With temperature in Texas blazing past 100 degrees daily, it's no wonder my thoughts turned to Door County, Wisconsin. Bounded by the waters of Green Bay and Lake Michigan, this peninsula offered a treasure trove of surprises when Larry and I visited several years ago. It could be your perfect summer getaway or a cool destination for a fall road trip
|Small towns and peaceful bay waters make an ideal retreat.|
|Charming Cana Island Lighthouse|
Climb the Cana Island Lighthouse tower. Built in 1869, you’ll have a stunning view of the windswept shore. Historic exhibits tell about storms and maritime dramas witnessed from the lighthouse near Baileys Harbor, one of the most photographed along the Great Lakes.
|Bike or hike on trails in the county's many parks.|
Explore the coast. Door County has 337 miles of shoreline, five state parks, and 19 county parks. Bike the Sunset Trail in popular Peninsula State Park, or hike on Eagle Trail where you can climb Eagle Tower for incredible views of limestone formations and caves carved by glacier water and erosion. Or visit Whitefish Dunes State Park with the highest sand dunes in Wisconsin.
|The explosion can easily catch you off guard!|
Go to an authentic fish boil. The traditional dinner experience—found only in Door County—features whitefish freshly caught by local fishermen and cooked outside over an open fire just as it was by early Scandinavian settlers. A spectacular ending to the cooking process involves a “boil-over” as the fire explodes in shooting flames to expel oils from the fish, which leaves it mild-tasting and delicious.
Get adventurous. For an active day, try zip lining through the woods. Or stay close to the ground on a Segway ride winding along wooded paths. Challenge yourself at one of the golf courses scattered throughout the peninsula.
|Zip lining is a fun activity for all ages.|
|Artists are attracted to and inspired by this region.|
|Cherry French toast--yummy!|
Sample everything cherry. Take a tour of the 60-year-old cherry orchard and cider mill at Lautenbach’s Orchard Country Winery and Market in the town of Fish Creek. See how the fruit is picked and packaged, sample pies hot from the oven, and then buy some scrumptious cherry jam, dried cherries, or cherry wines to take home.
|Fun family entertainment|
Savor tranquility. Stroll along the shore, soak up a scenic sunset, pick cherries in summer or apple in fall, taste award-winning wines, or ride the trolley. Shop small boutiques and purchase one-of-a-kind items for friends and family. Sample a double scoop at Wilson’s old time soda shop.
|You can't miss ice cream at Wilson's--it's a tradition.|
Photos by Larry and Beverly Burmeier