Northern Wisconsin may not be the first place that comes to mind when pondering an island vacation. However, having a shoreline on the world’s largest lake opens the door to plenty of unique opportunities. Arguably one of the most intriguing factors to consider when planning a getaway to Bayfield, Wisconsin, is the prospect of visiting Madeline Island, the largest of the Apostle Islands. As Bayfield’s premier bed and breakfast, Old Rittenhouse Inn is no stranger to guests wishing to explore the nearby isles. As such, we thought it would be fitting to provide some inside information regarding one of Lake Superior’s most popular vacation spots before the start of summer.
Madeline Island | What to Know Before You Go
Whether you plan on traveling by car, bike, or foot, it’s critical to familiarize yourself with the Madeline Island Ferry. Next, you’ll want to become somewhat acquainted with the town of La Pointe, Wisconsin, the only municipality on Madeline. One could almost consider the route from Bayfield to La Pointe a stand-alone activity in its own right as you’ll be treated to gorgeous views of Lake Superior and several of the other 22 Apostle Islands for about 25 minutes before landing. Once you arrive, you’ll find crisp air, ruggedly beautiful beaches, intricate hiking trails, and a bevy of island activities, tours, and attractions. Located near the ferry dock in La Pointe, be sure to check out Motion to Go for moped and bicycle rentals. You may also want to peruse this handy list of restaurants, coffee shops, and taverns.
7 Things to Do on Madeline Island
It doesn’t take long after landing in La Pointe to realize why so many people love Madeline Island. Madeline Island has an impressive collection of restaurants, shops, and events for such a small area. Here are some of our favorite activities to enjoy while on “Island Time.”
- The Madeline Island School of the Arts is the hill on which the local art scene plants its flag. MISA’s workshops and studios have given rise to many artists who were undoubtedly inspired by Lake Superior and its seemingly endless tranquility. La Pointe’s scenic surroundings have fostered an eclectic and sometimes overlooked art scene.
- Big Bay State Park is located on the eastern side of the island and is characterized by four miles of sandstone bluffs embedded along the shoreline. Big Bay offers several outdoor recreational opportunities, including hiking and kayaking.
- Birding and wildlife viewing is possible almost everywhere on Madeline Island, but Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is probably the best place. Don’t forget to bring binoculars!
- Horseback riding with Hippophile Farm is a must-do adventure for any equine enthusiast.
- Bike riding is reasonably popular as you’ll see plenty of cyclists and mountain bikers throughout the island. Bring your bike or rent one from Motion To Go.
- Woods Hall is another must-stop destination for the artistically inclined or anyone who appreciates handcrafted wares.
- Madeline Island Golf Club takes full advantage of the unique topography found throughout the isle and offers a formidable challenge for anyone looking to test their skills.
Bayfield Lodging | Luxury Hotels in Wisconsin
It never ceases to amaze us just how much you can do on Madeline Island with even a small amount of time. The quick guide above merely scratches the surface of the things you can find yourself getting into, so we encourage you to check out the official Chamber of Commerce website. In the meantime, if you have any questions about other things to do in the area, feel free to reach out to Old Rittenhouse Inn by visiting us online or calling 715-779-5111 today.