From its burbling start at Itasca State Park in Minnesota to its languid terminus in the Delta, the 2,000-plus-mile Mississippi River carries a nation’s worth of history, culture and lore in its muddy waters. Mark Twain (whom you’ll “meet” in Hannibal, Missouri) wrote that the river he knew was “as tranquil and reposeful as dreamland.” How much has it changed? We’ll leave that for you to discover.
View of Great River Road and Mississippi River from Maiden Rock Bluffs in Stockholm, Wisconsin
Perfect panoramas Savor sweeping views from parks along the byway, which runs the full length of both sides of the river. Our faves include Perrot State Park in Wisconsin, Frontenac State Park in Minnesota and Effigy Mounds National Monument in Iowa.
For maps and trip planning