Adventuring (great verb, right?)
Definitely check out the offerings of The Duluth Experience. They are a locally owned tour and adventure company run and staffed by some truly great folks. What we love about them is how easy they make it to connect with Duluth based on what you are interested in. You can get outdoors on a fat tire bike, do some kayaking on Lake Superior or explore the Duluth Traverse mountain bike trail. There’s even a walking tour of our Lincoln Park neighborhood! And if you came here for the beer, you can get behind the scenes tours and samples on one of their super popular brewery tours.
Food (this will be the longest entry hold on to your hats...)
Great Lakes Candy Kitchen Full disclosure, my husband and my in-laws own this perfect little candy store in Knife River. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t trust my opinion on this, rather, take note because I am basically a candy sommolier at this point. Everything is delicious but definitely get some toffee, some hot air, ship ropes and a nutty ice cream bar.
New Scenic Cafe I worked here for 8 years so I could keep getting employee meals. Kidding. Sort of. The Scenic is warm, unpretentious, yet unbelievably exceptional across the board: food, service and wine. Scott’s thoughtful approach and love of what he does was super formative for me. Man, this reccomendation is getting sappy. Just go.
Kendalls A total institution. The smoked fish is of course where its at but I could definitely eat my weight in the smoked salmon spread. Also there’s a cute beer bar connected to it if you need a picturesque place to snack.
Marthas Daughter Nyanyika Banda is an alum of Mission Chinese and WD-50 started her restaurant as a pop up which developed a cult following before she opened her brick and mortar downtown Duluth. The space is so pretty and her food is incredible, they also do a brunch on weekends but note that they are NA drinks only at the moment.
Duluth Coffee Company Stellar coffee roasted in house and occasional home to
Zenith Bread Project bakes which are the platonic ideal of bakes.
Lake Superior Bakehouse The bakery here is bonkers good. They do a savory roll with ham and gruyere that I will automatically stop for if i see a open parking spot on Superior street. Also, scones. Also, cinnamon rolls. Seriously amazing.
Sara’s Table Chester Creek There is a pancake situation here that is the size of your head and it comes with MASCARPONE BUTTER which you will dream about.
OMC Smokehaus* I've been known to make visiting friends go here with me at 4:30 like a couple of golden girls just so I can be sure we can get in on a weekend night. It's busy for a reason (and don't worry you can bop around the neighborhood and they'll text ya when a table opens up) wildly good barbeque
Corktown Deli and Brews* Home of the lunchie (lil’ lunchtime beer so cute) and innovative sandwiches, salads and soups that use local ingredients. Great for dining in but also a nice option for takeout/picnic supplies.
Ursa Minor Brewery* This one gets a food mention despite its brewery status because of the woodfired pizza. They've also got the Yker Acres pork hook up which makes their pizzas next level.
Duluth Grill* The menu is hug
Love Creamery* Housemade ice cream and sorbet (they’ve even got vegan options) with
Johnsons Bakery* These folks have been baking for over 70 years! Go to spot for amazing doughnuts. They also make adorable cakes.
Sunshine Cafe The gal who runs the Sunshine is the nicest and it always feels so cheery in there. Excellent diner breakfast, especially the swedish pancakes.
Ganucchi’s Italian Market
Bevs (various proofs including zero)
Snooty Fox Tea Shop
Hemlocks Leather and Ochre Stone Vintage*
Duluth Pottery and Gallery*
Thrift and Antique
Goodwills (michigan ave, kenwood, Hermantown)
Father Time Antiques
Old Time Antiques and Books
St Michaels Used a Bit
Antiques on Belknap (superior)