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Fillmore County, Minnesota Travel Guide

Complete Vacation, Recreation and Tourism Information

In this, the state of 10,000 lakes, Fillmore County is an anomaly, there are no natural lakes. Passed by when glacial movement carved pockets all over the rest of Minnesota, this region, nestled in the southeast corner, is instead noted not only for its splendid landscapes and abundance of outdoor opportunities, but also a rich Amish heritage and charming historic towns, like Lanesboro.

Your best bet, when exploring this neck of the woods, is to find a happy balance between adventures in the great outdoors and cultural tours through Amish country or living history towns like Forestville. Lanesboro is the best equipped to handle overnight tourists in terms of bread and board, and a convenient base for exploring nearby attractions, like the Fillmore County History Center in Fountain, or the caverns around Mystery Cave State Park, a short drive from Forestville. Take a morning to peruse the Lanesboro Historical Museum, the local petting zoo (at Avian Acres), the fish hatchery and livestock markets at the Lanesboro Sales Barn. Sign up for an organized tour of Amish country, or rent bicycles, canoes, kayaks, and cross-country skies (weather dependent) to do a little independent exploring.

This is a popular weekend destination for city folk down from the Twin Cities, partly because of the splendid trout fishing but also because there are great trails in the area suitable for both hikers and bikers. It's possible to boat the Root River all the way down to the Mississippi, a lovely lazy stretch of water ribbed, at the occasional bend, by some quaint old bridge. Root River State Trail follows the river's course, for those looking to stay dry, while the Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail wanders on over the hills to neighboring Harmony.

Lanesboro is 40 miles from Rochester and 125 miles southeast of Minneapolis.


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