Day Trips From the Twin Cities

Day Trips From the Twin Cities

Day Trips from Twin Cities

Globe-Pequot Press, July 2012, first edition

Hit the road with 24 day-trip destinations less than two to three hours from Minneapolis-St. Paul. Discover the towns that inspired Lake Wobegon, golf or shop your way through the Brainerd Lakes, go fishing, find fun family getaways, explore historic sites and state parks, and feast your way through Minnesota and Wisconsin’s romantic river towns.

The Dakotas Off the Beaten Path

Globe-Pequot Press, July 2010, eighth edition

Look for travel tips that cover a little bit of everything: rock-climbing and hiking in the Black Hills, watching the Laura Ingalls pageant, touring Native American museums, finding chic shopping and desserts in Fargo, and driving the quirky Enchanted Highway on the way to Medora’s Badlands and never missing the surprises along the way.


The Minnesota Lakes Vacation travel app debuted January 2011 and includes more than 125 entries, close to 1,000 photos and great maps from the best resorts, restaurants and destinations in several northern Minnesota regions: Brainerd Lakes, Headwaters (Park Rapids to Walker) Ely and the Iron Range, and Glacial Lakes. It’s a constant work in progress with frequent updates and additions.


USA Today Go Escape—A quarterly travel magazine

  • Look for “True North,” a feature about a family winter adventure on Minnesota’s North Shore in the Winter 2011/2012 issue.
  • Summer 2012 features include South Dakota’s Black Hills and boating among polar bears and beluga whales in Churchill, Manitoba.

Midwest Living

This wonderful regional magazine passionately captures life in the Midwest and thoroughly checks out everything it prints. I contribute to the annual Best of the Midwest Travel edition and ongoing bi-monthly magazine issues.

  • Great River Road Trip—More than famous eagles: A two-day getaway to artsy, Nordic, outdoorsy Decorah, Iowa.
  • Escape to Red Wing: Two-day getaway to this historic town of famous boots, bluffs and pottery.
  • Look for eagles, ride the Midwest’s coolest carousel and kayak the Mississippi River on a two-day getaway to Wabasha and Lake City, Minn.
  • Enjoy stained glass, Mississippi scenery and spice on a Winona getaway.
  • Have a winter adventure in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness with a Gunflint Trail lodge-to-lodge Nordic ski weekend.
  • Berea Artisans Inspired by Appalachian Roots. (Part of a Fall Art Drives package)

Twin Cities Star Tribune

I am grateful Minnesotans have one of the country’s best travel sections, taking readers across the world every Sunday.

  • Finding beauty in an overnight Badlands stay
  • Learning to cook in Puerto Morelos, Mexico
  • A tour of Oregon from orchards to ocean
  • A Whale of a Time in Manitoba: Paddling with belugas, boating next to polar bears: these are the joys of summer in Churchill, Manitoba.
  • Fresh take on SoCal: Flowers near San Diego offer a jumpstart on spring.
  • Take a memorable ride during a dolphin swim in the Florida Keys.
  • Sleigh ride brings on the magic: Gunflint Trail delivers a bucket-list experience.
  • Life Lessons in the Wild: Wilderness Inquiry helps mother and son overcome challenges, find new strength.
  • Longing for Light: Germany’s Ore Mountains influence Christmas ornaments and decor across the globe.
  • Ontario: Wilderness and Wonder. Family Canadian road trip pursues living history, thundering falls and real gems.
  • Ice Jollies: Embrace Minnesota’s winter with bucket-list ice fishing festivals.
  • Digging History: Unearthing dinosaur bones in Thermopolis, Wyo.
  • Rapid City’s revival: Check out the hip, artsy downtown before heading to the Black Hills.
  • Escapes that feed your creative side: Hands-on artsy workshops in the Upper Midwest.

USA Today Go Escape magazine and special editions

Links to come

Family Vacation Critic

This online website devotes itself to traveling with kids—which is its own kind of adventure. Look for resort reviews, the low-down on destinations and tips for parents.

Other Features

  • How-to guide to family camping
  • Lake Superior Family Vacation
  • Brainerd Lakes Family Vacation
  • Black Hills Family Vacation
  • Minocqua, Wis., Family Vacation
  • Traverse City, Mich., Family Vacation
  • Kalahari Resort, Wisconsin Dells
  • The Wilderness, Wisconsin Dells
  • Great Wolf Lodge, Wisconsin Dells
  • Hotel del Coronado, San Diego, Calif.
  • Smart Meetings

Urban East Meets Rugged West, a primer on places to meet in the Dakotas.

Log Home Living

I frequently contribute landscaping/gardening and travel features to Log Home Living, Timber Frame Living and Country’s Best Cabins, home magazines that are dedicated to rural living in some of America’s most scenic places. A sampling of landscape topics I’ve covered:

  • Home canning makes a comeback
  • Putting gardens to bed for the winter
  • Help gardens thrive with DIY compost
  • Gardening for shady areas
  • Forcing spring bulbs for winter blooms
  • Sweet success with fruitful landscaping
  • Grow citrus fruit indoors
  • Farms and ranches thrive in Maui’s scenic Upcountry
  • Learning to rock climb in the Black Hills.


  • Adventures such as dog-sledding, caving, mountain-biking and rock-climbing.
  • Family travel.
  • Hands-on vacations such as art studios, cooking classes and farm stays.
  • Off-the-beaten-path discoveries from Finnish cafes to ice-fishing festivals.
  • Local foods (think farm-stands & markets, vineyards, slow-food cafes, and ethnic neighborhoods).
  • National and state parks.


I have more than 25 years of journalism experience, beginning in newspapers before moving into magazines, online sites, guidebooks and apps. I covered everything from nuclear power plants to local government before moving toward creative lifestyle, food, parenting, gardening and travel features that interest me the most.


  • Second place, newspaper travel feature on a U.S./Canadian destination, Society of American Travel Writers (SATW), Central States, 2013.
  • Third place, action photography; honorable mention for U.S. scenery and for food photography reflecting local cultures, Society of American Travel Writers (SATW), Central States, 2012.
  • Third place, Newspaper feature-international, SATW, Central States 2011.
  • Third place, Past meeting location photo; third place, humorous photo; SATW, Central States, 2011.
  • First Place, Other (New Media), Mark Twain Awards, 2008.
  • Third Place, Newspaper feature, Mark Twain Awards through Midwest Travel Writers Association, 2007.
  • Second Place, Photojournalism, Mark Twain Awards, 2004.


Contact me if you’re interested in public speaking on family travel, ways to save money while traveling, cultural travel, travel writing or working successfully from home.

Please enter your contact details and a short message below and I will try to answer your query as soon as possible.

Lisa Meyers McClintick
Freelance Travel Writer/Photographer
St. Cloud, Minnesota