10 Most Beautiful Small Towns in Wisconsin

6: New Glarus

New Glarus
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Kyle Brazil

This town was built in the 19th Century by Swiss immigrants and named after a place in their home country. The town is set against a beautiful rural backdrop, but its most distinctive characteristic of the town it its charming Swiss architecture and culture. Even the businesses seem European; there is a bakery, a butcher shop, and a brewery that are all reminiscent of the Swiss way of life. And much of the food served at the restaurants is Swiss, too! This makes it a fun place for travelers to go and experience European culture—without the expensive plane ticket!

Address: New Glarus, WI

7: Mineral Point

Mineral Point
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Jeremy Atherton

Mineral Point is one of Wisconsin’s oldest cities. It was founded in 1827 as a mining town, producing lead and zinc. The architecture in the town is reflective of its heritage. You can see many lovely old block buildings, including the stunning First Methodist Church. Visitors can tour some of the historic homes, and many old buildings contain businesses such as independent breweries and galleries. Shop for local handmade pottery, beautiful jewelry, or fresh fudge! There is plenty to enjoy here, in the place where Wisconsin began.

Address: Mineral Point, WI

8: Ashland

Ashland
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Michael Hicks

Ashland is the quintessential “Small Town, USA.” It even has the typical Band Shell, an outdoor domed stage, complete with American flag mural. The Midwest flavor, lakeside location, and brownstone buildings seem to faintly remind small-town natives of their own childhoods. The best of Ashland is the outdoor excursions, from camping to boating to fishing. In fact, Ashland has two campgrounds, both of which are relatively inexpensive and have all the commodities. If you’re looking for a great place to take the kids camping, Ashland is it.

Address: Ashland, WI
Website: www.coawi.org

9: Ephraim

Ephraim
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/widnr

As most Norwegians are, the residents of Ephraim are fiercely proud of their heritage. In fact, they’ve done an excellent job of preserving it to share with you! There are over 30 historic sites in the area, from Anderson Dock to the old Moravian Church. If you’re interested in the history of American immigration, Ephraim is a great place to start! Within a backdrop of beautiful green scenery, the history of Ephraim comes alive through tours, museums, and preserved buildings.

Address: Ephraim, WI

10: Elkhart Lake

Elkhart Lake
Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Jim Bauer

This town is so named because the nearby lake actually looks like the shape of an elk’s heart. The English name is a translation of the original Potawatomi name. Don’t ask me how the Natives figured out the shape of the lake hundreds of years ago without GPS and satellite images, but in any case, the name has stuck over the centuries. Besides the lovely lakeside views, Elkhart has a lot to offer. Most famously, the Elkhart Road Races are immensely popular with locals and out-of-towners alike.

Address: Elkhart Lake, WI

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