Garden Island State Recreation Area

In the area

From Explore MN Tourism

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Garden Island State Recreation Area

Remote and virtually undeveloped, Garden Island State Recreation Area is the northernmost unit of the Minnesota State Park system. Part of its attraction is the challenge of getting there—as you leave the south shore of Lake of the Woods, the island is 19 miles away and not yet visible on the horizon. But once you arrive, the island itself will charm you. Its quiet beaches beckon you to stroll along the retreating waves.

Birds scamper at the water’s edge and dart above you in the air. Fishing boats come into dock for shore lunches, with visitors from near and far enjoying a midday break at the picnic tables. Or you may want to take a bit more time and explore the woods and marshes of the island’s interior. Winter offers opportunities too—and snowmobiling across Lake of the Woods may feel like your first Arctic adventure.

Tell me more about this park's wildlife, history, geology and landscape.

Park Notes

Virtual Tour

Take a virtual tour. It's a great tool to help you plan your next trip to the recreation area!
Panoramic tour | Snapshot tour

Boat Docks

Boat docks at Garden Island are available during the summer/fall seasons only.

Gift Cards

Purchase a Minnesota State Parks Gift Card.

Only use approved firewood!

Help prevent the spread of tree-killing insects by burning only approved firewood, available at all Minnesota State Parks.


Bird Checklist This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it. at Garden Island State Recreation Area.

Park Highlights

tree Picnicking

tree Walleye Fishing


For information on this park, contact Zippel Bay State Park at 218-783-6252.


Write c/o Zippel Bay State Park
3684 - 54th Ave. NW Williams, MN 56686

tel: 218-783-6252


Getting There

The island is 19 nautical miles from Zippel Bay State Park.