East Bethel, Minnesota may not be on everyone’s map, but it’s beckoning you for a visit and will certainly be an unforgettable trip for individuals and families alike! This scenic town beats the Minnesota chill with a warm, friendly atmosphere and a variety of indoor and outdoor attractions that cultivate togetherness, exploration, and embracing nature.
Whether you’re hiking the trails and visiting the parks around town, catching a movie, or dining and relaxing, you’re sure to find a variety of great things to do in East Bethel. Visit East Bethel and you will leave this town with a smile on your face and plans to visit again!
Best Restaurants in East Bethel, MN
Smokey’s Pub n’ Grill
Come hungry to Smokey’s Pub n’ Grill! A popular location known for its tasty fare and live music, Smokey’s offers a menu of traditional American pub food with fantastic variety—from fire-grilled burgers and smokehouse sandwiches to entrée spreads and sweet desserts. Stop in with the family, enjoy one of your pub-food favorites, indulge in a craft beer, and experience one of East Bethel’s most beloved eateries!
Looking for a warm, sporty atmosphere while you enjoy a classic bar-and-grill meal? The Dugout is the place for you! Visit this popular eatery for lunch or dinner, or grab breakfast on the weekends! You’ll find a great menu offering favorites like ribs, shrimp, burgers, sandwiches, and pizza. You can’t go wrong choosing The Dugout for your meal—there’s something here for everyone!
When it’s time for an afternoon coffee pick-me-up or a morning jolt of java, Metta Coffee has you covered! Stop in and order your favorite go-to drink or try one of their variety of specialties—and don’t forget to grab a breakfast dish, pastry, or soup, salad, and sandwich combo. Metta has it all! Support this warm, inviting local coffee shop and leave satisfied every time!
Take a jaunt just beyond East Bethel and indulge your craving for hibachi! Joy Kitchen offers a fresh, delicious selection of seafood, vegetables, and meat for your hibachi needs, as well as classic Chinese dishes, sushi, and more! Watch chefs prepare your meal right before your eyes with ingredients you choose yourself. This is a fantastic experience you won’t want to miss!
Family Fun Activities in East Bethel, MN
Bunker Park Stables
Looking for things to do in East Bethel that will excite the horse enthusiast in your family (or yourself)? Bunker Park Stables is calling your name! Located just fifteen minutes outside of town, this family-friendly and fun stable offers trail rides for older riders, pony leads for the youngest equestrians and an unforgettable experience for all! Book your visit today and saddle up for a fantastic time!
Splitrocks Entertainment Center
Bowling, laser tag, arcade games, and delicious food await you at Splitrocks Entertainment Center! Just a short drive from the heart of East Bethel, Splitrocks offers entertainment for the individual, group, or family looking to unwind and have a great time! Enjoy a classic American meal while you check out the fun games and activities this amazing location has in store. This is one spot you don’t want to miss!
Wildlife Science Center
Wolves and cougars and bears, oh my! These are just a few of the beautiful creatures your family will meet when you visit the Wildlife Science Center near East Bethel! Open Wednesdays 10am – 12pm and Saturdays 11am – 2pm, WSC invites you to come meet their more than 200 animals on-site, learn about their research and conservation, and more! You can dive even deeper with WSC’s after-dark programs, including opportunities for an overnight stay. Come visit the Wildlife Science Center for a howlin’ good time!
Historic Sites in East Bethel, MN
Rum River Dam
Take a short trip outside East Bethel and visit the historic Rum River Dam! This scenic location offers insight into the ancient dam’s history, as well as a spot for the eager fisherman to cast out. Stop by and learn a bit about the fascinating past of this historical site—and don’t forget to bring your fishing pole!
Oliver Kelley Farm
It may be a small drive into the country from the heart of East Bethel, but it’s worth the visit! Oliver Kelley Farm is a unique historic site located on the banks of the Mississippi River and dating back to the 1850s. You can explore the historic farmstead—including the house, root cellar, and more—meet the animals, hike the nature trails on-site, and drop by the visitor center and museum store. This historic farm provides a fantastic opportunity to learn more about farming and homesteading in the 19th century—a fun and educational trip for the whole family to enjoy!
Culture and Theater in East Bethel, MN
Willow Tree Winery
Come enjoy a wonderful, adults-only time of relaxation and fine wine-tasting at Willow Tree Winery’s tasting room! Open year-round, Thursday through Sunday from 1:00-5:00pm, the tasting room at Willow Tree offers the opportunity to sample delicious wine while you settle in at one of their many seating arrangements either indoors or outdoors. A perfect way to unwind and soak up peace and quiet!
Looking to catch a flick in comfort and luxury beyond what your average theater has to offer? Stop in at Emagine Theater! This beautiful, unique location offers more than just standard movie meal fare, with a variety of food for the family including pizza and sandwiches, and craft beers, cocktails, and wine for the adults—all enjoyed in the comfort of recliner seats while you watch the latest movie you’ve been dying to catch (or see a second time!). Come relax and enjoy the best amenities with your cinema experience!
Parks and Recreation in East Bethel, MN
Anderson Lake Park
Looking to run off energy with the family after a day full of exploring all the things to do in East Bethel? Stop by Anderson Lake Park! One of the many lovely parks located around the East Bethel area, Anderson Lake provides a playset, swing set, and plenty of room for adults and kids alike to get in motion and let out the excitement of another fantastic day!
Linwood School Forest Trail
It’s time to stretch those legs and experience the beauty of nature! Visit Lindwood School Forest Trail, a 3.3-mile loop trail through a lovely forest, with several activity options along the way! An easy and lightly-trafficked trail, this hike is great for all skill levels. It’s the perfect opportunity to experience the beauty of East Bethel’s outdoors solo or with the whole family!
Coon Lake County Park
Beat the heat, play hard, and enjoy your time in and on the water at Coon Lake County Park! Sitting on 125 acres just outside of East Bethel, Coon Lake Park and its beach offer a variety of outdoor activities including canoeing, swimming, volleyball, hiking, fishing, and playgrounds and pavilions. Pack a lunch, stop on by, and enjoy a day of fun in the sun!
A Smile on Your Face
After exploring all the great things to do in East Bethel, Minnesota, you will leave this town with a smile on your face and plans to visit again!
Were you familiar with East Bethel before? Are you excited to visit now? Let us know your favorite things to do in East Bethel, a hidden gem of Minnesota—or drop a comment about what you’re most excited to experience on your first trip out there!
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Born in Madelia, MN, to a now 5-generation Minnesota family, Ryan’s MN roots go deep.
A painter by day, Ryan founded Life in Minnesota in 2013 with his wife Kelly to chronicle their musings on everything Minnesota. Ryan and Kelly are raising their 7 kiddos in Maple Grove, MN.
When he’s not shuttling his kids around to hockey practice, you might find him in the shop working on his leatherwork. Undoubtedly, there will be a family trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area every summer, and of course weekends at Grandpa’s cabin up north in the summer.