Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park Snapshot Tour

Welcome to the Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park virtual tour! There is so much to do here that you may want to stay awhile. Explore trout streams, scenic hiking and horse trails, camping opportunities, a restored 1800s village operated by the Minnesota Historical Society, and guided tours of Mystery Cave. We hope the tour prompts you to visit the park in person sometime soon.


Photo of limestone cliffs along the South Branch Root River.
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Limestone Cliffs

Sheer limestone cliffs rise above the South Branch Root River.


Photo of a trout fisherman trying his luck on the South Branch Root River.
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Trout Streams

Three trout streams provide exceptional angling at Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park. Bring a fishing rod on your next visit and try your luck.


Photo of the Big Spring Trail bridge spanning the South Branch Root River.
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Big Spring Trail

Park trails provide access to the South Branch Root River and nearby creeks. At this location, Big Spring Trail passes a scenic bridge over the river. The trail eventually follows Canfield Creek before ending at Big Spring, where cool algific slopes provide the perfect place to rest on a hot day.


Photo of equestrian campsites, that feature electricity hook-ups and a pull-through design for horseback riding campers.
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Electric Horse Campsites

Many of the reservable electric horse campsites are conveniently designed to be pull-through. Sites offer hitching posts, a picnic table, and a fire ring. Vault toilets are located nearby.


Photo of of of visitors saddling up the horses at one of the non-electric campsites located in the park.
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Horse Campsites

Non-electric horse campsites provide a social experience. These sites offer hitching posts, a picnic table, and a fire ring. Vault toilets are located nearby.


Photo of the ravine trail, popular with equestrians and hikers, and in winter, visitors that cross country ski, snowmobile, and snowshoe.
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Ravine Trail

Park trails are popular for equestrians and hikers alike. In winter, cross country skiers, snowmobilers, and snowshoers enjoy different sections of the 20 mile trail system within the park.


Photo of the 1899 bridge providing access to (North) Historic Forestville, a state historic site.
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Historic Bridge

This 1899 bridge provides access to (North) Historic Forestville, a state historic site.


Photo of a portion of historic Forestville, a restored 1800s village operated by the Minnesota Historical Society.
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Historic Forestville

Historic Forestville is a restored 1800s village operated by the Minnesota Historical Society (MHS). Visitors can experience the interior of unique historic buildings by attending one of the tours offered during the summer months. Tours include costumed interpreters who offer a glimpse into what life was like in the 1800s.  Contact the park office or MHS to learn more.


Photo of a costumed tour guide inside the 1857 Meighen General Store.
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Meighen General Store

The 1857 Meighen General Store is included in a tour offered by the Minnesota Historical Society (MHS) at Historic Forestville. Tours are led by costumed interpreters and are offered during the summer months. Contact the park office or MHS to learn more.


Photo of the Sandbank Trail as it follows the route of an old road that was cut into the nearby St. Peter Sandstone.
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Sandbank Trail

Most park trails are surfaced with crushed rock to create stable footing. Trails traverse a wide variety of scenic areas throughout the park. The Sandbank Trail follows the route of an old road that was cut into the nearby St. Peter Sandstone many years ago.


Photo of one of the park's scenic overlooks, featuring a wooded valley.
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Overlook

Stunning panoramic views, like the one from this wooden overlook, await visitors who venture onto the trails at Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park.


Photo of the brick picnic shelter, in a pleasant, sunny picnic area.
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Picnic Area

Adjacent to the South Branch Root River, the picnic area offers both secluded spots and areas for large groups. Soak in the sunshine at a nearby picnic table, or take cover within the brick picnic shelter.


Photo of the fireplace within the picnic shelter.
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Picnic Shelter

The enclosed picnic shelter is ideal for group events! It offers an indoor area with numerous picnic tables and modern restrooms. Come wintertime, the structure is heated and serves as a warming shelter.


Photo of the park's restored alluvial prairie landscape.
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Alluvial Prairie

The varied habitats of Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park include closed canopy forest, oak savanna, bluff prairies, and this restored alluvial prairie.


Photo of the campground amphitheater providing the perfect spot to enjoy interpretive programs on summer weekends.
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Amphitheater

The campground amphitheater provides the perfect spot to enjoy interpretive programs on summer weekends. The amphitheater’s small shelter provides a dry spot for a picnic lunch.


Photo of visitors enjoying a campsite.
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Campground

Enjoy a picnic meal or gather around an evening campfire in these well-spaced campsites. Campground loops are paved for easy access to campsites.


Photo of one of the electric sites located in the main campground.
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Electric Campsites

The electric sites in the main campground are landscaped with native trees and shrubs that provide both privacy and wildlife habitat.


Photo of the park campground's toilet and shower facility along a paved path.
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Campground Amenities

Campground amenities include a well-maintained toilet and shower facility that can be accessed by a paved path.


Photo of one of the non-electric campsites with tent campers relaxing at a campfire.
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Non-electric Campsites

The campground’s non-electric campsites provide a natural experience without bothersome mosquitoes. Tall trees shade a picnic table and fire ring found at this non-electric site.


Photo of the primitive group campsite, offering gathering areas and secluded tent spots.
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Group Campsites

Trees border two primitive group campsites that offer group gathering areas and secluded tent spots. Picnic tables and a fire ring are located at each site, and a roofed shelter is available for the two sites to share. Vault toilets are located nearby.


Photo of the interior of the Mystery Cave Visitor Center, a headquarters for cave tours, displays and shopping.
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Mystery Cave Visitor Center

The Mystery Cave Visitor Center is the headquarters for cave tours, and includes educational displays, modern bathrooms, and a gift shop. A historic picnic area near the cave entrance provides a great place to relax.


Photo of dripstone formations within the cave.
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Mystery Cave

Numerous stalactites, stalagmites, and dripstone formations can be seen during a guided Scenic Tour of Mystery Cave. Visit the park website to learn more.


Photo of Turquoise Lake, a highlight of the guided Scenic Tour offered at Mystery Cave.
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Turquoise Lake

Below ground, Turquoise Lake is a highlight of the guided Scenic Tour offered at Mystery Cave. Visit the park website to learn more.


Virtual Tours

Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park home page

Legacy Amendment logo

This program is made possible by funds from the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment.