Three hidden gems to visit near Dunrovin
Three hidden gems to visit near Dunrovin

Three hidden gems to visit near Dunrovin

St.Croix River-Boat
The breathtaking view of the St. Croix River at Dunrovin Retreat Center.

Dunrovin Retreat Center, located on the St. Croix River in the small town of Marine-on-the-St. Croix, is certainly a destination for escape and exploration. Whether visiting for a retreat, business meeting, or group activity, Dunrovin is a beautiful option for getting out of the city environment.

While at Dunrovin, nearby attractions and towns can provide fun and historical outings. Consider the following towns for exciting day trips to enjoy in between your scheduled events hosted at the Retreat Center:

Small Town Charm and Hospitality in Marine-on-the-St. Croix

Marine-on-the-St. Croix is a quaint and picturesque getaway located just minutes from Dunrovin. Although small, the town prides itself on its community events and well-established businesses.

Founded in 1839, Marine has several historical landmarks and a small museum commemorating the town’s early settlers. There are several restaurants and even a chocolate shop that are constantly bustling with locals looking for excellent food and atmosphere. During the summer months, festivals like “Mill Stream Days” and a lavish Fourth of July celebration keep the town lively, and autumn hosts an Art Fair and “Take Me to the River” art events.

Historic and Scenic Day Trips in Stillwater

While a little farther out from Dunrovin, the nearby town of Stillwater provides a larger version of river-city charm. Spend a day downtown popping into small, unique shops that feature everything from antiques to old-fashioned candy. Enjoy some delicious barbeque from Smalley’s Caribbean Barbeque (a local favorite once highlighted on the Food Network), or get a reservation at Luna Rossa Wine Bar for steak and Italian cuisine.

Stillwater has no lack of activities, boasting a healthy level of tourism thanks to its historic background. Take a cruise down the river on the Paddlewheel River Boats, explore the caves formed long ago by the St. Croix River, and hop on the Stillwater Trolley for a tour through the historic architecture. From the Lift Bridge to the Warden’s House Museum, this town proudly proclaims itself “the Birthplace of Minnesota.”

Out-of-the-Ordinary Activities in Taylors Falls

For a longer outing, a scenic drive to the border provides stunning views and old-time adventures in Taylors Falls. Hike across huge rocks in Interstate State Park to get up close and personal with the St. Croix River, and make sure to schedule a scenic boat tour for later!

The old-fashioned Drive-In Diner still uses roller-skate-clad waiters while cooking up classic favorites, and Schooney’s Malt Shop and Pizzeria serves some of the best (and largest) shakes around.

On the way to Taylors Falls, make sure to stop by Franconia Sculpture Park, where artists live and work to create their outdoor, large-scale masterpieces. Admission is free, and guided tours are also available year-round. During the summer, Franconia holds music festivals and resident artists are available to present their current projects to the public.


Visiting Dunrovin Retreat Center is certainly an escape in itself, but the surrounding area has plenty of opportunities for further sightseeing and adventure. When planning a trip to Dunrovin, look into nearby towns and attractions for additional experiences throughout the beautiful St. Croix River Valley!

To learn more or request a reservation for rental space, please call 651-433-2486.