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29 Wonderful Winter Getaways in Wisconsin

The ultimate list of where to go in Wisconsin in winter and things to do in Wisconsin during the holidays

Why limit your vacations only to summertime? If you travel Wisconsin, there’s plenty to see and do all year round, and winter is no exception.

In fact, all the amazing winter getaways in Wisconsin make it one of the best times of year to visit!

There’s a wide selection of fun activities exclusive to this coldest of seasons, like snow sports, ice fishing, and dog sledding!

It can be difficult to choose where to go in Wisconsin in winter as there are so many great options.

So I’ve done all the hard work and put together the best places to visit in Wisconsin during winter depending on your budget and what type of vacation you’re looking for!

Top photo shows a snowy highway. Both bottoms photos are in the field with trees and snow.
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Overview: Top 5 Winter Getaways in Wisconsin

Romantic Winter Getaways in Wisconsin

1. Stay in a romantic resort in Northern Wisconsin

weekend winter getaways in wisconsin, lake side view of country house resort

Winter is a wonderful time to take a moment away from the hustle and bustle of daily life and make time just for yourself and your significant other.

Romantic winter cabin getaways are the perfect way to disconnect from the rest of the world and reconnect with each other.

Forget about worries and stress for a couple of days and enjoy a romantic getaway just for the two of you in beautiful northern Wisconsin!

Winter cabins in Wisconsin aren’t the only way to spend a quiet holiday.

This part of the state offers plenty of quiet winter resorts Wisconsin has to offer where you can hide away together, surrounded by gorgeous lakes and woodland.

Popular hiking destinations in the summer, these resorts are usually much quieter in winter, affording you some much-needed privacy.

Where to stay:

The Country House Resort – Located in the famously beautiful Door County, the resort is hidden away in the village of Sister Bay, surrounded by 27 acres of woodland.

Door County in winter is absolutely magical, and there are plenty of opportunities for taking walks together and enjoying the beautiful views of Sister Bay along the private shoreline.

The grounds around the resort are filled with secluded, romantic spots, featuring flower arrangements and fountains.

This is one of the best resorts in Door County for a romantic getaway and one of the most romantic hotels in Wisconsin.

It’s perfect if you’re looking for romantic things to do in Door County in February to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

The resort only accommodates adults and teens over the age of 13, in an effort to ensure a quiet and peaceful atmosphere for couples looking to take a break together. – Check rates here

2. Book a spa getaway in Wisconsin

Relaxation and romantic winter getaways, towels laid out for a massage

If you’re looking for the perfect romantic winter retreat, Wisconsin has some amazing spa packages for couples.

You can truly pamper yourself and your significant other by picking one of the best spa resorts in Wisconsin for your getaway!

Spas are a great winter-time alternative to traditional vacations since the weather outside has no effect on your plans and your enjoyment of the stay.

Whether it’s -20°C and snowy outside or not, spa treatments are always available – and they’re sure to help you relax and bond with your partner during your romantic winter getaways in Wisconsin.

Where to stay:

Delton Grand Resort and Spa – Spa getaways in Wisconsin don’t get much better than this. Delton Grand is a condominium resort – meaning you’ll have a whole condo to yourselves during your stay, ensuring complete privacy and comfort.

The on-site Rhapsody Spa offers a broad range of treatments for both of you, with package options available.

In addition to the dedicated spa building, the resort also has heated indoor pools and a hot tub you can use. – Check prices here

Alternatively, try The Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee. It has its own on-site spa and you and your partner can treat yourselves to pure luxury at one of the most romantic hotels in Milwaukee.

Sometimes you can also find some good post-Christmas deals, making it one of the best things to do in Milwaukee in January to treat yourself – Check prices here

3. Visit Elkhart Lake

winter weekend getaways in Wisconsin, Elkhart lake at sunset

Elkhart Lake is a charming village in Sheboygan County, eastern Wisconsin, surrounded by scenic parks and wildlife areas.

Situated just a two-hour drive from Madison, it’s the perfect spot for couples looking to relax in a cozy atmosphere and a popular choice for weekend getaways in Wisconsin.

Whether you’re looking for outdoor activities for couples or you simply want to get away from busy city life, Elkhart Lake won’t let you down!

Explore the village together to find quaint cafes and unique shopping opportunities – including authentic vintage food and wine shops.

For a more active take on your romantic getaways in Wisconsin, enjoy snow-shoeing, wagon rides, and long walks along the shore of the lake.

If you visit around Christmas time, don’t miss the Christmas in the Square event – which transforms the village into a picturesque winter wonderland.

Elkhart Lake also has one of the best Christmas markets in Wisconsin.

Where to stay:

The Esker Ridge Chalet – There are plenty of romantic cabins in Wisconsin to choose from, and this small chalet is sure to meet your expectations.

It’s far away enough from the town to provide a secluded couples’ retreat and create a feeling of complete privacy, but also close enough to ensure the village is well within walking distance.

The chalet is surrounded by scenic woodland, ideal for romantic evening walks together in the snow.

It accommodates two guests only, so there won’t be any other visitors nearby to disturb your romantic getaway. – Check rates here

You can also check out my guide on the best hotels in Sheboygan if you’d rather stay in the nearby city.

4. Do a weekend getaway to Lake Geneva

winter getaways for couples in Wisconsin, cozy room in a cabin in Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva is one of Wisconsin’s most enticing resort towns, with plenty of winter activities for both couples and families.

It’s perfect for a romantic weekend away but is also one of the best day trips from Milwaukee in winter.

As a fun-filled town with an easy-going vibe, Lake Geneva is the site of some of the best winter weekend getaways in Wisconsin.

Your romantic getaway to Lake Geneva in winter could include visiting one of the many spas in the area, enjoying winter sports together, taking long walks along the shore, and warming up next to a crackling fireplace.

The Shore Path is open year-round and is one of the best Southern Wisconsin hiking trails for winter excursions.

There are even more things to do in Lake Geneva in December, as the town treats visitors to Christmas-themed attractions.

Some of the best things to do in Lake Geneva include illuminated cruises of the lake, unique shopping experiences, Christmas dinners, and other fun holiday events.

Winter is also the perfect time to plan romantic getaways in Lake Geneva, and there are lots of cozy cabins for couples.

Where to stay:

Cozy Cottages in Lake Geneva – Choosing where to stay in Lake Geneva can get complicated. As a resort town, it’s filled with great accommodation options to suit everyone’s taste.

For romantic weekend getaways in Wisconsin, consider a cozy cottage for just the two of you.

The bungalow is part of a bed & breakfast, combining the privacy of having the place to yourselves with the comfort of complimentary breakfasts and a wine and cheese welcome.

Each bungalow features a huge bed and a spa tub, so you might end up just not wanting to leave the cottage at all! – Check prices here

5. Stay in a romantic cabin in Bayfield

Wisconsin romantic getaways, White tree and snow field in Bayfield

The small town of Bayfield is the access point for the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore and one of the best spots for winter cabin rentals in Wisconsin.

Bayfield’s location and surrounding landscapes make it one of the most scenic romantic cabin getaways in Wisconsin.

Rent a cozy cabin just for the two of you, spend the evenings wrapped up together in a warm blanket, and the days exploring everything the Apostle Islands in winter have to offer.

You can take the ice road to Madeline Island, see the incredible ice caves, and take in the amazing views of the frozen Lake Superior.

For more active couples’ fun, go dog sledding at Wolfsong Adventures, enjoy country skiing at Mt. Ashwabay, or take on one of the many snowshoeing and hiking trails in the area.

Where to stay:

Boulderridge Treehouse – Make your cabin getaways in Wisconsin extra special by staying in a cabin that’s also a treehouse!

Situated on secure stilts 12 feet above the ground, the cabin features a queen bed in a quaint loft area, a large deck, and a gas fireplace for cozy evenings together.

The interior of the house is just as unique as its construction, with natural elements woven into the design such as genuine driftwood railings and a wall featuring stones collected from Lake Superior.

The ideal place to make some romantic memories together! – Check rates here

6. Board a Snow Train 

romantic winter getaways wisconsin, snow train in winter going over a bridge

One of the most unique winter getaways in Wisconsin is riding a snow train!

The snow trains are amazing for winter getaways for couples in Wisconsin as they are intimate and enchanting.

There are several options for snow trains, but the most famous is the Great Northern Railroad. This track is over 100 years old and still going strong!

While the trains are great for couples, they’re perfect for families too.

If you are also looking for Wisconsin winter family getaways, check out the East Troy Electric Railroad.

This one only runs in December, but does Christmas-themed excursions, which are a lot of fun for kids.

So what are you waiting for? Hop a ride and see the fairytale Wisconsin landscape from the warm comfort of the train!

Where to stay

On the train of course! It offers a few options, including a super romantic overnight bed and breakfast option.

Book a night on the Great Northern Railroad!

Winter getaways in Wisconsin for families

7. Stay on Lower Kaubashine Lake in Hazelhurst

Winter getaways in Wisconsin for families, inside view of Birchwood Cabin at Black’s Cliff Resort

Lower Kaubashine Lake is a hidden gem of a winter destination for families, with tons of outdoor activities to enjoy and scenic landscapes to take in.

There is a range of hiking, snow-shoeing, and skiing opportunities in the area, so this winter getaway is best suited for active families who enjoy outdoor fun in the snow.

The nearby Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest features several groomed skiing trails, perfect for exploring the local snow-covered woodland.

For more winter fun, head to the Minocqua Winter Park, just 10 miles away, for snow tubing, ice skating, and over 50 miles of cross-country skiing trails.

Another one of the best things to do in Minocqua, especially for kids, is the Northwoods Zipline Adventure Tours, only 4.5 miles from Lower Kaubashine Lake.

Where to stay:

Birchwood Cabin at Black’s Cliff Resort – This two-bedroom cabin is part of a large lakeside resort, offering winter cabin rentals in Wisconsin with views of the lake and the chance to warm up by an antique wood fireplace.

The quaint, charming cabin features two bedrooms and one bath, accommodating four guests.

When the weather is right, the resort clears a section of the Lower Kaubashine Lake, creating an awesome natural ice rink for skating and ice hockey – so there’s no risk of the kids getting bored in the evenings!  – Check prices here

8. Go Snow tubing in Sunburst

best Wisconsin snow tubing resorts, snowy field with Snow tubing in Sunburst

If you’re looking for new things to do in Milwaukee in winter, The Sunburst Winter Sports Park in Kewaskum will be a great choice.

It’s located only a 45-minute drive from the city – making it the ideal place for a quick family winter getaway.

Sunburst is home to one of the largest snow tubing parks not just in Wisconsin, but in all of the USA!

This means tons of unmissable fun for the whole family, suitable even for the youngest winter adventurers.

Tubing at Sunburst costs $20 for two hours during weekends or for four hours on weekdays.

It’s not the only attraction at the sports park, either. Sunburst also offers 11 skiing and snowboarding runs and two terrain parks, so every member of your family will have access to something they enjoy!

Where to stay:

Waterfront Cottage on Big Cedar Lake – This spacious cottage is located in West Bend, about 10 miles from Sunburst.

With three large bedrooms and two bathrooms, it accommodates six guests.

Your family will feel right at home here, thanks to the welcoming, cozy interior and all necessary amenities, including an indoor fireplace and a dryer. – Check rates here

9. Visit an indoor waterpark in Wisconsin Dells

winter family getaways in wisconsin, Bumper boats in indoor waterpar

If your family enjoys waterparks, there’s no better place to visit than Wisconsin Dells – the world’s Waterpark Capital.

The city features over twenty different parks, including Wisconsin’s largest indoor waterpark; the Kalahari Resorts, boasting an impressive 125,000 square feet!

Even in the midst of the coldest Wisconsin winter, the waterparks are an excellent option for having indoor fun together with the family, regardless of the weather outside.

As an added bonus, Wisconsin Dells in winter is the quieter season, so the waterparks are not so crowded. Also, a great idea when planning a romantic getaway to Wisconsin Dells!

If you want to avoid the crowds, this is one of my favorite things to do in Wisconsin Dells in January.

Where to stay:

Glacier Canyon Condo – This two-bedroom, two-bathroom luxury condo sleeps eight.

With this booking, your family gets complimentary access to three indoor waterparks, making it one of the best Airbnbs in Wisconsin Dells for waterpark enthusiasts.

And there is no shortage of places to stay in Wisconsin Dells in Winter, many of these places offering free entrance to the water parks for guests.

You can reach the waterparks through indoor walkways, without having to step outside, which is especially convenient in the winter. No need to worry about the kids catching a cold! – Check prices here

10. Go snowmobiling in Eagle River

best winter activities in Wisconsin, snowmobiling in Eagle River

If you haven’t tried snowmobiling yet, here’s your chance because the snowmobile trails in Wisconsin are amazing!

The whole family will love this activity, and Wisconsin’s snowy winters and varied terrain provide the perfect conditions for motor sled fun.

Eagle River in Wisconsin has been officially named the Snowmobile Capital of the World, so there’s literally no better place to get your family started on a snowmobiling adventure.

The area features a massive 500 miles of groomed trails, surrounded by a scenic wooded landscape.

If you want to take a break from riding a snowmobile, visit Eagle River’s World Snowmobile Headquarters, where the whole family can find out more about the history of the sport.

Where to stay:

Eagle River Paradise on the Water – This cottage is just as beautiful on the outside as it is on the inside, combining a cozy feel with a spacious interior that includes an indoor fireplace.

Sleeping eight, it features four bedrooms and a spacious, bright living area, providing views of the river from every room.

The cottage is located in a wooded area just a few minutes walk from downtown Eagle River and snowmobile rentals, so you won’t have to go far to get your family started on the trails! – Check prices here

11. Go skating in Titletown District, Green Bay

winter getaways in wisconsin for families, kids ice skating

Titletown is a new community development in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

In the winter, local businesses and resorts provide plenty of outdoor attractions for families, including a large ice skating rink.

Whether your family is new to skating or you’ve enjoyed it together before, Titletown’s rink is sure to meet your expectations.

Skating makes for active and affordable family fun, with rentals at Titletown costing less than $10.

As an added attraction, Titletown offers ice bike rentals, combining cycling with ice skating. For the non-skaters in your family, there are also snow tubing opportunities in Titletown.

Where to stay:

Quaint Cottage in Titletown – Situated in a quiet area of Titletown that’s nonetheless close to the ice rink and other attractions, the cottage sleeps five guests.

It’s fully equipped with everything you could need during your stay, including a fully stocked kitchen.

Alongside the cozy, eclectic main building, there’s also a separate game room featuring a large TV, a foosball table, and a bar area. – Check rates here

Check out my guide on the best hotels and resorts in Green Bay for more great options for every budget.

12. Go dog sledding in Bayfield

places to visit in wisconsin in winter, dog sledding in Ice fields

Now for one of the most exciting things to do in Wisconsin in winter!

For a truly unforgettable winter experience, head to Wolfsong Adventures in Mushing, near the town of Bayfield in northern Wisconsin.

There, the whole family can take part in a dog sledding adventure!

In one of the best winter weekend getaways Wisconsin has to offer, you can either learn to drive your own team of trained Siberian Huskies, or simply go along for a ride with an experienced guide.

A Morning Dog Sledding Adventure lasts four hours, including time to get to know the dogs and a complimentary hot lunch. Alternatively, you can go for a shorter 2.5-hour afternoon trip.

Either way, you’re in for one of the most amazing winter getaways in Wisconsin!

Where to stay:

Residence in Bayfield – With this rental, you and your family will have an entire apartment to yourselves.

Sleeping four, this spacious accommodation measures 1500 sq ft, with two bedrooms and one bathroom.

There is also a sauna and a private deck with incredible views of Lake Superior!

The apartment is located in Bayfield, a short walk away from shops and restaurants. Wolfsong Adventures is just over 13 miles away. – Check prices here

13. Attend Merrill Winterfest to see sled dog races

Wisconsin winter activities sled dog racing in ice field

Keeping with the canine theme of the previous entry, Wisconsin is also home to sled dog races, with the most popular event taking place in Merrill, Lincoln County.

Attending the annual Merrill Winterfest Sled Dog Race will be fun for the whole family, as the weekend-long event features hundreds of contestants to cheer on!

Interestingly, Merrill Ice Drags are held around the same time (in January). The car races on ice make for an awesome spectator sport.

Where to stay:

Cozy Wood Cabin – The unassuming exterior of this two-bedroom house hides a spacious, cozy interior with a homely feeling.

The house sleeps 12 and is located on Lake Alexander near Merrill.

As well as the Winterfest, there are many other winter attractions in the area – such as snowmobile trails and skiing/snowboarding opportunities. – Check rates here

14. Ice Skating at The Edgewater 

best wisconsin winter family getaways, three kids having fun ice skating

If you are looking for amazing Wisconsin winter vacation ideas for kids, you can’t beat ice skating at The Edgewater.

The rink is located outside of The Edgewater and overlooks Lake Mendota for magical views while you skate.

When it opens for the season, everyone is welcome! It’s one of the top winter getaways in Wisconsin for families and couples.

In fact, it can be one of the most romantic winter getaways Wisconsin has to offer if you love ice skating.

For kids, the ice rink is a lot of fun but isn’t too big, so they won’t get overwhelmed if it’s their first-time ice skating.

Where to stay:

The Edgewater – Don’t just skate at the Edgewater, stay here too!

Guests can treat themselves to relaxing spa packages, fine dining, and luxury rooms with lakeside views over Lake Mendota.

The hotel is ideal for romantic weekend getaways in Wisconsin in winter as they have great spa treatments for couples.

Live evening entertaining is also available in the bar, so you can cuddle up and enjoy the show! – Check rates here

15. Winter in Madison

winter weekend getaways wisconsin, madison in winter

Once the lake freezes over, the fun can begin as winter in Madison, WI is full of festive surprises and some of the best winter events in Wisconsin.

As mentioned previously, ice skating is one of the top things to do in Wisconsin in the winter, and The Edgewater sits right on Lake Mendota where you can ice skate in style.

Wisconsin winter family getaways wouldn’t be complete without some sledding. Head down to southwest Elver Park and take advantage of the slopes of the big hill there.

If you want to explore the landscape on foot, the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum has winter hiking trails that cover 20 miles of gardens, wetlands, prairies, and woodlands.

Looking for Wisconsin winter vacation ideas that are indoors where it’s warm?

Well, lots of the best things to do in Madison, Wisconsin during the winter are inside!

There are plenty of museums in Madison for all the family to enjoy, including the Wisconsin Historical Museum, Madison Children’s Museum, and even the National Mustard Museum, with 6,000 different flavors available.

You can also visit one of the best Christmas tree farms in Wisconsin nearby and choose and cut your own tree!

Where to stay:

Madison Concourse Hotel – Whether you’re bringing the kids or you just bring your partner on your winter getaways in Wisconsin, the Madison Concourse Hotel will have everything you might need or want for an overnight stay.

Along with free wi-fi and large flatscreen TVs, you can make use of their large indoor pool, sauna, and fitness center.

There’s an on-site restaurant, complete with adjoining Starbucks, and guests can enjoy cocktails and appetizers at The Bar, the Concourse Hotel’s on-site lounge.

The spacious bathrooms and modern decor of the dining areas will add a touch of class to your Wisconsin winter vacation. – Check rates here

Winter Getaways for Outdoor Lovers

16. Visit the Ice Caves of Apostle Islands

Winter Getaways for Outdoor Lovers, Apostle Islands Ice Caves on frozen Lake Superior, Wisconsin

The red sandstone sea caves are one of the coolest things to do on the Apostle Islands in Northern Wisconsin.

They are a popular kayaking destination and a gorgeous sight in the summer. But did you know that in the winter, they turn into an even more spectacular sight?

Given the right conditions (particularly temperature and wind direction), the inner walls and ceilings of the caves become covered in ice formations during the winter.

Visiting the ice caves is a genuinely unforgettable, surreal experience.

Don’t forget to look down; you should be able to see the bottom of the lake through the frozen water beneath your feet!

Getting to the ice caves is an adventure in itself, as it requires a hike over the top of the frozen Lake Superior.

The trail is not long (measuring about a mile) but it’s certainly a unique experience to walk over the largest freshwater lake in the world.

The trail for the ice caves starts at Meyers Beach, 4 miles from the town of Cornucopia and 18 miles from Bayfield.

Before heading out to Apostle Islands in the winter, check the current weather conditions.

These have to be closely monitored for obvious reasons, and park rangers only allow visitors to hike to the caves when it is safe to do so.

As you’ve probably guessed, the colder the weather, the better the chances that the trail will be open.

Even if you arrive in Apostle Islands to find that the ice caves are closed, there are still plenty of scenic, challenging hiking and snowshoe trails on the islands.

While you’re in the area, be sure to check out the Devil’s Island Lighthouse, one of the best Wisconsin lighthouses!

Where to stay:

The Wooden Chalet – This lakefront cabin is near the small town of Cornucopia. So, as close to the caves as you can get!

The Airbnb listing is 1.29 acres, 150 feet of Wisconsin River frontage, and a well-equipped, large abode to spread out in.

Several hiking trails start nearby. So, if you’re planning a longer, active winter holiday in Apostle Islands, this chaletl will be a great accommodation choice for trips around the area. – Check availability here

17. Winter Camping in Wisconsin

cheap wisconsin winter getaways, a pitched tent in the snowy wilderness

For camping enthusiasts ready for the ultimate challenge, winter camping in Wisconsin is sure to provide plenty of excitement!

With largely unpredictable weather, plenty of snow, and nighttime temperatures often dropping below -20°C (-4°F) in January, Wisconsin winters will really test your skills.

The Peninsula State Park in Door County is another popular winter camping spot, with several campsites available year-round.

The Daisy Field Campsite in Potawatomi State Park is definitely the best spot for winter camping in Door County, and one of my favorite things to do in Sturgeon Bay in winter.

If you enjoy winter hiking, you’ll find some of the best hikes in Door County here, as well.

Some of these include facilities such as fire pits and electricity access, and there are suitable spots for both tents and RVs.

Camping is one of the best cheap Wisconsin winter getaways, but it’s also just a lot of fun and can be very exhilarating.

Where to stay:

Creekside Cottage – Before or after heading out into the State Park for some winter camping, you might need a rest at a nearby Airbnb.

This cottage is conveniently located right on the border of Peninsula State Park, close to the trails and campgrounds.

The cottage sleeps six, featuring two bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, so it’s a great choice both for couples and larger groups.

It’s close to the town of Fish Creek, where you can stock up on essentials before embarking on your winter camping adventure in Wisconsin. – Check rates here

18. Go skiing at Granite Peak

Winter family getaways in wisconsin, View of Granite Peak Ski Resort, Rib Mountain

Granite Peak is one of the most popular ski resorts in Wisconsin, in addition to being the largest. So, there’s no better place to hit the slopes!

To reach Granite Peak, head to the city of Wausau in Marathon County. Winter sports enthusiasts have 55 trails to enjoy on 200 acres, with an impressive 700 ft vertical drop.

There are also four terrain parks, as well as night skiing, and the option to rent equipment and book lessons for any level of ability.

Where to stay:

The Ski Chalet – This gorgeous, unusual chalet combines a historic exterior with tasteful, modern decor on the inside.

Outfitted with everything you’ll need during your skiing holiday in Wisconsin, it’s also close to the city of Wausau with its excellent restaurants and plentiful shops.

The house can accommodate eight guests in its four bedrooms, So, bring the whole family along! – Check rates here

19. Do a cross-country ski trail

where to go in wisconsin in winter, young girl cross-country skiing

Wisconsin’s snowy winters and varied, post-glacial terrain make it an excellent destination for cross-country skiing.

Black River State Forest is one of the most popular choices, boasting almost 24 miles of trails groomed for both classic and skate cross-country skiing.

The trails vary in difficulty and include some beginner runs. There are seven loop trails at Black River, with well-designed connector paths.

The area is outfitted with two large parking areas and several shelters along the way.

Where to stay:

Home Away From Home – This spacious, homely Airbnb is located in the village of Warrens – only around 10 miles from the main cross-country ski trailhead at Smerkar Lot.

The house features three bedrooms and can comfortably accommodate up to ten guests, so it’s a great choice especially if you’re hitting the trails as a larger group.

Alongside the 1400 sq ft house, you’ll also get exclusive use of a large backyard with a fire pit, complete with complimentary firewood. – Check rates here

20. Visit frozen waterfalls

Wonderful Winter Getaways in Wisconsin, View of frozen waterfalls

Thanks to its unusual terrain formations left behind by the retreating glacier, Wisconsin is home to a surprising number of waterfalls and rapids.

Though they’re a sight to behold any time of year, they can be particularly spectacular in winter.

Given that temperatures have been consistently low enough, there’s a high likelihood that smaller waterfalls will freeze completely!

Seeing the resulting ice formations makes for a truly unique experience, and hiking to some of the falls can be a fun challenge in the winter and a new twist on winter vacations in Wisconsin.

Copper Falls State Park in northern Wisconsin is a great starting point for this activity, owing to the high concentration of waterfalls and other ice formations in the area.

The park features 17 miles of hiking trails leading to three large waterfalls (Copper Falls, Brownstone, and Red Granite) as well as a series of smaller water features.

Nearby, you’ll also find Morgan Falls and Potato Falls, both well worth a visit!

Where to stay:

Lakefront Log Home – This beautiful log cabin is in a remote wooded area ideal for nature- and outdoor lovers, close to Copper Falls State Park.

For shopping and restaurants, you can head to the nearby town of Mellen, just a few minutes drive away.

The cabin features three bedrooms for eight guests, with a huge bath, a spacious deck, and a large backyard.

The cozy living area features an indoor fireplace, perfect for warming up after a day of hiking. – Check prices here

21. Snowboarding in Cascade Mountain

best skiing resorts in wisconsin, ski lift taking people up the mountain

If you’re a fan of snowboarding, head to Wisconsin to hit the slopes this winter!

Cascade Mountain near Portage is one of the best winter resorts in Wisconsin, featuring a 460 ft vertical drop and 8.7 miles of slopes serviced by ten lifts.

It’s a great option for snowboarders of any level, featuring a total of 47 runs suitable for beginners, intermediates, and experts. It’s also one of the most popular spots for skiing in Wisconsin Dells.

As with most other Wisconsin winter resorts, night snowboarding and snow tubing are also available, and the prices are highly affordable, with an 8-hour flex ticket costing around $70.

Where to stay:

Portage 2Bed APT – This apartment is situated in the town of Portage, a few minutes drive away from Cascade Mountain and a short walk from restaurants and shops.

It features two bedrooms for four guests, with very modern decor and a spacious interior.

With exclusive access to the entire apartment and free parking on the premises, you’ll have plenty of freedom and flexibility. – Check rates here

22. Snowshoeing in Peninsula State Park

Wisconsin winter family getaways, Family Snowshoeing in Peninsula State Park

Wisconsin’s Door County is famously scenic, drawing in tourists and adventures year-round.

In the winter, it’s a particularly enticing destination for snowshoeing, with Peninsula State Park offering several miles of trails winding through the gorgeous, snow-covered forest.

Depending on the conditions, the trails are mostly easy, leading through relatively flat terrain but offering unparalleled views of the bay.

Trips to Peninsula State Park make for excellent Wisconsin winter getaways for couples, too!

Where to stay:

Cabin in Ephraim – This small, charming cabin is located in the town of Ephraim, on the outskirts of Peninsula State Park.

It strikes a great balance between putting you in close proximity to shops and restaurants and being close to the park and its snowshoeing trails.

The cozy cabin sleeps four and has a warm, homely decor, a compact kitchen area, and all of the necessary amenities for a relaxing stay. One of the best Door County Airbnbs. – Check prices here

23. Snowshoe Nine Mile 

Places to visit in wisconsin in winter, man snowshoeing in the winter

Snowshoeing through Wisconsin during winter is a magical experience and fun experience for active couples or families.

One of the best places to go in Wisconsin in the winter for snowshoeing is the Nine Mile track near Wausau.

During the rest of the year, Nine Mile is one of the top mountain bike trails in Wisconsin, but from late November to early March, it’s perfect for a winter getaway in Wisconsin.

Nine Mile has 6.7 miles worth of snowshoe trails that traverse through beautiful Marathon County, perfect for a day out in the snow.

If you live in the area, annual passes are also available so you can make it one of your regular winter getaways in Wisconsin.

Where to stay:

Wausau Country Getaway – This cozy cabin is perfect for a Wisconsin winter vacation as it is both secluded and well-connected to nearby Wausau.

The cabin sleeps up to 12 so works for the whole family or a group of friends, but is also ideal for a romantic getaway for two.

The rental is near snowmobile and snowshoeing trails, as well as nearby pond hockey. – Check rates here

24. Ice Fishing in Hayward

best wisconsin winter vacation ideas, ice fishing poles on a frozen lake

Fishing enthusiasts have likely already heard of Lake Hayward in Sawyer County, Wisconsin.

The lake has something of a reputation for being a fishing favorite, with plenty of Pike, Bluegills, and Crappies.

In the winter, outdoor adventurers can enjoy ice fishing on the lake, preferably with an experienced guide, who can show you the best fishing spots and ensure everybody’s safety on ice.

There are plenty of ice fishing guide services in the area, with experts who’ll make sure you won’t be leaving empty-handed.

There are other lakes in the vicinity, so you can try your luck in several locations during a single trip.

While in Hayward, don’t forget to visit the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame!

Where to stay:

Log Cabin in Hayward – Complete your ice fishing trip with a stay in a rustic log cabin in the woods.

This particular Airbnb sleeps four and features a kitchenette (where you can prepare your freshly caught dinner!) and, like all of the best cabins in Wisconsin, a fire pit.

The lake, hiking trailheads, and the town are all a short walk away, so you can relax and explore the area during your stay. – Check prices here

25. Ice Fish Lake Winnebago 

best places to visit in wisconsin during winter, pier leading into Lake Winnebago at sunset

Another amazing ice-fishing destination if you’re visiting Wisconsin in the winter is Lake Winnebago.

Ice fishing is easily one of the most fun and unique winter weekend getaways Wisconsin has to offer.

The lake has several species of fish to try and catch: sturgeon, perch, white bass, and walleye. The sturgeon population here is considered one of the best in the world.

It’s a great winter activity, and a fun way to meet new people because everyone is very friendly out on the ice.

Lake Winnebago is the largest inland lake in Wisconsin, so don’t worry if you don’t know what you’re doing because you’re bound to meet some fellow ice fishers to show you the ropes.

Whether you’re new to face fishing or experienced, there’s no question that Lake Winnebago is one of the best places to visit in Wisconsin during winter.

It is one of the best lakes in Wisconsin, especially for a winter break, and within close distance to cities like Oshkosh and Appleton.

If you have time, make time to see all the cool things to do in Appleton, some of which are perfect for winter. There are also some fun seasonal things to do in Oshkosh, WI.

Where to stay:

Scenic Lake Winnebago Home – This beautiful lakeside home is the perfect place for a winter getaway in Wisconsin if you love ice fishing or snowmobiling.

A great snowmobile trail runs very nearby, and ice fishing is available on the lake that the house sits on, you’ll even see people setting up in the mornings.

Guests will have access to a private dock, a tiki bar, and their own campfire if you’re willing to brave the outdoors to get it going.

The property has stunning views over the lake and, a large, comfy living space to hang out in the evenings, as well as a large kitchen. – Check rates here

26. Washington Island

weekend trips in Wisconsin winter, View of stone pebble beach with clear turquoise seawater sitting calmly with tree-covered islet area in the background

Heading off of the mainland might seem like some unexpected winter fun in Wisconsin, but this island location has a treasure trove of fun activities and beauty spots.

From the geological marvel of the limestone rocks of Schoolhouse Beach to the sprawling and vibrant lavender farms, Washington Island is one of the most beautiful places in Wisconsin in winter.

Visitors here can take a full open-air tour of the island on the Cherry Train, with a tour guide introducing you to a wide variety of sights and areas of interest.

Fans of history and architecture should definitely check out Stavkirke Church, a Lutheran chapel built from wood in the distinctive style of Norwegian churches of 1100 C.E.

When thinking of ideas for weekend trips in Wisconsin winter is no obstacle for Washington Island!

Active skiers should make their way to the Jackson Harbor Ridges State Natural Area to enjoy 70 acres full of nature trails.

Afterward, head over to the Mosling Recreation Center for a relaxing soak in one of their hot tubs!

Where to stay:

Insta-worthy Waterfront Home – Options for accommodation on Washington Island itself can be limited, but here’s a place just 10 10-minute drive from the Washington Island Ferry Line.

Here you’ll be able to enjoy your Wisconsin winter weekend getaways with comforts both indoors and outdoors.

Take your mind off the cold with a soak in the six-person outdoor hot tub, complete with a gorgeous view of the water!

Inside you’ll find a large stone fireplace that’s perfect for curling up in front of with a book and a glass of mulled wine.

There’s also a huge kitchen area for making large meals for friends and family, or for cooking up something just for two – one of the most romantic things to do in Wisconsin in winter! – Check rates here

27. Vilas County

Best winter activities in Wisconsin, has to offer, several people hiking in winter along path lined with giant pine trees under bright blue sky

Anyone who enjoys hiking should make their way up north to see one of the best places to visit in winter in Wisconsin – Vilas County.

This is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, with a huge amount of hiking trails that cover almost the whole of the area.

You’ll be spoilt for choices of picturesque lakes to wander around on your winter vacation in Wisconsin!

There are plenty of indoor activities as well, especially in places like Eagle River.

Take in some culture at the Walter E. Olson Memorial Library, or see some live music and entertainment at the Headwaters Council for the Performing Arts.

Looking to find places to see in Wisconsin in winter with kids? The Northwoods Children’s Museum in Eagle River has a huge amount of fun and interactive exhibits guaranteed to educate and entertain at the same time!

Don’t forget to dine on some delicious entrees at the Headwaters Restaurant and Tavern or grab an ice cream at The Ice Shanty, both in Boulder Junction.

Where to stay:

La Vita e Bella in Northwoods – Resting on the shores of North Twin Lake, this spacious 3-bedroom cabin combines all the comfort of home with a relaxing vacation in nature.

You’ll have quick and easy access to the lake for on-the-water activities, plus it’s the perfect place to bring any furry friends!

If you’re enjoying romantic getaways in Wisconsin in winter, this cozy log cabin is a must. – Check rates here

28. Eau Claire

unexpected winter fun in Wisconsin, wooden slay sticking up in snow bank with snow covered trees in background and flurries in the air on a bright sunny day

For those who look for winter sport vacations in Wisconsin, Eau Claire should be on your radar.

This city comes alive when the snow starts to fall, with plenty of sledding, skating, ice fishing, and other ice sports opportunities available.

Pinehurst Park and Boyd Park are regular spots for ice rinks, and there’s an annual ice fishing contest that takes place on Lake Wissota in the nearby Chippewa Falls.

When you need a break from the cold, there are plenty of hot beverages to be found in many places across the city.

Make sure to check out The Nucleus on Water Street, or over at SHIFT Cyclery and Coffee Bar, which is perfect if you’ve brought your bicycles!

If Eau Claire is on your checklist of places to visit in Wisconsin in December, don’t miss out on the Chippewa Valley Parade of Lights, a yearly festive treat full of colorful decorations and bright lights.

Where to stay:

Cozy Cabin on Elk Lake – A wood-burning fire, a breakfast deck, and a view of a beautiful lake… this extensive log cabin has everything you could want for romantic getaways in Wisconsin winter season.

The nearby Elk Creek Lake provides opportunities for kayaking, fishing, and even some winter swimming if you like a challenge! There’s also a boat dock just a short drive down the road.

Make sure to make use of the grill and fire pit for some early evening s’mores and hot chocolate made in the well-equipped kitchen! – Check rates here

29. Winter Biking in Hayward

winter sport vacations in Wisconsin, person riding a fat tire bike

For an active winter vacation, Wisconsin is hard to beat, and one of the best places in Wisconsin to visit in winter is Hayward, and its many biking trails.

Each year, the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association (CAMBA) clears and maintains over 70 miles of winter biking trails in Hayward, Bayfield, Seeley, and Cable, and they’re very popular.

These trails are made for fat biking, which involves riding bikes with larger tires at least 3.8 inches wide. There are single-track trails and wider trails for those less experienced at fat winter biking.

The Hatchery Creek Winter Bike Trail and the Haywood Area Memorial Hospital Winter Bike Trail are both great places to start. For more of a challenge, you can try the 14-mile-long Big Fat Loop!

Where to stay:

Hayward Cabin on Nelson Lake – With a private dock complete with a table and chairs, plus canoes, paddle boards, and kayaks on hand for guests, this is a lakeside cabin with on-the-water activities for everyone.

There are plenty of easily accessible hiking and snowmobile trails nearby, starting right outside the front door.
The lake is full of different kinds of fish for the day’s catch, including muskellunge, bass, and pike all through the winter, so make sure you bring extra bait! – Check rates here

Many of Wisconsin’s most iconic landscapes look entirely different in the winter, too, with roaring waterfalls frozen still and Apostle Islands’ sea caves turning into an icicle-filled scene taken straight from a movie.

Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway or an off-season family holiday, or you can’t wait to hit the slopes and snowy hiking trails in Wisconsin.

There’s no denying that there are so many amazing things to do in Wisconsin in winter you’ll never get bored!

Short FAQs About Winter Getaways in Wisconsin

What are the best winter getaways in Wisconsin for families?

Staying on Lower Kaubashine Lake in Hazelhurst, and going snow tubing in Sunburst Sports Park are some of the best winter getaways in Wisconsin for families.

What are cool winter getaways in Wisconsin for couples?

Staying in a romantic cabin, getting a spa treatment, and visiting Elkhart Lake are some cool Wisconsin winter getaways for couples.

Where to go on winter getaways in Midwest?

You can visit Milwaukee, Mackinac Island, Door County, etc. which are some of the best winter getaways in the Midwest

What to do in Wisconsin Dells in December?

Most Wisconsin places to visit in winter have festive celebrations and activities happening, and Wisconsin Dells is no exception. December in Wisconsin Dells means decorations, Christmas markets, skiing and sledding, ice fishing, and much more.

What are things to do in the Dells in December?

The Dells are among the best places to visit in Wisconsin in winter. You’ll have no shortage of hiking and snowmobile trails in December, and the parks and lakes will look fantastic in the low winter sun.

What to do in Wisconsin Dells in January?

Log cabins are one of the best places to go in Wisconsin in winter, especially in Wisconsin Dells where the winter vibe is friendly and accommodating. Nestle into some warm blankets with a cup of hot coffee or let yourself relax in an outdoor hot tub looking out over the stunning landscape.

You can’t get enough of winter getaways in Wisconsin? Have a look at my Google Story here.

Want more winter getaways in Wisconsin? Check out our webstory.