Ely, Minnesota

Ely MN is a base for adventure in Minnesota’s northwoods wonderland. A four-season destination, Ely is located 115 miles from Duluth and 250 from the Twin Cities. Many of the local tour companies and outdoor outfitters offer shuttles from both cities’ airports, and well-maintained roads load to Ely, carrying those looking for adventure when they get away from it all. Ely also is the western gateway to the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area and home to cozy resorts and cool places to connect with culture.

Boundary Waters

Ely, Minnesota
Ely, Minnesota

Many of Minnesota’s famous lakes are perfect for paddling. Within the Superior National Forest, more than 1 million acres have been set aside as the Boundary Water Canoe Wilderness Area. On both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border, this vast wonderland is a top attraction. Not that it’s busy—there’s plenty of room to stretch out and get back to nature. Outfitters based in Ely MN can take you to the best places or provide you with the equip you needed for a paddling trip or fishing adventure. On land, you’ll find plenty of places to bird watch and hike or try backcountry camping.

Museums & Historic Sites

The land that came be be known as northern Minnesota once was prized by fur traders and sacred to Native Americans. With a visit to Ely’s museum and historic sites, you’ll have the chance to peek back in the past. The Bois Forte Heritage Center and Cultural Museum tells the story of this band of Ojibwe People who continue to call this land home. At the Ely-Winton History Museum, exhibits detail the logging past of Ely MN, while the Sisu Heritage Homestead preserves actual pioneer homesteads from the era. Ely also is home to the International Wolf Center, where a pack of resident wolves serve as ambassadors of conservation.

Hotels & Lodging

Hotels & Lodging
Hotels & Lodging

Just as variety is the name of the game for things to do, the overnight options in Ely are diverse. Whether you’re staying on a tight budget or you’re looking for luxury, you’ll have plenty of options — everything from primitive camping to luxury resorts. Several lodges and resorts welcome northwoods visitors, especially those on fishing and paddling vacations. Their packages include everything you need for a day in the backcountry and a night back at the lodge. If you’d prefer more traditional accommodations, Ely has a dozen motels available and several B&B inns.

Top image: Ely Minnesota Facebook Page

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