Midwest Living Review
If you've always wanted to visit the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness but you shudder at the thought of crawling in and out of a tent or sleeping on the ground, then Blue Heron B&B offers a wilderness experience with a cozy room, hot sauna and fine meal at the end of the day. The inn sits outside of Ely just 30 yards from the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, directly on Fall Lake. At night, you can hear wolves howl and loons yodel inside the wilderness while you sleep in a king-size bed. This simple inn offers five rooms (prices range from $135 to $175 per night, two-night minimum) and lounge with a wood-fired stove (for warming up in winter) and binoculars for watching birds on the feeders on the decks (birders delight in the Evening Grosbeaks that are common visitors). For BWCA tripping, all you have to do is fill out a day-trip license form and then hop in one of the canoes or kayaks at the inn's dock and paddle directly into the wilderness. Or there are hiking trails from the Blue Heron grounds directly into the BWCA. One of the inn's dogs would be happy to join you if you want a guided tour.After your day exploring the North Woods, you can request from staff that the traditional wood-fired Finnish sauna be fired up. Then if you choose, you may sit down to an elaborate five-course dinner in the intimate four-table dining room. Breakfast the next morning is included in your stay, which may be a simple offering of scrambled eggs, bacon, fruit and scones. On Sundays though, you may be treated to the inn's famous gingerbread pancakes. Blue Heron B&B isn't a destination to visit in its own right. But if you really want to visit the Boundary Waters and you don't want to camp, Blue Heron B&B is for you.