Wisconsin Top 20 Attractions

Wisconsin is in the heart of the Midwest, with access to Lake Michigan and a diverse geography.

Throughout the entire state, there are plenty of attractions you can visit, offering something for everyone whether you prefer nightlife, outdoors, museums, water sports, festivals, or the dairy that the state is famous for.

Below rundown on top 20 attractions in Wisconsin cover all the major sights ranging from museums for those who want to learn about a particular subject, sports attractions, to opportunities for spending some time outdoors.

1: Waterparks, Wisconsin Dells

Waterparks, Wisconsin Dells
Photo Courtesy: Facebook/mtolympuspark

Wisconsin Dells is known as the best spot in the state for fun at waterparks, and it is actually the "Waterpark Capital of the World."

This is where the very first indoor water park was pioneered and houses the biggest concentration worldwide of indoor and outdoor waterparks.

This means that you can look at just indoor waterparks or just outdoor ones and still have dozens of choices. Many of these parks have lodging right on site.

This is also where you'll find Noah's Ark Waterpark, the largest outdoor one in the country.

Address: 701 Superior St, Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin 53965

Accomodation: Where to stay in Wisconsin Dells

Also Read: Top 5 Water & Amusement Parks in Wisconsin Dells

2: Harley-Davidson Museum, Milwaukee

Harley-Davidson Museum, Milwaukee

Motorcycle enthusiasts will have a grand time exploring this museum that features all the best bikes in the world. Visit their Design Lab to see what goes on behind the scenes of making the world's finest bikes.

Go to the Experience Gallery where you can actually sit on the bikes and feel what it is like to ride a Harley. The museum consists of about 450 artifacts and motorcycles, including the oldest Harley-Davidson motorcycle that is known, Serial Number One.

Even the building itself is gorgeous as Pentagram Architects designed it. If you don't want to pay for museum entry, but want to take advantage of the space, get a meal at the restaurant, Motor.

Address: 400 W Canal St, Milwaukee, WI 53201

Accomodation: Where to stay in Milwaukee

Website: www.harley-davidson.com

Also Read: Top 10 Tourist Attractions in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

3: Door County

Door County

Door County is perfect for outdoor recreation as well as the performing arts. There are 11 lighthouses, 300 miles of shoreline, and 5 state parks to enjoy.

You can stay in any type of accommodation, including camping, bed and breakfasts, or even historic inns. You can go fruit picking, with apples or cherries depending on the season.

There are also numerous concerts, outdoor theater performances, and outdoor sports to enjoy, such as hiking, birding, paddling, and more.

Address: 1015 Green Bay Rd, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin 54235

Accomodation: Where to stay in Door County

Website: www.doorcounty.com

4: Olbrich Botanical Gardens, Madison

Olbrich Botanical Gardens, Madison
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/kfcasper

The Olbrich Botanical Gardens cover 16 acres of gorgeous gardens, including the only Thai Pavilion within the continental US as well as the only one of its kind surrounded by garden outside of Thailand.

There is also a rose garden, herb garden, Sunken Garden, and Perennial Garden. While at this attraction, visit the Bolz Conservatory, which is a 50-foot-high pyramid with a rushing waterfall, blooming orchids, free-flying birds, and tropical plants.

You can look at carnivorous plants as well as those responsible for growing your favorite foods like vanilla, coffee, and bananas.

Address: 3330 Atwood Ave, Madison, WI 53704

Accomodation: Where to stay in Madison

Website: www.olbrich.org

Also Read: Madison, Wisconsin Top 10 Attractions

5: The Green Bay Packers: Lambeau Field And The Walk Of Legends

The Green Bay Packers: Lambeau Field And The Walk Of Legends
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Mike Morbeck

The Green Bay Packers are very important the majority of Wisconsites and most visitors take advantage of their vacation to learn more.

Lambeau Field is where the Packers play, and you can attend events here, watch a game, or visit the Atrium. There you will find the Packers Pro Shop as well as the Hall of Fame, which commemorates top players throughout the years.

You can also go on a guided Stadium Tour to learn more. Exit Lambeau Field and go to the public art walkway just to the east of the building to enjoy the Walk of Legends.

This is a collection of 24 statues that honor legendary eras of the Packers as well as the legends that made them great.

Address: 1265 Lombardi Ave, Green Bay, WI 54304

Accomodation: Where to stay in Green Bay

6: Circus World Museum, Baraboo

Circus World Museum, Baraboo
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Amy Meredith

The Circus World Museum first opened in 1954 and today it is constantly expanding with new exhibits, including those that feature restored original Ringling Brothers structures, electronic media, and live programs.

The museum started with six old wagons from the circus and under an acre, but today there are 30 permanent structures over 64 acres of land, as well as winter quarters and the train shed complex.

One of the high-points of the museum is the Siemor Bros. Miniature Circus which took Mel and Lottie Romels 40 years to finish and can now be found in the Spectacle Room.

Address: 550 Water St, Baraboo, WI 53913

Accomodation: Where to stay in Baraboo

Website: www.circusworldbaraboo.org

7: Geneva Lake Shore Path, Lake Geneva

Geneva Lake Shore Path, Lake Geneva
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/atramos

For a relaxing day in Wisconsin, head to Lake Geneva and take a stroll along the Geneva Lake Shore Path.

This covers 21 miles and gives you the unique opportunity to walk through the backyard of numerous mansions which are at least a century old.

The earliest settlers of the area decided that the 20 feet closest to the shoreline would be public domain and this has continued today, giving you gorgeous views of the shoreline, gorgeous homes, and exquisite landscaping.

Address: Lake Geneva, WI 53147

Accomodation: Where to stay in Lake Geneva

Website: www.lakegenevawi.com

8: Wisconsin State Capitol

Wisconsin State Capitol
Photo Courtesy: wikimedia/Vkoulampet

The Wisconsin State Capitol building can be found in the Madison area and is home to a number of government departments and offices. The structure dates back to 1917 and is now the tallest building in the Madison area.

Wisconsin State Capitol is part of what has become known as Capitol Square, which is made up of a range of other businesses including shops and eateries amongst others.

You can enjoy exploring the building itself by booking a guided tour, which will enable you to take in the fascinating architecture as well as the stunning monuments, elaborate décor, and exhibitions.

Address: 2 E Main St, Madison, WI 53703

Accomodation: Where to stay in Madison

Website: tours.wisconsin.gov

Also Read: Madison, Wisconsin Top 10 Attractions

9: EAA AirVenture Show And Museum, Oshkosh

EAA AirVenture Show And Museum, Oshkosh
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/D. Miller

The museum's collection of 20,000 historic artifacts dates way back to 1962. With their extensive displays of aircrafts as well as educational tours that will give you everything that you need to know about flying, you are surely going to have a fantastic time with your entire family.

The AirVenture show takes place every summer and lasts a full week. It includes exhibits, air shows, the chance to explore aircrafts, and even theater.

Address: 3000 Poberezny Rd Oshkosh, WI 54902

Accomodation: Where to stay in Oshkosh

Website: www.airventuremuseum.org

Also Read: Top 10 Space and Aviation Museums in the USA

10: Cave of the Mounds, Blue Mounds

Cave of the Mounds, Blue Mounds

Cave of the Mounds National Landmark was discovered in 1939 and is now the premier cave within the upper Midwest.

You can go on guided tours of the cave that show you the colorful crystals formed along the paved walkways. The cave tour is perfect for the entire family and shows you columns, stalagmites, stalactites, and more.

There is also a butterfly garden, fossil dig, gemstone mine, biking and biking trails, and a gift shop.

Address: 2975 Cave of the Mounds Rd Blue Mounds, WI 53517

Accomodation: Where to stay in Blue Mounds

Website: www.caveofthemounds.com

11: Taliesin Preservation

Taliesin Preservation
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/K Tao

Located near Spring Green, the Taliesin Preservation is a popular tourist destination for learning more about Frank Lloyd Wright.

The late Frank Lloyd Wright was a famous, award-winning architect, born in Wisconsin. His architecture is seen all around the world, with some of the most impressive creations housed on the Taliesin Preservation.

The preservation was Wright’s residence and private studio – the grounds also includes other buildings designed by him.

Taliesin Preservation is a place to learn about Wright’s life, legacy, and inspiration behind some of his most iconic buildings. Visitors can walk the grounds, immersing into the beautiful design of the house merging perfectly with nature.

The preservation includes a visitor center, providing more information about the grounds. Visitors can also begin their guided tours at the center – expert guides walk with you around the house and other buildings while telling stories about Wright.

Address: 5607 County Road C, Spring Green, WI 53588

Website: www.taliesinpreservation.org

12: House on the Rock

House on the Rock
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Chris Lott

A visit to the House on the Rock will be one of the unique experiences you could imagine in Wisconsin. The house is an architectural complex and entertainment site designed by Alex Jordan Jr., a famous architect. His work on the house expanded to include an entire complex of fun, must-see attractions for visitors.

The primary House on the Rock was built in 1959 and opened to the public the following year. The house is only part of the attraction, as additional buildings were constructed in later years.

Explore the distinct rooms of the house, which showcase antiques and collectibles. The infinity room is one of the most popular rooms, designed as an illusion to go on forever.

The site also includes The Streets of Yesterday, a recreation of an American town, and the Music of Yesterday, an exhibit designed with automated musical instruments.

Address: 5754 WI-23, Spring Green, WI 53588

Website: www.thehouseontherock.com

13: Devil’s Lake State Park

Devil’s Lake State Park
Photo Courtesy: Celley/USFWS

Devil’s Lake State Park is Wisconsin’s largest state park, covering over 9,000 acres of the Baraboo Range. It’s the most visited park in the state with more than three million visitors every year, arriving for recreational activities, exploring the wildlife, or sightseeing.

Devil’s Lake State Park was established in 1911, becoming a popular destination thanks to its proximity to Madison.

The park's highlight is Devil's Lake – visitors can enjoy lots of outdoor recreation at the lake, including kayaking, fishing, hiking, and climbing. The lake is a well-known research site as it was formed from glacier activity in the park.

The beautiful park contains many other sights worth checking out during a visit. It has many unique quartzite rock formations such as Balanced Rock, or you can visit the winding Effigy Mounds.

Devil's Lake State Park has many visitor facilities, including a visitor center and over 400 campgrounds permitting overnight stays.

Address: S5975 Park Rd, Baraboo, WI 53913

Website: dnr.wi.gov

14: National Railroad Museum

National Railroad Museum
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Andrew Phelps

Railroad enthusiasts will have the time of their lives at the National Railroad Museum, one of the first railroad museums established in the country. The museum is dedicated to all things railroad for preserving more than 100 years of history.

National Railroad Museum is located in the Greater Green Bay area. The museum experience includes both indoor and outdoor exhibits.

The indoor exhibitions feature various railroad artifacts, photos, and other collected archives. Check out the indoor train yard to climb inside some of the historical locomotives. The outdoor exhibit features a wide range of trains, from steam-powered to electric-powered trains.

The historical trains are preserved to showcase their original appearance and condition. There are several noteworthy trains such as presidential trains and trains set for use during the World Wars.

The museum hosts train rides during special events.

During your visit, climb to the top of the observation tower for scenic views of Green Bay and the Fox River.

Address: 2285 S Broadway, Green Bay, WI 54304

Website: www.nationalrrmuseum.org

15: Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservatory

Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservatory
Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons/Sulfur

Mitchell Park is home to the Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservatory, a collection of three botanical gardens housed in large domes – locals refer to the attraction simply at ‘The Domes.’ The conservatory showcases over 1000 beautiful plant species from around the world.

Mitchell Park Horticultural Conservatory is divided into three domes: Show Dome, Tropical Dome, and Arid Dome. Each of the domes presents a particular climate zone and ecosystem for housing plants native to the conditions.

Explore the Tropical Dome to see close to 1000 different plants native to tropical climates. Many of the plants featured in the dome are fruit-bearing trees such as cacao and bananas.

The Arid Dome has plants from various regions of the world, including across the Americas and Africa. The plants are endemic to desert climate, with the temperature inside the dome regulated for sustainability.

The Show Dome features seasonal shows and exhibits, changing four times every year. It also hosts special shows for the holidays.

Address: 524 S Layton Blvd, Milwaukee, WI 53215

Website: county.milwaukee.gov

16: Pattison State Park

Pattison State Park

Pattison State Park is one of the top state park attractions in Wisconsin. It’s located in the northern region off the coast of Lake Superior. It’s a great destination all year round with fun outdoor activities for any time you visit.

The Big Manitou Falls is one of the biggest attractions to the state park – it’s Wisconsin’s highest waterfall. The park also includes Little Manitou Falls, another point of interest for visitors.

Outdoor recreation is very popular at Pattison State Park. Some of the favorite activities include hiking, swimming, and camping. Hiking trails extend for miles throughout the park. Visitors can also take guided walking tours to learn more about the flora and sightsee wildlife during the trek.

There are nearly 60 family-friendly campsites, several with working electricity and updated facilities.

Visit the park’s nature center to learn more about the park’s natural history and its cultural significance.

Address: 6294 WI-35, Superior, WI 54880

Website: dnr.wi.gov

17: Lake Minocqua

Lake Minocqua
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Sara

Wisconsin has several popular lake destinations, especially in the Lakeland region in the north. One of the premier lakes in the area is Lake Minocqua. Although surrounded by many other lakes, it’s one of the must-visit lakes for everybody visiting.

Lake Minocqua is a large, beautiful lake providing magnificent scenery while enjoying lake activities. People visit the lake at any time of the year since there are always things to do. During the summertime, some of the favorite lake activities include boating, water skiing, and swimming. Fishing is also permitted at the lake. During the wintertime, many people snowmobile on the lake.

Lake Minocqua is the perfect vacation spot – the lake is developed for tourism with lots of resorts and lake houses set up around it. Stay at one of the nearby accommodations to enjoy the beautiful sunsets and sunrises over the lake.

Address: Oneida County, WI

Website: dnr.wi.gov

18: Wisconsin Great River Road

Wisconsin Great River Road
Photo Courtesy: Travel Wisconsin

The famous Great River Road passes through the Western border of Wisconsin on a journey that extends for over 2,000-miles along the Mississippi River. The road runs north to south from Minnesota to Louisiana – each state promotes its local section as a tourist attraction.

Wisconsin Great River Road predominantly consists of WIS 35 – it's included as part of a National Scenic Byway where visitors will have fantastic scenery along the drive. The drive is famous when traveling to add a bit of fun to the road trip – you can go through multiple states or just enjoy Wisconsin's section of the attraction.

Some of the sights along the road include views of the Mississippi River, dams, boats, and more. The road shoulders are the perfect place to stop and enjoy the view from designated overlooks. There are also plenty of themed restaurants to visit along the way.

Address: Great River Rd, WI

Website: www.wigrr.com

19: Bay Beach Amusement Park

Bay Beach Amusement Park
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Jeremy Thompson

Get ready for some old fashion family fun when you visit the Bay Beach Amusement Park. The amusement park is in Green Bay, open seasonally from May to September.

For over a century, families have visited the park to enjoy lots of rides and attractions since it first opened in 1892. The park is unique compared to other amusement parks because it maintains its original prices – ride tickets cost only a quarter.

Bay Beach Amusement Park has something to do for everyone. There are 23 rides, a vintage wooden roller coaster, food stations, bumper cars, and a Ferris Wheel. Take a ride on the Zippin Pippin roller coaster for a thrill ride or hop on the Ferris Wheel for beautiful views overlooking Lake Michigan. The park includes kid’s rides.

Visit the park’s pavilion for a variety of events and performances during the open season.

Address: 1313 Bay Beach Rd, Green Bay, WI 54302

Website: www.greenbaywi.gov

20: Wisconsin Ice Age Trail

Wisconsin Ice Age Trail
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Joshua Mayer

Wisconsin Ice Age Trail is the most famous National Scenic Trail in the state – the major trail extends for 1,200-miles across Wisconsin, with approximately half of it already developed. It’s mainly used for hiking and sightseeing, offering an excellent opportunity to see the state’s diverse landscape. 

Wisconsin Ice Age Trail has trailheads at Potawatomi State Park and Interstate State Park. The trail winds throughout the state passing through a variety of landscapes, including the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, Lookout Mountain, and other landscape features left behind by glacial activity.

Visit a nearby section of the trail as an excellent destination for outdoor recreation. It's a year-round destination where you can enjoy hiking in the Summer and snowshoe trekking in the winter. Most visitors enjoy regional sections of the trail, although long-distance hikes are permitted. You can find designated camping sites on the trail.

Address: Eagle, WI 53119

Website: www.iceagetrail.org

Wisconsin Travel Guide

Explore Guide