Area Attractions | Voyagaire Lodge & Houseboats | Crane Lake, MN

There's So Much to Explore!

Your stay at Voyagaire Lodge & Houseboats is an opportunity to explore our unique region, whether you head out on foot by boat or by car.

  Hiking

Discover the hiking trails that lead from our backyard through native marshes. Then take in our unique boreal forest and head to the Vermilion Gorge, where rushing water has cut a canyon into the stony ground. The Vermilion gorge hiking trail begins on the western border of the Voyagaire property. It is a beautiful 3-mile hike through the woods and along the cliffs of the Vermilion River Gorge. At a leisurely pace, you can hike it in 3 hours.

The Vermilion Falls is another beautiful spot to see. Drive 5 miles down Vermillion Falls Road and take a left into the parking lot. From there, you can take a short walk to the boardwalk to see the falls.

Mukooda lake has a newly designed hiking trail that is beautiful! Just a short boat ride from our dock to this quiet island, where you have a chance to see the pristine waters of Mukooda lake.

While in Orr, you’ll also enjoy the Bog Walk, where rare species of marsh plants thrive, including the elusive pink lady slipper, Minnesota’s state flower.

Fishing

Join us at Voyagaire for some of the best fishing in the Midwest. Walleye, Northern Pike, Smallmouth Bass, Muskie, or Panfish – any of these could be your catch of the day. Improved fish management policies have provided impressive catches in recent years. Spring is one of the best times to fish the lakes of Voyageurs National Park, and our years of experience have taught us where the hot spots are.

  • White Sucker
  • Lake Whitefish
  • Bluegill
  • Black bullhead
  • Redhorse
  • Muskellunge
  • Sturgeon
  • Sauger
  • Black Crappie
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Walleye**An experimental walleye/sauger regulation six total (not more than four can be walleye; walleye 18"-26" must be immediately released; only one walleye over 26" may be kept).

Hot Fishing Spots

In the spring, the walleye will be in areas with current – where the Vermilion River comes into Crane Lake, Crane Lake Narrows, the Vermilion Gorge, Namakan Narrows, Harrison Narrows, and Voyageurs Narrows for a start. As the water warms from late June to late August, the walleye will move out to deeper water. You will then want to fish off the reefs. There is plenty of structure in all the lakes, but it is a good choice since Namakan is the largest. We will provide you with a detailed water depth map of Namakan with your houseboat rental.

Some people like to troll in Sandpoint using deep diving Rapalas; some guides have been known to use outriggers like on the Great Lakes. This method can produce some trophy fish. Crane Lake, Grassy Bay, and Brown’s Bay all produce walleye. A map can be marked for fishing spots when you arrive to give you the most current information on fishing. Northern abound in Crane Lake’s weedy Northwest Bay, Hammer Bay on Namakan, and Swanson Bay in Sandpoint, to name a few places. Anglers can catch crappies on Crane Lake, Grassy Bay, and Namakan.

Mukooda Lake is a portage lake. Find it on our interactive map just north of Crane Lake. We store a fishing boat available for rent as outside vessels are prohibited. In an effort to keep all interior lakes of Voyageurs National Park as pure as possible, only artificial bait is allowed on Mukooda. This lake has sunfish, bluegills, lake trout, large and smallmouth bass. It is a fun lake to take kids to. This is a very deep and clear lake, making it great for snorkeling. Houseboats can be parked south of the dock, and it is a short ride and fun hike over to Mukooda Lake with newly designed hiking trails throughout this scenic island.

Fishing At Dawn

Area Lake Information

Crane Lake – 3,088 Acres
Sandpoint Lake – 8,869 Acres
Namakan – 25,130 Acres
Kabetogama – 25,760 acres

Tackle Tips

Many locals and traditional guides will just fish with a jig and minnow. We find brightly colored jigs work the best. Rapalas and similar lures work well in gold colors. Lindy rigs and spinnerbaits with bright tails are popular for walleye and smallmouth bass. Smallmouth bass also like meps, beetle spins, and husky jerks in the smaller sizes. Of course, spoons are suitable for the Northern and the occasional muskie.

Do You Need a Canadian Fishing License?

Most of the lakes you will be cruising, and all the Voyageurs National Park waters, are within the Minnesota boundary. However, you must have an Ontario fishing license to fish in Ontario, so some avid fishermen purchase both a Minnesota and an Ontario license. Please follow Canadian guidelines. You are currently prohibited from touching shores in Canada even with a non-resident fishing license.

Guided Tours & Wildlife

Wildlife Sanctuary

One must-do unique day trip is visiting the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary in Orr, where you will get up close and personal with wild black bears. Observe wild bears from a viewing platform safely above them as they come out of the forest to eat. It’s a fantastic experience. Open evenings Tuesday – Sunday. Ask in the office for details and directions.

Visit an interactive map to view photos and details of points of interest throughout Crane, Sand Point, Namakan, and Kabetogama Lakes.

Eagle Hunting A Fish

Golf

What summer vacation would be complete without a round of golf? Casual golfing, 9-hole course within minutes of Voyagaire Lodge. Several other Premier Clubhouses and courses in surrounding areas.

Golf

Crane Lake, MN

Shopping

Start your shopping adventure with our gift shop located in the Voyagaire Lodge lobby. Our quaint, historic village of Crane Lake offers visitors many unique shops to browse.
Set out to explore all the unique clothing and gifts offered by other surrounding resort gift shops, including Nelson’s Resort, Handberg’s Marina (they also have ice cream!), and Scott’s New Leaf Gift Shop. 

Places of Worship

Crane Lake Chapel – A nondenominational Christian congregation. Service at 11:30 am Sunday. In the summer, ACMNP- A Christian Ministry in the National Parks, recruits several young men and women to join the staff at businesses in the National Parks. These talented individuals host Wednesday night Bible Studies, coordinate Vacation Bible School for the youth in their areas, and add a welcomed wholesomeness to the places they reside for the summer.

Holy Cross Catholic Church – Located in Orr. Mass at 5 pm Saturday.

Contact us for more details on any of these Crane Lake attractions!

Family Fun At Voyagaire

Voyageurs National Park

Voyageurs National Park lies in the southern part of the Canadian Shield, representing some of the oldest exposed rock formations in the world. This bedrock has been shaped and carved by at least four periods of glaciations. As a result, the topography of Voyageurs National Park is rugged and varied; rolling hills are interspersed between bogs, beaver ponds, swamps, islands, small lakes, and four large lakes. Since the last glaciations, a thin layer of soil has been created, supporting the boreal forest ecosystem, the “North Woods” of Voyageurs National Park.

Rich in Human History

This region was named for the Voyageurs, French-Canadian canoe-men who traveled these waters in their birch-bark canoes from the Great Lakes to the interior of the western United States and Canada. Modern voyageurs continue to ply these waters. 

Fifty-five miles of the park meanders along the border separating Minnesota and Ontario, Canada. Voyageurs is about 15 miles east of International Falls, MN, and 300 miles north of Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN. Voyagaire Lodge & Houseboats is an hour and 20 minutes from I-Falls

The Water

The water, accompanying scenery, geology, and rich cultural and natural resources that give Voyageurs its national significance, merits its protection for the enjoyment of present and future generations.

Voyageurs is a water-based park. Watercraft provides access to the Kabetogama peninsula, the islands, and nearly all the park’s shoreline. Free public boat ramps and parking are available at the park’s visitor centers and the Kabetogama State Forest Campgrounds.

The national park encompasses lakes, wetlands, and upland forests of approximately 218,059 acres. The park area includes four large lakes (Rainy, Kabetogama, Namakan, and Sand Point) and more than two dozen smaller ones. You cannot get to Rainy with a houseboat. You can have your boat portaged from Namaken to Rainy at Kettle Falls Hotel. This year, zebra mussels were discovered in Rainy Lake, so boats will have to pass through a decontamination station to transfer back from Rainy Lake to the Namaken basin.

Grassy Cliffs On The Lake

A Legacy of Transportation

Voyageurs National Park was authorized in 1971 and established in 1975. Its purpose is to preserve “the outstanding scenery, geological conditions, and waterway system which constituted a part of the historic route of the Voyageurs who contributed significantly to the opening of the Northwestern United States.”

Perhaps the essential words in the park’s enabling legislation are “part of the historic route.” The park’s terrain is a representative portion of a much greater historical geography. The voyageurs’ travels through the present-day Voyageurs National Park were generally part of much larger journeys. 

Rainy Lake was a transportation hub and a strategic crossroads in the fur trade.

The staff at Voyagaire Lodge has made a career out of understanding the special qualities of this unique park and is happy to guide you on your journey. 

Explore Voyageurs National Park with an interactive map.

Are You Ready for the Trip of a Lifetime?

See Voyagers National Park in a luxury houseboat!