Minneapolis Parks
Cyclists on a Minneapolis urban bike path.

We’ve all heard of the benefits of natural recreation to health and productivity and for this reason, MeetingSource.com has added it as an integral part of the tourism appeal scores used in our annual ranking of convention cities. You may not have time for a walk in the park, but it’s nice knowing it’s available in case you do.

Without surprise, cities like San Francisco where Golden Gate Park hosts more than 24 million visitors a year and New York City where Central Park pulls in 42 million visitors a year are in the top 10 in the nation for park visits (according to the Center for City Park Excellence, Trust for Public Land). However, both are topped by Washington DC, if you count a walk to the Lincoln Memorial as natural recreation, with 51 million visitors a year. What you may not know, is that two cities in the top five of the destinations in our list of cities best for natural recreation (which we measure by investments in city parks PLUS air quality) are close to each other in Minnesota. The Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St Paul benefit from an early investment in public land for gorgeous parks that surround its chain of lakes and boarder the Mississippi River. They can be found right downtown as well. Which is one reason we like to say, “”Convene In These Places – Then GET OUT!”