Manitowoc

  • The S.S. Badger is docked at the harbor with passengers on board.

    The S.S. Badger is docked at the harbor with passengers on board.
  • The S.S. Badger sets sail across Lake Michigan.

    The S.S. Badger sets sail across Lake Michigan.
  • Walkers enjoy a fall stroll along the beach.

    Walkers enjoy a fall stroll along the beach.
  • The S.S. Cobia sits peacefully in the harbor.

    The S.S. Cobia sits peacefully in the harbor.
  • A spectacular full moon glows in the sky above Lake Michigan.

    A spectacular full moon glows in the sky above Lake Michigan.

Known as Wisconsin’s “Maritime Capital,” Manitowoc celebrates its past and its present as a shipbuilding center with fascinating attractions. The largest maritime museum on the Great Lakes is here, with displays of everything from wooden sailing ships to a World War II-era submarine. Charter sport fishing boats and sail out of the city’s modern harbor and marina. The city is also the homeport of the largest carferry on the Great Lakes, carrying cars and passengers from Manitowoc to Ludington, Michigan and back. The downtown includes a classic candy store/antique soda fountain.

Don't leave without tasting...

Chocolate from Beerntsen’s and cheese from Pine River Dairy, Henning’s Cheese, the Cheese Nook, or Z’s Wisconsin Cheese. Or, try the microbrews at The Courthouse Pub.

Top photo opportunities are...

  • The Badger Carferry Docking for the afternoon
  • Our Breakwater Light which sits ¼ mile into the lake
  • Thunder on the Lakeshore Air Show and Balloon Glow
  • Breathtaking sunrises and beach landscapes

Must see attractions:

  • The Wisconsin Maritime Museum is a Smithsonian Affiliate and the largest Maritime Museum on the Great Lakes
  • The Rahr-West Art Museum, named one of USA Today's "10 Great Places to See Art in Smaller Cities,” with its beautiful architectural appeal
  • Pinecrest Historical Village recreates a turn of the century Manitowoc County village with over 25 historical buildings from the county

Mark these events on your calendar:

  • Thunder on the Lakeshore Air Show - includes a balloon glow and launch and international acrobatic flying teams
  • Sputnikfest was rated by Readers Digest as one of the quirkiest festivals in the country and celebrates the large chunk of Sputnik IV that fell from the sky in 1962
  • Metro Jam is a free concert held in June that has huge headliners and lasts for 2 days

Your child will always remember...

Wonderful, fun filled vacation traveling on the S.S. Badger, playing on the beach, exploring Maritime history on the nation’s most fully restored WWII Submarine, or going to the Manitowoc County Fair.