With an average annual snowfall of 80.7 inches, no place says “winter wonderland” quite like Duluth, Minnesota. For families seeking amazing winter activities to please kids of all ages, there's something for everyone in the northern city on the shores of Lake Superior, the largest freshwater lake in the world.
Whether you yearn to hit the slopes or revel in the magic of the season, don’t look any further than visitduluth.com for a glimpse of all the possibilities.
Here are a few highlights.
To discover the fun and the beauty of the season, Duluth has everything you need for a magical holiday.
- Bentleyville Tour of Lights
Sparkling holiday lights, Santa and more can be found at Bayfront Festival Park. Visit the Bentleyville Tour of Lights every evening through Dec. 28. Enjoy lighted holiday displays, a 128-foot tree, hot cocoa, popcorn and roasting marshmallows. Kids 10 and younger can visit Santa and have their photo taken with a reindeer!
- Spirit of the Lights at Glensheen Mansion
Free and open to the public, Duluth’s historic Glensheen mansion provides cider and cookies as you explore the inspiring outdoor light display on the beautiful grounds of the mansion.
You can also take a guided indoor Glensheen Candlelight Christmas Tour from 6-9 p.m. on various dates during the season.
If you miss visiting the gorgeous decorations inside Glensheen during the holidays, never fear — Free Day at Glensheen Mansion will be Jan. 5, 2020, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Thrilling Winter Sports
Explore all kinds of winter sports in the Duluth area, from a leisurely snowshoeing expedition to the exciting world of skiing and snowboarding — not to mention sled dog racing!
With over 175 skiable acres, Spirit Mountain offers a wide range of activities and sporting events for all ages and ability levels, including:
- Downhill skiing
- Cross-country skiing
- Snow tubing
- Snocross racing
- Fat biking
The best snowmaking equipment available helps Spirit Mountain keep up with everyone’s winter sporting desires.
If you always wanted to try snowshoeing, you can explore that as well as lots of other fun activities in the great outdoors — for all skill levels — either through Day Tripper of Duluth or The Duluth Experience.
Kids can enjoy sledding, snow sculpting, flag football, campfires and s'mores plus much more at Duluth's Cold Front event, Feb. 1-3 at Canal Park.
- Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon
One of the most anticipated events of the winter is the 400-mile John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon, celebrating its 40th year this January. Events begin Jan. 24 and continue through Jan. 30, with the marathon running Jan. 26-28.
Family-friendly events around the Beargrease include:
- KQDS Mini Sled Dog Races on the morning of Jan. 24 in Canal Park
- John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon Photo Exhibit Open House Jan. 19-March 8 at the Great Lakes Aquarium
- Cutest Puppy Contest Jan. 25 at Fitger's Lakefront Hotel
- Watch the race begin at Billy's Bar, 11 a.m. on Jan. 26
- Cheer finishing teams from early morning, Jan. 28 at Skyport Lodge on Devil Track Lake, Grand Marais
- Winter biking
Duluth has an amazing array of trails for all skill levels. Off-road cyclists can challenge themselves on more than 45 miles of single-track trails. Check out the current conditions of all the trails.
Cozy dining, indoors and out
When you're ready to warm up, check out the amazing selection of restaurants. Dining in Duluth has never been better! There’s a fantastic array of restaurants, cafes, markets and food trucks serving up a far-reaching selection of culinary fare. You can sample something new or enjoy an old favorite. Whether you're a vegetarian, carnivore or locavore, you’ll find something truly tasty. Click here for a full listing of restaurants, or check out the Dine & Drink Blog to explore your tasty options.
There's no better time to enjoy northern Minnesota than the winter months. Duluth offers so much to see and explore that once you've visited, you'll just have to make a plan to come back again soon. See all the possibilities at VisitDuluth.com.