|Cathedral of Saint Paul on the left, Minneapolis in the distance|
As a parent, you are warned never to compare children. Parents of twins have it even harder, as kids the exact same age go through school, friendships and activities.
The Twin Cities, Minneapolis and Saint Paul, inevitably draw comparisons. Minneapolis gets most of the glory, but Saint Paul has many reasons for a visit.
Minnesota History Museum
|It was snowing in April, so an indoor campfire was in order at the Children's Museum|
We explored the 1968 exhibit, which covers the Vietnam War, civil rights demonstrations, fashion and culture.
|The giant astronaut at the science museum|
Children's Museum of Minnesota
|Motorcycle from Purple Rain. Credit: Paisley Park|
Minnesota State CapitolThe fabulous Minnesota State Capitol has daily tours. The landmark building has been restored inside and out. The rotunda is particularly impressive.
|Interior of Cathedral of Saint Paul|
Cathedral of Saint PaulThe historic Cathedral of Saint Paul offers guided tours during the week, but we couldn't make it. Your can wander through on your own, which we did. Just not during Sunday services.
The Science Museum of Minnesota has a mummy, mostly complete Triceratops and a giant astronaut. Instead of just looking at the mummy, you can see what it looks like on the side through 3D imaging. In the interactive Sportsology exhibit, you can throw a basketball, kick a soccer ball or race a dinosaur and learn about hand-eye coordination and the science of sports.
Science Museum of Minnesota
|Minnesota State Capitol, in downtown Saint Paul|
Paisley ParkPrince's home and recording studio is in neither Minneapolis nor Saint Paul. But since traffic was so light in and out of Saint Paul, our drive here was quick.
At this tightly controlled tour, you have to turn off your cellphone and put it in a locking bag (unlocked as you exit). There is no picture taking, or touching. But you do get to hear snippets of Prince as you see where he lived and worked. There are also clips from movies and music videos. This is a must see for even a casual Prince fan.
You have to reserve tickets in advance.
|Tasting at Summit Brewery|
Saint Paul food scene
Saint Paul has venerable places, like Mickey's Diner, along with new hot spots. The year old plant based J. Selby's has delicious vegan food. We also ate Ethiopian food at Fasika and excellent falafel and hummus at Shish, near Macalester College.
Cossetta Alimentari has been around for over 100 years. There is a huge pizzeria, along with an Italian grocery, a gelato and pastry shop and a fancier restaurant. Think Eataly, but historic. Across the street Cossetta, the Seventh Street Truck Park offers pizza, tacos, salads and grilled cheese. There is also a full bar and plenty of local beer on tap.
We had excellent cocktails at Vieux Carre. The speakeasy features live music most nights.
Saint Paul Booze
Summit Brewery charges $5 for hour long tours of the brewery. These come with 3 8 ounce glasses of beer. And you can get a small taste first if you want to make sure you like the beer. The Imperial IPA was our favorite. There are also food trucks.
The Happy Gnome has 89 beers on tap. There is a large outdoor patio.
Convenient Doubletree hotel
|The pool at the Doubletree Hotel|
For morning coffee, we could practically get to Dunn Brothers or Starbucks from a climate controlled environment, with just a quick dash outside.
|Warm chocolate chip cookie at check in at the Doubletree Hotel|
Although the bed was quite comfortable, and the linens pristine, the bathroom had rust on the mirror and needed a refresh.
There is a large indoor pool, with a gym next to it.
We didn't eat at the breakfast Town Grill, but we did have drinks at the Rival House Sporting Parlour. This is a fun sports bar with local beers on tap, and lots of board games that you can play while you eat a pizza cooked in a wood oven.
Note: I was a guest of Visit Saint Paul, which covered my stay at the Doubletree Hotel. Opinions expressed are my own.