There are just a handful of places in the United States where you can experience unspoiled natural beauty. Ely, Minnesota, a small town located in the northern part of the state, may not be the first place that comes to mind when you’re thinking of a remote and rustic vacation, but it certainly should be added to the list! Ely is known as the gateway to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. This untouched preserve is the largest protected wilderness west of the American Rockies and is full of forests and over 1,500 miles (2,414 km) of waterways which can be explored by canoe. You can also explore the wilderness on foot by hiking one of the many trails that pass near or through Ely, including the picturesque Echo Trail and Trezona Trail, which passes through the old iron ore mines which brought settlers to the area. If you are daunted by visiting Minnesota during the cold months, reconsider a winter visit: frozen lakes and snowy trails provide ample opportunities for snowmobiling, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and even dog sledding. Ely is rustic, but not so rustic that you can’t find a great accommodation for your trip. Read on for some picks of where to stay in Ely, Minnesota.
Experience the beautiful wilderness of Minnesota the way it was meant to be at the Grand Ely Lodge. This stunning accommodation combines the luxury of a hotel with the coziness of a rustic cabin and the fun of an all-ages summer camp. Rooms are outfitted with comfortable furnishings, and some include a seating area and even bunk beds. Take advantage of amenities like the on-site restaurants, where kids under age 10 always eat free, the indoor pool, and the fitness center with a sauna. The lakefront location provides stunning panoramas as well as lots of nearby activities. No matter what season you visit, there will be tons of options: rent a boat at the resort’s full-service marina in the summer; hike nearby trails to see foliage in the fall; venture out on snowshoes or cross country skis in winter; and visit the International Wolf Center and North American Bear Center nearby to learn about local wildlife in the spring.
You’ll feel perfectly at home in this Ely Airbnb that has the perfect balance of modern minimalist design and cozy furnishings. The home has two bedrooms which can sleep up to six guests. Upstairs there is a full bathroom with a claw-foot tub perfect for soaking in after a day of sightseeing. Downstairs is a living room, dining room, kitchen, and sun room, providing plenty of space for everyone to spread out! The fenced-in backyard is the perfect place to enjoy a warm evening, with Adirondack chairs and a fire pit you can use if it gets chilly. The home is within walking distance to shops and restaurants and just a few miles from an entry point to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area preserve.
Sit back & Relax in Ely!Ely, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsnice amenities including snacks and full cabinets for cooking direct tv and a very clean housethe beds were like sleeping on a cloud was fun to wake up to snowinterior has a nice size kitchen with islandthe kitchen was impressively equipped the linens were high quality and so soft and beds were very comfortablebeds were firm and comfortableclean design and cleanneat and clean pleasantly responsiveblake’s ely house is very clean and modernthe house was sparkling clean and we loved the radiator heathouse is extremely well appointed and very clean
Host:blake was an outstanding host and the home had every possible amenity that i wanted/neededblake's place was lovely and he was an attentive hostblake was a great host and check-in was a breezeblake and ashley are super nice and the most responsive airbnb hosts we have ever worked withblake is a very thoughtful super hostRead more reviewsclose to ely shopping and fun activities near bygreat location—walking distance to everything in towngreat house and great location in elygreat location in ely as wellgood value for the price nice central location in ely
This charming little cottage is the perfect size for two to three guests, making it an ideal pick for couples, small families, or even a solo traveler who doesn’t need a ton of extra space. Though it’s small, it has everything you’ll need for a comfortable stay and then some. Upstairs is a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and small living room. Downstairs in the basement there are even more great amenities like laundry and a game room! The host provides locally roasted coffee from Northern Grounds so you won’t have to worry about running out first thing for supplies. Guests are also welcome to visit the Northern Grounds coffee shop for a free cup each morning of their stay!
Cozy Cottage near Downtown & Trezona TrailEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewshas a nice basement with wifi so we could watch movies netflix etcthe bed is comfortable and so is all the other furniture in the houseit would have been nice to have a small dining table with chairsthe cozy cottage was very comfortable and quietsuper well laid out and has great light and is cozyclean and comfortable and cozythis house was very clean and was very attractiveit was very clean exactly as described and very smartly laid outclean cindy has gone above and beyond expectationsthe house is on the older side but nicely redone and very clean
Host:the host cindy is super attentive if you need somethingcindy was really responsive and helpfulcindy was an excellent host and made us feel welcome in the rentalRead more reviewsthe location was fantasticcute little place near the lake a great trail close bysuper close to shopping and restaurantsgreat location to downtown and bike and hiking pathsit was close to restaurants and a great walking path
Another cozy pick is this small home close to downtown. It might look tiny from the outside but it has two bedrooms which can sleep up to six guests. The first floor also has a full-equipped kitchen and a living room so you will never feel cramped. This small house is also big on technology: it has an outdoor security camera and a smart deadbolt which works with smartphones for secure, keyless entry. You can also listen to music on the Sonos speakers and adjust the temperature to your comfort with a Nest thermostat.
Adorable, tiny 2 bdrm cottage in downtown ElyEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsit was nice to have air conditioning in the summerthis kitchen table can sit four but it's a tight fitthe two bedrooms are up a steep set of steps but were roomy and comfortablehaving laundry on the main floor and a nice deck outside were some great featuresthe home is super basic but linens were clean and wifi and television worked welleverything was clean and comfortableit was a very clean cozy housecomfortable clean and close to ely shops and restaurants our dog loved the yardvery clean and a fully stalked kitchenthe house was clean and comfortable and had everything we needed
Host:host was great and responsive communicatorthe host was super nice and responsivefriendly neighbors too thank you aubreyaubrey is an absolutely amazing hostaubrey was a great host for my family and i staying in elyRead more reviewsgood location walking distance to everythinglocation is perfectgreat location walking distance everything downtowngreat central location close to downtown shoppinggreat location in central ely
If you’re visiting Ely in the winter, this house rental would be the perfect pick for winter sports enthusiasts! The house is located just two blocks from the Taconite Trail, a popular route for snowmobile riders in the winter. If cross-country skiing is your sport, use the waxing station in the garage during your stay. Even if you’re not into winter sports or you’re visiting in the summer, this home is a great option. It has three bedrooms that can host up to seven guests. Enjoy access to a kitchen with lots of appliances, a family room and laundry in the basement, and two and a half bathrooms so no one ever has to wait!
The White House in ElyEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsthe deck in the backyard is perfect for morning coffee and the kitchen is well equippedkitchen was very well stocked for our cooking needs and grill was great toothere were 7 of us and we were very comfortableplenty of space lots of beds to accommodate everyone and lots of cute toucheswell equipped house; pretty much everything needed for a comfortable stay - nice quiet neighborhoodexcellent place to stay cleanhome was very clean and had great sleeping areaseverything was exactly as expected from the listing and the house was very clean and had everything advertisedthe house was just as presented - clean comfortable well stocked and quietwe had a great stay at the white house clean place with plenty of room
Host:the host was responsive friendly and accommodatinghighly recommend excellent host and the accommodations exceeded our expectationsheather was very helpful in answering questions and providing information and recommendations about local thingsheather was very informative and friendlyRead more reviewsgreat location to downtown elyit has an excellent location within easy walking distance of "downtownclose to down town and local attractionswalking distance to main street the house is in really nice conditioneasy walk to main street ely to check out the fun local spots
Other vacation rental options
Take full advantage of the rural wilderness surrounding Ely by renting out this charming cabin. You’ll be peacefully secluded in a setting of rustic woods and the lakefront that are just steps away. The sandy shoreline and docks are both perfect locations to launch one of the complimentary canoes or kayaks. You can also take in the natural surroundings in a relaxing way by grilling on the patio or sitting around the fire pit. If the conditions are right, you can even see the northern lights by night! However, you won’t be completely cut off from human contact: the cabin has WiFi and satellite TV, and is just a short drive from downtown Ely.
*5 Star Burntside Lake Cabin 10 minutes from ElyEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsall the beds and the couch are comfortable for sleepingwifi worked better than expected for a remote cabinthe cabin is clean and comfortable with nice amenities and gorgeous view of the lakegenerous amenities include kayaks a canoe and really well-functioning wifibed and bedding was fantastic couch is now on my list to buy shower was greatvery clean and comfortable homereally nice and clean cabinit was very clean and comfortablevery comfortable and cleanthe cabin is simple clean uncluttered attractive
Host:the hosts were lovely peoplethe host is very responsivekelly was a great host thank you so muchowner was very responsive and nicethe hosts are very responsive and make sure ones stay is perfectRead more reviewsexcellent location for snowmobilinggreat location and super comfortablebeautiful location and comfortable lodgingvery nice place and locationgreat place and location will definitely book again
This gorgeous cabin has all the amenities of a modern home in a charming, rustic space! The cabin dates back to the 1800s but was moved to its new space in 1936 and has been fully renovated with all the comforts you’ll need. The rich wooden interior is adorned with cozy furnishings like a wood stove. It can sleep up to six guests in one private bedroom and an upstairs sleeping loft with a queen-size and two double beds. Outside, there is a patio with a grill where you can prepare an al fresco meal. From the interior and immediate surroundings, the cabin appears to be deep in the wilderness but is actually close to downtown Ely and conveniently within walking distance of shops and restaurants.
NEW Airbnb Restored Rustic In-Town Cabin - Ely, MNEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewseven my oldest daughter who barely share her room loved us sleeping together in the lofteverything was well thought out and every room was a delight to be inwe fell in love with the beautiful log cabin interior and cozy pine wallscolleen’s cabin was amazing the decor and overall atmosphere was very cozyvery clean and cozy cabinvery clean and well maintainedsuper cozy and clean cabin feelcolleen's place was cozy clean and comfortablevery thoughtful host immaculately clean and charming inside
Host:the host is quick and efficient at responding to any questionscolleen is a wonderful caring hostcolleen our host was extremely easy to communicate withgas fireplace comfortable beds kitchen amenities and a wonderful responsive host that provided great recommendations that met our interestscolleen was great to work with and responsive to minor questionsRead more reviewswonderful cozy cabin close to townbeautiful rustic cabin within walking distance of downtown elythe location was best balance of peace and walkability to restaurants/shoppingthe cabin was close to downtown ely making it an easy drive to restaurants and storeswhat an amazing space so close to town
Designed to bring the outside in, this cabin is the perfect spot to experience the gorgeous nature around Ely. The cabin features huge floor-to-ceiling windows which let in the sunshine as well as the views of surrounding trees and the lake. No matter the season, you can stay cozy inside while still appreciating the natural setting. The living room is an especially nice place to take in the views, with windows on two sides, a cozy fireplace, and a cabinet full of board games. If you’d rather get outside, the host generously provides amenities for year-round activities, like snowshoes, sleds, two kayaks, and a canoe. With three bedrooms that can host up to six guests, this is a great pick for families or groups of friends.
Seize the Good Life at Waterfront Lake HomeEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsour bed was comfortable the bathroom was large and included a washer and dryerthe kitchen is so well stocked with any appliance or gadget you might needstunning log home with gorgeous wood paneling and kitchen cabinetrywe especially enjoyed the kitchen amenities the kayaks and the comfortable bedsviews sparkly snow awesome beds fun games and the perfect place for 6 friends to hangthe cabin was clean and cozythe space is clean and well decoratedit is a clean home and well stocked with everything imaginableperfectly comfortable clean and felt like homeclean stylish space with gorgeous views
Host:each time i got a helpful response within minutesgreat hosts they thought of absolutely everythinghosts checked in after we arrived to make sure everything was ok and reached out throughout the staythe loving attention to detail by the owners is evident in every roomthis cabin is fabulous very family friendly and cozy the owners have thought of every little detail and amenityRead more reviewsthe location being close to town is a huge plus as wellbeautiful house in a fantastic locationi highly recommend this location without any reservationschrissie and rich’s place is absolutely fantasticnice location and view
Stay in a rustic setting in downtown Ely at this cute loft apartment. The one-room suite has wood-paneled walls and cozy furnishings like you’d find in a cabin, just condensed into a smaller space. There is still more than enough room to relax, with a dining table, living room, and kitchen for preparing meals. Four guests can stay in the loft, which has a queen bed under a single bunk and a couch where a fourth person can sleep. The loft is located right over the charming Fox & Hen Antique Shop and even has a shared garden with gazebo where you can take in the fresh Minnesota air.
East Loft in Downtown ElyEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsvery comfortable space with air conditioning and comfortable bedsit was a treat to have a set of board games in the roomwe had a wonderful stay at the loft the beds were huge and can accommodate many peoplemost comfortable beds of our vacationalso the kitchen was well stocked equipment-wise - we were excited to have a rice cookerit was very clean and the beds were pretty comfortablethe unit is fresh clean practical and orderlythe rooms were clean basic accommodations exactly as describedthe place was very clean with comfortable beds and the location was greatthis was a clean quiet centrally located place
Host:the host is wonderfully helpful and quick to respondeveryone was helpful and the fresh pastries and coffee each morning were deliciousRead more reviewseasy location to downtown elyperfect location for a downtown strollgreat location and a cozy spaceeasy walk to many restaurants in elythis is a great location in ely as it's a very walk-able town
This lovely home has the perfect location for exploring downtown Ely as well as the surrounding area. Right nearby you can find everything you’ll need like restaurants, shops, outfitters with sporting gear, and more. However, don’t worry about going out for supplies right when you check in–you’ll find complimentary pancake mix, oatmeal, and coffee, affording you a relaxing start to your first morning in town. Fuel up for days of exploring all there is to offer–with parks, lakes, and trails right outside your door, the possibilities are endless!
Conveniently Located Spacious Ely HomeEly, Minnesota, United States
Top guest reviewsgreat extras like coffee and breakfast foodsnice amenities like coffee soda snacks and fixings for breakfasteach room had a combination of homey and modern furnishings and the beds were soft and comfortablethis spot was spacious clean cozy nice amenities and in a great locationclean - lots of extrasit was extremely clean and kept wellthe house was clean and homelyvery nice super cleanwe arrived to a warm and extremely clean house
Host:she's very responsive and made us feel at homegreat host will be returningcasey is a great hostthe hosts were readily available with great suggestions and tips for nearby activities and restaurantscasey was a very good hostRead more reviewsperfect place close to elygreat location near downtown elygreat place close to shops and restaurantsgood location close to downtown would stay here againlocation was just a couple of blocks from the main street and a great grocery store
Explore nature and then sleep in comfort
You don’t have to camp to enjoy a rustic and remote destination. Ely is full of comfortable accommodations that range from basic to luxurious. Whether you stay right in town or in a secluded spot nearby, Ely is the perfect starting point to explore northern Minnesota’s natural attractions. From summer to winter, this area is one of the few places you can see nature as it was intended–untouched by human hands and unspoiled in its beauty.
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