Door County Wisconsin - Visiting the Peninsula
Some places urge you to just kick back and relax, then parade a host of activities and events to compete with that same inactivity. But Door County in upper Wisconsin offers visitors a true kickback opportunity, as well as charming towns filled with restaurants, galleries, and shopping.
Reminiscent of Cape Cod, and the coastal towns of New England, the Peninsula offers beguiling villages along the waterside Route 42. These are the kind of places that make you want to stay and explore, and enjoy the sunset. The best way to experience the peninsula is probably to take Route 42 one way, and then Route 57 the other way, making plans to stay at a couple of nights, or more to take advantage of the courses and performances offered in the area. Although tiny villages dot both coasts, the larger ones with more amenities are on the east side of the peninsula.
LighthousesCana Island is a wonderful lighthouse. It was once a true island, but over time, the water disappeared and now there's a rocky path to the lighthouse. Visitors will need closed toe shoes to explore the lighthouse, but just walking along the beach is fascinating marine delight.
Lighthouse fans take note – each May there is a self-guided countywide tour of the mainland highhouses. There are also boat tours available. Contact the Door County Maritime Museum at 920 743-5958 or DCMM.org for more information. Get a lighthouse map at DoorCounty.com
State ParksPeninsula State Park features 6 miles of shoreline and gorgeous sweeping views. There’s also the Eagle Bluff lighthouse as well as all those wonderful outdoor activities. Whitefish Dunes State Park has the tallest dunes in Wisconsin, and Nicolet State Park is one of the smaller but has a lovely beach.
Performing ArtsBeginning as early as the 1930s, there has been performances in Door County. The Peninsula Players Theatre dates back to 1935 and has been doing summer stock ever since. Peninsula State Park has its on troupe providing original musical productions celebrating the stories of lumberjacks, fisherman, and other men and women who settled in the area. In addition there are free community concerts in the major villages. Sister Bay offers afternoon Concerts in the Park overlooking the water. Egg Harbor has its concerts in the park on Thursdays from 5PM to 6:30PM. Bring a blanket and enjoy. The Door Community Auditorium offers year-round programming for theatre, dance and music.
And MoreCooking and Craft Courses
The Clearing Folk School in Ellison Bay offers one and two day classes on art and crafts. Ellison Bay also have the Savory Spoon with cooking classes.
Real Drive-in Movie
DiningAs you would expect in a tourist area, there are lots of enticing places to eat. But two dining experiences stand out. Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant and Wisconsin Fish Boils.
Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant in Sister Bay Al’s is famous for the goats on the roof. Yes, you did read that correctly. Al was given a goat years ago, and apparently took quite a fancy to it. Over the years, others have joined and now there are several goats who live elsewhere but visit the roof of the restaurant every day in good weather. The roof, it should be noted, is planted with grass for a touch of authenticity, harkening back to Swedish sod roofs. It also helps the goats feel at home and the goats keep the sod trimmed reducing the need to mow the roof. Inside, people feel at home with the wonderful Swedish-themed decor and dining specialties. Gawk at the goats, then go inside and enjoy a taste of Sweden.
Wisconsin Fish Boil
Julie’s restaurant at the edge of Peninsula State Park is a local favorite with lovely views.
For more information contact Door County Visitor Bureau or call 1- 800-52-RELAX (973529)
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