You cannot visit Minnesota without seeing/experiencing a lake. It is impossible.
We love Long Lake Beach in New Brighton and frequent this beach weekly. We like to go around 10:30 so that we can have lifeguard free swimming for a while. The lifeguards come on duty at noon in the months of June and July. If you go to the beach in August, the lifeguard season has already passed.
- The water table on the shore is super fun. Sometimes there is more attraction to that than to the lake.
- A huge grassy lawn is butted up to the beach, so we can lay out our blankets on the grass and eliminate cups of sand from our lunch–instead it is tablespoons.
- Lifeguards are nice even if hard to understand at times.
- Simple beach with lake and water/sand table.
Since there are so many lakes in the Twin Cities, let alone Minnesota, I will help guide you to some of the favorite beaches in the Twin Cities area. Let me reiterate: there are a lot of swimming beaches. I have divided my description up into location sections. Disclaimer: Some of the lakes may be in two different quadrants: i.e. north and west, thus northwest. When that happens, I am going to just pick an area. I will have a link for each of the beaches, so you can determine if it is close to you or not. Also, I have not included every single beach.
- Lake George : We’ve never been here, but we have been told it is a beautiful and big lake. Just take Round Lake Boulevard North from Highway 10 and you will run into it after about 9 miles. Daily permits cost $5 and annual permits $25.
- Lakeside Commons Beach, Blaine : This is a man made lake (because we don’t have enough in Minnesota) that is chlorinated. I’ve been told 50 yards away is another splash pad. Free for Blaine Residents. Non residents $5 daily permit, $25 season pass.
- Big Marine Lake: This lake is amazing. It is less than 2 feet deep for yards and yards. There is a $5 entrance fee or a yearly membership required. When you are done swimming, you can take the whole family back toward the parking lot, stopping at one of the biggest playgrounds ever.
- Lake Calhoun
- Lake Harriet
- Lake Nokomis
- Long Lake: located in New Brighton.
- Lake Johanna : Arden Hills. I am particularly fond of this beach since from the beach, you can see Northwestern College, my alma mater. It’s a beautiful beach with a playground right beside the sand and concessions.
- Lake Josephine: Another beautiful lake from my college days. We called this beach bikini beach because thousands of sunbathers came to soak in the rays. There are still lots of families who come, but I thought I would give you the heads up.
- Lake Phalen: Located in St. Paul, I haven’t ever swum in this lake. I have run around it. So if you like this lake or know this lake, please let us know.
- Sand Point Beach: No lifeguards at this beach and parking fee is $5 per day, $20 for car with trailer. You an buy a season pass for
- Lake Elmo Beach: Filtered and cleaned swimming lake. Parking permits are required: daily $5, annually $25. This is a busy beach and well loved. Located in Lake Elmo (the city)–so far eastern Metro
- Silver Lake In North St. Paul, this little lake is a refreshing place to stop and take a dip. Lifeguards go on duty at noon.
- Carver Lake: No lifeguards on duty here. Though I have never personally been to this beach, I cannot tell you my opinions. Being located in Woodbury makes me believe that it is a beautiful place to swim.