Scenic Byway: Minnesota River Valley National Scenic Byway: Minnesota River Valley
map of the scenic byways

Search the river of stories...
Located along the meandering Minnesota River, the Minnesota River Valley National Scenic Byway is a destination in itself.

  • Breathe as you paddle through the quiet Minnesota River
  • Touch 3.8 billion year old granite outcrops
  • Walk through lush prairie grasses
  • Picnic at state and local parks along the valley
  • Hear vivid stories of prairie life

Close your eyes and imagine becoming an explorer for a day. Relax in the tranquility of Big Bluestem prairie grasses. Watch for Dakota skipper butterflies among purple cornflowers. Scan the expansive blue sky for bald eagles or wait quietly at the river’s edge to catch a glimpse of a deer at sunset.

Take home one of our stories- we’ve got plenty to share! And don't forget to share your story with us.


Walleye Browns Valley
to Ortonville
Goose Ortonville
to Montevideo
Canoe Montevideo
to Granite Falls
Tipi Granite Falls
to Redwood Falls
Waterfall Redwood Falls
to New Ulm
Beer Stein New Ulm
to Mankato
Steamboat Mankato
to Belle Plaine





Byway-Long Garage $ale

Cruise up and down our 287-mile long Byway to shop at the garage sales on May 2-4, 2014. Look for the RED BALLOONS!

Sellers:  If you would like to have a garage sale, put up RED BALLOONS with your signage along the Minnesota River Valley Scenic Byway to attract customers.

Buyers:  Look for the RED BALLOONS as you enjoy the Minnesota River Valley Scenic Byway on May 3rd!

For the facebook event page, click here.

For a list of chambers/CVBs along the byway, click here.

For a map of the byway, click here.

City-wide garage sales (that we know about) are taking place in Granite Falls, Redwood Falls and Fairfax. But look for sales all along the byway!

Our goal is to get people out-and-about along the 287-mile long Byway to learn about our natural and historic sites. To help achieve that goal, we hope to have people participate by hosting a garage sale and for the public to patronize those sales. Get out and enjoy a spring day along the Byway!

There is no formal structure to this operation. There is no license, fees, paperwork or anything else involved other than a coordination of the first full weekend in May. We have publicized this at various City Halls, Chambers of Commerce, at various other community garage sales and other outlets along the Byway. We will announce the date, do some publicity and then let the buyers and sellers find each other!


New Visitors Guide!

Click here to view the new Byway Visitors Guide:



Geocaching in the Byway

Click here for a geocache program continuing in the summer of 2014 called "Who's who in the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862".

This program started June 9th, 2012.

With ample diversity in the landscapes and cityscapes along the Minnesota River Valley Scenic Byway, there are plenty of locations to pursue this up-and-coming outdoor hobby!

Byway Alliance members have discovered caches hidden in city parks, on public property, near historic attractions and many other appropriate places.

Imagine geocaching along the 287-mile length of this nationally designated Byway as you progress up (or down) the valley while you enjoy all of the natural beauty associated with the Minnesota River. Use the Byway as a destination for your hobby and see what you discover!

Check out our geocache page with links to byway caches!

(Interested “Cache Masters” are encouraged to discuss operating a Byway-wide program by contacting “Kristi” at 320-289-1981x6 or by e-mail at



U.S.-Dakota War of 1862

The year 2012 marks 150 since the U.S. - Dakota War of 1862.  The Byway has gathered links to help Byway travelers who want to learn more about this important event. Click here to learn more. 



Intepretive panels

Ten new panels are being placed along the Minnesota River Valley National Scenic Byway in the spring of 2012. Click here to view the panels and learn more. 

Byway panels are already located at sixteen Discovery sites.  These interpretive panels were featured in the Minnesota River Valley National Scenic Byway 2010 Calendar. Click here to view the calendar, and make a plan now to travel the Byway and view all of the panels in person!



Byway DVD 

The Byway has a DVD for sale filled with fablous photos of the byway and lovely music by nature photographer Ron Bolduan! Take a preview of some of the great places along the byway that are featured on the DVD: Explore The Valley with Ron Bolduan

If you would like to purchase a DVD email the byway and we can take your order!



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