Great Small Cities: Eagan, Minnesota

Author: Alecia Pirulis

Bridge in Eagan, Minnesota

Has the Minneapolis/St. Paul area caught your eye? You’re not alone! This busy metro area has some amazing qualities — from the crisp clean air to the gorgeous lakes – and is home to more than 3 million residents. If that’s a little too busy for you, consider the gorgeous smaller city of Eagan!

Eagan used to be a rural area famous for its onions, but Eagan has become the eighth-largest city in Minnesota. It is located along the Minnesota River, not far from the Mississippi River. It is convenient to both Minneapolis and St. Paul, situated just south of the two larger cities. It is also close to the Mall of America, the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport, and the University of Minnesota-UMore Park.

Shoppers will love living in an Eagan apartment – the famous Mall of America is just five minutes away! The Mall of America features 520 stores and 50 restaurants. The mall also hosts events and has a variety of attractions, making this the go-to location when you are in the mood to shop, dine out, or see a movie. The Mall of America is also home to the country’s largest indoor amusement park, Nickelodeon Universe, and the nation’s largest underground aquarium, SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium. You can even pretend to be part of a CSI team at CSI: The Experience, or get in touch with your inner Trekkie at Star Trek: The Exhibition.

But the vast Mall of America isn’t your only shopping hotspot – Eagan is home to the Twin Cities Premium Outlets! This outlet mall features more than 100 stores on about 409,000 square feet. The mall has covered walkways for year-round shopping as well as a dining pavilion with a two-sided fireplace.

Eagan is home to Cascade Bay, the largest outdoor municipal water park in the region. Cascade Bay offers water slides, a Lazy River, a miniature golf course, a lap pool, and Sandpiper Beach. Drive about 20 minutes west to nearby Shakopee and you’ll discover even more adventures at the Upper Midwest’s largest theme park, Valleyfair Amusement Park. Valleyfair offers 75 different rides and attractions in its 90-acre park. Valleyfair also contains a water park, Soak City.

Once you’ve enjoyed the thrills and spills at area water parks and theme parks, you might want to find a peaceful setting to relax. Caponi Art Park is a gorgeous outdoor sculpture garden that features one of the region’s largest outdoor amphitheaters. This is where residents and visitors to Eagan gather to watch summer concerts and special performances.

Lebanon Hills Regional Park is the perfect place to play! This park covers almost 2,000 acres and includes Schulze Lake Beach, one of the area’s most popular lakeside beaches. The park also has miles of hiking trails, several lakes, and the Lebanon Hills Visitor Center. The park is ideal for both summer and winter activities and provides opportunities for canoeing, kayaking, paddle-boarding, horseback riding, mountain biking, hiking, fishing, swimming, picnicking, snowshoeing, sledding, ski skating, ice fishing, and cross-country skiing.

Moving to Eagan means you’ll have a wide variety of fairs and festivals to enjoy! Eagan knows how to put on a show – be sure to check out the Eagan Art Festival, the Holz Farm Spring Festival, the Minnesota Scottish Fair and Highland Games, and the Caponi Art Park Bluegrass Festival. And from June to September, you’ll be able to shop at the Eagan Market Fest! This market is held on Wednesdays and offers fresh-grown produce, fine art, live music, cooking demonstrations, and more.

With its rolling green hills and crystal blue lakes, Eagan is an ideal location for renting an apartment in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. The beautiful scenery and its proximity to all of the area’s major attractions, universities, and businesses make Eagan a great small(ish) city you’ll love!