Distance from the Twin Cities: 248mi, 4-hour drive
Why it made our list: Lutsen Mountains Resort is the largest, and one of the Northernmost, ski resort in the Midwest. It's also got one of the most vertical drops, so if you're into downhill skiing, this is your place. The fact that it's got four mountains (Eagle, Ullr, Mystery, and Moose) and 95 runs doesn't hurt either. You can also check out all 10 of Minnesota’s highest peaks, cross country ski, go fishing, or play golf. The Hopped Up Caribou Beer Festival, which brings several local breweries to the mountains, is perfect for anyone who doesn't want to spend their entire vacations on the go.
Pro tip: If you go in the summer be sure to check out the Alpine Slide on Eagle Mountain. You control the speed of your sled, which means you can zip down the half mile luge run or take it slow and soak in the view.