Isn’t it interesting that every year thousands of people visit Ely, but everyone experiences it differently? There’s so much to explore up here, but how you plan your vacations and explore the surroundings depends on what type of traveler you are.
You might find yourself among the following travel personalities:
Your life revolves around conquering challenges, owning a lot of camping gear, and knowing not only how to use it but how much each piece weighs. You go to sleep thinking about your next vacation and have a long list of adrenaline-pumping adventures you need to get to. Minnesota has what you are looking for. Whether you want to go out and explore the wilderness in a canoe, experience camping, or go Stand Up Paddle Boarding or kayaking on local lakes, we have got everything you are looking for. We’ve also spent our lives seeking adventure and part of our travel personalities is definitely that of Adventure Seekers.
The Creative Finder
You have a love for unique things, everything handmade and authentic. As far back as grade school you may have begun your own art career and in college you enjoyed spending time around the art galleries and museums. You enjoy craft fairs and farmers markets. In Ely, you are most likely to sign-up for a class at the folk school, walk around the art galleries and spend most of your afternoon in a secluded spot with a sketchbook and maybe some paints. Ely, Minnesota has a vibrant and thriving Artist community. Indeed, you can find something creative to do or someone creative to share and talk with almost anywhere you go around Ely. You will especially enjoy the Blueberry Arts Festival, Harvest Moon Festival and Ely Winterfest (think Snowcarving Symposium). We welcome all Creative Travel Personality people to Ely and the Boundary Waters.
You love reading adventure stories and you may have taken a year off in college, or from work, to travel to different destinations around the world. To feed your restless soul, there are many ways to get out and explore the Ely area, find a quiet spot, and experience the spiritual Zen of being in one of the most beautiful natural areas in the world. After all, the Boundary Waters has just been designated one of the Quietest Parks in America and the world’s newest International Dark Sky Sanctuary. Explorer Travel Personalty visitors could literally spend a lifetime getting to know the 2000 lakes in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness that is our protected backyard.
Before you visit any place, you do your homework. It won’t be wrong to call you a history buff. You tend to read up and familiarize yourself with the history and culture of a place. Fortunately, the Ely-Winton Historical Society, the Ely Arts and Heritage Center, the Dorothy Molter Museum, and the Sigurd Olson Cabin at Listening Point proudly speak of Ely’s heritage for you to scoop up as much information as you want. You can even take advantage of our own diverse programming and book one of our popular Guided Group Canoe Trips — Sigurd Olson Canoe Trip. Ely has a rich history and there are plenty of opportunities for Knowledge Seeker Travel Personalities to discover more each minute you are visiting us.
You wish you were born in frontier times or had been a French Voyageur, before there were any towns and cities and when the rivers and lakes were still unnamed? No surprise you came up to Ely! As Ely is the gateway to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, there are thousands of ways to get out and explore a wilderness area that will make you feel like you are the first one to explore the place. There’s nothing like discovering for yourself the vast potential that Wilderness has to offer each and every one of us! Discoverers are a travel personality we can get behind :). We do our best, each and every day, to get you out into the wilderness with the highest quality canoes and lightweight camping gear available. We test it, try it out first and make sure it is up to the challenge. We also know that you will be as well. We pride ourselves on preparation for each canoe trip and every client that comes through our Canoe Trip Outfitting Department. And.. if you still find yourself in the discovery stage and not ready to jump from soaking up knowledge to applying it in the wild, try taking one of our experienced guides out with you on a day trip or a short couple of overnights first.
Exploring the wilderness area is a great adventure, but sometimes you just want to walk around, enjoy the modern lifestyle, and shop. With plenty of restaurants, cafes, craft breweries, wine bars, art galleries, spas, boutiques, and art and craft shops, Ely has got everything to delight your soul. Our retail store is the largest in town including one of the best independent Book Stores in Minnesota and we are open all year round. During the Summer months we are also open the longest hours of anyone in town: from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Bonus: If you are looking for some high-quality camping products, apparel, tools, books, popular Northstar and Wenonah Canoes, and Kayaks to everything imaginable you can need for canoe outfitting and paddling – our Boundary Waters Catalog has got you covered. Browse around to order your favorite products today.