Five Gorgeous Wisconsin State Parks You NEED to See

I’m beginning this post with stating I’m so thankful to live in a state that is thriving with beautiful nature. Wisconsin (USA) is severely underrated as a destination in the United States. (One could possibly say it’s a…..hidden gem.) If you’re like me, then it’s safe to say being close to Mother Nature herself is one of your favorite places. Wisconsin has so many state parks perfect for hiking, kayaking, biking.. or even taking a dip (or fall) into a river or lake! If you’re a winter fan, you can even go snowmobiling or cross country skiing on certain paths.


Without further ado… 5 gorgeous Wisconsin state parks that you need to visit ASAP.

Governor Dodge State Park

Governor Dodge State park | Wisconsin State parks Governor Dodge State Park | Wisconsin State parks | Miranda Knudtson

Governor Dodge State Park is located in Dodgeville, just west of of the capital: Madison. (Hint Hint: perfect for a day trip or half day trip when visiting this city). It’s a total of 5,270 acres and has about 40 miles (64 km) of trails. With this many trails, you’ll be able to find a trail regardless of your skill level. Trails range in length from .5 to 15 miles. This place is flourishing with beautiful lush, green plants and trees, and (to my happy surprise!) a waterfall. It’s rather small, as you can see, but Wisconsin does have one! I’d recommend going during the spring or early summer to see it flowing.


Devil’s Lake State Park

Devil's Lake State Park | Wisconsin State Parks Devil's Lake State Park | Wisconsin State Parks

Devils Lake is the biggest state park in Wisconsin at 9,217 acres! You can find it near Baraboo, Wisconsin nearby the Wisconsin Dells. It’s a perfect addition to your waterpark weekend if you’re looking for something different on the way to or leaving the Dells. With 500 ft (150 m) bluffs and a 360 acre lake, there are so many beautiful landscapes (and photo opportunities!).


Apostle Islands

Apostle Islands National Lakeshore consists of a shoreline and 22 islands located on Lake Superior northwest portion of Wisconsin. (Fun Fact: Lake Superior is the deepest of the 5 Great Lakes.) Activities around Apostle Islands include hiking, kayaking, sailing, and cruising! Kayaking through the sea caves is an absolute must for your bucket list


Kettle Moraine State Forest

Wisconsin State Parks | Kettle Moraine | Lapham Peak Trail Lapham Peak Trail | Wisconsin State Parks

As a whole, Kettle Moraine is quite large at 30 miles in length with 160 miles of trails, stretching from the village of Dousman to the city of Whitewater. There are a few specific trails and areas in Kettle Moraine I’d love to go to which include Lapham Peak, Scuppernong Trail, and Nordic Trail. . This unit has many trails ranging from 1-7 miles, adding up to a total of 17 miles of loop trails. Scuppernong Trail and Nordic Trail each have trails less than 5 miles, which can easily be a nice afternoon trip! You can find Lapham Peak 25 miles west of Milwaukee near Delafield. It’s a perfect day trip if you’re staying in the Milwaukee area. Have yourself a bloody mary, and head off to go hiking!


Quincy Bluff & Wetlands State Natural Area

This state park has gorgeous scenery that truly rivals Devils Late State Park! Quincy Bluff is 200 ft high and 2 miles long. This state park features sandstone cliffs, and the main one, “Lone Rock,” is 200 ft tall. This state park is found in Adams County about 20 miles north of the Wisconsin Dells in the central area of the state.


Have you been to any of these?


  1. Wow you are so sporty! So impressive :). I wish I could do those things over here in the Netherlands. Unfortunately everythings is flat and our country is so small haha… Would love to do a big hike in the nature one day! What’s the best hike you ever went on?

  2. Lacee

    Isn’t it funny that when you grow up in a state you don’t go out and “adventure” it as much? I am excited to read about your travels this summer. I have some fun places I want to see from my home state too. Also these lakes are gorgeous!

  3. Rpsie Fluskey

    You are so lucky that summer is reliably warm. Here in the U.K. it’s foolhardy to make these kinds of plans, although I am also trying to plan some hiking lol. Wisconsin sounds like it is full of some amazing places to visit. By the looks of google, Devil’s Lake looks well worth the visit, beautiful!

  4. Even though I lived in Chicago for many years, I never knew there was so much in Wisconsin to explore, besides the Dells. Wish I had known about Apostle Islands. They sound amazing. Keeping that in mind for the next time I’m in the Midwest.

    1. If you’re a wine lover– Door County has some lovely wineries(very well known in the state), cute shops, trails, and it’s beautiful in the fall with all the foliage! (Thought fall is also a very popular time to come, so expect lots of people!)

  5. Pingback: Hiking Governor Dodge State Park | Muddy, Bloody, & Wet! | Miranda Knudtson

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