12 Exciting Activities To Explore On Lake Minnetonka

things to do on lake minnetonka

If there's one thing you absolutely can't miss while visiting Minnesota, it's a trip to Lake Minnetonka. Known for its crystal clear water, scenic beauty, and endless recreational opportunities, Lake Minnetonka offers an unforgettable experience that will leave you craving for more. From boating and fishing to hiking and biking, there's something for everyone in this spectacular region. In this article, we have come up with 12 exciting activities to explore on Lake Minnetonka that will surely make your trip worthwhile. Get ready to dive into an exhilarating experience like never before!

Activity Description
Boat Tours Enjoy a guided tour of Lake Minnetonka and learn about its rich history
Fishing Cast a line and try your luck catching bass, sunfish, and more
Water sports From wakeboarding to water skiing, Lake Minnetonka is perfect for thrill-seekers
Beaches Relax on one of Lake Minnetonka's numerous public beaches
Hiking Explore the scenic lakeside trails and nature preserves
Fine dining Enjoy a lakeside meal at one of Lake Minnetonka's upscale restaurants
Shopping Visit local boutiques and gift shops for unique souvenirs
Ice fishing In the winter, Lake Minnetonka transforms into a premier ice fishing destination
Sunset cruises Take in the breathtaking Minnesota sunset from the comfort of a boat
Swimming Cool off on a hot day in the clear waters of Lake Minnetonka


Boat tours

Source: www.exploreminnesota.com

Lake Minnetonka is a beautiful destination to consider for your next vacation. Located in the western suburbs of Minneapolis, it covers over 14,000 acres and features various activities for tourists to enjoy. One of the top things to do on Lake Minnetonka is taking a boat tour. Explore the clear waters, breathtaking views, and learn about the history of the area with one of the following boat tours:

Al & Alma's Charter Cruises

Al & Alma's Charter Cruises offer various lake tours and dinner cruises. Choose from a public sightseeing cruise during the day or relax on an evening sunset dinner cruise with gourmet food, drinks, and live entertainment. Experience the 1920s glamour of the restored "Lady of the Lake" yacht while listening to commentary about the lake's history and legends.

Wayzata Bay Charters

Wayzata Bay Charters is another famous boat tour agency that offers private excursions. Their flagship yacht is the luxurious Wayzata Elite, which can accommodate up to 12 guests and features a sleek design with leather seating, dining areas, and a fully equipped bar. Choose from a romantic sunset ride, a guided fishing trip, or even a corporate event.

Lake Minnetonka Cruises

If you're looking for a more immersive experience, Lake Minnetonka Cruises will also satisfy your needs. This tour agency provides historical tours showcasing the lake's famous landmarks and insightful conversation about the historic boats on the lake. For instance, you’ll view interesting boathouses, unique architecture, and other notable spots that only locals are familiar with.

Minnetonka Queen Cruises

Finally, Minnetonka Queen Cruises is another popular tour agency that offers an assortment of boat tours for visitors of all ages. Take a steady ride on the classic "Minnetonka Queen" paddle boat, which narrates the history of the lake and the area’s famous inhabitants. Enjoy a daily lunch or dinner cruise, learn about the prairie ecosystem during the fall, or experience the spectacular Christmas lights during the holiday season.

In conclusion, a boat tour is an excellent way to explore Lake Minnetonka’s scenic views and history. It’s a surreal experience that’ll leave you with memorable moments and images that’ll last a lifetime. Just make sure that you choose the best tour package that suits your preference and budget.



Source: www.schroedersguidingservice.com

Lake Minnetonka, located just west of Minneapolis, is a popular destination for fishing enthusiasts. The lake features a wide variety of fish species, including walleye, musky, northern pike, largemouth bass and crappie. Whether you're a seasoned angler or a weekend fishing enthusiast, there are plenty of ways to enjoy fishing on Lake Minnetonka. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your fishing experience on the lake.

Get a License

Before you start fishing on Lake Minnetonka, make sure that you have a valid Minnesota fishing license. You can purchase a license online through the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website. A license is required for all anglers over the age of 16.

Choose the Right Gear

When fishing on Lake Minnetonka, you will need to bring the right gear for the fish you want to catch. Make sure that you have the proper fishing rod, reel, line and bait. You can find a variety of fishing stores in the area that can help you pick the right equipment for your needs.

Find the Right Spot

There are many great spots for fishing on Lake Minnetonka. Depending on the type of fish you want to catch, you may want to target the deeper areas of the lake or the shallower areas close to shore. You can also check with local bait shops or fishing guides for recommendations on the best spots to fish.

Pay Attention to Weather Conditions

Weather can have a big effect on fishing conditions on Lake Minnetonka. Fish may be more active during certain times of the day or in certain weather conditions. For example, you may find that fishing is better in the early morning or late evening when the water is cooler. Pay attention to weather forecasts and adjust your fishing plans accordingly.

Practice Catch and Release

Lake Minnetonka is a popular destination for anglers, and it's important to practice catch and release to ensure that the fish population remains sustainable. Always release fish that you don't plan to keep back into the water as quickly and safely as possible. This helps to maintain a healthy fish population and ensures that fish will be available for future generations to enjoy.

In conclusion, fishing on Lake Minnetonka is an enjoyable and rewarding way to spend time outdoors. To make the most of your fishing experience, be sure to get a license, choose the right gear, find the right spot, pay attention to weather conditions and practice catch and release. With these tips in mind, you can enjoy angling on Lake Minnetonka and create memories that will last a lifetime.

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Source: mspmag.com

Lake Minnetonka is a beautiful freshwater lake located in the heart of Minnesota. It’s a popular summer destination for locals and tourists alike, offering a wide range of activities for visitors of all ages. Among these activities is swimming in the lake, which is a great way to cool off during hot summer days. Here are some things to consider when planning a swimming adventure on Lake Minnetonka.

Safety first

Before jumping into the water, it's important to check the weather conditions, especially during stormy weather. Always wear a life jacket if you are not a strong swimmer and avoid swimming after dark as visibility can be limited. Pay attention to the signs indicating swimming areas, as some areas may not be safe for swimming.

Find a designated swimming area

Lake Minnetonka has several officially designated swimming beaches, where you can enjoy the water while keeping safe. Each beach has its own unique amenities like lifeguards, showers, restrooms, and places to picnic. The most popular beaches on Lake Minnetonka are Excelsior Commons, Wayzata Beach, and Big Island Park.

Try swimming off a boat

Another fun way to enjoy the lake is to swim off a private boat. Many locals own boats, and boat rental agencies provide a great way to explore the lake and enjoy swimming at the same time. Swimming off a boat is exciting and provides more privacy than swimming at a crowded beach.

Engage in water activities

If you’re not content with merely swimming, you can also engage in several water activities offered at Lake Minnetonka like jet skiing and water skiing. These water activities can elevate the excitement level and get your adrenaline pumping.

Know the lake

Lastly, be aware of the currents and depth of the water. Lake Minnetonka has some shallow areas, but it also has some deep water spots that can drop suddenly so always stay within your comfort levels. Also, always swim with a buddy as it’s a great way to be safe and enjoy the water at the same time.

In conclusion, swimming is an excellent way to enjoy Lake Minnetonka. Always prioritize safety, find designated swimming areas when possible, engage in activities on the water and have fun while being safe at Lake Minnetonka.

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Target shooting at Oak Ridge Gun Club

Lake Minnetonka is a big and beautiful lake located in Minnesota, and it is a great place to spend a day with your friends and family. If you are looking for a thrilling and exciting activity to do in the area, then you should definitely try out target shooting at the Oak Ridge Gun Club.

The Oak Ridge Gun Club is located on the western side of Lake Minnetonka, in Victoria, Minnesota. It is only a short drive away from Minneapolis, making it a great destination for a day trip. The gun club is a safe and professional shooting range where people of all skill levels can come and enjoy shooting. They have a variety of different targets and guns available, making it a great place for beginners and experienced shooters alike.

Visitors to the club can choose from a variety of different firearms, including rifles, pistols, and shotguns, to shoot at targets that are set up in different locations on the range. Some of the targets are stationary, while others move across the range, providing a more challenging and exciting shooting experience. The gun club provides all the necessary equipment, including ear and eye protection, so there is no need to bring your own gear.

Safety is a top priority at Oak Ridge Gun Club, and they have strict rules and regulations in place to ensure that everyone is safe. Visitors must attend a safety briefing before they are allowed to shoot, and there are trained professionals on the range to supervise and assist visitors as needed.

If you are new to shooting, then the Oak Ridge Gun Club is a great place to learn. They offer beginner classes and training sessions, where you can learn about gun safety and shooting techniques from experienced professionals. For more experienced shooters, the club offers advanced training courses, where you can learn about long-range shooting and other more advanced shooting techniques.

Overall, target shooting at Oak Ridge Gun Club is a fun and exciting activity that you should definitely consider trying if you are in the Lake Minnetonka area. It is a safe and professional shooting range that offers a variety of different guns and targets to shoot at, making it a great destination for people of all ages and skill levels. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced shooter, you are sure to have a great time at Oak Ridge Gun Club.


Windsurfing at Surfside Park

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If you're looking for an exciting and challenging experience on Lake Minnetonka, windsurfing at Surfside Park should definitely be on your list of things to do. This beautiful body of water just outside Minneapolis offers plenty of spots for windsurfing, making it a popular destination for both beginners and seasoned surfers.

Located on the west shore of Lake Minnetonka, Surfside Park is a great place to start your windsurfing adventure. The park has a sandy beach and a grassy area where you can set up your gear and take off into the water. It's also well-equipped with restrooms, parking lots, and picnic areas.

Windsurfing is a sport that involves riding on a board that's attached to a sail. The goal is to use the wind to propel you forward and steer your board in different directions. Although it may seem challenging at first, with the right instruction and some practice, you'll soon be gliding across the water like a pro.

If you're new to windsurfing, Surfside Park offers lessons for all ages and skill levels. The instructors will teach you the basics of balance, turning, and controlling the sail. They'll also provide you with all the gear you need, such as a board, a sail, a wetsuit, and a life jacket.

For more experienced windsurfers, Surfside Park is a great place to show off your skills. The winds on Lake Minnetonka can vary from day to day, so you'll need to choose the right sail size and board type for the conditions. Some days you might have to work a little harder to catch the wind, while other days you might find yourself flying across the water at full speed.

In summary, windsurfing at Surfside Park is definitely one of the best things to do on Lake Minnetonka. Whether you're a beginner or an expert, this sport will challenge you and provide you with a unique and exhilarating experience. So why not give it a try and see what it's all about?

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Stand-up paddleboarding

Source: www.minnesotamonthly.com

The beautiful Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota is the perfect place for adventure-seekers and outdoor enthusiasts looking to try something new and exciting. One activity that has gained immense popularity in recent years is stand-up paddleboarding (SUP).

Here are some reasons why SUP on Lake Minnetonka should definitely be on your to-do list:

  • It’s a great workout: Stand-up paddleboarding requires a lot of core strength, balance, and endurance. By gliding across the beautiful waters of Lake Minnetonka, you can give your body a full-body workout without even realizing it.
  • You can explore the lake: With a paddleboard, you can easily navigate through the waters of Lake Minnetonka and discover new areas that you might have never known existed. The lake is nearly 15,000 acres and has 125 miles of shoreline, so there are endless places to explore.
  • It’s a great stress reliever: Being out on the water and enjoying the beauty of the lake can be a great way to get away from the stresses of daily life. Stand-up paddleboarding provides a sense of peace and calmness that can be difficult to find elsewhere.
  • Anyone can do it: SUP is a sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and skill levels. Whether you’re a seasoned paddler or a beginner, Lake Minnetonka is the perfect place to try this exciting activity.
  • It’s a fun group activity: Stand-up paddleboarding can be a fun activity to do with a group of friends or family members. You can rent boards and spend the day exploring the lake together.

There are plenty of places to rent stand-up paddleboards on Lake Minnetonka, including Tonka Paddle Sports, and Bay Rentals. Whether you’re looking to try SUP for the first time or you’re a seasoned paddler, Lake Minnetonka is the ideal place to experience this exciting watersport.


Ice fishing

Source: www.schroedersguidingservice.com

As the temperature starts to drop and winter sets in, the icy waters of Lake Minnetonka offer a unique set of opportunities for those willing to brave the cold. One such activity is ice fishing, a winter pastime that draws in enthusiasts from all over the area.

Before heading out onto the ice, it's important to make sure you have the right gear. You'll need an auger to drill a hole in the ice, a fishing rod and reel, bait, and warm clothing. Additionally, it's important to check the ice thickness before stepping onto it, as thin or weak ice can be dangerous.

Once you're all geared up and ready to go, there are a few different techniques you can use to catch fish. Jigging is a popular method where you attach a baited hook to your line and jig it up and down to attract fish. Tip-ups are another option, where you set up a line with a flag that pops up when a fish bites.

Lake Minnetonka has a diverse range of fish species, including crappie, bluegill, walleye, and northern pike, among others. Depending on the time of day and season, you may have better luck in certain areas or with specific bait choices.



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If you are looking for a thrilling and adventurous way to experience the serenity and beauty of Lake Minnetonka, then sailing could be an activity that you will not want to miss. This magnificent lake located in Minnesota, with its crystal-clear water, natural beauty and abundant wildlife, is a perfect spot for sailors and sailing enthusiasts.

For those who are new to sailing, several opportunities are available to learn all the essentials, from basic techniques like hoisting sails and tacking to advanced maneuvers like racing and navigation. The lake's sailing schools offer classes for all ages and skill levels, from children's sailing camps to adult sailing lessons.

Even if you don't have any sailing experience, you can still enjoy the beauty of Lake Minnetonka by renting a sailboat, along with a knowledgeable captain. The captain can guide you through the lake and help you explore its many features, like the numerous marinas along the shore, the historic mansions or the pristine beaches that line the shoreline.

Lake Minnetonka is an ideal place for sailing year-round, thanks to its exceptional climate. The combination of calm waters and moderate winds makes sailing on the lake possible in all seasons. Moreover, the autumnal colors provide a breathtaking backdrop for a sail on this freshwater haven.

To sum it up, sailing on Lake Minnetonka is an unforgettable experience for anyone who loves adventure, serenity and natural beauty. Whether you want to learn to sail, rent a boat or enjoy a guided tour, this lake has something for everyone. So, put on your sailing hat and enjoy the winds and natural beauty of this picturesque lake!

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Source: planetwithsara.com

Lake Minnetonka, located just a few miles from Minneapolis, offers a perfect escape from the busy city life. With over 14,000 acres of water, the lake provides a great place for kayakers to explore the beauty of nature. Whether you are an experienced kayaker or a beginner, here are some things you can do on Lake Minnetonka while kayaking.

Paddle the bays

Lake Minnetonka is home to over several bays, each with its unique beauty. Taking a paddle through the bays will take you along the shoreline and allow you to explore various coves and beaches. You can navigate your kayak through the channels and check out the different wildlife and beautiful flora that surrounds the bays.

Experience the sunrise or sunset

Lake Minnetonka offers stunning sunrise and sunset views. Paddling during the early morning or late evening allows you to capture these breathtaking moments. You can witness the sun casting a beautiful golden light across the lake, lighting up the sky, and creating an otherworldly experience.

Check out the waterfalls

Lake Minnetonka is known for its waterfalls. Take a paddle through Minnehaha creek—the only outlet that connects the lake to the Mississippi river, and discover the beautiful waterfalls, including Minnehaha Falls. The moving water and lush greenery surround the area, creating a peaceful and tranquil atmosphere.

Try fishing while kayaking

Lake Minnetonka is home to various fish species, including bass, walleye, and muskies. Kayaking allows you the chance to explore different fishing locations on the lake. You can bring your fishing gear and cast your line into the water while paddling. You will find that paddling and fishing are a perfect blend.

Take an eco-tour

Many local tour operators offer eco-tours on Lake Minnetonka. These guided tours take you through Lake Minnetonka's waterways, allowing you to explore its unique ecology and learn about the lake's history. You can spot various birds, fishes, and other wildlife while enjoying a peaceful and relaxing paddle.

In conclusion, Lake Minnetonka provides an excellent platform for kayakers to experience the beauty of nature. From exploring the bays, spotting the sunrise or sunset, checking out the waterfalls, fishing, and taking eco-tours, Lake Minnetonka offers anyone a perfect chance to create unforgettable memories while on a kayak. So pack up your paddles and head out to Lake Minnetonka for a truly remarkable experience.

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Jet skiing

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Lake Minnetonka is a popular destination for water enthusiasts who are looking for a place to enjoy the great outdoors. One of the top activities on the lake is jet skiing. Here are some things to keep in mind when planning your jet ski adventure on Lake Minnetonka.

First and foremost, make sure you have all the necessary safety equipment before getting on a jet ski. This includes a life jacket, which is required by law, as well as a whistle and a fire extinguisher. Always wear your life jacket, even if you are a strong swimmer, as accidents can happen on the water.

There are many different places to rent jet skis on Lake Minnetonka, so do your research before choosing a rental company. Look for a company that has a good reputation for safety and cleanliness. You can also look for rentals that offer guided tours, which can be a great way to see more of the lake and learn about its history.

When you hit the water, remember to be respectful of other boaters and swimmers. Stay in designated areas and follow the speed limits, which are posted for safety reasons. Never drink and operate a jet ski, as alcohol can impair your judgment and reaction time.

One of the great things about jet skiing on Lake Minnetonka is the many different areas you can explore. There are numerous bays and inlets that are perfect for exploring on a jet ski. Some popular spots include Big Island, Dutchman's Bay, and Grays Bay. You can also head out to the middle of the lake for a thrill ride.

On a hot summer day, there is nothing better than feeling the wind in your hair as you race across the water on a jet ski. Just be sure to take the necessary precautions and follow the rules of the lake to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone.



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If you're looking for a peaceful and scenic activity to do on Lake Minnetonka, canoeing is the perfect choice. With over 14,000 acres of water, the lake offers numerous places to launch your canoe and explore. Here are some tips for an enjoyable and safe canoeing experience on Lake Minnetonka.

  • Plan your route: Decide on your destination before heading out on the lake. Do some research on the different bays, inlets, and channels to find the best places to paddle. The West Arm, Minnetonka Bay, and Wayzata Bay are popular areas for canoeing.
  • Check weather and water conditions: Always check the weather forecast and water conditions before heading out on the lake. Wind and waves can make canoeing challenging and dangerous. If there are strong winds or storms predicted, it's best to postpone your trip.
  • Wear a life jacket: A life jacket is a must for every canoeing trip. Always wear a properly fitting life jacket, especially if you're not a strong swimmer. It's also important to make sure your passengers wear life jackets as well.
  • Pack essentials: Bring plenty of water, snacks, and sunscreen on your canoeing trip. It's also a good idea to pack extra clothes in case you get wet. If you're planning to stay out for a few hours, a small first aid kit and a map can also be useful.
  • Follow boating regulations: Lake Minnetonka has specific boating regulations that apply to canoes as well. Pay attention to speed limits and no-wake zones. Canoes should stay to the right side of the channel and yield to larger boats.
  • Respect nature: As you paddle through the lake, take in the beauty of nature around you. However, it's important to respect the environment and not disturb wildlife or leave any trash behind.
  • Stay aware: Always be aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye out for other boats, obstacles in the water, and changing weather conditions. Have a plan in case of an emergency.


Pontoon rental at Lake Minnetonka Boat Rentals & Accessories

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Lake Minnetonka is a popular destination that offers a wide range of water activities. Whether you are looking for fishing, water sports, or simply relaxing on a leisurely cruise, Lake Minnetonka has everything that you need. One of the best ways to enjoy the lake is by renting a pontoon boat from Lake Minnetonka Boat Rentals & Accessories.

Pontoon boats are a great way to enjoy the lake with your family and friends. They are easy to operate and provide a spacious platform for socializing, sunbathing, and enjoying the view. Lake Minnetonka Boat Rentals & Accessories offers a variety of pontoon boats for rent to suit different needs and preferences.

Their fleet includes pontoon boats that can accommodate up to 12 people, making them perfect for large families or groups of friends. They are equipped with comfortable seating, a sound system, and a swimming ladder, so you can enjoy all the amenities of a luxury boat at an affordable price.

If you are new to boating, Lake Minnetonka Boat Rentals & Accessories also provides a brief orientation to ensure that you understand the basics of operating a pontoon boat. They will walk you through the safety procedures and teach you how to maneuver the boat in the water.

Renting a pontoon boat also provides you with the freedom to explore the lake at your own pace. You can cruise along the shoreline, anchor in a quiet cove, or take in the beautiful scenery of the lake. If you are feeling adventurous, you can take part in water sports like tubing, waterskiing, or wakeboarding.

Lake Minnetonka Boat Rentals & Accessories offers both half-day and full-day rentals, so you can choose the option that best fits your schedule. They also provide additional accessories like coolers, wakeboards, and water skis, so you can customize your experience.

In conclusion, renting a pontoon boat from Lake Minnetonka Boat Rentals & Accessories is a great way to enjoy the lake. You can relax, socialize, and have fun with family and friends while exploring the beautiful waters of Lake Minnetonka. So, the next time you are looking for things to do on Lake Minnetonka, consider renting a pontoon boat and experience the lake like never before.

Frequently asked questions

Boating and fishing are incredibly popular activities on the lake. Other fun things to do include water skiing, wakeboarding, paddleboarding, kayaking, and swimming.

Yes, there are several great beaches on Lake Minnetonka. Some of the most popular ones include Excelsior Beach, Wayzata Beach, and Big Island Beach.

Absolutely! There are so many beautiful sights to see on the lake. Some of our top recommendations include taking a tour on one of the lake’s historic steamboats, visiting the Lord Fletchers restaurant and beach for some breathtaking views, and watching a sunset from one of the many lakeside parks.

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