The main part of our day today was completing the drive to Minneapolis from Chicago. We made a packed lunch for the drive in Wisconsin Rapids and then set off. The drive was mainly past forests and dairy farms. There were a number of times when the smell of cheese was overpowering – Wisconsin definitely lives up to its name of ‘America’s Dairyland’!
Eventually we passed the Mississippi which starts somewhere up here before travelling down the entire continent to the Gulf of Mexico. It just looked like any other river up here and we wouldn’t have known we were crossing it if there hadn’t been a sign. It also happens to mark the border between Wisconsin and Minnesota.
Minnesota roughly translates to ‘Land of the Lakes’, and its main city Minneapolis roughly translates to ‘City of the Lakes’. These are old Indian words and are apparently appropriate since there are meant to be literally thousands of lakes up here. We haven’t seen any yet but will let you know if we see any after some site seeing tomorrow!
Getting here a bit earlier than planned meant we had some time in the early evening. We spent it checking out the largest mall in North America called the Mall of America. It was huge and even had an entire amusement park in the centre of it with four floors of shops surrounding (520 shops in total). Neither of us managed to find anything worth buying though! Tomorrow we are going to explore Minneapolis and possibly neighbouring St Paul (the two cities are known as ‘The Twin Cities’.
Photo of the day: No good photos today but here is a photo of the amusement park which the mall surrounded. Gives you some idea of how big the place is!