LOCATION: Southcentral Minnesota, approximately 80 miles southwest of Minneapolis-St. Paul, in the scenic Minnesota River valley.
POPULATION: 103,566 as of the 2020 census
The Greater Mankato region includes Blue Earth and Nicollet counties (Mankato-North Mankato metropolitan statistical area)
Outdoor enthusiasts will find the Mankato area to be a great place to explore on wheels, by foot, or on the water!
The Sakatah Singing Hills State Trail is paved and runs 39 beautiful miles from Mankato to Faribault, Minnesota. The paved Red Jacket Trail is a scenic 13-mile trip through woods and prairie and includes a trestle bridge that crosses the Blue Earth River.
Minneopa State Park offers visitors a close-up look at a rushing waterfall and a peek at a herd of bison. Seven Mile Creek County Park has 8 miles of multi-use trails to explore.
Downhill skiing and snowboarding are popular at Mt. Kato, and in the summer, mountain bikers make excellent use of the trails there and at Kiwanis Recreation Area.
Area rivers and lakes give explorers a chance to see nature from the water from kayaks, paddleboards, and canoes.
The region’s many parks are perfect for picnics, fishing, swimming, sledding, and so much more.
Three public golf courses and a disc golf course provide options for those looking to get out on the green.
Annual events like the Mankato Marathon and the River Ramble Bike Ride bring participants from all over the Midwest.
Concerts, parades, cultural events, and more keep the Mankato area busy and vibrant year-round!
The Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center regularly hosts events, concerts, and shows by nationally-known performers. Scenic Riverfront Park and its Vetter Stone Amphitheater are the backdrop for many outdoor concerts and events during the summer and early fall, including Rib Fest, Pride Fest, and more.
Unique public art decorates downtown Mankato, including the annual CityArt Walking Sculpture Tour and a huge mural on the Arden Mills Grain Silos by internationally-recognized Australian artist Guido Van Helton.
Events to recognize and celebrate the history and culture of the region, such as the Juneteenth Celebration and the Mahkato Wacipi, enrich and educate the community.
Many theatre, dance, and music performances from various organizations showcase regional talent and provide opportunities for community involvement.
The Mankato area is home to many boutiques, small businesses, and locally-owned restaurants, giving a small-town feel within the larger community.
A stroll along Riverfront Drive in Mankato, across the bridge to Belgrade Avenue in North Mankato, highlights the opportunity to “Shop Small” for clothes, home décor, sporting goods, and so much more.
Local coffee shops and cafes double as meeting spaces and music venues while serving delicious and unique meals.
Farmers' markets and craft/vendor fairs draw vendors from all over the region, selling produce, art, and more.
Hilltop Mankato and the River Hills Mall provide an excellent shopping experience with access to many national store and restaurant brands, offering the resources of a larger city.
The Mankato area is enriched with a variety of ethnic restaurants including German, Middle Eastern, Asian, and Hispanic traditional foods, as well as plenty of places to find American fare like burgers and wings.