Minnesota’s Chain of Lakes

Minnesota is often called the “Land of 10,000 Lakes.” It’s home of some of the most stunning landscapes in the country.

The Chain of Lakes is stands out as a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and proof of Minnesota’s dedication to preserving its natural heritage.

It is an interconnected system of five urban lakes. There is Cedar Lake, Lake of the Isles, Bde Maka Ska, Lake Harriet and Lake Nokomis, with all of them linked by channels and located within the city limits. Each lake is unique in its charm and offers individual characteristics, making them a favorite destination for both locals and tourists. Cedar Lake is the westernmost lake in the chain and known for its untouched natural beauty and tranquility. Clear waters and lush green surroundings create an ideal opportunity for paddleboarding, kayaking and picnics at the water’s edge. Lake of the Isles is found between Cedar Lake and Bde Maka Ska and features a wilder, more wooded landscape. A path winds along the shore, providing an opportunity for runners, cyclists and walkerts to enjoy local beauty without leaving the city. The lake is also popular for birdwatching. Bde Maka Ska, formerly known as Lake Calhoun, is the biggest of the lakes and most well-known due to providing for windsurfing, sailing, paddleboarding and all sorts of watersports. The beach draws in sun-worshipers and swimmings during the summer. There is also a lovely trail circling the shore. Lake Harriet is a family-friendly spot including a bandshell for concerts and other summer events. There is an impressive rose garden, a playground and amenities for family picnics. Lake Nokomis is the easternmost lake and less well-known. The area is quiet, less crowded and where locals getaway for swimming, fishing or picnics.

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