Lake Nokomis Main Beach–Sandy Fun for Everyone

Beach Day with Family Fun TWin cities
Finally at the beach!

For the past five summers, I have made it a priority to get to the beach each week with my kids–to really take advantage of the Minnesota weather and Minnesota lakes.

This year, much to my kids’ chagrin, is the first year in the past five that hasn’t been successful in this endeavor.  It wasn’t until July 11 that we made it to the beach.

So we made an excursion of it, heading down to South Minneapolis to explore Lake Nokomis’ Main Beach.

Our family has been to Lake Nokomis a couple of times because it’s been host to many different types of walks and runs.  We, however, have never been there to play in the water or on the beach.  We decided it was a about time.

lake nokomis
“It’s FINALLY beach day!”

It’s a little bit of a drive for us (unlike Long Lake Beach which is just five minutes away),  and the kids were getting anxious to be at the lake.  When we arrived, the road was blocked due to the Lifetime Fitness Triathlon! So we made a sharp right turn where the safety patrol officer was sending us and ended up driving around the lake to the tune of understandable whining, “When are we going to get there.  Why can’t we just park?  Mmmmmoooooommmmmm!”

We drove all the way around the lake until we came to another triathlon road closure.  I made the decision to leave and go to Heartfelt (which was also on our agenda).

I am starting to get familiar with the roads in Minneapolis and what connects to what and which streets are north/south and which are east/west.

The key word in this sentence is “starting.”

I made another quick right and thought I was going north, but because I had been going around the lake, I had lost all sense of my inner compass.  I took a left and then another right on streets that I thought I recognized.  Suddenly, I realized I was right back where I had started.  I saw a free parking spot and grabbed it.  Though the main beach was a bit of a small hike, my kids were so thrilled to be out of the car they didn’t complain.

Dark clouds were rolling in , so we grabbed our beach gear quickly and marched across the park.  “We will stay until it rains,” I promised.

Once we got to the beach, we unloaded our things and ran into the water.  Kyla was convinced the water would be freezing, but we were all pleasantly surprised to find it warm and inviting.  After playing together for a while, we all chose our different modes of fun.  Dash and Jack ran over to the playground on the beach.  Tori started to dig in the sand and build while Kyla enjoyed the water.

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Local Lake Nokomis Residents Out for a Stroll

That’s when the ducks started their venture through the beach.

Back and forth the baby ducklings and mama explored searching over our blankets, discovering our feet, and nibbling our toes.  The ducks delighted our entire family, and since it never started raining, it was very tricky to pull my kids away from Lake Nokomis.

We loved it and can’t wait to go back.

Beach Day with Family Fun Twin citeis
Enjoying the Beach
  • The beach is massive.
  • The playground is ON the beach right next to the lake.
  • While there are a lot of different activities you can rent (like Wheels O’Fun is there), the beach itself is so much fun.
  • The ducklings


  • You have to pay to park in the main parking lot.  $0.75/hour.  There is free parking on the street and at hidden lots around the park, but it is a bit of a hike especially if you have little ones.
  • I imagine it gets busy  most days but since we were there at the end of the triathlon and dark clouds were rolling in, it was very empty.

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FFTC did not receive any compensation for this review.

Gianna Kordatzky published this article July 22, 2015.

1 thought on “Lake Nokomis Main Beach–Sandy Fun for Everyone”

  1. Pingback: 10 MORE Twin Cities Beaches, Playgrounds & Attractions to Try This Summer - Family Fun Twin Cities

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