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Best Lakeside Getaways Near Minnesota

There is no shortage of lakes in Minnesota and many are paired with lakeside resorts. If there's one thing Minnesotans like more than just getting together, it's getting together outdoors. Activities on the lake and around the lakeside landscape are popular recreation choices for locals and lakeside resorts cater to these activities. Enjoy fishing, boating, or just lying on the beach at a lakeside resort. Many even operate throughout the year to cater to those that enjoy winter recreation as well. Check out some of the favorite resorts in Minnesota.

Cragun's Resort On Gull Lake
11000 Craguns Drive
Brainerd, MN 56401
(866) 835-0564

Cragun's Resort is perfect for the vacationer looking to spend most of his or her time on the water. A full-service marina complete with boat rentals and access to beaches awaits families, couples, or anyone who desires to getaway to a down-to-earth resort. Cragun's has a wide selection of accommodations that range from cabins to lakeside suites, but is not overly-fancy or too modern for the true "outdoor types." Bring your family for the large amount of activities that include swimming in the huge pool, horse-drawn carriage rides and organized sport games. Cragun's is also open year-round and offers snowmobiling and sledding in the winter.

Fair Hills Resort - Pelican Lake
24270 County Highway 20
Detroit Lakes, MN 56501
(218) 847-7638

While Fair Hills Resort is only open from May until September, many will agree they offer the best family-centered vacations during the best time of the year to be outside. Each cabin on the lake is unique in size and made to accommodate all types and sizes of families. Enjoy activities designed for all ages that include fishing, sailing, waterskiing and sports. Spend time on the beach and watch the kids climb on the playground equipment. Don't worry about meals; they are served in a dining hall, family-style, and all the cooking and cleaning is included in your stay.

Timber Trail Lodge And Resort - Boundary Waters Canoe Area
629 Kawishiwi Trail
Ely, MN 55731
(855) 762-9351

The Boundary Waters Canoe Area in itself is one of the most popular lakeside destinations in Minnesota. At the Timber Trail Lodge and Resort, vacationers can take advantage of everything the BWCA has to offer and get even more in a resort setting. Fishing is the number one activity at the Timber Trail and all ages and skill levels are invited to try their luck at casting a line. Located  right on the shores of the BWCA, Timber Trail is a quiet and secluded vacation spot that offers boat rentals and cabins of all sizes for ultimate relaxation. Tucked away up north, the resort is over 10 miles away from any town or populated area, lending itself to a perfect place for peace and quiet.

Related: Best Day Trips From The Twin Cities

Pine Point Lodge And Resort - Crane Lake
7533 Gold Coast Road
Crane Lake, MN 55725
(218) 993-2311

Fall Colors 2012
(credit: Jeff Brown)

Way up north on the Canada/Minnesota border, the Pike Point Lodge and Resort is a privately-owned area of the state that offers serenity and luxury at the same time. The resort is accessed by boat and features cottages on a private shoreline for guests to enjoy their own space and privacy. Rent a boat and get out on the water or just play on the beach or the water trampoline in the lake. Complimentary water taxis are available if you wish to be transported into town for a bite to eat or an ice cream run and bonfires are lit when the sun goes down for some peaceful night life.

Timberlane Lodge - Itasca State Park
18454 Dayspring Drive
Park Rapids, MN 56470
(218) 732-8489

Take your pick of accommodations: a lakeside cabin, a modern condo, a beach cabana, or a small suite in the Timberlane Lodge. There is something enjoyable for every member of your family at this lakeside resort located at the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Enjoy swimming in the lake or take a lap in the outdoor heated pool for water recreation. A video game room is available for the gamer crowd and a beautiful golf course is on site for the more outdoorsy folk. The cost factor of this resort also makes it a popular destination as it is less pricey than many other getaway locations in and around Minnesota.

Related: Best Pet-Friendly Getaways In Minnesota

Andrea Wodele is a freelance writer who has lived in the Twin Cities for the last 10 years. Her hobbies include exercising, driving kids around, watching Minnesota sports, and reading self-help literature.

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