Minnesota's Best Wooded Spa Retreats, Treetop Ziplines, Pontoon Happy Hours, and More!
Best of the Midwest Travel 2017
Play, Eat, Stay. Essential Guides to 17 states.
Best Resort Cabins: Burntside Lodge, Ely- Best of MN 2016
Burntside Lodge occupies a wooded peninsula on Burntside Lake. The resort’s 22 rustic-chic cabins, most built in the 1920s and 1930s, keep your attention turned to the lake; none has telephones or televisions. Together with the lodge building, circa 1911, the well-kept collection of mostly log buildings earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. It feels lost in time, but offers modern amenities, too. You’ll find Wi-Fi, cappuccino and a movie screen at the lodge. 2755 Burntside Lodge Rd., Ely; 1-218-365-3894; burntside.com
Deep North: History comes into focus on an offseason family trip to Ely
Like the lake it’s named for, Burntside is “Northwoods” in the most classical sense. There’s a pristine half-moon beach, a main lodge adorned with trophy fish, and 23 standalone cabins, many of which were built from local pine by Finnish craftsmen. Its refusal to draw a line between down-home and upscale sets it apart from most resorts up here—the lodging equivalent of a lumberjack who traveled the world and returned knowing how to make a great Manhattan (really, Burntside is legit).
A final nod to civilization (and infinitely more appreciated after a few shower-free nights in the wilderness) is the Burntside Lodge, and early-20th-century lakefront resort. A series of handsome log cabins nestled in wooded privacy, solidly built of local materials by expert local craftsmen, the Burntside is especially sought out for its kitchen and winelist, whose unpretentious excellence is unmatched-and unexpected-in the area.
Best of the Midwest- Summer 2015
Best of Minnesota- Northwoods
"The classic Minnesota lakeside experience gets even better at Burntside Lodge, where log cabins, a white tablecloth restaurant and superb hospitality are the hallmarks of this former hunting camp."
Star Tribune- June 6, 2015
Loons, wilderness and historic cabins define Burntside Lodge.
We made our first visit to Burntside Lodge in 2006, hoping the trip would become an annual family tradition and give our boys a deeper appreciation for the uniqueness of the Iron Range and Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Mission accomplished.
This July we’ll spend a week in Cabin No. 9 for a 10th year, drawn back by the beauty of the setting as well as the cherished friendships initially made that first summer with five other families who book their cabins the same week each year.
The yearly reunions with our Burntside friends — who come from hometowns as near as Duluth and as far away as Oklahoma City — become more meaningful with each return trip to the 7,313-acre lake that environmentalist Sigurd Olson called a “composite picture” of the northern wilderness.
Outside Magazine- July 14, 2014
An Old-School Northwoods Outfit
Channel your inner voyageur at the Burntside Lodge in Minnesota.
"With its pine- and cedar-lined shores, rocky islands, and clean blue water, Burntside is the prototypical northwoods lake. And this 101-year-old outfit on the lake’s south shore is the prototypical northwoods lodge.
Immaculately restored FDR-era cabins sitting at the water’s edge? Check. A bar and restaurant serving freshly caught pan-fried walleye? Yep. Access to a fleet of boats and canoes for exploring 7,000 acres of deep, fish-filled waterways? Right again."
Thrillist - Minnesota's 10 Best Restaurants Outside of the Twin Cities
"Relying on locally sourced, seasonal ingredients and quality seafood, this North-woods restaurant changes their menu frequently, but it always promises relaxed, simple, and thoughtful eats. Plus, the selection of house-made baked goods could definitely make the almost-four-hour car ride worthwhile."
Best of the Midwest Travel- May 2014
The classic Minnesota lakeside experience gets even better at Burntside Lodge, where elegant cabins, a white-tablecloth restaurant and superb hospitality are the best you'll find in this region of pine trees, clear lakes and mossy shores.
Mpls. St.Paul Magazine- April 2014
Ely- Where to Stay
Burntside Lodge offers a classic (and classy) Northwoods experience.
Ely- Where to Eat
For fine dining in a gorgeous setting, try Burntside Lodge.
Duluth Superior Magazine- July 2013
Minneapolis Star Tribune- Best of Minnesota 2012
Minnesota Resort for History Buffs: Burntside Lodge
Architecture MN- July 2012
Northwoods Resorts Architects Love
Burntside offers quiet oneness with nature. Its rustic architecture, built with local materials by local craftsmen, never overpowers, settling instead for understated elegance.
National Geographic Traveler- June 2012
Lake Escapes - 7 American Classics
Families have returned year after year to summer at historic lakeside log cabins here - places like Burntside Lodge - where, since 1913, nature's quiet pleasures have continued to be the driving attractions.
Best of the Midwest- August 2008
Where to Stay- Burntside Lodge
Nicely appointed lakeside cabins, lodge and gourmet restaurant outside Ely.
Mpls St. Paul Magazine- April 2009
Best for: Enjoying canoe country without a tent.
Channeling the Boundary Waters. Burntside Lodge makes a promise- a canoe country experience with perks and a roof. From your hand-crafted log cabin, listen as loons call on craggy, clear Burntside Lake. Take a sauna, sip a cappuccino, and enjoy first-rate dining. Most cabins have internet access, but TV and phone are only at the main lodge.
Log Homes Illustrated- July 2008
Timeless Hospitality- a Minnesota Lodge Showcases Century-old Finnish Log Building
Snuggled beneath bed covers, I'm embraced by big log purlins, rough-hewn walls and the warmth of a small fireplace in the cabin's corner. Windows on three sides open to the lake. As the morning fog lifts, two adult loons swim past the window, trailed by two babies. Last year, a blue heron stalked along the rocky shore of a small island nearby. We're celebrating another anniversary in Cabin 26 at Burntside Lodge near Ely, Minnesota.
1000 Places to See Before You Die- USA 2009
Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
After several nights in the backcountry, treat yourself to a stay at the Burntside Lodge. Handsome log cabins, solidly built by expert local craftsmen, nestle in the woods at this early 20th-century lakefront resort. The Burntside is especially sought out for its excellent kitchen and wine list, an unexpected delight in this remote outpost.
Best of the Midwest- May 2009
Ely's Burntside Lodge knows that roughin' it in style is as Minnesota as wild rice. A family-owned tradition since 1941, this summertime resort's fresh American cuisine exudes a backwoods gourmet vibe. After house-made dessert (with a single-malt scotch on the side), you'll be ready to retire to a log cabin that's listed on the National Register of Historic Places but tricked out in North Woods chic.
Real Simple Travel- May 2008
10 Hidden Gems of the United States
One of the largest U.S. wilderness areas east of the Rockies, Minnesota's Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is made up of more than 1 million acres of land, rivers and streams- including 1,200 miles of mapped canoe routes. You won't find any roads and motorboats are scattered over nearly 1,200 lakes– leaving a paddler's sense of isolation and timelessness intact.
Where to stay: The lakefront Burntside Lodge consists of 21 pine-nestled cabins from the early 1900's and offers the best food you'll find in this remote outpost.
Minneapolis Star Tribune: Travel 2010
Summer's Simple Pleasures
Burntside Lodge near Ely celebrates the season with bursts of flowers, boat rides on the lake and peaceful nights.
Moon Handbooks: Minnesota- January 2004
One of the loveliest resorts in all of Minnesota— and certainly the most photographed —Burntside Lodge...got it's start as a hunting camp in the early 1900s. Many of the 21 ultra-cozy cabins overlooking island-studded Burntside Lake were built in the 1920's and each is unique. The National Park Service, noting both its age and architecture ("a remarkable architectural achievement in an outstanding state of preservation"), has added it to the National Register of Historic Places
Country Home Magazine- July 2007
Historic Burntside Lodge near Ely, Minnesota is a step back in time. The pine lodge and cozy cabins scattered along the shores of Burntside Lake are almost a century old, and the lodge has been operated by generations of the same family– the LaMontagnes- since 1941.
The place to be in the evening is the old-fashioned dining hall, where families reconvene for some of the best locally inspired food around.
Midwest Living: Best of the Midwest- 2007
Fodor's Escape to Nature- January 2004
Built in 1914 and now on the National Register of Historic Places, the lodge is almost as legendary as its surroundings. Fourty-four log cabins, many hewn by Finnish immigrants, were built here upon a rocky point of Burntside Lake. Today, 21 remain, spread among the pines on stilts like unobtrusive forest creatures. Glowing in the lodge's trademark red-orange varnish, waterfront Cabin 26 is perhaps the most photographed cabin in the state. Its pine logs still bear the marks of the broadax.
Best Weekend Drives-
You feel like you're staying at your own cottage in the cozy, updated 1920's cabins. The large main lodge, a north-woods style retreat, combines original furnishings with logging memorabilia.
Burntside includes a top-notch restaurant, even a cappuccino bar. After a day of canoeing or fishing, guests can sing along in the lounge.
Midwest Living- August 2000- cover story
Summer bursts across northeast Minnesota's old mining region, as dazzling as Fourth of July fireworks - and almost as fleeting. Outdoor enthusiasts seize the chance to explore the region's vast north woods and countless lakes. Vacationers flock to dozens of resorts. Grab your gear and make the most of every second!