I travelled to St. Paul MN in September 2011 with my husband for a friend's wedding. We stayed at the St. Paul Hotel, which is also where the wedding took place. This was a beautifully restored historic hotel with a great location and delicious on-site restaurants. The hotel rates are a bit on the high end, but worth it for the excellent service received.
Having never been to St. Paul before, we were surprised by the number of things to do. We decided to stay a couple of days after the wedding, and make a long weekend getaway out of it. The Cathedral of St. Paul is breathtaking, a must see when visiting the area, and the church is just as beautiful as some I've visited in Europe. Free guided tours are offered and photography is allowed inside. Other worthwhile attractions to visit are the Minnesota State Capitol, Wabasha Street Caves and Summit Avenue. We also visited the nearby Mall of America, which is a destination within itself, so would be much better appreciated if you had a whole day to spend there at the very least.
The best part about St. Paul is their downtown area, lots of nearby attractions and restaurants all within walking distance and we always felt safe. We ate at the Great Waters Brewing Company one afternoon and the food here is decent and reasonably priced. The best part is their selection of microbrews and we had a fun time sampling their beers. The weather in late September could get a bit chilly in the evenings, but was perfect for walking around and seeing the sites. Overall, St. Paul was a delightful place to spend the weekend, and recommended for both couples and families.
In the four years that I have lived in the Twin Cities, I have come to appreciate just how different St. Paul is. In a state dominated by, in some ways, a monoculture, St. Paul is a true melting pot. Tied together by Catholic identity, it is home to a number of different cultures.
The capital city of Minnesota, St. Paul houses one of the country's most beautiful buildings, the Minnesota State Capital. Designed by St. Paul native and architect of the US Supreme Court, Cass Gilbert. It is home to a number of museums, beautiful riverfronts, attractions and amazing restaurants. It holds a number of distinct ethnic neighborhoods with Jewish delis, Italian markets, and Mexican bakeries just short distances away. More than anything else, St. Paul has a feel akin to many East Coast cities where it is a conglomeration of a number of different districts, haphazardly glued together. St. Paul may lack the glitz of Minneapolis, but it has a unique feel that is all its own.