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Bde Maka Ska is the largest lake in Minneapolis. It joins the Lake of the Isles through a long channel and is the biggest lake of five that make up the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes. Surrounded by city park land and circled by bike and walking trails, it is popular for many outdoor activities like canoeing, fishing, wind surging, swimming, sailing, and of course, biking.

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Best Outdoor Recreation Spots: Minnesota Lakes, Rivers & More

In the heart of Minnesota, summer memories are made in the refreshing waters of its lakes and rivers. Countless adventurers embark on an annual quest to discover the best swimming spots, from hidden gems in lush forests to bustling beaches with golden sand.

This guide is here to share some of the most breathtaking swimming destinations that Minnesota has to offer. Gather the swim gear and sunscreen, and prepare to dive into the aquatic paradise of the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Let’s navigate these stunning locations together and uncover the ideal spots for an unforgettable summer adventure. It’s time to make a splash.

Lake Harriet – Minneapolis

Nestled just south of Bde Maka Ska, Lake Harriet’s beaches are the talk of the town in Minneapolis. Two designated swimming spots make it double the fun for water enthusiasts.

The northern side boasts Lake Harriet North Beach, featuring a roomy sandy area and buoy-marked waters to keep swimmers safe. Meanwhile, the southern side offers Lake Harriet South Beach, a smaller yet equally charming sandy spot.

Both beaches cater to swimmers and grant easy access to surrounding walking trails and Wheel Fun Rentals for those itching to kayak or paddleboard.

Thomas Beach – Minneapolis

Thomas Beach – Minneapolis makes for a fantastic swimming spot in Minnesota and is located on the picturesque Bde Maka Ska in the heart of the Twin Cities. As you venture to the southern shores of the lake, you’ll find Thomas Beach, perfect for a day of fun under the sun. The expansive grassy patch invites you to lounge while the sandy playgroundbde offers endless entertainment for kids eager to build sandcastles.

The beach buzzes with lively crowds on warm summer days, offering a vibrant atmosphere. Its prime Minneapolis location means no need for long drives from the city center. Head to the north shores of the lake, and amp up your adventure with the Wheel Fun Rentals that offers kayaks and paddleboards for extra fun.

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