a variety of trails, including paved and unpaved options, as well as an impressive array of pickleball courts. For those seeking a more rugged adventure, the Pine Bend Bluffs hiking trail offers a challenging trek through a mix of prairies and woodlands. Fishing enthusiasts can head to Smiley Island Pond, City Hall Pond, and McGroarty Pond, all of which are stocked with an array of fish species. These peaceful spots are perfect for a relaxing day spent casting a line and enjoying the scenery. The Heritage Village Dog Park (separate areas for large and small dogs) offers ample space, shaded spots, and water stations for furry friends to exercise, socialize, and have fun in a safe and controlled environment. 

B52 Burgers + Brew Rooftop Pation
Photo Credit: B52 Burgers + Brew

When the weather is warm and sunny, there’s nothing better than enjoying a delicious meal while basking in the great outdoors. Inver Grove Heights offers a variety of excellent restaurants with outdoor dining options, perfect for a casual lunch or a romantic dinner. For those who crave burgers and beer, the Rooftop at B52 Burgers & Grill offers both, along with breathtaking views of the city skyline. At the Mississippi Pub, diners can savor delicious food while enjoying a front-row view of the mighty Mississippi River. Seafood lovers can head to Mallards Restaurant, where they can savor delicious seafood dishes while taking in the sights and sounds of the surrounding nature. For those who enjoy a cold brew, Inver Grove Brewing offers their brewed beer and woodfired pizza. Jerseys Bar & Grill boasts an outdoor fireplace for cool nights, while Drkula’s 32 Bowl offers casual dining and courtside views sand volleyball courts for some fun in the sun.  

Make Inver Grove Heights your base for a weekend of exploring the great outdoors in the Twin Cities!  Inver Grove Heights hotels offer excellent value and are conveniently located to downtown St. Paul, the Mall of America, Minneapolis, and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  Enjoy amenities including complimentary breakfast, free parking, indoor pools, and more.  Book your stay at these Inver Grove Heights hotels today! 

Biking in Inver Grove Heights: Regional Bike Trails

Pine Bend Bluffs
By Stacy Brooks

Inver Grove Heights is a top-notch biking destination, thanks to its miles of trails, parks, and Bike King, a full-service bike shop.  It’s also a convenient place to connect to some of the Twin Cities’ best regional bike trails and stop for a bite to eat along the way. 

Mississippi River Trail Bikeway (U.S. Bicycle Route 45) 

Minnesota’s segment of the Mississippi River Trail Bikeway runs about 620 miles from the river’s source in Itasca State Park to the Iowa border.  Located mostly on the shoulders of paved and low-traffic roads, the route also includes segments of state and regional trails.

Rock Island Swing Bridge regional bike trials
Photo Credit: Visit IGH

Inver Grove Heights’ portion of the trail passes through the heart of the city, running along Concord Boulevard, 80th Street, and South Robert Trail.  Stop at Swing Bridge Park for panoramic views from the 680-foot walking pier that juts halfway across the Mississippi River.  The park also has a trailhead facility with bike fix-it stations, restrooms, water, and benches.

Mississippi Pub
Photo Credit: Mississippi Pub

Several locally-owned Inver Grove Heights restaurants are located on or near the Mississippi River Trail Bikeway.  For river views and elevated bar fare, visit the Mississippi Pub, which has two outdoor patios overlooking the river and a glass-walled dining room.  Other local favorites include Jersey’s Bar & Grill, Turitto’s Pizza, Iwa Sushi, and Dominick’s Pizza.  In the mood for something healthful?  Check out Oyevida Lifestyle Cafe for sandwiches and salads.

Mississippi River Greenway- Regional Bike Trails

Extending 27 miles along the Mississippi River from St. Paul to Hastings, the Mississippi River Greenway runs through Inver Grove Heights, with trailheads at Swing Bridge Park and Pine Bend Bluffs.  The paved trail has scenic views of the river and is also connected to other local parks and trails.

Regional Bike Trails
Photo Credit: City of Inver Grove Heights

Salem Hills Park/Harmon Park Reserve Mountain Biking Trail

Looking for a beginner-friendly mountain biking trail?  Check on the 4.3 miles of trails in Harmon Park Reserve.  The one-way trail system includes three loops.  A Loop (Singletrack Sawmill) starts from the parking lot, and is less than a mile long, with a twisting route through the trees.  B Loop (Foul Pond) features two wooden bridges and goes in and out of the woods.  C Loop (Prairie Fire) also incorporates both wooded and prairie areas, with a bridge and an optional rock obstacle. 

Make Inver Grove Heights your base for a weekend of biking in the Twin Cities!  Inver Grove Heights hotels offer excellent value and are conveniently located to downtown St. Paul, the Mall of America, Minneapolis, and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  Enjoy amenities including complimentary breakfast, free parking, indoor pools, and more.  Book your stay at these Inver Grove Heights hotels today!

6 Family-Friendly Outdoor Winter Activities in Inver Grove Heights

South Valley Park Inver Grove Heights
By Stacy Brooks

This winter, embrace chilly temperatures in Inver Grove Heights! This is your guide to 6 Family-Friendly Outdoor Winter Activities in Inver Grove Heights. From sledding to snowshoeing, learning survival skills to navigating an ice maze, these outdoor family-friendly activities are fun for kids of all ages (and their grownups, too).

EcoElsa Outdoor Programs

Enjoy the snow with an educational twist: EcoElsa outdoor programs from Inver Grove Heights Parks and Recreation offer a fun, interactive way for kids and families to learn about STEM and local wildlife. Upcoming programs include a family Winter Night Hike on February 24, 2023 (ages 5 and up), family snowshoeing on February 25, 2023 (ages 6 and up).  Learn more and pre-register online here.  

Snowshoeing Photo Credit: Mael Balland
Photo Credit: Mael Balland

Snowshoeing

Explore the great outdoors on snowshoes at a local nature preserve.  At the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge you can borrow adult and child-sized snowshoes for free at the Bloomington visitor center and check out over 50 miles of trails.  For a backcountry experience without leaving the metro, visit Pine Bend Bluff Scientific and Natural Area, which is an undeveloped, serene spot for wildlife watching or simply appreciating the snow-covered landscape.

Hiking 

The Mississippi River Greenway is plowed throughout the winter, making it perfect for a cold-weather hike.  Bring along your furry friends, too—on-leash dogs are welcome.  Stop at the Swing Bridge Park trailhead for a snowy family selfie at the end of the Rock Island Swing Bridge, a walking pier that juts hundreds of feet over the Mississippi River.

South Valley Park Inver Grove Heights
Photo Credit: Inver Grove Heights

Sledding

The whole family will love zooming down the sledding hill at South Valley Park.  The large hill has a long, gentle slope and is close to the parking lot, and the park also offers trails, a playground, and a skating rink. 

Inver Grove Heights Outdoor Skating Rinks
Photo Credit: Inver Grove Heights

Ice skating

Glide across the ice at one of Inver Grove Heights’ outdoor rinks, which are open through February 20, 2023 (weather permitting).  Rinks are lit after dark, and warming houses and portable bathrooms are available.  The rinks at Skyview, Oakwood, Groveland, and South Valley Parks have warming houses; there’s also a rink at Southern Lakes Park without a warming house.  

Minnesota Ice Maze 2023
Photo Credit: Minnesota Ice Maze

Minnesota Ice Maze

Have fun getting lost at the Minnesota Ice Maze at Viking Lakes.  With nearly half a mile of twists and turns made from over a million pounds of ice, the maze is fully lit with colorful lights.  Kids can win a prize by completing the interactive scavenger hunt, and there are also ice thrones, fire pits, and hot beverages and treats available for purchase.  The ice maze is open daily through February 19, 2023 and tickets can be purchased online.

This winter, book a stay in Inver Grove Heights!  Inver Grove Heights hotels offer excellent value and are conveniently located to downtown St. Paul, the Mall of America, Minneapolis, and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  Warm up with amenities including complimentary breakfast, free parking, indoor pools, and more.  Book your stay at these Inver Grove Heights hotels today!

Budget-friendly Itineraries in Inver Grove Heights

Hotels Near St. Paul, MN

With budget-friendly attractions, restaurants, and accommodations, Inver Grove Heights is a great destination for a cost-effective getaway.  Whether you’re planning a family vacation, couples weekend, outdoor adventure, or foodie experience, check out these itineraries for free and low-cost fun.

For families…

Photo Credit: Inver Grove Heights Parks and Recreation

The indoor water park at Veterans Memorial Community Center provides thrills for a small price—daily passes are only $6 for kids and $9 for adults.  Smaller children can check out the waterpark’s play area and dumping bucket, and older kids can zoom down the waterslides.

 

Photo Credit: Visit IGH

Drkula’s 32 Bowl is a budget-friendly indoor activity, with all-you-can-bowl 1.5 and 2 hour blocks that include shoe rental.  The new Hyperbowling system adds a fun video game element the whole family will enjoy.

park- Budget-friendly Itineraries in Inver Grove Heights

Photo Credit: Dakota County Parks

Take the kids to an Inver Grove Heights park for a no-cost way to spend the afternoon.  Family-friendly amenities include playgrounds, a sledding hill, and outdoor skating rinks.

Eat at restaurants with kids menus to save money when dining out—check out this list of diverse local options that will satisfy the pickiest eater.

For couples…

Inver Grove Heights’ most iconic attraction is completely free of charge—the Rock Island Swing Bridge is a historic swing bridge that has been converted into a walking pier jutting over the Mississippi River.  It offers a unique panoramic view of the river and is the perfect backdrop for a romantic photo.

Enjoy an easy-on-wallet date night at Iwa Sushi, which offers sushi specials for two that include two bowls of miso soup, two house salads, two sushi rolls, and a chef-selected assortment of sushi.

Photo Credit: Mallards

Brunch is typically a more budget-friendly meal than dinner, and Mallards serves a delicious Sunday brunch, with specials like brandy French toast, chicken and biscuits, and lobster quiche.  

For outdoors lovers…

Disc golf enthusiasts rejoice—the 18-hole disc golf course at North Valley Park is completely free October through April (during the rest of year, a daily pass is only $5).  The course has four different layouts based on varying skill levels, making it fun for both experts and novices.

Photo Credit: Samantha Dettinger 

Spend the day cycling, hiking, or running on one of Inver Grove Heights trails for a cost-free way to explore the community and get some exercise.  The paved Mississippi River Greenway stretches 26 miles along the river, with scenic overlooks and connections to other local trails.  Check out the free bike repair station at the Swing Bridge Trailhead if you have any issues.

Hiking, bird watching, wildlife viewing, snowshoeing, and more: local nature areas are a free way to appreciate all of Minnesota’s seasons.  Pine Bend Bluffs Scientific and Natural Area is one of the largest undisturbed natural areas in the Twin Cities metro and has great views of the Mississippi River.

For foodies…

Photo Credit: Taqueria El Girasol

Find bold flavors on a budget with lunch at iPho2, a Vietnamese restaurant that serves banh mi, pho, vermicelli salads, and rice platters with your choice of meat, seafood, or tofu.  Other Inver Grove Heights lunch options that are delicious and light on the wallet include Taqueria El Girasol, which serves Mexican fare, and Oyevida Lifestyle Cafe, where the menu features wholesome bowls and sandwiches with plenty of vegetarian and gluten-free options.

Photo Credit: B-52 Burgers & Brew

Jersey’s Bar & Grill is a local favorite for its lineup of award-winning burgers, sandwiches, and dinner entrees, and they offer nightly food specials—check the website for details.   Another beloved spot for local eats is B-52 Burgers and Brew, which specializes in gourmet burgers and also offers nightly specials like Wednesday wing night and a Friday fish fry.

Treat yourself to dessert at Hometown Sweets, which has an impressive array of bulk and nostalgic candies—purchase as much or as little as you want.

For everyone…

Inver Grove Heights hotels have some of the most affordable rates in the Twin Cities metro and also offer complimentary breakfast and free parking.  When you stay in Inver Grove Heights, you’ll enjoy easy highway access, and you’re within ten miles of downtown St. Paul, the Mall of America, and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  

Book your stay at these Inver Grove Heights hotels today!