Winona, known as the Island City, is a historic river and college town in Southeastern Minnesota, located on a large sandbar among the bluffs along the Mississippi River. It is about 110 miles southeast of the Twin Cities.


Get in

By car

If you are travelling by car, from the north (Twin Cities), travel along the Mississippi River on US highway 61 through the picturesque Hiawatha Valley. About 110 miles from the Twin Cities. From the west (Rochester), take Interstate 90 east about 45 miles, then head north on state highway 43 about 6 miles. From the east (La Crosse, Madison), take Interstate 90 west about 10 miles into Minnesota then continue north on US highway 61, another 15 miles.

By train

Amtrak, . Amtrak's Empire Builder service, which runs between Chicago and Seattle/Portland, stops in Winona. The train station is located at 65 East Mark Street.

By plane

There are several nearby airports, including La Crosse (LSE, 25 miles), Rochester (RST, 45 miles), and the Twin Cities (MSP, 110 miles).



Fairs and Festivals

Winona has a variety of festivals throughout the summer, along with a few sprinkled here and there the rest of the year. Some of the best include:


There are two main shopping areas in Winona: Downtown, and along Highway 61.


Winona's historic downtown hosts a variety of interesting architectural styles...including Italianate, Queen Anne, Victorian, Egyption Revival...the list goes on. The city's Heritage Preservation Commission and Visit Winona have walking and driving tour brochures, cassettes, and mp3s available to assist in exploring downtown. Be sure to visit Levee Park, and talk a walk on Third Street from the Courthouse to Watkins, then head back west on Second Street. It is also a nice walk from City Hall west to the Courthouse on Fourth Street. Sandwiched between downtown and WSU is a wonderfully walkable historic residential neighborhood along Seventh Street from Franklin to Huff. You'll find interesting spots everywhere.

Highway 61

Most of the retail development of the big-box type occurs along or near this highway which traverses Winona east-west. In and around Riverbend, under Sugarloaf, are Target, Wal-mart Supercenter, and Fleet Farm, as well as a variety of smaller, mostly chain stores.

Furthur West, past the lakes, are K-Mart, and the Winona Mall, which, despite its name, includes very little shopping. Then comes the area around Hy-Vee Grocery, which has many smaller businesses, particularly fast-food places. Nearing Goodview, you'll encounter another cluster of stores and restaurants where the highway intersects Highway 14/Pelzer Street, which include JC Penney, and Shopko. Unless you like Big-box retailing, I'd recommend sticking to downtown.



Winona boasts the most bars per capita in the state of Minnesota. Each bar offers a different personality and atmosphere.



Camp or RV


Stay Safe

Being small, Winona is a quite safe community. Other than staying away from unlit and untravelled areas at night, you should remain safe just taking basic precautions. If you have a problem, just remember the number for 911 is 911.

The local hospital and clinic are located in the same building, off of Highway 61 on Mankato Ave in the East End, across from Target. The East End is where Sugarloaf is.

Go next

Routes through Winona

St. Paul Red Wing  W  E  La Crosse Milwaukee
Mankato Rochester  W  E  La Crosse Madison
St. Paul Wabasha  N  S  La Crosse Dubuque

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Sunday, February 28, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.