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Winona, Minnesota - Great River Road

Winona Minnesota
The city of Winona is sandwiched between Lake Winona (foreground) and the Mississippi River

scenic byways toursThings to see and do in Winona

Winona, MN

- Winona Things to See and Do
- Steamboat Days Festival

- Events Schedule & Links

Winona Steamboat Days
June 12 -17, 2012

One must-see when visiting Winona is driving up to Garvan Heights, a Winona park and overlook 575 feet above the Mississippi River. On a good day you can see up to 30 miles up and down the river. Founded in 1851, Winona is surrounded by water, the river to the north and several lakes and ponds ring the remainder of the city. It bills itself as the "Island City."

Winona Visitor CenterTravelers will want to stop at the Visitor Center conveniently located just off US Highway 14-61 on the isthmus between the two halves of Lake Winona. It offers information and travel advice for Winona as well as other Minnesota communities and attractions along the River Road. Adjacent to the center is a nice walking/biking trail that loops the lake.

Winona Sugar Loaf Mountain

Sugar Loaf Bluff is perhaps Winona's most famous landmark. The cap rising above the forest was not the work of Mother Nature but the left-over core of a quarry operation in the late 1800s.

More attractions (and pictures) are profiled below plus a list of some events and links of interest.

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Winona Riverwalk

< < < A couple takes an evening stroll through Levee Park alongside the river.

Mississippi Queen docked at Winona, mn

The steamboat paddle wheeler, the Mississippi Queen, also docks at Levee Park. > > >



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Historic Downtown Winona
Like La Crosse, Winona is engaged in a program of restoring its historic downtown buildings. Within a few blocks of Levee Park are several buildings from the late 1800s and early twentith century. A map is available for a walking tour.

Winona Historic Downtown

< < < Winona County Courthouse, built in 1888, used buff-colored sandstone quarried in the region, trimmed with Lake Superior brownstone.

Winona Historic Downtown The former Second National Bank, 1871-72, anchors the East Second Street commercial district.


Winona Historic Downtown

< < < The Beck Building, 1886, originally built for the C.C. Beck Hardware company, is one of several historic buildings in the Third Street Commercial District.

Winona Historic Downtown
A few doors down is the former Choate Department Store (1888), built for Hannibal Choate, a prominent merchant with operations throughout southeastern Minnesota.

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Artisan Shops, Dining & Entertainment
Winona Arts District

Sprinkled among the historic buildings are a number of arts and crafts shops. Jo enjoyed browsing in Peterson's Pieces of the Past shoppe.


Jefferson Pub Winona MN

< < < Near Levee Park, Jefferson Pub and Grill is a popular spot for burgers and their extensive selection of brews.

Winona Railroad Station

Passengers wait at the Winona Station for Steam Locomotive #261 to arrive for the annual fall color train ride.

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Prairie Island Campground

The City of Winona operates a campground NW of the city on Prairie Island Drive. It offers 198 campsites, with 108 having electric service. Amenities include showers, playground, campground store, sand beach, boat launch and RV dump station. An attendant is on duty 24 hours. Reasonable rates. Based on a brief day visit, it looked clean and well maintained.

Winona Events and Festivals

bulletWinona Steamboat Days - June 12 - 17

bulletGreat River Shakespeare Festival - June 30 - August 5

bulletWinona to La Crescent Steam Locomotive Color Train

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Winona, MN Travel & Visitor Links

quiltbullet Winona Visitors Center
quiltbullet Great River Shakespeare Festival
quiltbullet Winona Steamboat Days
quiltbullet Prairie Island Campground

More Great River Road Scenic Byway Pages

- Scenic Drive from Fulton to Galena to Prairie Du Chien
- Scenic Drive from Prairie Du Chien to LaCrosse to Winona
- Scenic Drive from Winona to Red Wing

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