23 Best & Fun Things to Do in Grand Marias (MN)

In search of the best and fun things to do in Grand Marias, MN?

Grand Marais is a beautiful city in Cook County, Minnesota, United States; it is located on the North Shore of Lake Superior.

The city is the largest in Cook County. It is also the county seat and sole municipality of Cook County; the name Grand Marais was gotten from the large, shallow harbor of the area. Grand Marais is a French word meaning “Great Marsh.”

Summers in Grand Marais are usually comfortable, while winters are freezing, snowy, and windy. The city is also partly cloudy year-round. Snowmobiling is an enjoyable activity to do in Grand Marais during winter. While swimming, hiking, boating, kayaking, and fishing are summer activities.

Here are the best things to do in Grand Marias, Minnesota

Things to Do in Grand Marais

1. Grand Portage State Forest

Grand Portage State Forest
Credits: RAMESH PAVVLURI VEERA / Shutterstock
Grand Portage State Forest

Explore the beauty of nature at the Grand Portage State Forest in Grand Marais, Minnesota.

Visit the Grand Portage State Forest with your family or friends and enjoy the scenic view of nature. The Grand Portage State Forest features trails, lakes, and enough land space for snowmobiling, cross-country country skiing, and lots more.

Camping, hiking, dog sledding, cross-country skiing, and fishing are some exciting things to do in Grand Marais, at the Grand Portage State Forest. There are nine boat launches at the State Forest, making it very accessible from different places.

The forest was named after a historic trade route between the Great Lakes and the Northwest called the Grand Portage. The Grand Portage State Forest is also an excellent place for a family picnic and other water recreational activities.

Grand Portage State Forest is located Northwest of Lake Superior and northeast of Minnesota.

2. Judge C.R. Magney State Park

Judge C.R. Magney State Park
Credits: Tony Webster / Flickr
Judge C.R. Magney State Park

The Judge C.R Magney State Park is one of the top attractions in Grand Marais.

The state park features waterfalls, forests, and wildlife; this makes the park one of the best places to visit in Grand Marais.

Enjoy watching the fantastic waterfalls at the park, strolling on the paths with your friends, watching wildlife, and taking in the beauty of nature. The park is an excellent example of Minnesota’s North Shore wilderness.

The breathtaking park was named after a former mayor of Duluth and Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, Clarence R. Magney. When you visit the state park, make sure you see the “Devil’s Kettle.”

The Devil’s Kettle is an impressive, famous waterfall in Grand Marais. It is a wonder to behold.

Address: 4051 E Highway 61, Grand Marais, MN 55604-2150

3. Pincushion Mountain Trail System

Pincushion Mountain Trail System
Credits: Daxiao Productions / Shutterstock

Get a spectacular view of Grand Marais town and its harbor when you climb up the Pincushion Mountain.

The Pincushion Mountain is about 1160 – 1180 ft. high. The mountain trail system features single-track mountain bike trails, ski trails, snowshoe trails, and other trail systems. The ski trails at the mountain trail system are structured for both beginners and experts. No one is left out in the adventurous fun at the Pincushion Mountain Trail System.

Picnic tables are also available at Pincushion Mountain Trail System. Take your family for a day of adventure and relaxation at the Pincushion Mountain Trail System in Grand Marais.

The fantastic view from the mountain top and the different trail systems makes the place a tourist attraction in Grand Marais.

Address: Gunflint Trail County Rd. 12 & County Rd. 53, Grand Marais, MN 55604

4. Grand Marais Lighthouse

Grand Marais Lighthouse
Credits: John Brueske / Shutterstock

Visit the historical Grand Marais Lighthouse in Grand Marais.

The Lighthouse represents the history of commerce and trading in Grand Marais. The monumental Lighthouse was first lit in 1922 and is still operational.

The Grand Marais Lighthouse is a steel-constructed building about 34 feet high. The building has been registered under the Cook County Historical Society. Take a tour around the Lighthouse and learn about the people and history of Grand Marais.

The Lighthouse is located on the outer end of a breakwater on the shore of Lake Superior in Grand Marais.

5. Honeymoon Bluff Trail

Honeymoon Bluff Trail
Credits: Tony Webster / Flickr
Honeymoon Bluff Trail

Enjoy hiking in the beautiful Grand Marais when you hike on the Honeymoon Bluff Trail.

Honeymoon Bluff Trail is a 0.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail in Grand Marais. The trail is short and fit for all hiking skill levels. While you hike on the Honeymoon Bluff Trail, enjoy the scenic views of Hungry Jack and Bearskin Lakes.

Hiking, nature trips, walking, and bird watching are some of the fun things to do in Grand Marias, Minnesota. The Honeymoon Bluff Trail is best used from April until September. You can bring your dog along with you as dogs are allowed on this trail but must be kept on a leash.

Experience a short and sweet hike when you hike the Honeymoon Bluff Trail. Though the trail is short, it offers one of the most beautiful natural scenery in Grand Marais. The forest area is full of old green trees, lush foliage, and the calls of native birds; while hiking, you may be lucky enough to spot wildlife in the forest. Get your cameras ready as you document these exciting memories.

6. Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center

 Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center
Credits: Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center / Facebook
Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center

Have fun learning about the history of Grand Marais when you visit the Chik-Wauk Museum & Nature Centre.

A visit to Chik-Wauk Museum & Nature Centre in Grand Marais takes you very close to the history of Grand Marais and Minnesota as a whole. The museum and nature center present the cultural and natural history of the Gunflint Trail, Grand Marais, and Minnesota.

With its interpretive and interactive displays, the Chik-Wauk museum presents the area’s cultural history from its prehistoric beginnings to the city it is today. Have an exciting time exploring and browsing through artifacts and other historical exhibits in the museum.

Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Centre is located on a 50-acre ground, featuring a natural trail, two exhibit buildings, and a museum. Deep in the beauty of nature while you hike on the Gunflint Trail forest.

The Museum and Nature Centre is open from Memorial Weekend until the third weekend in October.

Address: 28 Moose Pond Dr, Grand Marais, MN 55604-2058

7. Poplar Lake

Poplar Lake
Credits: doclam01 / Flickr
Poplar Lake

Explore the waters in Grand Marais when you go on a trip to Poplar Lake.

The Poplar Lake is about 764 acres with a maximum depth of 73 feet and water clarity of over 10 feet. It is also the entry point to many lakes in the Boundary Waters area. Since 1938, the site has been a landmark on the Gunflint Trail.

You will find walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, whitefish, burbot, black crappie, pumpkinseed, and yellow perch when you fish on Poplar Lake. The lake is wide enough to accommodate any size of boat or motor.

In Poplar Lake, there are a lot of hidden boulders under the surface of the water; as you enjoy the boat ride, be careful throughout the lake. The Poplar Lake serves as the start and endpoint for the Gunflint Mail Run during the winter season. Do not miss this if you visit Grand Marias during the winter.

Address: Gunflint Trail, Grand Marais, MN 55604

8. Sivertson Gallery

Sivertson Gallery
Credits: Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock

Are you an art lover? Do you love browsing through various artworks for fun? If yes, then you should visit the Siverston gallery in Grand Marais.

The history of Siverston gallery goes as far back as 40 years ago when the gallery started in the basement of Howard Sivertson’s home.

The artworks at the Siverston gallery are primarily inspired by the region’s assets, which includes landscapes, animal, history, and unique lifestyle and community. As the gallery grew, Jan collaborated with emerging artists like Dave Gilsvik, Allen, Jim Brandenburg, etc.

Currently, the Sivertson Gallery occupies the Humphrey building, purchased remodeled by Jan Sivertson. The gallery also has many Inuit sculptors and Cape Dorset printmakers, making it an attraction in Grand Marias.

Address: 14 W Wisconsin St, Grand Marais, MN 55604-5017

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9. Grand Marais Art-Colony – Studio 21

Grand Marais Art-Colony - Studio 21
Credits: Grand Marais Art Colony / Facebook
Grand Marais Art-Colony – Studio 21

Visit the Grand Marais Art Colony – Studio 21 as it is one of the best things to do at Grand Marais; the Grand Marais Art Colony is the right place for art lovers and art enthusiasts. The art colony encourages arts in the Great Lakes Region by supporting artists through residencies, intensive mentoring classes, and signature events.

While in Grand Marais, enroll your kids or yourself in one entry points program. The Grand Marais Art Colony – Studio 21 offers classes for all skill levels and ages. Have fun learning how to create stunning artworks when you enroll in an immersive mentoring course.

Grand Marais Art Colony holds art classes on two-dimensional arts, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, and literary arts; the art studio is accessible to the public every Monday and Tuesday from 10 am – 3 pm.

Address: 21 W Highway 61 Studio 21, Grand Marais, MN 55604-4401

10. Beaver House

Beaver House
Credits: PunkToad / Flickr
Beaver House

The Beaver House is a fishing museum cum fishing supplies outlet. The Beaver House has been in operation by the Cronberg family for over 50 years. The house is currently run by Tyson, the son of Bill Cronberg.

The Beaver House was established in 1964 by Bill Cronberg and Goyal Anderson. Before going on a fishing trip, do well to stop by at the Beaver House to learn and explore fishing history in Grand Marais.

Although not officially a fishing museum, the old fishing equipment and history of the Beaver House give the place a museum feel. The Beaver House is well recognized for its famous invention of “Beaver Flick.” Participating in the Beaver Flick is one of the fun things to do in Grand Marais.

The house opens seasonally from May- to October. Beaver House is located on the beautiful Lake Superior in Grand Marais, Minnesota.

11. Betsy Bowen Gallery & Studio

 Betsy Bowen Gallery & Studios
Credits: Betsy Bowen Gallery & Studios / Facebook
Betsy Bowen Gallery & Studios

Take your family to the Betsy Bowen Gallery & Studio to check out some fantastic collections of wood arts.

The Betsy Bowen Gallery & Studio is one of the best places to visit in Grand Marais. The gallery is filled with exclusive woodcuts by Betsy, signed books, calendars & cards.

The place features a gallery where artworks and a studio where artists come to get creative and create beautiful masterpieces. The studio is home to some artists, including Stephan Hoglund Borderlands Gallery and Wickwire Clay Works.

Betsy Bowen Gallery is an excellent place to find rare and exclusive woodcuts by Betsy, signed books, calendars, and cards. The gallery is also home to the working studios of Stephan Hoglund Borderlands Gallery, Wickwire Clay Works, and woodenware by Jim Sannerud.

Viewing some exclusive woodcuts by Woodblock artist Betsy Bowen is one of the most exciting things to do in Grand Marais.

Address: 301 1st Ave W, Grand Marais, MN 55604-3137

12. Visit Cook County

Cook County
Credits: Ralf Broskvar / Shutterstock
Cook County

At Cook County, there are countless activities to get everyone

excited and happy. Get accurate information of communities like Lutsen – Tofte – Schroeder, Grand Marais, Gunflint Trail, and Grand Portage.

Explore Cook County to the fullest when you find trails and maps for biking, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, alpine skiing and snowboarding, canoe trip routes, Lake Superior Water Trails, Superior Hiking Trail, and much more.

To enjoy a wonderful time at Cook County, look out for events, art places, races, games, festivals, and lots more. You can as well meet any staff to get assistance on whatever you might need or questions

you have.

13. Cut Face Creek

Cut Face Creek
Credits: Ann / Flickr
Cut Face Creek

A family picnic time at the Cut Face Creek is a fun thing to do in Grand Marais. Cut Face Creek is a nice stream in Minnesota, and the stream has an elevation of 184 meters. The Cut Face Creek is one of the best places in the north shore area to picnic. Spend time picking beautiful, unique stones while on the shores.

The place is perfect for spending family time far away from the city hustle and

bustle. As you explore the area, be mindful of private property restrictions. Hiking, fishing for rainbow trout, and picnicking are some of the

exciting things to do in Grand Marais at the Cut Face Creek.

Cut Face Creek is located near the Good Harbour Bay Overlook and close to Good Harbor Bay Geological Marker.

14. Putt N Pets

Putt N Pets
Credits: ZigaKalan / Shutterstock

Enjoy golfing as you take in the beauty of nature at Putt-N-Pets in Grand Marais.

Putt-n-Pets Mini Golf is one of Minnesota’s best places to play golf. The golf course is a bit tricky and adventurous but fun. It has a lot of fun obstacles, turns, and surprises in different places.

Putt-n-Pets is an 18-hole miniature golf course surrounded by waterfalls, water towers, and

other exciting things. There is also a place for animals at Putts-N-Pets. Animals such as goats, chickens, turkeys, peacocks, and various other birds.

Experience a whole new level of a fantastic golf experience as the golf course is filled with delightful features such as chainsaw-carved bears, a giant tortoise, a lighthouse, the Statue of Liberty, through a cave, and around a tower of goats.

These features make Putts-N-Pets among the top attractions in Grand Marais, Minnesota.

Address: 2014 W Highway 61, Grand Marais, MN 55604-7501

15. Cook County Public Tennis Courts

Cook County Public Tennis Courts
Credits: Olena Yakobchuk / Shutterstock

Have fun playing tennis at the Cook County Public Tennis Courts.

Visit the Cook County Public Tennis Courts with your partner or friends to enjoy a fantastic afternoon of tennis. Meet new people and try out the five different tennis courts at the

Cook County Public Tennis Courts.

The Cook County Public Tennis Courts are one of the best places to visit in Grand Marias, Minnesota. The Cook County Tennis Association pro

vides recreational tennis play at the five hard surfaces during summer.

Tennis lessons are also available at Cook County Public Tennis Courts. The director of tennis instruction gives private instruction and weekly tennis clinics. You can enroll in any tennis lessons to begin your tennis journey.

Address: 201 S 5th St next to Cook County Community Center, Grand Marais, MN 55604-3132

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16. Grand Marais Court House

Grand Marais Court House
Credits: Tony Webster / Flickr
Grand Marais Court House

Grand Marais Court House is another fantastic historical building in Grand Marais, Minnesota.

The Courthouse was initially built-in 1889. The building was a 24-by-30-foot two-story frame building; the district court has original jurisdiction in all civil, family, probate, juvenile, criminal, and traffic cases filed in Cook County.

In 1912, a new court building was built in a Classical Revival style. The building features Ionic columns supporting a cornice and overlooks the city of

Grand Marais and Lake Superior from a hilltop. Grand Marais Court House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983. Have an exciting day when visiting the Grand Marais with your family or loved ones. Do well to come with your cameras to take pictures of this historical building.

A visit to the Courthouse is one of the things to do when you visit Grand Marais.

Address: 435 W 2nd St, Grand Marais, MN 55604-2307

17. Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery

Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery
Credits: Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery / Facebook
Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery

A visit to an art gallery is an exciting thing to do in Grand Marais, Minnesota.

The Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery is a non-profit art gallery in Grand Marais that features artworks from local, regional, and national artists. The Cook County Historical Society operates the art gallery.

Explore fantastic artworks with your family or friends when visiting the beautiful gallery. The west wing of the gallery is dedicated to the original works of Anna C. Johnson, an early 1900s artist. Anna is also the mother of the

gallery donor, Lloyd K. Johnson. Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery is focused on having quality and unique artworks in the exhibition. The gallery is open to exhibiting works of an artist who might like their paintings displayed in the gallery.

Address: 115 W Wisconsin St, Grand Marais, MN 55604-5019

18. Joe’s Inland Fishing

Credits: Cherries / Shutterstock

Have you ever embarked on a fishing trip? If not, you should book a trip with Joe’s Inland Fishing.

Joe’s Inland Fishing offers a guided fishing trip in a Classic 165 Alumacraft. When you book a fishing trip with Joe’s Inland Fishing, rods and reels, bait, tackle, and life vests will be made available to you.

Joe’s Inland Fishing is also equipped with a 50HP 4-stroke and up-to-date electronics to give you and your family a smooth and exciting inland

fishing experience. Meet with Joe, the tour guide and Captain while on the fishing trip. Joe is friendly and entertains tourists while they fish.

19. Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply

Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply
Credits: Vitalii Nesterchuk / Shutterstock

Visit the Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply to get all your outdoor adventure needs.

Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply is a retail store in Grand Marias. Not only is it a retail store, but Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply also offers guided tours. Come shop for your high-quality gear and clothing with your family and loved ones

Enjoy outdoor adventures such as fishing, rock climbing, canoeing, paddleboarding, kayaking, hiking, and lots more. Ice fishing and snowshoeing are some of the fun things to do in Grand Marias.

Stone Harbor Wilderness Supply also lets you rent some equipment you will need to have an exciting adventure. They can be easily located on the left side when you enter Lake Superior from the only stoplight in Cook County.

20. LutZen Reflections Massage Studios

LutZen Reflections Massage Studios
Credits: Rido / Shutterstock

Enjoy a befitting special body treatment with your family and loved ones at LutZen Reflections Massage Studios in Grand Marias.

Visit the LutZen Reflections Massage Studios and check out their fantastic body massage offers. The Spa is well equipped with the right massaging equipment, body products, and professional therapist to cater to your needs.

LutZen offers unique body massage options like Aveda Mini-Facial, Buddha Head Scalp Treatment, Soles~Lower leg & Foot Treatment, Zen Hand Refresher, and many more. You can decide to have a “me time” or family bonding time at the Spa. The Aveda Mini-Facial helps rejuvenate your face and gives it a perfect feel. The Buddha Head Scalp Treatment is also one of the best massages to try out. It helps in relaxation and boost hair growth.

Relaxing and enjoying a spa treatment at LutZen Reflections Massage Studios is one of the top things to do in Grand Marias.

Address: 14 S Broadway Ave & 360 Ski Hill Road Lutsen Red Pine Building/Mountain Inn at Lutsen, Grand Marais, MN 55604

21. Border Lakes Tours & Guide Service

Border Lakes Tours & Guide Service
Credits: Yauhen Buzuk / Shutterstock

Do you love to go on an exciting adventure with your family or friends? If yes, you should tour with Border Lakes Tours & Guide Service in Grand Marias.

Touring with Border Lakes Tours & Guide Service is one of the best things to do in Grand Marias. Come along with your cameras, sunglasses/sunscreen, warm jackets, and other short trip necessities as you explore Grand Marias.

Border Lakes Tours & Guide Service offers guided and safe trips to natural attraction areas in Grand Marias like Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Superior National Forest, Superior Hiking Trail, State Parks, and many

more. Border Lakes Tours & Guide Service caters to your adventurous needs and is ready to assist tourists of all ages and abilities. Lake tours also provide delicious lunches for

full-day trips.

22. Gunflint Mercantile

Gunflint Mercantile
Credits: Brenda Carson / Shutterstock

Take your kids on a special treat at the Gunflint Mercantile, Grand Marais.

Gunflint Mercantile is a candy and fudge shop in Grand Marais. Get your taste buds excited when you visit the Gunflint Mercantile and try out their treaties. There are free samples available when you stop by the store.

Gunflint Mercantile offers made-from-scratch fudge, truffles, cakes, ice cream, soup mixes, assorted candies, and much more. The fudge is made right at Gunflint Mercantile. The Gunflint Mercantile special fudge is made of real butter, milk, sugar, and chocolate. Nuts, candy, caramel, and other unique ingredients are also added to the fudge.

Be sure to have a taste of their truffles, turtles, caramel, and peanut butter cups, all made in the in-store kitchen. Also, try out their ten unique flavors to figure out which one you love the most.

The astonishing varieties of sweet treaties available at Gunflint Mercantile make it a fun place in Grand Marias. The store also has a gift store; check out the gift store and get something special for that particular person.

Address: 12 1st Ave W, Grand Marais, MN 55604-3131

23. Lake Superior Trading Post

Lake Superior Trading Post
Credits: Tony Webster / Flickr
Lake Superior Trading Post

Shopping is much more exciting in Grand Marais when you shop at the Lake Superior Trading Post.

The Lake Superior Trading Post is a multi-purpose one-stop store in Grand Marais. The store is filled with varieties of quality clothing and footwear for men, women, and children.

Go on a shopping spree at the Lake Superior Trading Post, as many items are sold at affordable prices. There are also books, toys, jewelry, camping supplies, baby gear, a large selection of knives, backpacks, and many more in the store.

The plethora of items sold in the store makes it one of the best stores and an attraction in Grand Marais. Lake Superior Trading Post is about 20 steps away from the waters; this gives shoppers a breathtaking view of Grand Marias Harbour.

Address: 10 S 1st Ave W, Grand Marais, MN 55604-3136

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Start planning your trip to Grand Marais

Grand Marais is a city with many exciting activities to enjoy with your friends or family.

The Pincushion Mountain Trail System is a beautiful place to enjoy the scenic view of Grand Marais from a height of about 1160 – 1180 ft.

Grand Marais has many exciting things to do with your family loved ones. Go mountain climbing, biking, hiking, snowmobiling, fishing, shopping, and sightseeing at museums and historical buildings in Grand Marais.

Visit the Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center, Gunflint Mercantile, Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery, and many more to experience a fantastic vacation in Grand Marais.