The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources maintains 67 state parks, as of 2015. The department also maintains nine state recreation areas, 13 state trails and eight waysides. Waysides are similar to parks but are smaller and usually located near the highway.
The three most popular state parks in Minnesota are Fort Snelling State Park, Gooseberry Falls State Park and Itasca State Park. All three parks receive over a half million annual visitors. Itasca State Park is located in northern Minnesota near Bemidji and contains the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Gooseberry Falls State Park is near Duluth and is known for its waterfalls and views of Lake Superior. Fort Snelling State Park is close to Minneapolis and contains the point where the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers meet.