Eagan, Minnesota, lies just across Long Meadow Lake from the Mall of America, one of the top attractions in the state as well as the country. Located only 7.5 miles from the mall, Eagan’s proximity to such an attraction is one of its main draws.
As the largest mall in the United States, the Mall of America is a family vacation in and of itself. At the mall, kids zoom on rollercoasters at Nickelodeon Universe, build cities one LEGO brick at a time and sit for tea with their favorite American Girls. Adults juggle bags of goodies found amidst racks of designers like Bebe, Burberry, L’Occitane and Steve Madden. All this can be done before lunch at any of the complex’s outstanding restaurants like Kokomo’s, where a self-proclaimed “Ameribbean” menu ranges from fish tacos to good old American hamburgers. Afterwards, it’s off to the in-house Minnesota Aquarium, Sea Life, where 10,000 sea creatures await in thrilling exhibits like the Atlantis Temple and the Ray Lagoon.
Many other notable tourist attractions reside in and around Eagan, perfect for traveling families. Those visiting Eagan in the summer months float along the lazy river or crash into pools via the water slides at the Upper Midwest’s largest outdoor municipal waterpark, Cascade Bay.
For fun with all paws on dry ground, tourists head to the Minnesota Zoo, just four miles south of town. Another of the top tourist attractions in Eagan, the zoo is housed on 500 acres, with over 4,100 animals from 500 species. Visitors see Amur tigers, Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins, leopards, and several kinds of bears such as grizzlies and black bears.
Hikers, bikers and nature lovers journey to the nearby Lebanon Hills Regional Park, located at the city’s southeast corner. Visitors can hike the Holland Lake Trail, careen along the West Trail via mountain bike or saddle up and journey the Equestrian Trail atop a trusty steed. Outdoor adventurers visiting Eagan in the wintertime have access to most of the trails for cross-country skiing as well.
When all this activity works up an appetite, travelers flock to Doolittle’s Woodfire Grill on Cliff Road. As the name suggests, Doolittle’s specializes in woodfire cooking, providing diners with succulent, rotisserie-smoked sirloin, Jamaican jerk pork tenderloin and spare ribs. For a more relaxed, fun-filled atmosphere, head to Fitz’s Bar and Grill, located within Cedarvale Lanes. Here, entrees like the signature Fitzburger contribute to bowlers' hope for strikes and spares.
During summer evenings, art lovers stroll through Eagan’s Caponi Art Park. The 60-acre park is devoted to presenting visual and performing arts to the public in an environment where art is paired seamlessly with nature. Thirty of Anthony Caponi’s works are nestled along hillsides and bridges throughout the soulful sculpture garden including a bronze relief sculpture entitled Pompeii, depicting the events of the famous volcanic eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. The park’s outdoor amphitheater, aptly named Theater in the Woods, hosts a summer concert series on Sunday evenings, poetry readings and a medieval fair in the fall.