With more than a thousand acres of skiing spread over four mountains and the region's only gondola, Minnesota's oldest ski resort is the closest thing to a Western-style spread in the Midwest. Thus it has a little bit of everything for everyone: the hardcore will appreciate the fact that, unlike other resorts in the state, Lutsen has runs facing all aspects, each of them dotted with everything from cliffs to glades; and families will love the long-groomed cruisers that Lutsen is famous for. But even a diehard downhiller may be tempted by the nearby cross-country skiing — the area has the largest network of trails in North America (400 miles). Lift tickets are $82, but book four or more days, and, via discounts, you can cut your lift and lodging in half.
Where to stay: The Lutsen Resort, just a mile from the mountain and right on the shores of Lake Superior, is an architecturally stunning lodge, where luxury meets northern-territory tradition.
Insider Tip: Grand Marais, just 20 miles south of Lutsen, is often voted one of the coolest small towns in America. More importantly, it's the home of the insanely good Voyager Brewery, which often hosts live music on the weekends and offers the town's best food.