By Jeniece Smith
Looking to add some “extra” to the “ordinary” in your getaway? Venture beyond the expected to find these brag-worthy local secrets in northeastern Wisconsin, from a cruise on a pirate ship to a towering silo where you can stay the night to a traditional Northwoods supper club!
True to its name, this shop takes a trip down memory lane (make that "Sweet Memories Lane") with nostalgic treats you won’t still see in most stores. From fudge to Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream and all other things candy, Sweet Memories has you covered!
Kids have their own corner, and you can also browse gifts, wines and gourmet foodie finds throughout the converted barn that houses the shop.
If any Northwoods restaurant captures the classic atmosphere of a Wisconsin supper club, it’s Blink Bonnie. Just belly up to the knotty pine bar for a Brandy Old Fashioned, glance up at the elk head and fish mounts, and you’ll quickly see why.
This favorite among locals and far-flung travelers alike is known for juicy, generously cut steaks served to you on a sizzling platter, so they’re still steaming when they reach your table. Don’t be surprised if you see a line out the door.
Have lunch or dinner, come for giveaways and raffles during Green Bay Packers games, or just sip a craft brew and enjoy views of sprawling Lake Nokomis during happy hour.
Known for its daily specials, Friday fish fry and old-fashioned broasted chicken, the eatery also offers vegetarian and health-conscious options on its menu. Signature items include a French onion soup and crab cakes made with a house sauce.
The wild woods of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest may be your backyard, but Waubee Lake Lodge brings a taste of luxury to your Northwoods adventure. Your suite comes with a kitchen, hot tub, fireplace, private balcony and lovely lake views.
There’s even an on-site restaurant with daily specials and a weekend breakfast buffet, so you won’t have to stray far from your room to refuel after a day of golfing, whitewater rafting, ATV-ing, snowmobiling or skiing.
This rugged resort has two outposts – one in Athelstane and one in Niagara – offering a variety of lodging ranging from riverbank tent camping to "glamping" in a yurt with a built-in skylight, and from primitive cabins to deluxe modern lodges.
You get to decide how much you want to “rough it” after a day pulse-pounding fun. Whitewater rafting, rock climbing, paintball, ziplining, golfing, snowmobile tours and even a mud obstacle course round out the activity highlights.
Not only is this one of Door County’s most unique overnight rentals, but it’s also about the same price as a night in a chain hotel. You’ll love the panoramic views of Green Bay and Peninsula State Park from the top-floor living room’s circle of windows.
With four floors, two bedrooms, and one and a half baths, this one-of-a-kind lodging is just a block from a bike path and within walking distance to charming downtown Fish Creek.
You may have heard that northeastern Wisconsin’s Marinette County is the waterfall capital of Wisconsin, but the fun doesn’t end there! This 100-mile loop in Florence County offers 15 beautiful stops to gander at waterfalls and whitewater stretches along the Pine and Popple rivers.
Hikers, paddlers, anglers and nature lovers will all find something to love about these undeveloped, pristine resources, two of Wisconsin's originally designated Wild Rivers.
Ahoy, matey! Sail the seas – or, rather, the Eagle River Chain of Lakes – on a 50-foot pirate ship complete with cannons and costumed buccaneers. You can opt for kid-friendly public tours, or book the entire vessel for a special occasion.
If you’re bringing the kids along, be sure to check out the Northwoods Children’s Museum in Eagle River once you’re back on the mainland!
Did you know Sun Drop is a proud Wisconsin brand? Lovers of all things carbonated will delight in this museum that allows you to compare history right alongside Twig’s Beverage’s operating production line.
Stop off in the gift shop for some memorabilia and be sure to hit the tasting bar after your walkthrough!