Moving to Duluth

If you've ever dreamed of a city that nestles perfectly between nature and urban appeal, Duluth, Minnesota could be calling your name. No ordinary Midwestern town, it's a hidden gem where pristine woodland, sparkling waters, and cosmopolitan charm join hands. In this comprehensive Duluth relocation guide, we will explore the lush landscapes, bustling downtown, and close-knit community that makes moving to Duluth a decision not just of the head, but of the heart. So ready your spirit of adventure as we embark on this journey to unpack the true essence of Duluth.

Moving to Duluth, MN landscape image

What to Know Before Moving to Duluth

1. Experience the Four Seasons in all their Glory

If you're moving to Duluth, you're in for a treat! This city takes no half-measures when it comes to the seasons. Winters are a picturesque flurry of fluffy snow and twinkling icicles. Summers offer warm, breezy afternoons perfect for lakeside picnics, and fall...well, get ready for a massive display of vibrant fall colors that will take your breath away. Spring is always a welcome relief, full of blooming flowers and singing birds. If experiencing the seasons is something you long for, Duluth will not disappoint.

2. Outdoor Activities Galore

The outdoor experience in Duluth is nothing short of awe-inspiring. From hiking along the beautiful shoreline of Lake Superior, exploring the wilderness on the Superior Hiking Trail, skiing Spirit Mountain's well-groomed slopes, to fishing in the nearby streams and rivers--there's an activity for every weather and every mood.

3. Top-Tier School System

Whether you're moving with your family or planning on starting one, the educational system in Duluth is something to look forward to. Duluth Public Schools are ranked among the best in the state, owing to a dedicated staff and comprehensive curriculum. This city takes education seriously.

4. A Beautifully Quirky Street Grid

This might be unknown to many, but Duluth boasts a unique street grid that runs at a 45deg angle to the rest of the compass. This charming quirk not only gives the city its distinctive look, but it also means that most lots have a view either of Lake Superior or the rolling hills that backdrop the city. If you're looking for a town with character, the streets of Duluth are loaded with it.

5. Culturally Rich and Diverse

Duluth is a melting pot of cultures, packed with historical sites, art galleries, music festivals, and diverse dining experiences. Each year the Homegrown Music Festival brings local artists and thousands of music lovers together, keeping the city's music scene alive and kicking. The city's Norwegian roots are also hard to miss, with Scandinavian festivals making for colorful and tasty events - think lutefisk, lefse, and rosemaling!

6. The Talkative Lift Bridge

Lastly, you should know about the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge. This landmark has an identity of its own--it talks! Yes, you heard right. Installed in the control house, a system called "Bridgetalk" announces bridge lifts in a human-like voice. An example: "This is Bridgetalk, lift starting now." Now, isn't that something to tell your friends about when you move here?

In conclusion, Duluth is not just a city; it's an experience--an intriguing mix of outdoor adventures, educational excellence, historical richness, and unique quirks. So, if you're on your way to becoming a Duluthian, start planning an invigorating hike, learn about the city's many festivals, brush up on your ice fishing, and definitely don't forget to say hello to the talking bridge!

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Pros and Cons of Living in Duluth

Pros of Living in Duluth

Access to Outdoor Activities

Duluth is an excellent place for outdoor enthusiasts. Situated on the shores of Lake Superior and near several state parks, residents have a wealth of opportunities for hiking, biking, fishing, sailing, snowshoeing and more. The area's natural beauty can be appreciated all year round.

Vibrant Arts Scene

The city hits above its weight when it comes to the arts. There are lots of galleries, studios, and maker-spaces, and the Duluth Art Institute offers a variety of community classes. Annual events such as the Homegrown Music Festival and Duluth Art Week highlight local talent and invigorate the city's cultural life.

Strong Sense of Community

Duluth has a small-town feel, which helps foster a strong sense of community. There are frequent community events and festivals, and it's common for neighbors to know each other by name. This close-knit community vibe can make Duluth a comforting and supportive place to live.

Good Educational Institute

Duluth is home to several quality higher education institutes, including the University of Minnesota Duluth and the College of St. Scholastica. These institutions bring a youthful, intellectual energy to the city and provide plenty of opportunities for personal and professional development.

Historical Charm

While Duluth has all the amenities of a modern city, it's also rich in history. From its stately brick buildings downtown to the Glensheen Mansion and the historic Fitger's complex, there's a wealth of local history to explore.

Cons of Living in Duluth

Cold Winters

Winters in Duluth can be quite harsh, with heavy snowfall and temperatures often dipping below freezing. Despite the cold weather providing opportunities for winter sports, it can be difficult for those not accustomed to such cold climates.

Limited Job Market

While Duluth has a fair number of job opportunities in certain sectors, the job market can be limited in others. Depending on one's career field, it could be a bit more challenging to find work in Duluth compared to larger cities.

High Property Taxes

Property taxes in Duluth tend to be higher than the national average. This can increase the overall cost of living for homeowners and should be a consideration for those planning to buy property in Duluth.

Remote Location

Although its location is part of its charm, Duluth's remoteness can also be a drawback. It's a couple hours' drive from Minneapolis, the nearest big city, which can make it a bit of a hassle if you're used to having a wide array of city amenities at your fingertips.

High Wind Factor

Due to Duluth's location on Lake Superior, high winds are a common occurrence. And with the wind comes the cooler temperature making the climate feel much colder, especially during the winter.

Modern day picture of Duluth, MN highlighting pros and cons of living in Duluth, MN

Is Duluth a Good Place to Live?

Duluth, MN is a great place to live because of its breathtaking nature, vibrant arts scene, and friendly community. This wonderful city has an array of recreational activities with stunning parks, hiking trails, and the picturesque Lake Superior for outdoor enthusiasts. Not to mention, Duluth offers affordable living, good schools, and a variety of food and entertainment options, making it a charming mix for anyone considering putting down roots there.

What Is Duluth Famous For?

Lake Superior

As the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area, Lake Superior is a remarkable feature of Duluth. Offering beautiful views, thrilling water sports, and great fishing, this mighty lake is a constant source of entertainment and inspiration for Duluthians as well as tourists.

Aerial Lift Bridge

One of Duluth's iconic landmarks, the Aerial Lift Bridge is a marvel of early 20th-century engineering. Originally built as an extraordinarily rare transporter bridge, it was modified into the current lift bridge design, and today it lifts up to allow large ships to enter the harbor - a spectacular sight to see!

Duluth's Park System

Boasting a 129 parks covering 11,000 acres, Duluth's park system is a breathtaking showcase of the city's commitment to green spaces. From hidden woodland trails to open fields, beach parks, botanical gardens and a zoo, there's a park for every mood and occasion.

The Duluth Pack

Duluth is famously home to the Duluth Pack, the oldest canvas and leather bag and pack making company in the USA. So if you see a stylish, durable, hand-sewn bag with the trademark oval logo, you know it's a product of Duluth's dedication to quality and longevity!

Capital building of Duluth, MN in artistic rendering

Overview of Tax Rates

Property Tax

As of 2023, the effective property tax rate for residents of Duluth, MN is about 1.21%, which is relatively higher when compared to the national median rate of about 1.07%. The actual tax amount varies based on the assessed value of the property.

Sales Tax

The sales tax in Duluth, MN, is 8.875% as of 2023, an amount that is significantly above the US average of roughly 7.12%. This rate includes the state, county, city, and special district rates.

Income Tax

Minnesota has a progressive income tax system, and for Duluth residents, the tax rate ranges from 5.35% to 9.85% as of 2023. This bracket is relatively high in comparison to other US states, many of which have a lower maximum rate or no state income tax at all.

Housing Market

The housing market in Duluth, MN offers an affordable alternative compared to other U.S regions. As of early 2022, the median home value is around $215,000, significantly lower than the national median, making homeownership more accessible. Rental prices in Duluth also appear attractive, with a median of approximately $1,000/month, which is below the national average. However, Duluth's housing market is competitive with properties typically receiving multiple offers. Buyers and renters should be prepared for this environment and act quickly when they find a suitable property. It is also beneficial to have financing pre-approved to strengthen their offers.

Cost of Living

Living in Duluth, MN is comparatively less expensive than other US cities. A lower cost of living index indicates that expenses towards housing, groceries, transportation, utilities, and healthcare are much reasonable. Though the overall cost can vary depending on personal lifestyle, Duluth's affordability makes it an attractive option for both families and individuals. Still, it's essential to consider factors such as income and job opportunities when comparing the cost of living between cities.

Weather & Natural Disasters

Duluth, MN, situated on the western shore of Lake Superior, has a humid continental climate marked by cold, snowy winters and warm, humid summers. Weather conditions can vary, from frosty winter days with temperatures plugging below zero degrees Fahrenheit, to pleasant summer weather, with temperatures often reaching 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Snow is a significant characteristic of Duluth's winter, with the city receiving over 80 inches annually. Despite Lake Superior moderating the climate, Duluth experiences thunderstorms in summer that occasionally give rise to tornadoes. The city is also susceptible to blizzards in winter. Duluth's topography, characterized by hilly terrain and numerous bodies of water, often contributes to microclimates, causing weather conditions to change rapidly within short distances. Regardless, the city's captivating natural beauty, breathtaking views of Lake Superior, and outdoor recreation opportunities, make it an enticing place to reside or visit.

Typical weather in Duluth, MN

Economy & Job Market

* Health Care and Social Assistance

* Education Services

* Manufacturing

* Retail Trade

* Construction

With its roots firmly planted in the iron mining industry, Duluth, MN has diversified its economic portfolio to accommodate a wide array of industries, making it a vibrant place to work and live. Historically, Duluth was a significant player in the iron ore mining business, with a rich history involving the iconic Duluth, Missabe and Iron Range Railway. Nowadays, medical and healthcare services have taken the reins as the city's leading industry. The education sector, particularly higher education with institutions like the University of Minnesota Duluth and the Lake Superior College, also plays a pivotal role in Duluth's economy. Rounding out the sphere of influence are the manufacturing, retail trade and construction sectors that have made their own enduring marks on the diverse and bustling economy of this port city.

If you're packing your bags and heading over to Duluth for a whirlwind of new opportunities, here's the scoop you need on the job market. Duluth boasts an employment rate that hovers around the national average with certain industries surpassing others in terms of job availability. You'll find maximum opportunities in health care and social assistance, so if you're a medical professional or social worker, you're in luck! The education services industry also presents ample employment opportunities, making it an exciting time for educators seeking to set up shop in this Minnesota gem. Additionally, manufacturing and construction industries are continually on the lookout for new talents. So, sally forth and seize the job market by the horns in Duluth, because this city has plenty of space for fresh and established talent alike!

Traffic and Transportation

Zip zap zop! Gallivant around glorious Duluth, MN like a pro! A city where navigation is a piece of cake. With an average commute time of just 16.3 minutes, you'll be whizzing across town in no time. Try something exciting and swap your car for the Duluth Transit Authority (DTA)! Offering both bus and trolley services, DTA is both a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly way to traverse the city. For more high-flying adventures, the Duluth International Airport can whisk you away to your dream destination. Offering daily flights to major hubs like Chicago and Minneapolis, the sky is literally the limit! So, whether your journey in Duluth is on the ground or in the air, embracing the city's traffic and transportation options will add fun and ease to your travel experience.

What is the traffic like in Duluth, MN?

Best Neighborhoods in Duluth

1. Congdon Park

Starting us off is Congdon Park--undoubtedly one of the most attractive neighborhoods in Duluth. Surrounded by majestic pines and scenic walking trails, this is an idyllic place for nature lovers. You'll also find Tischer Creek winding its way through the neighborhood, adding a touch of tranquility to the area. For history buffs, the famous Glensheen Historic Mansion is located here, which offers insightful tours into Duluth's past. Add to this the top-rated schools and close-knit community, and it's no wonder Congdon Park is highly coveted!

2. Lakeside-Lester Park

Say hello to Lakeside-Lester Park, a picturesque neighborhood graced by the grandeur of Lake Superior. Residents adore their peaceful streets and the easy access to Lester Park, a gem loaded with hiking and cross-country skiing trails. Living here means feasting your eyes on remarkable sunrises over the lake while enjoying a laid-back lifestyle. Add to the mix a handful of charming shops, restaurants, and a strong sense of community that will make you feel at home instantly.

3. Woodland

Nestled amidst lush green parks and great schools is Woodland, a neighborhood perfect for families. The nearby Hartley Nature Center and Hawk-ridge Bird Observatory offers exciting opportunities for education and recreation alike. If you have a dog, they'll be thrilled about the Jean Duluth Dog Park, and did we mention the fantastic ice cream at The King of Creams? This family-friendly neighborhood offers stability, connection, and a lot of fun!

4. Endion

Quirky and eclectic come to life in Endion, a lively neighborhood on the east edge of downtown Duluth. Endion is renowned for its historic charm, with well-preserved architecture dating back to the 19th century. You'll find numerous breweries, coffee shops, and art galleries, including the iconic Endion Station Public House. The majestic Lakewalk trail is a must-explore here, with plenty of scenic spots for those Instagram-worthy snaps. If you're seeking urban vibrancy with a side of history, Endion is your place to be!

5. Park Point

Last but certainly not least is the adventurous Park Point, a sliver of land separating Lake Superior from Superior Bay. It's famous for its sandy beaches, the Park Point Recreation Area and the historic Aerial Lift Bridge. You're never far from water-based activity here, be it swimming, kitesurfing, or just unwinding on the beach. The vibe here is relaxed yet spirited, making Park Point a sanctuary for active individuals who love the great outdoors.

Each one of Duluth's neighborhoods has its own unique charm that appeal to different lifestyles, whether you're an outdoor enthusiast, a history buff, a foodie, or someone who enjoys peaceful strolls along quaint streets. So, put on your adventurous cap and discover your own favorite corner in the beautiful city of Duluth, MN.

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Things to Do


So, you're moving to Duluth, Minnesota? Whether you're a prospective resident or a new arrival, there's an array of exciting and unique experiences waiting for you. Nestled on the shores of Lake Superior, this beautiful city offers vibrant history, breathtaking landscapes, and a diverse mix of cultural activities. Here are seven of the top things you absolutely must do in Dul.

1. Lose Yourself in Canal Park

Canal Park is the pulsating heart of Duluth. This vibrant waterfront district buzzes with activity. From exciting eateries to boutique shops, there's no shortage of ways to pass the time. Add in the Lake Walk, an excellent trail providing stunning views of the world's largest freshwater lake, and Canal Park is a must-visit.

2. Ever Watched a Ship "Fly"?

This is one of Duluth's unique charms. Visit the Aerial Lift Bridge and watch massive freighters sail under the bridge as it lifts into the sky. This engineering marvel operates 24/7 and attracts hundreds of spectators each day. While you are there, remember to visit the nearby Maritime Visitor Center for a deeper glimpse into Duluth's sailing history.

3. Get Lost in the Beauty of Enger Park

For lovers of flora, fauna, and fantastic views, Enger Park is your haven. This park gives you panoramic views of the city and Lake Superior, especially from atop the five-story Enger Tower. Look out for the bell gifted by Duluth's sister-city, Ohara-Isumi City of Japan, while you're there.

4. Step Back in Time at the Glensheen Historic Estate

For a glimpse into Duluth's opulent past, take a tour of the Glensheen Mansion on Lake Superior's shore. Once owned by a wealthy mining family, the 39-room mansion and the striking gardens are beautifully maintained. This provides an impressive peek into the glamorous life in the 20th century.

5. Discover a Hidden Gem at the Lake Superior Railroad Museum

Located downtown Duluth, the Lake Superior Railroad Museum is a largely undiscovered treasure. Visitors can board historic trains, learn about the rich history of railroads in the region and even participate in driving a locomotive. A must-visit for railroad enthusiasts or anyone intrigued by history and machinery.

6. Embrace the Wild Adventure at the Adventure Zone

Offering laser tag, mini-golf, arcade games and lots more, the Adventure Zone is a fun paradise for kids and kids-at-heart. This hidden jewel, located in the bustling Canal Park, is sure to bring joy and a competitive spirit out of you.

7. Thrill Your Taste Buds at the Duluth Grill

Rounding off our list is Duluth Grill, a family-owned restaurant that serves fresh, organic food. From vegetarian dishes to meat lovers' delights, there's something for everyone at Duluth Grill. Plus, their ingredients come from their own garden and local Duluth vendors making it a community favorite.

In conclusion, Duluth is a city with a rich past and a vivacious present. From magnificent lake views to hidden historic gems, there's an adventure waiting around every corner. And while this list provides a brief look at a few activities, once you arrive in Duluth, you'll find there's so much more to explore. Enjoy your new adventure in Duluth!

' Things to do in Duluth, MN?

Find Movers for Your Duluth Relocation

As you plan your move to the vibrant city of Duluth, let us assist in making it a breeze. With Great Guys Moving, your path to a seamless transition becomes clearer. Our hallmark over the years is matching people like you with reputable, licensed, and insured movers, guaranteeing quality service at affordable rates. So, with your boxes packed and the North Star guiding, why not take your first step towards settling in Duluth? Simply submit your move's basic details and secure a free quote from Great Guys Moving, fast-tracking your way to your new Duluth home.

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