By Sharyn Alden
Special to TravelWisconsin.com
It’s time to explore the wonders of spring. The astonishment of unfolding colors, renewed sights and sounds, are yours to enjoy. One of the best places to see the season’s magic is Wisconsin B & B gardens. There’s more beauty ahead when you put a trail guide in your pocket and hike nearby trails. Close your eyes and you can almost hear flowers unfold at nearby woods and foot paths. Reserve your own lasting memories at these four B & B gems.
Put this spot on your list as being one of the best for sipping coffee or lemonade. The hill-top, wrap-around porch is perfect for watching the world go by. Innkeeper Wendy Phillips, says, “If it’s a cool day with a breeze off Lake Superior, just grab an afghan from your room, curl up on the porch and enjoy.” The property includes the original, renovated 1890 house, along with a cottage and chateau for a total of 20 guest rooms. In spring, Bayfield’s tulips and daffodils start showing up all over town, including lavish color in the Rittenhouse gardens.
Nearby, take in the wonders of Lake Superior on the Brownstone Trail, an easy lakeside walk where you’ll see a dramatic shoreline and cliffs. There’s nothing like waterfalls to stop you in your tracks. Check out the plunging Lost Creek Falls south of Cornucopia.
There’s always something in bloom at this Victorian charmer on Water Street. One Innkeeper, Joan Ouellete, and her brother renovated the former 1889 Rothman home. Fragrant phlox and tulips decorate the landscape. Ask Joan to point out the garden’s showy Japanese and Korean lilac varieties for a true wow factor. You’ll have a birds-eye view of the gardens beyond from guest rooms with balconies. Pull up a chair on the Crystal Dawn suite’s balcony and recharge. After a homemade breakfast that might feature Joan’s special turtle French toast, it’s time to explore the environs.
Close by on Water Street wine-heaven awaits at the Sunset Point Winery. Don’t miss the magnificent outdoor flower bowl at SentryWorld Sports Center golf complex.. You’ll burn off energy on the Green Circle Trail, a 27-mile hiking and biking trail weaving through Stevens Point.
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Few places can rival this B & B’s blend of Scottish heritage, farm, winery and country home. Innkeepers Chris and Sherry Hardie point out spring emerges here full-blast. Look for violets in the woods, yellow cowslips, tulips, daffodils and giant cabbages and roses. You may see edible flowers adorning your breakfast plate, along with ham and eggs, all produced on site. Lucky you if your visit coincides with spring lambing. Nine mothers (Scottish Blackface sheep) are expecting this spring. In the mood for wine? You’re in the right place. This is one of only two B & Bs in Wisconsin that has a winery on-site. Try Nessie’s Mirage, named for Scotland’s Loch Ness monster.
Stay awhile and paddle to your heart’s content. Stop at the Sand Creek Brewery in Black River Falls, then head to the Black River for canoeing. Go biking on the Trempealeau County Wisconsin Bicycle Loops. There’s a lot to see over 506 miles of paved roads.
This elegant country inn is filled with family antiques and old world charm. It’s easy to kick away stress among its cozy nooks and crannies. Some portions of the original home date to 1843. History is alive and well on the six rambling acres with two timber-pegged barns. Footpaths will take you by woodlands of plum and apple trees, old-fashioned lilacs, hyacinths and neon-blue sillas flowers. Innkeeper Susan Morton, says, “This is a house to be lived in.”
After a family-style breakfast that may feature Susan’s classic almond and currant scones, head outside to do some serious relaxing. You’ll find a lawn chair waiting by the vegetable garden. Or take a book out to the hammock and rock to your heart’s content. To see more of spring’s beauty you’re about a five minute walk from Big Foot Beach State Park. Nearby, the Geneva Inn is a convenient stop for dining in a beautiful setting with lakeside views.