Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

May 24, 2018

Scenic Byways provide variety of vacation opportunities

ST. PAUL, Minn. — As you plan your summer vacation this year, consider travelling along one of Minnesota’s 21 Scenic Byways that cover almost 2,900 miles of roads across the state.

“These byways give travelers a chance to discover Minnesota’s scenic beauty, nature, history and culture by a variety of travel modes,” said MnDOT Commissioner Charlie Zelle. “Each byway offers something special—an opportunity to experience small town-main street charm, historic sites, state parks and trails, local arts and more. The program is looking ahead to determine how best to sustain the qualities that make these routes worthy of the experience – by all modes of travel.”  

MnDOT is one of several agencies that oversee Minnesota’s Scenic Byway Program, which was established in 1992. Others are the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the Minnesota Historical Society and Explore Minnesota Tourism.

Minnesota’s Scenic Byways Program has worked collaboratively with the Federal Highway Administration’s National Scenic Byway Program and the National Scenic Byways Foundation to create distinctive travel destinations throughout the state.

“The Scenic Byway designation is recognized for its potential to positively affect the cities and towns located along the routes,” said Zelle.  “Many communities benefit due to a Scenic Byway route, including increased economic benefits, improved traveler and community services, and broadened appreciation of Minnesota’s historic and natural resources.”

Other important attributes of a Scenic Byway include support for managing and maintaining these historical and natural resources, improved management of resources to accommodate visitors, and vigilant stewardship of the byway corridors.

Visit MnDOT’s Scenic Byways website at mndot.gov/scenicbyways for information about Scenic Byways locations and what each has to offer.