One alternative to renting Minneapolis apartments is to look outside of the area for a spot that feels comfortable. Apple Valley is southwest of the Twin Cities area and is a lovely place to visit and a great place to call home. A mere ten minutes from the Mall of America and just a short drive to Minneapolis, this city also has a good deal to offer all on its own. The downtown area of Apple Valley has over 200 stores and 60 restaurants. The shopping corridor here is a little over three miles long, making it a great place to stroll and browse. Families will enjoy spending the day at the Minnesota Zoo, where they can observe the 2,700 residents, including grizzly bears, sharks and wolves. If you’re looking for a big city alternative, check out this small community and see if it might be the location you’ve been looking for. It’s out of the loop, but still has plenty to offer.