Minneapolis is very grid-like. Avenues run north/south; streets run east/west. There are a lot of one-ways, but the next street over usually runs the opposite direction. Please remember there are always exceptions.
St. Paul – The capital of Minnesota and the other city that makes up the
“twin cities”. Even though it’s just a few miles across the river to the East, going to St. Paul is considered going out of town for most Minneapolis residents.
There are several distinct areas in Minneapolis:
This is exactly where you think it is: the place where all the big buildings are.
This is the melting pot of Minneapolis. There are three main roads; Hennepin Avenue and Lyndale Avenue run parallel (N, S) to each other, and Lake Street crosses (S, E) both. Lake Street is a good border for the southern, more residential area, and the northern, more commercial area.
An area to the west of downtown that is slowly being rejuvenated, but still has some long-standing establishments and killer warehouse apartments.
This is literally the West Bank of the University of Minnesota (the campus is divided in half by the Mississippi River).
Nordeast is the way the movie Fargo claims we say it, and they’re right. This is a blue-collar, old-school region. There is a bar on every corner and a church across the street.
Minneapolis’ area code is 612; St. Paul’s is 952. You will not need to dial the area code if you are within the area. Get it?
Buses, buses, buses. That’s really all we have for transportation, and they go everywhere. Well, just about. Most bus drivers will answer questions for you, or tell you what bus to take to get where you want to go.
There is a bus phone line with an operator that will get you where you want to go on-time:
From the airport, a cab to the city will run you about $20-30. To take the bus from the airport, take the #7, and transfer to the #21 going west when you get to Lake Street. This will take you to the Uptown area.
At the Airport, when waiting for the #7, make sure you stand in the line for Downtown and not Mall of America. Unless of course you want to go to the Mall of America.
Minnesota is working on getting light-rail installed by 2003-2004. This is a great conversation starter with the person on the next barstool. You will most likely get more than one opinion.
There is a money exchange at the airport, and in Downtown Minneapolis at the Federal Reserve Bank on 2nd St. and Marquette. Call for hours: 340-2345.
My suggestion would be to exchange your money at the airport, unless you are planning on taking a daytime trip, during the week, to downtown.
Click here for info on where to rest your head.
Click here for some great eating-out ideas.