Monthly Archives: February 2018

February 22, 2018



Explore Wisconsin’s charm with these tips

Wisconsin’s rural beauty is easy to find—depending on where your road starts, adventure could be less than a gas tank away. The Dairy State’s natural beauty, local cultural traditions and unique cuisines are remarkable, and adventurous road trippers have been navigating our scenic winding roads as long as there have been cars with four wheels. This year, chart your own course on Wisconsin’s beautiful backroads. Here are a few tips for your next road trip.

Tip: Pack a cooler

Many travelers only put a cooler in the car when they are camping or heading to the beach. They are missing out, though, because some of the best souvenirs are tasted with a fork. Wisconsin has some of the world’s best cheesemakers, and artisan butchers can be found in dozens of our small communities. Bakers use rich local butter to churn out old-world delights. Our supper clubs serve up delicious portions that challenge even the biggest eaters. Search out these food finds and take some to go.

Tip: Use a map

In the age of smartphones, a paper map might seem like a throwback that has little purpose these days. On Wisconsin’s backroads, they’re still invaluable. Local maps are usually free and can be found in kiosks at hotels, rest stops and service stations. They can be a source of inspiration, pointing out interesting local attractions, like museums and cheese factories. Sometimes they’ll show you a route that’s not digitally mapped. And when your phone is running out of battery or the wireless signal is weak, these maps can be truly helpful.

Tip: Allow time to explore

This might seem obvious, but in an age when the Internet can use real-time data to predict your drive time to the minute, it can be too easy to make plans that leave little room for wandering. Some of the best roadside discoveries can’t be planned. Maybe there’s a local bakery selling pie—perhaps the baker is in and willing to share a recipe. Or maybe there’s a trail that leads to a dramatic overlook, if you have time for a short stroll. Plan for the unplanned, and leave a little extra time in your schedule.

Tip: Take lots of pictures

It’s easy to forget to capture the beauty of your vacation, so take time to take some images from the road. Consider the offbeat, the bits of Americana that are part of the fabric of Wisconsin’s small towns, and keep an eye open for the wildlife that may be hiding in plain sight. Consider a camera with a zoom lens to photograph distant subjects like birds or deer. A tripod that can accommodate a smartphone can be useful for on-location family portraits. You just might find the perfect image for this year’s holiday card.

Tip: Find the perfect location

Half the fun of road tripping in Wisconsin is finding the undiscovered. Some good places to start your exploration: the Blue Hills in Rusk County, the Kettle Moraine Scenic Drive near West Bend and the forested roads of Oneida and Vilas counties.


February 8, 2018

Your Guide To Wisconsin’s Best Romantic Retreats

Escape with someone special

This Valentine’s Day, treat your loved one with a weekend escape to some place extraordinary. These charming bed and breakfasts provide guests with a mix of timeless charm and modern luxury, and they’re located in destinations that offer beauty that’s waiting to be discovered. Here are three best bets for a romantic getaway you’ll never forget.

Where to go: West Bend
Where to stay: Westphal Mansion Inn Bed & Breakfast

This carefully restored 1913 English Tudor mansion takes couples back to romantic days past. The Inn features eight spacious suites thoughtfully furnished with period antiques. It has all the modern amenities you need to relax, including free wireless Internet. Start your day in the formal dining room—the inn serves an elegant four-course breakfast. In nearby West Bend, take in the impressive Museum of Wisconsin Art and natural attractions like the Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest.

Where to go: Oneida County
Where to stay: Inn at Lindwood, Minocqua Area

In beautiful Oneida County, you’ll find a retreat perfect enjoying the great outdoors. The Inn at Lindwood has an ideal location—it’s just 2.5 miles from Minocqua Winter Park, one of the best cross-country skiing and tubing areas in the Northwoods. In the warmer months, guests can enjoy Squirrel and Ink Pot Lakes via a private dock. Bicycles and a canoe are available to guests. Oneida County is an ideal place to enjoy outdoor recreation—its woodland paths run through some of the state’s most pristine wilderness areas.

Where to go: Vilas County
Where to stay: Inn at Pinewood, Eagle River

Nestled deep in the Northwoods, on the shore of a small private lake, you’ll find a retreat that has helped generations of travelers relax and enjoy the outdoors. The Inn at Pinewood offers timeless cabin ambiance—the original log home dates to 1934. Since then, the resort has been expanded and upgraded to offer modern today’s amenities. The inn has eight large guest rooms, each with private baths, king-sized beds and balconies that present panoramic views of the lake and woods. After a hearty homemade breakfast, explore Vilas County, a destination with 1,300 lakes and more than 240,000 acres of public lands.