National Parks

Wisconsin National Parks & National Forests

Wisconsin is home to ancient sea caves, pristine riverways and lakes where glaciers used to be. Our national landmarks include a lakeshore, riverway, trails and a forest.  

Spend a day at a national treasure with your family, then return to your comfy hotel, tent or RV. However you choose to enjoy a family vacation, bring your camera — the phone kind will do — to capture fun-filled memories for your scrapbook.

Explore Rivers & Lakes

Journey back in time and see untouched lands on the water anyway you’d like.

Explore the reddish sea caves at the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore on a kayak or a sightseeing cruise. Situated on a rocky shoreline along Lake Superior, the national lakeshore is also made up of 21 islands where more than 240 bird species live. Nine lighthouses dot the skyline and 18 of the Apostle Islands feature campgrounds. More than 50 miles of hiking trails lead to beaches, abandoned quarries and scenic overlooks.

Catch a glimpse of bass and muskies, which anglers can fish for, as you canoe or kayak down the St. Croix and Namekagon rivers; both make up the Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway. Stretching more than 250 miles with parts in Minnesota, the riverway has many primitive campsites only accessible by small boats and canoes. Other ways to enjoy the river area include hiking, paddling, fishing and boating.

Pick Your Trail

Two national trails are found in Wisconsin. Discover one or both with your family.

Hike where glaciers used to be 10,000 years ago on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail any time of year. More than 1,000-miles long, the Ice Age Trail offers visitors an unforgettable hiking journey up and down hilltops and through forests and prairies between St. Croix Falls and Sturgeon Bay.

Then there’s the North Country National Scenic Trail, which stretches 4,700 miles across eight states, including Wisconsin. Go backpacking or birdwatching with your family or friends and share in the beauty of the priceless moment.

If you plan on camping at any of our national landmarks, on-site campgrounds are there to help start your trip off right with amenities ranging from AC hookups to showers and more.

Journey Through a Forest

Wisconsin is also home to the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, encompassing more than 1.5 million acres of Wisconsin’s north woods region. 

Although technically two forests, the Chequamegon and Nicolet forests are managed as one. You can ATV along the trails in the summer and hike in snowshoes during winter. Dozens of quiet, developed camping sites dot the park.

As you and your family explore the grounds, be sure to check out the Mountain Fire Lookout Tower and Cathedral Pines, a 40-acre grove of white pine, hemlock and red pine trees that escaped human destruction in the 1900s.

Keep in mind, our national parks and forests may have a fee or pass requirement. Check out the National Park Service or Forest Service USDA site for more information on admission, campgrounds and more. 

However long your visit to a national park and forest is, we’re confident you’ll find relaxation, adventure and the perfect setting for some family bonding.

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