BEST VIEW - 2000
First things first: Forget climbing the IDS--we're thinking rustic. So bring along the picnic basket, be sure to invite your significant other, and head up to Tower Hill, nestled above southeast Minneapolis's professorial Prospect Park neighborhood. A spectacular vista awaits those who climb the steps to the top of the 371-foot-tall Witches' Tower, but it's open only one day of the year (for the neighborhood ice-cream social in late May), which makes it ineligible for a prize it would otherwise be guaranteed. But despair not: The view at the tower's base is still lovely. Despite any inferiority complexes Minneapolitans might feel vis-à-vis New York or Chicago, pound for pound this town may well have the swellest skyline this side of San Francisco Bay. The view of I-94 at night has been scientifically proven to induce romance, and the hill itself is nearly serene: You'd forget that you're in the city if you weren't staring at it.