One of the great things about road tripping through the Americas is that you discover a lot of beautiful and fascinating places in destinations that aren’t typically included on travel lists. For example, In the U.S. most of the popular destinations are on one coast or the other, with a few exceptions in the form of big cities like Chicago or national parks. But journeying through the middle states, you can often find a lot of awesome things to see and do. One such state that might surprise a lot of people is Wisconsin.
The capital city of Milwaukee gets its share of attention. It’s home to multiple professional sports teams (which always helps), and its situation on Lake Michigan (about 90 miles directly north of Chicago) makes it all the more interesting. Then again, it may not even be the preferred city in Wisconsin for those few who do single out Midwestern states for tourism! Madison, home to the University of Wisconsin, has been called one of the most attractive cities in the United States, and with good reason. The college town atmosphere and placement between two lakes (Mendota and Monona) make it a pretty lovely place to spend a few days.
But out and about in the rest of Wisconsin there are plenty of other interesting places. One good place to start might actually be sports tourism, which is a good enough reason in and of itself to tour Wisconsin. Lambeau Field in Green Bay is widely considered one of the most iconic sporting venues in the entire United States, and this year the state also played a special role on the PGA Tour. The beautiful Erin Hills course hosted the U.S. Open, where popular long shot Brooks Koepka scored a nice win for the States. Even if you can’t see a game at Lambeau or play Erin Hills, these are worthwhile spots to see as you drive around.
Wisconsin is also a beautiful state for nature lovers, as there are a couple of state parks that make for wonderful visits. A personal favorite is Devil’s Lake State Park, near Baraboo, which is home to campgrounds, activities for kids, and plenty of nice hikes. It’s said to be visited by three million people each year, but it’s large enough that you don’t really notice a crowd while you’re there. Peninsula State Park is another great place to check out if this is the sort of attraction that most grabs your attention, and Blue Mound State Park is a great place for hiking and cycling.
As a final point, Wisconsin is also lovely to visit simply because of the number of lakeside beaches it has. Milwaukee gets the most attention, as a major city right on the water, but Wisconsin has a lot of coastal land, so to speak, and there are plenty of small towns and remote beaches that can make for excellent stops. And as is often the case at the Great Lakes, some of them feel more like ocean beaches than your typical lakeside getaways. To give you a few names, North Beach, Kohler-Andrae State Park, and Schoolhouse Beach are some of the most popular.