“Play time” is all the time in Rochester, MN! Ranked “the second best city for children in the U.S.,” Rochester is a kid-friendly destination that parents will appreciate for its caring ambience, relaxing pace, and convenient entertainment and attractions. Enjoy some family fun (and dial down the stress) in Rochester, MN with these 10 things to do with kids.

1.    All aboard! Catch a ride with the Rochester Trolley & Tour Company, the city’s premier “hop-on, hop-off” city sightseeing tour company, or try another of our top five sightseeing tours.

2.    Experience some hands-on fun at the Minnesota Children’s Museum Rochester, an interactive world that will ignite your child’s curiosity in a stimulating environment with rotating exhibits. Grown-ups are welcome to “learn while playing” as well!

3.    For some healthy, active pursuits that will ensure a good night’s sleep, try rock climbing at one of Rochester’s two indoor climbing gyms, enjoy a pedal-boat ride around Silver Lake, or rent a bike (along with a bike trailer and helmets) and spin your wheels on the city’s more than 85 miles of trails. In the fall, pick your own apples—and enjoy a wagon ride—at Sekapp Orchard, located minutes from downtown.

4.    Shop at a variety of unique stores featuring children’s apparel and toys, including the downtown boutique Baby, Baby and the locally-owned favorite of Rochester parents, ABC and Toy Zone.

5.    With older kids, discover the fascinating history and extraordinary innovations of Mayo Clinic with a self-guided tour of the campus. For a glimpse at the lives of the Clinic’s brilliant founders, join a Mayowood Mansion tour. (Bonus: Maybe you’ll inspire a medical career for one of your offspring!)

6.    In the cold-weather months, enjoy the simple pleasures of building a snowman, making a snow angel, sledding at an area park, or skating on a pond or rink. Check out “Five Hot Ways to Spend a Cool Day” for tips on where to go for winter fun in Rochester.

7.    Roll on over to Bowlocity Entertainment Center, your one-stop shop for family fun in Rochester. Bowlocity features a two-story laser tag complex, bowling, and a 45-game redemption arcade that includes classic favorites such as skee ball, air hockey, and more. Onsite sports bar for the adults.

8.    Jump around at Bounce World, featuring a packed arena full of inflatables. Parents can relax in the comfort of the lounge offering free Wi-Fi and a big screen TV.

9.    Solve a mystery at the Escape Challenge or Unraveled Escape Room, where participants are locked in a themed room and must find clues in order to escape. Work together as a family to break free within 60 minutes.  

10. Get sporty cheering on our local teams. The Ice Hawks are a United States Hockey League team that plays from fall to spring at the Rochester Recreation Center. If you’re visiting in the summer, catch a Rochester Honkers minor league baseball game at Mayo Field.

Visiting Rochester with a sports team or other big group? Check out these group-friendly restaurants that roll out the welcome mat for kids!