This charming, European-style walking neighborhood takes a nod from the immigrants that first populated the area, having preserved the culture in restaurants, shops and nightlife. Located along the Mississippi riverfront, “northeast,” as its known to locals, is home to the river’s only waterfall, St. Anthony Falls, and the one-of-a-kind Stone Arch Bridge, a pedestrian and bike pathway that once served as a rail connection across the river. Over the years the bustling area has only continued to grow, adding art galleries, specialty shops, bars and more as neighbors to the long-time staples, creating an endearing mix of old and new.
Start off with a hearty breakfast at the Victorian-style Wilde Roast Cafe. If you’re feeling particularly indulgent, try the crème brulee French toast. Then grab a cold press or other coffee drink at Maeve’s Cafe to take with you on a stroll across the Stone Arch Bridge, where you can marvel at the beauty of the mighty Mississippi, as well as see one of the best skyline views of the city.
Because you wouldn’t want to visit without finding something unique to take home, pop into the local shops. Find apparel that ranges from soft tee’s to flowing dresses at Parc Boutique, artists’ work on consignment at i like you, clothes, toys, gear and keepsakes for cool and modern kids at Pacifier, or gifts that are whimsically unique or distinctly Minnesotan at Bibelot. After you’re all shopped out, get pampered at the Aveda Institute. Here typical salon services are offered—hair care, nails, massages, facials—but at a discounted rate because they’re done by (supervised) professionals in training.
Grab a few drinks, but where is up to you. Go brewery hopping at Indeed Brewing Company, 612 Brew and Dangerous Man Brewing Company, all of which have taprooms where you can sample local offerings. If beer isn’t your thing, grab a tiki-themed cocktail at Psycho Suzi’s Motor Lounge before heading over to Nye’s Polonaise Room, said by Esquire to be one of “10 bars you must experience before you die,” for an honest drink and music by the World’s Best Polka Band. If you want a more active experience, bike with a barrel on the “nordeast” PedalPub tour. It’s BYOB, but you do have the chance to stop at up to 15 bars.
Also consider: St. Anthony Main
Also located along the Mississippi, here you can view the river while walking along brick-paved streets or from the deck at waterfront restaurants like Pracna on Main and Tugg’s Tavern. After you’ve seen all sights of the river—Boom Island, St. Anthony Falls, the Stone Arch Bridge—catch a flick at the historic St. Anthony Main Theatre.