Mall of America Trip

The opportunity to go to Mall of America® came in my inbox a while back.  I jumped at the chance!  I’m a small town kind of girl, but I do love going up to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area as much as I can.  Mostly for the shopping.  I love the variety and Mall of America is the queen of shopping centers.  If you’ve never been to Mall of America, you’ll want to read on.  And if you’ve been there lots, maybe you’ll find something new that you just have to try.

I remember way back, back when Mall of America first opened in 1992 – I was almost 12.  My mom and brother and I went up to do some before school shopping.  It’s crazy how exciting it was then.  And it’s still exciting.  I think it’s even more so because my girls are at really fun ages where we can do more fun activities (they’re 6 and 4).  Seeing them excited about being there just makes it so much cooler.

So anyway fast forward 21 years later. We got to stay at the new Radisson Blu Hotel that’s directly attached to the Mall.  I hadn’t heard of the hotel yet, but it had just opened in March.  And it’s rad.  I love that fresh and modern feel it has. Everyone was so extremely nice there.  I’ve stayed at lots of hotels and this is one of the nicest and had the friendliest and most helpful staff.  Haha, I have to admit they were awesome about answering our questions as we got turned around or couldn’t find the parking ramp.  I really liked that we could stay out pretty darn late (ahem, 10 pm) in the Mall and not have to worry about going to get our car and heading back home or driving to a different hotel.  It was awesome.  We even tested the saline pool (no chlorine!).  Natalie said she enjoyed the taste.

The room was really awesome, and Mall of America and some of its stores left us some really great things to try, including tickets to some really fun stuff (which I’ll get to in a sec), but most importantly – cupcakes from the shop Cupcake!  I had the store written down as must visit, haha, cupcake sucker I am.  They were amazing, I scarfed down a Chocolate Espresso cupcake.

We threw our things in the room and didn’t waste any time going to the first stop: SEA LIFE® Minnesota Aquarium!  We had a ton of fun.  The girls loved seeing the sharks and jellyfish and even an octopus.  We all got to touch starfish for the first time – I know, where have I been?!  They’re awesome.

After the Aquarium we checked out LEGO® and checked out the lines for the rides.  I’d definitely say that a Saturday afternoon is the busiest time, so if you can avoid that time and go another, definitely give it a shot.  We waited until Sunday morning to check out as many rides at Nickelodeon Universe® as possible.  Roller coasters (the Pepsi Orange Streak was our family fave), swings, Brain Surge, rides for little kids, plus things we didn’t even have time for like the Moose Mountain adventure golf or the Ghostly Gangplank ropes course (I’m definitely going back to try the ropes course!).

We stopped half way and did some shopping at Archiver’s (for me) and at the American Girl store for the girls.  They loved looking at all the American Girl craziness!  We also had to try our Build-A-Bear for the first time, it’s something I think the girls will remember for a long time!  And afterwards, we ate at my favorite Panda Express (why oh why did our local mall have to close ours?!).  Then back to some more rides and then we pretty much passed out from all the excitement.

It went by so fast, but we had such a great time.  And we were totally wiped out on the way home we couldn’t even talk for over an hour.  Happy kids make happy parents, so we were all set.

Thanks for reading about our adventures.  Visit Mall of America this summer!  It’s a great place to shop and have fun, plus no sales tax on clothes!!  Bonus points!  Hey and I’m giving away a $100 MOA™ gift card too!

To enter for a chance to win, leave me a comment telling me what looks like the best thing for you and your family at MOA?:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the 
following unique term in your tweet message: “”#SweepstakesEntry””; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post”
c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 5/13 – 6/9.
Be sure to visit the Mall of America page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

142 thoughts on “Mall of America Trip

  1. Marisa says:

    My kids would love the LEGO area! Thanks for the opportunity! I remember road tripping to the MOA shortly after it opened with my family as well 🙂

  2. @lliE says:

    I LOVE MOA. I went there once when I was 21 with my husband-to-be…a Wisconsin boy. Being from California and visiting the MOA in December I thought for sure I was going to freeze to death while being outside, running from the parking lot to the MOA. Once inside it was warm, cozy, and Amazing. I had never seen anything like it before.
    When I go there again (now with my four little kiddies) we’ll for sure visit the Lego area and all the fun roller coasters. What a great place!

  3. Jeni says:

    Oh my gosh that all sounds so fun! I definitely need to plan another time to come up! Megan and I didn’t go on any rides!! 🙂

  4. Jill says:

    My daughter would go bananas over the rides! She’s never seen anything like that!

  5. Andrea Lui says:

    I think it’s definitely the shops!

  6. This is a fun family trip for us as well, living in northwestern WI. We’ve enjoyed the aquarium and the LEGO store the most. Mostly, I think the kids get a kick out of the people-watching! We aren’t usually around so many bodies at once, ha!

    Thanks for the chance to win. I didn’t know about the Cupcake store, so that’s at the top of my list for next time we go!

  7. asf says:

    Shopping looks like the best thing for this single girl! My family lives in MN, so it would be lovely to visit them and shop.

  8. Cameron H says:

    We recently moved to the Twin Cities, and the MOA makes a great staycation! We enjoy the rides the most (oh, and the LEGO store!).

  9. Nicole J says:

    We are going in July as part of our family vacation and we will have to visit the Lego store as usual. W live in ND but get to the MOA often as our son has eye appointments at the U of M about every 6 months. They love walking around the rides too but we have yet to ride them as our daughter is only 2. Would love me that gift card to treat the kiddos! Thanks for the awesome giveaway! The new hotel looks awesome!


  10. Amy says:

    The aquarium for my daughter, and anything LEGO for my son. They would both be in heaven!! I looks like such a fun trip.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I would take my girls to the aquarium and rides and cupcake store. Bubba Gump Shrimp sounds good too! I posted on my facebook page.

  12. Colleen says:

    Ive been once, and have no kids and only had a short time but I LOVED the Build-a-bear (built a cute rabbit) and Lego World! Want to go back badly!

  13. Jenny says:

    I’m going to say the Lego store, but my 3yo is standing on the side of my chair, demanding to see all these photos again. I think he would choose the cupcake, the legos, the roller coaster, the aquarium, build a bear, and ice cream, actually. Thanks!

  14. We were just there yesterday (our annual Race For The Cure walk to raise money to fight breast cancer) and ate at Fire Lake at the Radisson. I had seen your Instagram of the food from there. So the best thing for my family would be a stay at the Radisson Blu hotel!

  15. Allison C says:

    I go home to MN twice a year and I usually always try to squeeze in a trip to “the Mall”. I love the variety of stores, eateries, and checking out what has changed since I was there last. If I go with my nephews we go on rides, but otherwise I’m just content walking around and shopping. I’m glad you took the Pinkberry (MY FAVORITE) image as I looked for it last time I was home and it wasn’t open. I’m going to MN this weekend and plan on hitting the mall on the way home from the airport and now I know exactly what I will have for dessert. I haven’t checked out the aquarium yet, so maybe this round or the next I will have to do that.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I haven’t been to the Mall of America for a while but love wandering around and watching the people there. It would be great to have a gift card to take with me the next time so I could take my granddaughters to Lego land or the aquarium. Can’t wait to check out the cupcake store, too!

  17. Darcy says:

    This looks like it was a GREAT trip! I’ve been trying to convine my husband we *need* to go to the MOA and this might be just the help I needed! Thanks 🙂

  18. JuneBug says:

    Holy Moly what fun! I was just daydreaming about driving across the country – I guess MOA will have to be a multi day stop! Sounds like you had a great time, I’ll admit to being a little jealous 🙂

  19. Love that no tax on clothing!! Our tax here in KS is nearly 10% which is such a killer. Can’t wait to move away from this state!!!

  20. The LEGOs for sure! My girls would love that!

  21. gpc says:

    I love LEGO stores, but my most favorite part would be the aquarium — I had no idea they had that sort of thing there! 🙂

  22. Ana says:

    Fun rides while mommy shops!

  23. Ana says:

    Fun rides while mommy shops!

  24. veronicamade says:

    I think my husband and I would enjoy the rides and doing some shopping. The cupcake store looks yummy, too!

  25. Amanda says:

    I remember going to the MOA when it first opened, I was 10 and we took my young cousins it was very memorable for me! I haven’t been for quite a few years and would love to take my kids there soon! We’d definitely do the aquarium and Camp Snoopy and of course shop! 🙂

  26. carrie says:

    My kiddo loves the aquarium and the LEGO store @ MOA!

  27. Our family would love the ropes course. Wow, I had never realized what the MOA entailed. Sounds like a blast!

  28. Erin says:

    I love eating at Tucci Benush. Yum!

  29. Maria says:

    Glad you enjoyed your time at MOA! Nickelodeon Universe is always fun, and no trip with my daughters is complete without a stop at the AG store. They also love the Amazing Mirror Maze on the third floor.

  30. cassie says:

    ohmigosh! I totally forgot the MOA existed! I think I went once as a kid and was in awe just walking around and looking at how huge everything was

  31. Debbie says:

    On my last visit, Legoland was the star attraction. Haven’t been for awhile and would like to go again.

  32. annemarie says:

    I actually grew up in Minnesota but have not been to the Mall of America – shame on me. I would love to see the Legoland.

  33. DKB says:

    Rides, totally the rides

  34. Rachel says:

    So glad to hear that you and your family had such a fun time @ MOA. With 2 boys I would have to say that the LEGO store is the best thing for our family, they have everything there including the pick a brick wall!

  35. giddy99 says:

    Wow, the Aquarium, the LEGO store and the rides would be tied for the top! 🙂

  36. Carly R. says:

    How could i choose one thing? I would love to check out all the different stores and sites.

  37. Amy says:

    We are definitely LEGO people! My boys would love this!! Thanks for the chance! Amy @ gasudimack(at)sbcglobal(dot)net

  38. Rebecca says:

    That aquarium is the bees knees. My kids would love it!

  39. Ari says:

    I love hitting up H & M when I go to MOA. (I always run across the street to Ikea too 🙂

  40. Jen says:

    Oh I would love to go shopping and then take a break, relax and eat a cupcake!

  41. Julie says:

    Love going to H & M with my girls…and Forever 21. And of course, all the kids enjoy the rides and food!

    Thanks for a chance to win!

  42. Celestial says:

    And to think I used to live 7 miles from the MOA! Now it’s more like 37 =)

    Since our Little is still so little the best thing for us is the 3+ floors of walking for exercise. And of course a stop by Cold Stone does happen once in a while. Looking forward to him discovering Lego Land.

    If I knew you were going I would have suggested that you stop by the new(er?) Pardon My French cafe in the mall. They have a stand alone store in a town south of the mall. One of our favorite places to grab a French treat.

  43. Liz says:

    We’re taking my girls to visit relatives in MN this summer, and we’d love to go to MOA. The American Girl store I’m sure would be a stop!

  44. Elsa says:

    I’ve heard it’s really a huge place. The largest mall I’ve ever been to is in Costa Mesa, CA ~ South Coast Plaza, but it’s not nearly as exciting as MOA. Looks like there’s a lot of fun things to do there!

  45. Cindy says:

    Looks like you all had a great time!! You are so right- happy kids make happy parents! I always had more fun just watching my daughter have fun!:) I’ve never been there but would love to go! I don’t have little ones anymore but I’m sure I’d enjoy the shopping and the eating!:)

  46. Tricia says:

    I went to the MOA for the first time last Oct. Only there for one day and didn’t get thru hardly any of it. But loved the aquarium and eating at the Rainforest Cafe. My mom and I had a great time. Her in her 70’s, I in my 50’s, we loved it all! I had to fly out the next morning, but otherwise, I would have done it another day or 2!!

  47. laurakam says:

    The aquarium looks amazing!

  48. Tammie B says:

    We go there every summer. The kids love it!

  49. Alison says:

    Travelling to USA in November, wish I could do a side trip to MN to visit MOA.

  50. Lorie says:

    My boys love the Lego store. That cupcake looks super yummy!

  51. lvkwilt says:

    I’m going to be sending this to my daughter-in-law because we are going to Minnesota next month with one of our goals being a visit to Mall of America! (Main reason is for Great Grandma to meet her great-grandkids that she hasn’t ever met–mainly because their Dad is in the Air Force.) We are originally from Minnesota. I think the Grandkids will love the roller coaster!

  52. I’ve been there before, long before I was married and had a child. I know we’d all have a blast there. I’m sure my daughter would love the Lego area.

  53. Dwayne Berry says:

    I went to the Mall of America a couple years ago. It was really nice, but I kept wondering, why did they have a Lids store every 5 feet?

  54. I SEA LIFE® Minnesota Aquarium! looks fantastic and something our family would love 🙂

  55. Alissa says:

    I’m local, so this is one of the main places my husband and I shop…or go for exercise in the winter.
    Thanks for the giveaway.

  56. adrienne says:

    That looks like a grand trip all around. I had no idea the MN Aquarium was housed in the MoA!

  57. Cody says:

    Build a bear workshop!

  58. Kim Hardy says:

    Ive never been but Aeropostale is the kids favorite

  59. kristine says:

    buildabear would be fun for my kids 🙂 I think i might try the roller coasters 🙂

  60. KristyLou says:

    We drive up to MOA a few times a year. I would love to try out the new hotel. It looks great!

  61. the mrs says:

    I’ve only been once, but my sister lives in the area and she (and her teenage daughters) love this mall! I’d have to go for the Camp Snoopy ride for my small kids.

  62. Thorson's says:

    I remember it being a big deal when it opened, too. We spent a whole weekend exploring everything. Now, we park closest to the apple store or gap, dash in, and dash out. My kids do love Lego and American Girl if we do go for a longer visit though 🙂

  63. Katie Roch says:

    My family’s favorite thing would be the Aquarium!

  64. Melissa says:

    I love going to MOA. I remember my first trip there when I was in college in southern MN with a group of girls. To them MOA was old news, to me, I thought it was amazing. Even now after going there several times a year for the past 12 years, I am amazed at the size of the place. I love trying a new restaurant every time I go there.

  65. jillm says:

    We took the boys to MOA a few years ago and they loved the amusement park. The aquarium looks like a lot of fun.

  66. Pank says:

    HI I love to visit MOA and my longtime friend I’ve known since I was 1 year old we are now in our 40’s tee her! We love to shop there along with getting our walk in, taking her twins with us. We enjoyed going to the Mirror Maze that was fun and crazy. The rides are fun along with the hidden stadium seat on the wall. Thanks for letting me know about the hotel what a smart move on their part! Cheers and happy quilting!

  67. JC says:

    Legoland for kids, they just can’t get enough from it.

  68. rachel says:

    There’s enough there to entertain our whole family! Lots of great food, too. 🙂

  69. pkrueger says:

    The aquariam looks awesome, that’s where we would go first. THanks for sharing your trip.

  70. Shari says:

    I would love to take my child to the Mall of America. He’s just turned one and is starting to notice when animals are moving. The Aquarium thing would be perfect!

  71. Ms. Jones says:

    My kids and I love Mall of America. We like to shop and people watch, and it’s also right next door to the best store ever, Ikea. (We call it the mother ship!)

  72. Ms. Jones says:

    My kids and I love Mall of America. We like to shop and people watch, and it’s also right next door to the best store ever, Ikea. (We call it the mother ship!)

  73. Erin says:

    Hey Anna! We are moving back to MN at the end of June and will definitely take Millie to the aquarium. I hope that we’ll get to catch up in person once we’re back in neighboring states – maybe we’ll meet up at the MOA! Erin

  74. Legoland has got to be the coolest thing for adults and children! onefrugalgirl AT dmail DOT com

  75. Mary Calabrese says:

    The best thing for us is the variety of food options. Everyone is happy~!

    ighmeg at yahoo dot com

  76. Stephanie C. says:

    I love everything about the MOA! We’ve never been to the aquarium though so thats what I’d want to check out first next time!

  77. Kristin says:

    Cupcakes! 🙂 No but really – I think for the family it would be the aquarium!!

  78. turist says:

    The aqwarium look very amazing!Thanks for sharing!

  79. M says:

    The aquarium for sure

  80. Anonymous says:

    shopping with my little one

  81. dian says:

    Thanks for such a wonderful review of the hotel and MOA. It sounds like
    it would be a great place to take our “grands” this summer-a place I hadn’t considered until reading your blog. Thanks, Dian


  82. The aquarium would be our top pick!
    aleksnearing gmail com

  83. kristinorth@mchsi.com says:

    I would love to try to no-chlorine pool! My son’s eyes always get so red. Of course the cupcakes look amazing too!

  84. kbotr says:

    I would love to try Cupcake- looks delicious!

  85. The roller coaster would be so much fun for my family.

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

  86. tweet–https://twitter.com/WildOrchid985/status/338397389360603136

    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

  87. Lydia says:

    Looks like a fun trip! Wish we would’ve known you were in town we would have come down to the mall to say hello but it sounds like it was a quick trip! I’ve been in the lobby of that hotel and it’s super cool! Glad you guys had a fun time! Should’ve ate at Tucci Benucch!! 🙂

  88. The roller coaster would be fun.

    rhoneygtn at yahoo dot com

  89. Lego Land would entertain my family for hours.

  90. Erica Best says:

    i love the indoor park that is so cool

  91. Kerry says:

    It all looks amazing – we’d especially love the roller coaster, I bet!

  92. Deb says:

    Whenever we find ourselves in the Cities our son requests a stop at MOA. On his list? Legos and rides! My list? Disney Store and, after seeing your picture, Cupcakes!

  93. Gianna says:

    American Girl store.

  94. Our favorite stop is of course the rides! My little guy is finally tall enough to ride the orange pepsi coaster, so that is all he wants to do! We will have to try Cupcakes next time!

  95. Gina Bonina says:

    How crazy that you’re giving this away right when we are planning a trip there in July! It would be awesome to have that extra cushion for our souvenirs. We are totally stoked to check out the roller coasters.

  96. Christy says:

    We are making our first trip there in a couple of weeks! Nickelodeon Universe looks fun for us!

  97. Howell says:

    the best thing for us at MOA is the food coourt–so many choices to make everyone happy!

    hlee99 at gmail dot com

  98. wizardewu says:

    Best of all for our family at MOA is the aquarium.

    eugeniewu [at] gmail-dot-com

  99. neubiewaters says:

    My family would go nuts over the aquarium or Lego area…looks like tons of fun!

  100. Anonymous says:

    I want to take my daughters and grandkids to MOA that would be a dream come true…

  101. Emmy Coffee says:

    Since I used to live in Minnesota, Tucci Benucch is the best restaurant in the MOA, specifically, the Baked Spaghetti, which is a block of deliciousness!

  102. Amy says:

    What an awesome day you had. Hanging out at Lego store, enjoy a cup if Pinkberry yogurt, and lots of shopping look like the best things for me and your family at MOA! I can’t wait to visit with my family again!

    amy [at] utry [dot] it

  103. Justine says:

    Food and toy stores! So froyo and LEGO! 🙂

  104. Betty C says:

    I think the aquarium would be first but Cupcake is a must.

    willitara [at] gmail [dot] com

  105. sparkedcat says:

    We would love to go to the aquarium.

  106. amy16323 says:

    my kids would love the toy stores

  107. Susan Smoaks says:

    i would really enjoy going to see the Amaluna by Cirque du Soleil

    susansmoaks at gmail dot com

  108. DarcyO says:

    The Build a Bear store is the best!

    valleyreader (at) gmail (dot) com

  109. DarcyO says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  110. brendaelsner says:

    We would love the Lego area!!

    brat52101 at yahoo dot com

  111. MANDY83 says:

    The rides and definitely the cupcake shop would be perfect for my family. Looks like so much fun!

    pokergrl8 at gmail.com

  112. My family would love the aquarium

    rounder9834 @yahoo.com

  113. Donna says:

    Aeropostle is our fave store.

  114. Donna says:

    Chance to Win a gift card. #SweepstakesEntry http://tinyurl.com/m6nbfwj

  115. Natalie S says:

    I love the MOA I live in Minnesota so I go there a lot. My favorite place in the mall has got to be Urban Outfitters and one of my favorite restaurants is Corona’s I would love to have this gift card and would use it soon since I live so close.

  116. My kids have been begging to go to the mall store thanks for the chance to win eaglesforjack@gmail.com

  117. the build a bear workshop thanks for the chance to win eaglesforjack@gmail.com

  118. Sea Life Aquarium looks nice for my family.

  119. Charity/CC says:

    Of course, we would love to try all of the restaurants.

    ccboobooy at gmail dot com

  120. eclairre says:

    Aeropostale is our fave store.

  121. buzzd says:

    aerospostle is our fav

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