A travel guide to Door County, WI with the best places, stunning beaches and pristine islands in Door County, Wisconsin
If you love the Midwest, you’ll love Door County, Wisconsin.
With its charming harbor towns and breathtaking bluffs along Lake Michigan’s edges, it’s no wonder why this is a top vacation spot for travelers looking to get away and explore nature.
Discover Door County’s wide range of activities such as camping in Peninsula State Park, kayaking along the rocky shoreline, or tasting local wines on an Island Orchard Cider tour; there really is something for everyone!
Let me help guide your journey around one of Wisconsin’s most popular travel destinations and explore the best things to do in Door County, Wisconsin.
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Table of Contents
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Accommodation in Door County Map
- Quaint Door County Cabin with Beach views
- Peace of Beach Door County Cabin
- Hidden Bear Cabin Egg Harbor Wisconsin
- Sand Beach Cottage
If you are planning a romantic getaway in Door County, the region is also home to some of the best adult-only resorts in Wisconsin.
Best Things to Do in Door County Wisconsin
1. Visit Cave Point County Park
One of the best things to do in Door County, Wisconsin is to visit Cave Point County Park! Cave Point consists of limestone cliffs facing Lake Michigan.
These caves weren’t formed overnight, but took millions of years! It’s nature’s artwork, stunning and beautiful, making it a perfect Wisconsin Vacation idea.
You also get to see splendid ice formations here in winter, some of which even enclose trees! You can enjoy the view with several cool things to do in Wisconsin in winter as mentioned below.
Here are some fun things to do in Cave Point County Park:
- Go kayaking! – Book tours here
- Cliff-diving (I love this part and the adrenaline rush it gives me!)
- Have a picnic
If you’re not up for any of these activities, you can just sit on a rock with your feet dipped in water and let it take all your stress away!
2. Explore Fish Creek by Segway
I went on my first Segway ride at Fish Creek, and it’s one of the most memorable experiences I had in Door County! If you’re looking for fun things to do in Door County, Wisconsin this should be on the top of your list!
I took a Fish Creek sunset tour that lasted for an hour.
Watching the beautiful sunset as it painted the sky with hues of red, yellow, and orange was an amazing experience!
3. Take a ferry to Washington Island
Washington Island is located just north of the Door Peninsula, about a 30-minute ferry ride away! The strait between Washington Island and the Door Peninsula is called “Death’s Door” owing to the large number of shipwrecks located in the area.
Washington Island is a beautiful, pristine island with a lot to offer. It’s easy to reach with the Washington Island ferry. Here are some fun things to do in Door County, Wisconsin on Washington Island:
- Explore Schoolhouse Beach: lined by thousands of tiny limestone pebbles, one of the few limestone pebble beaches in the world, and definitely one of the best beaches in Door County!
- Take in panoramic views of the island at Mountain Park Tower: a tall tower that you can climb via stairs. There are more than 180 steps! You get to see the whole island along with the surrounding lake!
- Island Stavkirke: a Lutheran Church with an impressive European architectural touch.
- Jacobsen Museum: contains fascinating Native American and shipwreck artifacts!
- Take a ferry to the nearby Rock Island: a 10-minute ferry ride away from Washington Island, and home to Wisconsin’s oldest lighthouse, the Rock Island Light.
4. Explore the Whitefish Dunes State Park
The Whitefish Dunes State Park faces Lake Michigan and has a beautiful shoreline.
If you want to know what to do in Door County for hikers, this park is a must-visit for you because it contains some of the best hikes in Door County.
Some of them are considered the best hiking trails in Wisconsin.
The red trail leads up to Old Baldy, which is the tallest sand dune in the park and gives great views of the park!
You can also rent one of the best romantic cabins in Wisconsin here and enjoy your vacation with your beloved one.
You can bring your pets along with you to the Park, but make sure they have a leash tied on. There’s a special area of the beach dedicated to pets!
The beach at Whitefish Dunes Sand Park is over a mile long and is one of the best beaches in Door County!
The Red Pines loop is another interesting hiking trail that’s lined by a lot of pine trees.
In the winter, the shoreline is beautiful with many ice formations. That’s why it’s one of the top things to do in Door County in the winter.
5. Take a picture at Eagle Bluff Lighthouse
Eagle Bluff Lighthouse is located in Peninsula State Park and is one of the best lighthouses in Wisconsin.
Visiting Eagle Bluff Lighthouse is one of the top things to see in Door County, Wisconsin for history buffs as it’s been here around since 1868.
This historical lighthouse is still furnished with some of the original furniture! It’s interesting to see how hard life was back in the 20th century.
The lighthouse was restored so it’s in great condition. It’s a picturesque lighthouse where you can take great photos!
Visiting Eagle Bluff is one of the best things to do in Door County in June as the weather allows you to see for miles along the coast.
However, the trail is also popular with families during spring break in Wisconsin as you can see everything in bloom without the heat of summer.
6. Explore the Peninsula State Park
Peninsula State Park is one of the best places to visit in Door County Wisconsin! It’s the third-largest state park in the state of Wisconsin. It’s open to pets as long as they’re wearing a leash.
Hiking or bicycling in Door County through the Park is the best way to explore it. Here are some interesting spots to visit in the park:
- Eagle Buff Lighthouse: One of the best lighthouses in Wisconsin.
- Northern Sky Theater: hosts family-friendly musical plays in the summer months.
- White Cedar Nature Center: contains a small-sized model of the Peninsula State Park and home to historic artifacts.
- Nicolet Beach and Horseshoe Island: one of the most scenic boat tours. Enjoy taking a stroll along Nicolet beach and head over to the nearby Horseshoe Island by taking a boat!
- Sunset Bike Trail: lets you witness stunning sceneries!
- Enjoy the golf Course: home to a scenic 18-hole golf course!
Of all the things to do in Door County Wisconsin, Peninsula State Park is a must-visit! No wonder that the area was a film location for some of the best movies set in Wisconsin.
If you are a runner, one of the best things to do in door county in May is the Door County Half Marathon & Nicolet Bay 5K. These are usually in the first week of May and run through part of Peninsula State Park.
7. Visit the Best Wineries in Door County Wisconsin
Did you know that there are plenty of wineries in Door County, Wisconsin? This makes the region a perfect destination for foodies and especially for wine lovers.
A visit to the wineries also one of the best romantic getaways in Wisconsin. Luckily, Door county also has some of the most romantic hotels in Wisconsin for you and your partner to unwind after a long day of wine tasting.
Here are some of the best wineries in Door County Wisconsin that you must visit:
- Door Peninsula Winery: the best winery in Door County peninsula! They offer free tastings of 7 wine samples so that you can pick your favorite.
- Stone’s Throw Winery: one of the best wineries in Door County. Although the wine tasting here is a bit expensive, it’s definitely worth the price, especially for the quantity. I love their selection of dry wines!
- Lautenbach’s Orchard Country Winery & Market: family-owned winery that has a beautiful attached orchard. They offer six free tasting samples!
- Simon Creek Vineyard & Winery: one of the best wineries in Door County! A beautiful winery with a lovely patio where you can relax, sip on wine, and enjoy the views!
These are just some of the best wineries in Door County. Make sure to give them a visit!
If you’re still looking for a quaint place to stay, have a look at my list of the best Airbnbs in Door County, Wisconsin.
8. Relax at the Best Beaches in Door County
Looking for the best things to do in Door County in summer? Look no further than the regions top notch beaches!
Door County is the perfect destination for a beach vacation. Here are some of the best beaches in Door County where you can just sit back and relax:
- Rock Island State Park: one of the beautiful beaches in Door County Wisconsin, but it’s not easy to get to! However, the beautiful and pristine beach is worth it.
- Schoolhouse Beach Park: one of the few limestone pebble beaches in the world! It’s beautiful and rather than being a typical beach with white sand, its shore is lined by hundreds of thousands of tiny pebbles. No doubt, Schoolhouse Beach is one of the best places in Door County and considered one of the best beaches in Wisconsin.
- Nicolet Beach: a lively and beautiful beach, and one of the best beaches in Door County Wisconsin. It’s located in Peninsula State Park which is one of the best state parks in Wisconsin.
- Sister Bay Beach: I love the positive vibes you get at this beach! Watch the sunset and relax by the beach. You can also go kayaking here!
- Egg Harbor Marina & Beach: great beach to chill, swim, and go fishing! It has many facilities available like restrooms and showers.
- Whitefish Dunes Beach: contains a separate portion that’s reserved as a dog beach so that you can bring your pet dogs here!
These were some of the best beaches in Door County Wisconsin. Many of them are very close to romantic, lakefront cabins. – Check the best lake cabins in Door County here
9. Attend the best fish boil in Door County
One of the most unique and weird things to do in Door County, Wisconsin is attend a fish boil.
Fish boiling refers to a method of cooking fish in which you boil water in a large pot on a fire and add the fish to the water. Red potatoes and salt are added.
The cook then throws some fuel into the fire, which causes the water to pour over as the flames rise high around the pot!
Some of the top family resorts in Wisconsin even host their own fish boils!
Here are some of the best fish boil in Door County Wisconsin for you to attend:
Old Post Office Restaurant
Old Post Office restaurant offers delicious fish boil in Door County! It’s located in Ephraim and offers a spectacular view of the Eagle Harbor.
White Gull Inn
White Gull Inn has the best fish boil in Door County! I loved their taste and serving style.
The Viking Grill and Lounge
The fish boil is served with a slice of cherry pie, coleslaw, onions and potatoes.
Pelletier’s Restaurant & Fish Boil
They offer non-fish options for those who don’t like fish! The fish is crisp and delicious, served with a side of cherry pie. It’s one of the best fish boil I’ve ever had!
10. Visit the Door County Maritime Museum
The Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay is home to many restored artifacts and traditional machinery. It has an amazing display of marine history.
The museum also contains a restored tugboat that’s over 100 years old! You can even take a tour of it. Moreover, you also get to see displays of shipwrecks, ship motors, lighthouses, and other interesting artifacts!
If you love museums or learning about maritime history, this is one of the best places to see in Door County.
11. Go fishing in Door County
One of the top things to do in Door County is to go fishing! Some of the best fishing spots in Door County include:
- Sturgeon Bay Canal
- Mink River Ellison Bay
- Clarke’s Lake
- Kangaroo Lake
Many of these lakes are considered as some of the best lakes In Wisconsin, where you can enjoy fishing as well as the beauty of nature.
And if you love lakes as much as I do, consider staying at one of the best lake resorts in Wisconsin.
12. Explore Green Bay
Green Bay is a fabulous city and easily one of my favorite places to go in Door County!
Whether you are in town for a packers’ football game or want to get pampered in one of the city’s numerous spas, you’ll love Green Bay!
Oh, and not to mention the countless restaurants you can find here!
Here are some of the top things to do in Green Bay:
- Explore the National Railroad Museum
- Visit the Green Bay Botanical Garden
- Check out The Automobile Gallery
- Have fun at the Bay Beach Amusement Park
If you plan on staying overnight, there are plenty of resorts in Green Bay for every budget.
13. Go Shopping in Door County
Door County is known for its wine, arts and crafts, stunning food, and fresh fruits. Here are some of the best places to go shopping in Door County:
- Jacksonport Cottage Gallery and Gifts: contains jewelry, crafts, clothes, collectibles, books, accessories, and art pieces!
- Koepsel’s Meadow Lane Antiques: great for antique shopping!
- J. Jeffrey Taylor-Jewelry Fine Art
- O’Meara’s Irish House
- Cappaert Contemporary Gallery: great for art and craft shopping!
14. Go Hiking in Door County
Hiking is the best way to explore Door County’s splendid natural beauty. Here are some of the best places to hike in Door County:
Peninsula State Park
The Eagle trail provides an adventurous and rather challenging hike as it takes you through rocky landscapes and steep descents. The Sunset bike trail is also spectacular and some of the best hiking in Northern Wisconsin!
Lake Michigan’s shore along Cave Point County Park and Whitefish Sand Dunes
The Red Hiking trail in Whitefish Sand Dunes is a long and splendid trail that takes you through the sand dunes to the Old Baldy. The black hiking trail in Cave Point connects it to the Whitefish Sand Dunes.
Thordarson Loop Trail, Rock Island State Park
The Thordarson Loop Trail circles Rock Island. It’s about 5 miles long and takes you through the beautiful shoreline. You can also spot the Pottawatomie Lighthouse on your way!
Newport State Park
If you’re looking for a longer hiking trail, head over to Newport State Park. The Hotz Loop in the park is 7 miles long and is one of the most popular hiking trails in the park.
Hiking is one of the most popular Door County activities! Have fun at these hiking trails.
In the winter, some of the trails in Door County also become some of the best snowmobile trails in Wisconsin!
15. Dine in Sister Bay
Sister Bay has some of the best restaurants in Door County. You have many dining options here. Some of the best places to eat in Door County, Sister Bay include:
- Grasse’s Grill
- Lure Restaurant
- Chop (an amazing steakhouse!)
- Carroll House Restaurant (offers the best breakfast in Door County!)
- Sister Bay Bowl
- Wild Tomato Wood-Fired Pizza and Grill (their wood-fired pizza is delicious!)
- Husby’s Food & Spirits
- Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant & Boutik (one of the best places to eat in Door County with an amazing ambiance!)
16. Go Kayaking in Door County
A kayak refers to a traditional canoe, usually designed for one or max two people. Kayaking is one of the best Door County attractions and it lets you explore interesting places!
Here are some of the best places to go kayaking in Door County:
- Peninsula State Park
- Cave Point
- Baileys Harbor: home to numerous shipwrecks! You can watch these shipwrecks as you kayak above them.
- Mink River: a beautiful kayaking destination where you can spot about 200 species of birds!
- Washington Island: Take a kayak ride around Washington Island to explore the shoreline of the island. You can also take a kayak from Washington Island to Rock Island, which is only 10-15 minutes away.
17. Do a Segway Tour in Door County
A Segway is a vehicle on which you stand on your two feet. It’s a single-capacity vehicle that you control through handlebars!
A Segway tour in Door County is the best way to discover and explore an area because it lets you observe things from up close. Moreover, it’s a fun and interesting experience!
Here are the best places for a Segway tour in Door County:
- Peninsula State Park
- Fish Creek
- Sturgeon Bay
- Bailey’s Harbor
18. Do a Bike Tour in Door County
If you’re looking for stuff to do in Door County outdoors, this area is a biker’s paradise, with endless biking trails and scenic views! No matter where you go, there’s always a beach or a pub nearby.
Cycle along the endless shoreline, observe beautiful orchards, and take in stunning scenery. Here are the best spots for a bike tour in Door County:
- Washington Island
- Sunset Bike Trail, Peninsula State Park
- Hotz Trail, Newport State Park
- Red Trail, Whitefish Dunes State Park
- Potawatomi State Park
Other than these areas, you can bike on virtually every road in Door County.
If you don’t want to do a tour, you can also head to one of the best Door County bike trails and explore the area on bike.
19. Play Golf in Door County
Playing golf is one of the best things to do in Door County in summer. Enjoy Door County’s fresh air and have a great time playing golf in the greenery!
Here are some of the best golf courses in Door County:
- Peninsula State Park Golf Course: an 18-hole golf course set in the beautiful Peninsula State Park.
- Bay Ridge Golf Course: a stunning 9-hole golf course surrounded by stunning flower gardens and fairways.
- Alpine Golf Door County: a 36-hole golf course with a practicing range, carts, and a bar. The Alpine Resort is also one of the best places to stay in Door County with stunning views of Egg Harbor.
- Horseshoe Bay Golf Club: an 18-hole private golf club in Door County.
- The Orchards at Egg Harbor: a stunning 18-hole golf course with beautiful orchards.
20. Go camping in Door County
Door County is a popular camping spot with a lot to offer: Beautiful scenery, stunning landscapes, pristine parks, diverse birdlife, and great camping facilities!
Here are some of the best spots to go camping in Door County:
- Peninsula State Park
- Aqualand Campground, Sister Bay
- Baileys Grove Campground, Baileys Harbor
- Monument Point Camping, Sturgeon Bay
- Egg Harbor Campground & RV Resort
- Potawatomi State Park
- Washington Island Campground
You can even rent an RV and do a road trip through Door County, which is one of the best Wisconsin road trips.
21. Visit the orchards of Door County
Door County is home to several orchards where you can book a tour and pick your own fruits. Anyone looking for what to see in Door County for families, this is a great kid friendly option!
It’s a fun and interesting experience where you get to see beautiful plantations and interact with nature up close. Here are some of the best orchards in Door County:
- Seaquist Orchards Farm Market: with over 1000 acres of land, this orchard produces apples (about 30 varieties), pears, tart cherries, and sweet cherries.
- Choice Orchards: once the largest producer of cherries in the world! You can pick apples here starting from the mid of September to late October, which makes October the best time to visit Door County.
- Lautenbach’s Orchard Country Winery and Market: They have a huge variety of apples!
22. Stop for some Cheese Curds at Renard’s Cheese Shop
There are two branches of Renard’s Cheese Shop, one is located at Sturgeon Bay and the other at Algoma.
Renard’s Cheese Shop is a family-owned business and the owners make the best, hand-crafted, delicious, high-quality, hygienic cheese!
Their Cheese Curds are delicious! So much so that I still remember their taste!
23. Eat out in the best restaurants in Door County
Wisconsin Door County has some of the best eateries. If you’re a foodie and love filling up your stomach while traveling, here are some of the best restaurants in Door County:
- Chives Door County: crab cakes, French onion soup, steaks, mussels, and salmon.
- Waterfront Restaurant: one of the best places to eat in Door County that gives a beautiful view of the sunset and offers patio seating. Their bestsellers are scallops, swordfish, lobster bisque, and shrimps.
- Alexander’s of Door County: steak, ravioli, French toast, “crème brûlée”, and seafood.
- Grasse’s Grill: one of the best Door County restaurants. It also offers the best breakfast in Door County. Their highlights are cherry pancakes, tacos, meatloaf, brisket sandwich, spinach, and artichoke dip
- The Cookery Restaurant and Wine Bar: another one that offers the best breakfast in Door County!
- The English Inn: beef wellington, fish fry, prime rib, clam chowder, and spinach salad.
- Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant & Boutik: delicious Swedish cuisine! The best dishes are Swedish meatballs, Swedish pancakes, and lingonberry pancakes.
24. Visit The Ridges Sanctuary
This 1,600-acre nature preserve in Bailey’s Harbor is one of the best places to visit in Door County for nature lovers and bird watchers.
Founded in 1937, the Ridges Sanctuary is dedicated to land preservation in Door Country. So it’s no wonder they pride themselves on the unique landscape within the park.
The Ridges Sanctuary is also a great option if you’re looking for romantic things to do in Door County, Wisconsin. This is due to their impressive collection of orchids. The sanctuary has at least 28 different species, most of which are native to Door County.
When in bloom the orchids are absolutely stunning!
25. Enjoy a drink at the best Door County Breweries
In addition to wineries, one of the popular door county attractions for adults is a visit to the region’s best breweries. In fact, Door County is home to some of Wisconsin’s best beer!
So if you’re wondering what is there to do in Door County, Wisconsin for foodies, or those looking for an adults-only day out, here are some of the best breweries in Door County:
- Shipwrecked Brewery: this area is seen its share of shipwrecks, and this historic inn turned pub has witnessed its fair share of them since 1882! Now it is proud to ONLY serve Door County brewed beers, and is responsible for 1,100 barrels of hand-crafted beers annually.
- One Barrel Brewing Company: this has one of the largest selections I’ve ever seen, and serves some of the best of Door County’s local beers. They also make delicious pizzas if you want to stay for a meal.
- Door County Brewery: a family-owned brewery that is responsible for some of my favorite local beers! Come try a few on tap, and then pick up a case of your favorite in a local store, where they come in cans with bright and fun designs.
So, what are you waiting for? Head over to Door County, WI, and have a great time!
Watch the video: best things to do in Door County, Wisconsin
Short FAQ about things to do in Door County, Wisconsin
What are things to do in Door County in the winter?
Kayaking, cliff-diving, hiking, rock-climbing, and having a picnic are the best winter activities in Door County.
What are things to do in Door County when it rains?
You can enjoy the Door Community Auditorium, Peninsula Players Theatre, and the Stone Silo Studios when it rains in Door County.
What are fun family things to do in Door County, Wisconsin?
You can enjoy musical plays in the summer months. Beach days and a night at the theater with your family are fun family things to do in Door County, WI.
Where is Door County, Wisconsin?
Door County is located in the state of Wisconsin, United States.
It’s in the eastern part of Wisconsin, surrounded by Lake Michigan on the north-eastern side and Green Bay on the western side.
What’s the best time to visit Door County, WI?
The best time to visit Door County Wisconsin is from September to October and June to August.
September – October: These months mark the fall season, which is full of colors and vividness! Perfect for a fall getaway in Wisconsin!
Door County Wisconsin looks spectacular during these months and has some of the best fall colors in Wisconsin.
Door County in September is beautiful as the colors are just starting to change and it isn’t yet too cold, the summer crowds are also gone.
June – August: This is one of the most popular times to visit because there are so many things to do in Door County in summer! It’s thus perfect when looking for weekend trips in Wisconsin. It may simply end up being one of the most memorable visits when it comes to these trips.
No matter when you visit, I recommend at least a short stay in one of the best cabins in Door County.
Hola! I am Paulina, a fervent travelette who crossed the Atlantic Ocean by Boat HitchHiking. On my blog, you’ll find all the tips to make the most of your holiday. Get ready to enjoy outdoor and sustainable travel like hiking, cycling or sailing. Let’s hit the road together!