Blake Walsh

23 Best Things to Do in Worthington, MN

  • Published 2023/03/18

Worthington, Minnesota, is a friendly city located at Interstate 90 and Minnesota State Highway 60.

The city offers recreational activities and great places to eat.

There are also various shops, many parks, and historical sites to explore.

Some of the best things to do in Worthington include visiting the many shops and restaurants, joining recreational activities, and exploring the parks and historical sites.

Worthington, MN, is an excellent option whether you’re looking for a day trip or a weekend getaway.

Here are the best things to do in Worthington, MN:

Tour the Historic Nobles County Pioneer Village

Village general store at Nobles County Pioneer Village

Myotus, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The historic Nobles County Pioneer Village is Minnesota’s largest landmark village.

This village gives you the chance to step back and take a glimpse at Minnesota’s rich pioneer history.

Stucco church at Nobles County Pioneer Village

Myotus, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The village has over 30 historic buildings relocated and restored.

Find a schoolhouse, church, blacksmith shop, a farm site, a rail depot, and more.

State bank of Worthington at Nobles County Pioneer Village

Myotus, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

You’ll also find unique collections and artifacts, including a log cabin and an old stagecoach.

The historic Nobles County Pioneer Village is open year-round, with different events and activities happening each season.

Sod house at Nobles County Pioneer Village

Myotus, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Stay at Norwood Inn & Suites Worthington

If you’re looking for a place to stay in Worthington, look no further than Norwood Inn & Suites Worthington.

This hotel offers a great location, comfortable rooms, and top-notch amenities.

Norwood Inn & Suites Worthington has all the amenities you need for a comfortable stay.

Enjoy free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, an indoor pool, and a complimentary breakfast.

Their rooms are spacious and clean, with all the necessary amenities such as a coffee maker, hairdryer, and iron.

Norwood Inn & Suites Worthington is the perfect place to stay whether for business or pleasure.

See a Show at the Memorial Auditorium

The Memorial Auditorium is a classic art deco performance venue that hosts various events and shows.

Constructed in 1931, the Memorial Auditorium is one of Worthington’s oldest and most iconic buildings.

The auditorium has various seating options, holding up to 735 people.

Several events and shows happen at the Memorial Auditorium each year, ranging from concerts and comedy shows to dance performances and live theater.

Check out the upcoming events at the Memorial Auditorium.

Visit the Ocheda Lake

Minnesota is the “Land of 10,000 Lakes,” so it’s only fitting to visit a couple of them when you’re in Worthington.

You’ve already been to Okabena lake, so why not visit Ocheda Lake next?

Ocheda Lake is the perfect place for a day trip.

You can go fishing, swimming, canoeing, or enjoy scenic views.

There are also several camping grounds near the Lake, so you can stay for a few days and take in all Ocheda Lake has to offer.

Have Fun at the Tap

What better place to have fun in Worthington than at The Tap?

The Tap is an arcade bar and grill perfect for visitors of all ages.

They have a wide variety of arcade games, pool tables, and darts.

If you get hungry, they also serve up some great food.

Their menu includes burgers, sandwiches, wings, and more.

Explore Downtown Worthington

Buildings along Downtown Worthington

Tim Kiser (w:User:Malepheasant), CC BY-SA 2.5, via Wikimedia Commons

You don’t have to go far to find great things to do in Worthington.

The downtown area is packed with shops, restaurants, and historical sites.

Start your day by strolling down iconic streets like Oxford Street, North Humiston, and Ryan’s Road.

You’ll find unique shops, retail stores, restaurants, beauty clinics, and everything else downtown Worthington offers.

Some notable features of downtown Worthington include comfortable public benches, decorative columns, and bright lights.

The sidewalks are also extra wide to encourage people to walk and shop.

If you’re looking for a place to stay, downtown Worthington has several hotels that offer comfortable accommodations.

Go for a Stroll around Lake Okabena

Lake Okabena is a small lake located in the heart of Worthington.

It features ten different lakeside parks and walking trails for locals.

Each park surrounding Lake Okabena offers different amenities such as picnic areas, sports facilities, boat launches, restrooms, and more.

Popular favorites among children are the splash pads and playgrounds.

Beach Nook is a newly renovated park that offers water sports rentals such as kayaks, canoes, and paddle boards.

The Lake is also a popular spot for fishing and boating.

The walking path around the Lake is perfect for biking and strolling.

If you’re feeling hungry, snack bars and food carts are scattered around the area.

Spend a Day at Olson Park

Olson Park is a lakeside park located south of Okabena Lake.

This 2,498-acre park offers visitors plenty of outdoor activities.

Olson Park is a great place to go for a walk, jog, or bike ride.

You can also stay at camping grounds if you want to spend a few days in nature.

The park has a playground, picnic tables, grills, and well-maintained restrooms.

These amenities make Olson Park the perfect place to spend a day with family and friends.

Catch Up with Friends at the Long Branch Saloon

If you’ve got friends in the area you haven’t seen in a long time, you can meet and catch up at the Long Branch Saloon.

Long Branch Saloon is one of Worthington’s premier bars and grills.

The Long Branch Saloon is a great place to relax and have a few drinks with friends.

The warm and cozy interior makes it the perfect place to catch up on old times.

They also have a wide variety of menu items, such as burgers, sandwiches, appetizers, and more.

The place is also known for its cocktails and happy hour specials.

If you’re looking for a place to have some drinks and catch up with old friends, head to the Long Branch Saloon.

Bring Your Kids to Centennial Park

If you have kids on your trip to Worthington, bring them to Centennial Park.

This park has a playground, walking trails, and a gazebo on the northwest side of town.

The park also has a splash pad, perfect for cooling off hot summer days.

With a wide area, plenty of trees, and natural greenery, the Worthington Centennial Park is the ideal place to spend time with your kids.

You can take a stroll, have a picnic, or relax and enjoy the scenery.

Whatever you do, you’ll enjoy a day well-spent at Centennial Park.

Tour the Historic Dayton House

Exterior of the historic Dayton House

McGhiever, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Historic Dayton House is a historic home showcasing the early days of Worthington.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this home dates back to 1890.

American businessman George Draper Dayton built the house.

Coming from Clifton Springs, New York, Dayton arrived in Worthington in 1883 and immediately recognized the city’s potential.

Side facade of the historic Dayton House

Tony Webster from Minneapolis, Minnesota, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

He helped shape Worthington’s thriving agricultural industry.

This fully restored home is on 4th Avenue and features pure Victorian-period elegance and hospitality.

Dayton House accepts rentals for weddings and other events.

The Dayton House also offers several suites for overnight lodging, featuring amenities that you can only find in five-star hotels.

Taste Worthington’s Iconic Beer at Forbidden Barrel Brewing Co.

Nothing beats having a cold beer after a long day of exploring.

What’s better than having a cold beer that’s brewed right in Worthington, MN?

The Forbidden Barrel Brewing Co. recently opened for business in 2019.

However, its dedication to its craft, and uniqueness as the only micro-brewery in the area, have instantly made it a local favorite.

The Forbidden Barrel Brewing Co. offers locally crafted beers made from fine ingredients.

They also have a full bar and serve light food and other alcoholic drinks such as wines, pizza, nachos, and sandwiches.

Visit Spomer Classics

If you’re into classic and vintage cars, visiting Spomer Classics is a must.

This museum is dedicated to showcasing a vast collection of classic automobiles from different eras.

Spomer Classics features over 1,000 artifacts and various restored classic vehicles.

Their collection includes rare automobiles and other fascinating artifacts you won’t find anywhere else.

You can also find many old tools and photos of classic cars.

It’s the perfect place for car enthusiasts and anyone interested in vintage automobiles.

Play Golf at the GreatLife Golf and Fitness Club

Worthington has an active golfing scene.

The GreatLife Golf and Fitness Club is one of the most famous golf courses in the area.

This 18-hole course features rich green landscapes and beautiful views.

The course is perfect for all skill levels, with a driving range and practice green available for those who want to perfect their game.

You can also enjoy a meal or a drink at Duffer’s Bar & Grill inside the club.

After a day of golfing, enjoy other facilities such as the gym, bowling alley, and indoor pool.

Create Your Own Art at the Jane Hickman Paint and Pottery Studio

You’ll love the Jane Hickman Paint and Pottery Studio if you’re into arts and crafts.

This studio offers pottery painting, glass fusing, mosaics, and clay hand-building classes.

They also have a wide selection of pottery pieces you can paint, including mugs, vases, plates, and more.

The Jane Hickman Paint and Pottery Studio offers workshops and art classes for all ages, the perfect activity for a family day out.

It’s the perfect place for a one-of-a-kind art experience.

Unwind at the Hickory Lodge Bar & Grill

Hickory Lodge Bar & Grill is the best destination after a long day of exploring Worthington.

Located in downtown Worthington, MN, this bar and grill offer various snacks and drinks.

The Hickory Lodge Bar & Grill prepares mozzarella sticks, tortilla chips, cheese curds, jalapeno poppers, chicken tenders, onion rings, mac & cheese, and more.

They also serve beverages such as beer, wine, and mixed drinks.

Hickory Lodge Bar & Grill is also known for its iconic ax-throwing.

It’s one of the best things to do while in downtown Worthington.

Whether you’re a complete beginner or a seasoned ax thrower, you’ll have plenty of fun at Hickory Lodge Bar & Grill.

Join the Fun at the King Turkey Day Festival

The rich production of poultry in Worthington during the early 1920s began the King Turkey Day Festival in 1939.

Celebrated annually in September for 2 straight days, the festival has gained international attention, and since then, many tourists come to join and celebrate.

Free pancakes for all also highlights the celebration, which is one of the festival’s tradition since its first establishment.

Called The Great Gobbler Gallop, witness lots of racing turkeys down the main street.

There will be a grand parade, a gobbler barbecue contest, puzzle tournaments, a 10k race, and many more.

The King Turkey Day Festival is a family-friendly event, so take your entire family to Worthington and enjoy!

Pick Your Own Apples at the Nystrom Orchard

From September to November, Nystrom Orchard opens its farm to the public for an opportunity to pick apples right from the trees.

Almost 20 varieties of apples are available at the orchard, which you can pick at your own phase and even bring a picnic to enjoy the farm’s beauty.

Also, you can have an apple pie, a jar of honey, cider, crisps, salted caramel, and more from the orchard.

Nystrom Orchard hosts special events with live music.

You can find it off Quine Avenue.

Watch a Movie at the New Grand Theatre

Catching a new release movie in Worthington also comes in handy at the New Grand Theatre.

The theater features 5 big screens in Sony 4K Digital Cinema, an impressive 8-channel surround sound, and luxury reclining seats.

Popcorn is warm and the drinks are cold—all these you can enjoy at the theater’s comfortable auditorium.

You’ll also love the historic photos of Worthington, including the old cinemas in town that are all on display at the theater.

The New Grand Theatre is located off Darling Drive.

Enjoy Working Out at Anytime Fitness

Gym rats don’t have to skip the usual workout time when traveling to Worthington, especially since Anytime Fitness is open 24/7!

The gym features updated equipment and machines—enough for the comfort and ease of gym-goers.

Memberships are available, as well as for transient visitors who needs to stretch out those tightened muscles from touring around Worthington.

Coaches and trainers are there to help you out, and you can also ask for a gym tour to check things out for your convenience.

Anytime Fitness is conveniently located at Ryan’s Road just off Interstate 90.

Get Your Cup of Coffee at Phileo’s Coffee and Eatery

Kickstart your day at Phileo’s Coffee and Eatery, where coffee is fresh and pastries are delicious!

The coffee shop is popular for its delicious latte, cold brew, mocha, smoothies, breakfast bagels, sandwiches, and more.

Other than being a coffee shop, it also serves lunch, which is perfect for those who are coming in a little late for their morning coffee.

Also, homemade salad combos are a must-try, as well as its mouthwatering avocado toast and chicken sandwich!

You can find Phileo’s Coffee and Eatery on 10th Street.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Sip Fine Wine at the Lake Vineyards and Winery

Established in 2007, Lake Vineyards and Winery is one of the most popular bistros in the area.

Find it in Round Lake, Minnesota, 15 minutes from Worthington.

The Lake Vineyards and Winery offer 15 different wines, each with its distinct flavor.

They also have a full menu with a wide variety of food options, perfect for any time of the day.

Their beautiful outdoor seating overlooking the Lake is the perfect spot to enjoy a glass of wine with your friends or family.

They also have an indoor seating area if you want to enjoy the view inside the restaurant.

Dine at TC’s Tavern

If you’re craving some American food, then be sure to dine at TC’s Tavern.

It’s in Brewster, Minnesota, 12 minutes away from Worthington.

This restaurant is the perfect place to go for a quick bite or a sit-down meal.

TC’s Tavern is known for its hearty meals and generous servings.

Their menu includes your favorite American dishes, such as burgers, fries, chicken tenders, and more.

The diner-style restaurant also has a full bar so that you can enjoy a drink with your meal.

At the same time, you can also get to know the locals and get tips on what else to do in Worthington.

Final Thoughts

Worthington is a worthy place to visit when you’re in Minnesota.

This city represents its state in the best way possible with its endless amount of things to do, see and eat.

From spending a day at the park to catching up with friends at the bar to enjoying its notable lakes, there are plenty of things to do in Worthington.

So, what are you waiting for?

Start planning your trip today!

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