Surrounded by water but stuck on shore because you don’t have a vessel? Or maybe you just decided not to bring yours along. Don’t fret! You can get out and enjoy all of Minnesota’s recreational waterways by renting a boat. Here are some of our favorite places to rent a boat.
Tally’s Dockside has been the place to rent boats and get ice, gas, or snacks on White Bear Lake for decades. Even though it’s now upscaled with a restaurant and bar, you can still rent a pontoon, kayak, fishing boat, paddle board, or canoe from this waterfront institution.
A boat is the best–and in many ways, the only–way to explore Voyageurs, the only national park in Minnesota. Voyagaire Lodge can set you with just about any kind of vessel you want: Canoes, kayaks, fishing boats, power boats. You want a houseboat with a hot tub? They’ve got ‘em.
For folks who want to get out on the lower St. Croix River, head over to Stillwater. There, you can rent a pontoon from Stillwater Boat Club and Rentals, next to P.D. Pappy’s on the north end of downtown. Both half and full-day rentals are available.
The Wheel Fun Rentals concession at Lake Calhoun is the best way to explore the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes by water. Grab a canoe, kayak, stand-up paddle board, or pedal boat and hit the water. From Lake Calhoun, hit the canals to reach Lake of the Isles, Cedar Lake, and Brownie Lake. Or just float and chill.
If you need a boat in the Brainerd Lakes Area, give Boats and Beyond Rentals a call. They’ll rent you a jet ski, fishing boat, ski boat, or pontoon so that you can get out and explore Gull Lake from the water. They also have some boats that can pull double duty, like ski-fishing and pontoon-fishing combos.
If you’re a landlocked fan of Lake Minnetonka, head out to Shorewood and let Howard’s Point Marina set you up with a vessel. A big selection of pontoons and a handful of 15-foot fishing boats are available for rental.
For a rolling adventure amidst the Mississippi River bluffs and Lake Pepin, pick up a boat from Red Wing Marina and headed downstream. They have a fishing and pontoon boat available, as well as a 28-foot cabin cruiser and a 23-foot Sea Ray that can sleep two if you’re looking for a more intimate adventure.
Grab a boat from Itasca Sports if you prefer to see the Mississippi before it takes its river form. As the watercraft concession in Itasca State Park, they will rent you a kayak, pontoon, paddleboard, or fishing boat so you can get out and explore the lake that forms the headwaters of the Mississippi River in Minnesota’s oldest state park.
Randy’s Rentals in Onamia will help you get out on the waters of Mille Lacs Lake, one of the biggest in the state. Whether you’re looking to drop a line in this popular smallmouth bass fishery or simply to explore by pontoon, canoe, kayak, or paddleboard, Randy’s will set you up.