A Great Fall Tour: Great River Road to the Great Lakes

From Itineraries Minnesota Summer Issue 2006

This itinerary works best in the Fall.

Work your way upstream via the Great River Road National Scenic Byway, to the Headwaters of the Mississippi River.  Explore river towns dressed for fall with colorful foliage and deep blue waters.


9 – 11:30 am
Depart Minneapolis via Great River Road National Scenic Byway US Hwy 94.

10 – 11:30 am
Arrive in St Cloud. Tour Munsinger/Clemens Gardens on the bank of the Mississippi River.

11:30 – 12:30 pm
Enjoy lunch at a variety of group friendly places in St. Cloud.

12:30 – 3:30 pm
Depart for Itasca State ParkHeadwaters of the Mississippi

3:30 – 5:30 pm
Arrive at Itasca State Park – stop at Jacob V. Brower Visitors Center Tour Park with a step-on naturalist guide – and step across the Headwaters of the mighty Mississippi River. (light refreshment break available at historic Douglas Lodge).

5:30 – 6:00 pm
Depart for Bemidji via Great River Rd National Scenic Byway.

6 – 6: 45 pm
Arrive in Bemidji, check into motel.

6:45 – 9:00 pm
Enjoy an incredible dinner and evening at the Country Club overlooking Lake Bemidji.

8 – 10:00 pm
The evening is yours to explore area entertainment.

10:00 pm
Return to motel.


8 – 8:30 am
Photo stop of the legendary huge statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox. View Paul’s memorabilia and the Fireplace of States in adjacent TIC.

8:30 – 10:00 am
Tour Bemidji Woolen Mills Factory and Outlet store – stock up on warm Woolen outerwear to enjoy the cool, crisp Minnesota fall air.

10 – 12:00 pm
Next stop, the Headwaters Science Center for a presentation such as ‘All About Raptors’ and a chance to explore the exhibit floor.

12 – 2:30 pm
Board coach, depart for Buena Vista Logging Village Chuck wagon-style lunch and then board horse-drawn covered wagons to ride to the ‘Top of the World’. From the top of the East/West Continental Divide, see spectacular fall foliage from the Vantage point of the birds – above the trees. Don’t forget your camera!

For more information or to customize this tour for your group please contract your tour operator or the Bemidji CVB, 800-458-2223 ext 106. 

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