When you call a city like Eagan home, there's always a new discovery waiting just around the corner.
Nestled in the heart of Minnesota, this vibrant city has a special allure that keeps me intrigued year after year.
Whether it's the picturesque landscapes, the friendly community spirit, or the rich history that seeps into everyday life, Eagan always has a way of making every day feel like an adventure.
So, let me take you on a journey through the 15 best things to do in Eagan, Minnesota!
Our aim is not just to guide you to popular places but to encourage you to venture out and experience the city for yourself.
Experience Nature's Playground at Lebanon Hills Regional Park
Every time I want to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, I find myself drawn to Lebanon Hills Regional Park.
Nestled right here in our backyard, it is a haven of tranquility and natural beauty.
The main trail is a hiker's dream, meandering through a series of lakes and forests.
What makes it exceptional is the labyrinth of side trails that sneak around the lakes, offering a chance to discover hidden gems.
As I walk, the mere sounds of birds chirping, the sight of turtles frolicking in the water, and the occasional playful muskrat make the experience even more enjoyable.
The trail system is quite extensive, but don't let that intimidate you.
With the right trail app, like GMaps or All Trails, navigating through this natural labyrinth is a breeze.
Each new trail I explore seems even more beautiful than the last, and every visit feels like a new adventure.
One of my favorite activities at the park is kayaking.
The staff at the rental center has always been so friendly and professional.
The rentals are reasonably priced, and the equipment is top-notch.
There's nothing quite like floating around on one of the park's serene lakes, taking in the surrounding beauty.
The hiking trails are incredibly well-marked, so no worries about losing your way.
You can walk over 10 miles without retracing your steps!
And let's not forget about Schultz Beach. It's a pristine swimming spot, ideal for a lazy summer afternoon.
Discover Your Creativity at Eagan Art House
Ever had a moment when you touch clay and feel the creative muse awaken within you?
That's exactly what happened to me at Eagan Art House.
The first time I walked into the pottery class, I was greeted by expert teachers who were not only well-versed in their craft but also amazing at making you feel comfortable and excited.
I distinctly remember my first creation - a simple clay pot.
But the satisfaction of seeing it take shape under my fingers was unparalleled.
I've been a regular attendee of their classes for over a year now.
The variety is incredible - from pottery to felting and everything in between, there’s so much to explore!
There was something incredibly magical about the Mystery Art Night my partner and I attended.
We made coiled clay pots under the twinkling fairy lights.
That night, not only did we learn about pottery, but we also discovered a shared love for creating art.
If you think art is just about painting, think again.
My partner has found a new passion, watercolor painting, thanks to the beginner classes at Eagan Art House.
Have Fun on the Farm at Holz Farm Park
There's nothing quite like a day spent at Holz Farm Park.
I decided to take my three boys, aged 7-10, out for a day of fun and learning at the Spring Festival.
Much to our surprise, the variety of animals was larger than expected, with volunteers stationed all around the farm to demonstrate different aspects, answer questions, and share their knowledge.
I might try this trick at home, although I suspect the lure of fresh eggs might not be as effective!
Our day continued with a hay ride, a tour of a beautifully restored farmhouse, and demonstrations of traditional farm activities.
We watched a woman churn butter, witnessed a blacksmith at work, and the boys even got to crank a machine that separated corn kernels from the cob.
One highlight was a faux cow that allowed the children to practice milking.
The udders were so realistic, squirting water when squeezed.
Additionally, they got to operate a machine that transformed twine into braided rope, a simple yet genius contraption.
We were all impressed by the large barn with its towering ceiling.
As the planting season begins, I look forward to returning to see the fields lush with crops.
After a long Minnesota winter, the sight of fresh greenery and the warmth of a sunny day was truly a delight.
In addition to the events, Holz Farm Park offers a picturesque setting for a peaceful walk, and it is one of the best places for capturing beautiful photographs.
Have an Immersive Experience at the Vikings Museum
One of the perks of living around here is having the Vikings Museum right at my doorstep!
It has been a delight to take family and friends around the museum and watch their faces light up as they delve into the rich history of one of the most loved NFL teams.
I remember taking my 81-year-old mom here, a lifelong Vikings fan.
It was a total surprise for her, and the joy on her face was priceless.
She's been a Fran Tarkington fan for as long as I can remember, with a newfound love for Adam Thielen.
The museum building is always clean, and the exhibits are a treat for the eyes.
Spend a Day at Eagan Community Center
Every time I swing by the Eagan Community Center, I'm always welcomed with the same friendly faces at the front desk.
One visit to The Blast playground is all it took for my twin boys to become die-hard fans.
They especially love all the little fun nooks - there's just so much to explore!
The best part? We had the whole place to ourselves on a quiet Monday afternoon.
While the kids are busy with their adventures, I take the opportunity to indulge in a leisurely stroll around the center.
The well-kept lawn, the chirping birds, the blooming flowers - it's all so peaceful.
I've even used the picturesque surroundings to test out my new camera.
The wildlife is abundant here, with ducks, geese, and other birds making regular appearances.
The koi fish in the pond are a beautiful sight, too, their vibrant colors adding a touch of charm to the place.
What makes this community center stand out is the incredible upkeep by the city.
Discover Various Hidden Gems at Caponi Art Park
One day I found myself craving a break from the hustle and bustle, and I stumbled upon this little slice of heaven, Caponi Art Park.
Nestled in the heart of our city, this oasis of tranquility and art is a beloved retreat for many of us.
My first experience with the park involved taking a leisurely stroll along both the nature and art trails.
Surrounded by the quiet, clean environment, I couldn't help but feel a deep sense of peace.
I still remember the excitement of seeing the leaves change color in the fall, their vibrant hues enhancing the beauty of the art pieces scattered around the park.
The park is meticulously maintained, making it a pleasure to roam around.
Part of the fun is getting a little lost and stumbling upon art in unexpected places.
Plus, entrance to the park is free, though they graciously accept donations.
Caponi Art Park is the kind of place where you can effortlessly spend a couple of hours.
Have a Splendid Afternoon at Bald Man Brewing
Oh, the lazy afternoons I've spent at Bald Man Brewing!
This place is a hidden gem in Eagan and a go-to spot for me.
Nestled close to Highway 77 and just off Highway 13, it's conveniently located, making it an easy stop after a long day at work.
There's nothing like walking into the welcoming atmosphere of the taproom after a stressful day.
The quality of their beer selection is top-notch, offering a range that caters to all beer enthusiasts.
I've seen them gradually expand their offerings since they opened a few years ago, and each new addition is a delight to try.
If you can make it on a Monday, you're in for a treat.
They offer discounted beers, making it the perfect start to the week.
If you're lucky, you might catch some live music in the background, adding to the fantastic ambiance of the place.
But what I love the most about Bald Man Brewing is the outdoor patio. It's my favorite spot to settle down on a sunny afternoon.
I love watching the hustle and bustle of the food trucks, which, by the way, serve some of the best street food in the area.
Go Shopping at Twin Cities Premium Outlets
If you're searching for a haven of retail therapy, then you absolutely must visit Twin Cities Premium Outlets.
Shopping there is a love affair that's renewed with each visit.
Every trip feels like a treasure hunt where I find the best deals on shoes, clothing, and more.
What I treasure the most about the place is the ability to turn shopping into a family affair.
With numerous stores, there's something to cater to everyone's shopping preferences.
Whether it's the heat of summer or the bloom of spring, the weather only adds to the charm of the shopping experience.
The open floor design allows for a leisure stroll between stores.
It's almost therapeutic to take a walk, the weather playing a pleasant tune to the hum of my shopping spree.
When the shopping bags start to weigh, I usually take a breather at Starbucks - a warm cup of coffee acting as my shopping fuel.
I also enjoy the abundance of seating options - tables, benches, and reclining chairs, all neatly tucked under umbrellas for those sunny days.
It's the perfect setup to rest, rejuvenate, and dive back into the shopping frenzy.
The food court, while not massive, offers a decent selection to satisfy my hunger pangs.
And let's not forget the massive parking lot, ensuring that finding a parking spot never becomes a hurdle in your shopping adventures.
Working close to this shopping paradise has its advantages.
It's like being a kid in a candy store, with a myriad of great businesses offering fantastic sales.
You can always find me hunting for the best deals during my lunch break.
The convenience of having such a shopping gem in our city is a luxury I wouldn't trade for anything.
Twin Cities Premium Outlets is more than a mall; it's a shopping utopia.
Pay a Visit to Eagan Arms Public House
I take great pleasure in being a regular at Eagan Arms Public House, a hidden gem in our community.
They offer a taste of British pub food that never fails to tantalize the taste buds.
I'm especially fond of their Bangers and Mash.
The sausages and gravy are top-notch, cooked to perfection that never disappoints.
Ever since my first visit, I've made it a point to try something new off their menu.
The Speyside pie was an interesting detour, and the Scotch egg, served warm or cold, is pretty delightful.
Their Mac n cheese with bacon is a guilty pleasure of mine, albeit a bit heavy.
I wouldn’t mind a few onions to lighten it up a bit.
A trip to Eagan Arms Public House wouldn’t be complete without sampling their cocktails.
Despite being located in a strip mall, the place has its own cozy charm.
I can't help but feel that some people might be put off by the location, but for me, the food more than makes up for it.
Have Fun at Lost Spur Golf and Event Center
One of the best-kept secrets in my city is the Lost Spur Golf and Event Center.
I've been there for numerous events and have even swung my putter on their turf a few times.
It's one of the most versatile and enjoyable venues in the city.
When it comes to hosting events, Lost Spur is second to none.
I've seen it transformed from a sprawling golf course to a grand wedding venue in a matter of hours.
Their upper ballroom, specifically, is a sight to behold.
It's massive and can accommodate large wedding parties with ease.
The lower ballroom has its own charm. It's perfect for smaller, more intimate gatherings, be it social or professional.
One of its best features is its proximity to the golfer's 19th tee, where one can enjoy a variety of gins in a relaxed setting.
Even if you're not much of a party person, Lost Spur is worth a visit for its golf course alone.
It's a 9-hole beauty that's never too crowded.
There are some really fun and challenging holes that will keep you on your toes.
Other Things to Do Nearby
See the Animals at the Minnesota Zoo
If you're ever looking for a place to spend a beautiful day, trust me, you won't regret heading down to the Minnesota Zoo.
Situated on a sprawling 485-acre preserve, it is a magnificent showcase of animals, both local and global.
Ranging from the mighty Russian grizzly bears to the delicate butterflies, there's a world of wonder to explore at every turn.
The welcoming smiles of the friendly and knowledgeable employees make the entire experience even better.
They truly seem to be passionate about their work, ensuring the animals are well cared for.
Each visit feels like a fresh experience.
The animals are not just gorgeous, but they're also active and full of life.
What you absolutely can't miss is the Bird Show.
Be prepared to be enthralled as a diverse array of birds put on a mesmerizing performance.
Now if you're thinking that this is just for the kids, think again.
The zoo has a well-maintained infrastructure with ample break spots, so you won't feel worn out.
It's one of those places you keep returning to, not just because there's always something new, but because it's a genuinely enjoyable place to be.
If you have kids, the membership is a worthy investment.
There's a special time frame for members, which usually has less crowd, perfect for a stress-free outing with the little ones.
Plus, the play areas like the bee hive and the splash pad are bound to keep your kids entertained for hours.
Stroll Through Coldwater Spring
The crackle of gravel underfoot, the subtle perfume of wildflowers, the whispers of local history echoing through the trees - this is just a typical afternoon at Coldwater Spring.
As someone who's been living in the vicinity for years, every visit here is like taking a step back in time.
Getting lost in the network of trails here has become something of a cherished pastime.
Each pathway unravels a new facet of the reserve, from the remains of Native American settlements to the vestiges of a U.S. military camp.
It's a living testament to our rich past and a palpable reminder of our obligation to preserve it.
Being a proud dog owner, I particularly appreciate the off-leash dog area.
Seeing my furry friend run around freely in the vast expanses of nature without a care in the world is a joy in itself.
And if you're up for a bit of a workout, some paths have steep inclines that deliver a good dose of cardio.
Just remember to put on a pair of sturdy shoes - the terrain demands it.
But Coldwater Spring isn't all about the past or the physical exertion – it's also a place to find peace and solace.
The wildflower-dotted trails and the natural nature preserve in progress transform the reserve into a haven for those seeking refuge from the relentless pace of city life.
One caveat, though: on some days, the water can give off an odor that might be off-putting to some (think: hardboiled egg).
Revisit the City's History at Dakota County Historical Society
The Dakota County Historical Society has outdone itself lately.
The new exhibits have brought a fresh atmosphere to this beloved institution.
It's a place that I am incredibly proud to call a local gem.
The anticipation is palpable as the museum gears up for an upcoming display.
For a history aficionado like me, it's a real treat.
But one exhibit that never fails to astound me is the huge floor painting of Dakota County.
There's something truly remarkable about being able to see the entire county laid out beneath your feet.
Being a map enthusiast, the old maps on display have always been a personal favorite.
Each one tells a story, a snapshot of what Dakota County was like during different periods of history.
There's a real sense of connection when you see how the place you call home has evolved over the years.
And let's not forget the seasonal showings.
They keep things interesting, bringing variety and ensuring there's always something new to see.
I still remember the stunning quilt show they hosted.
It was a beautiful blend of craftsmanship and history that really resonated with me.
Step Back in Time at the Sibley Historic Site
Walking through the Sibley Historic Site feels like opening a book and stepping directly into history.
Nestled in my hometown, this hidden gem captures the richness of our local early settlement history and the fur trade era with a level of authenticity and detail that is truly remarkable.
The hour-long tours conducted by the Minnesota Historical Society are a treat to attend.
They weave a vivid tapestry of stories retelling the life and times of the indigenous settlers who lived here, their unique cultures, and their invaluable contribution to our history.
I've toured here recently and was deeply moved by the richness of the narrative and how well it captured the spirit of our past.
Another significant highlight of the Sibley Historic Site is the Sibley House.
A tour of this place is like stepping into a time machine, transporting you back to the beginnings of Minnesota.
Explore the Mississippi National River & Recreation Area
Every morning, I'm greeted by the sight of the magnificent Mississippi National River, an oasis of tranquility amidst the hustle and bustle of the Twin Cities.
With a staggering 72 miles of canoeing and boating lanes, combined with ample opportunities for hiking, biking, fishing, and birdwatching, this recreational area is our city's green heart.
One of the highlights of my routine is walking along its banks, soaking in the enchanting panorama.
The lush greenery, the vibrant wildlife, and the serene sounds of the river have a soothing effect on the soul.
The Upper Mississippi branch, traditionally accepted as originating from Lake Itasca, is right here in our backyard.
This waterbody, perched 1,475 feet above sea level in Itasca State Park in Clearwater County, is undoubtedly one of Minnesota's finest treasures.
And if the natural beauty wasn't enough, the river also plays the role of a historical landmark.
It's the dividing line between St.Paul and Minneapolis, MN, USA - a testament to the colorful past of this area.
Eagan truly is a hidden gem within Minnesota.
From exploring the natural beauty of Lebanon Hills Regional Park and Coldwater Spring to soaking up local history at the Dakota County Historical Society and Sibley Historic Site, there's something for everyone.
This place I call home is a wonderful mix of history, culture, nature, and entertainment.