10 Unforgettable Best Places to Visit in Wisconsin In The Fall

sunrise view in lodi wisconsin

Get ready to fall in love with Wisconsin!

Our guide to the 10 unforgettable best places to visit in Wisconsin in the fall is packed with autumnal gems waiting to be discovered. From rustic beauty to vibrant city life, this list has it all.

Keep reading, and let’s embark on a fall journey like no other.

1. Door County

a curvy road with autumn color leaves in door county wisconsin

The first stop on our autumn tour is Door County. Picture this, vibrant hues of red, yellow, and orange cascading along a picturesque shoreline. Door County, with its scenic beauty and tranquil ambiance, is a fall wonderland.

From indulging in the annual harvest of juicy apples at local orchards to exploring the intoxicating flavors at award-winning wineries, Door County has something for everyone. Take a scenic drive through the county and soak in the stunning vistas of Fall, or better yet, hop onto the Door County Trolley Scenic Tour, it’s an experience like no other!

Travel Tip: Don’t miss the Pumpkin Patch Festival in Egg Harbor; it’s the epitome of fall celebrations.

2. Kettle Moraine State Forest

Kettle Moraine State Forest in autumn with red and yellow leaves on trees

Next, let’s head to the captivating Kettle Moraine State Forest. This place transforms into a kaleidoscope of fall colors every year, making it one of the best places to visit in Wisconsin in the fall.

The forest offers miles of hiking trails, allowing you to wander through the vibrant fall foliage. But the real treat? The stunning Autumn colors that blanket the forest – they’re a sight to behold!

Travel Tip: The Scuppernong Trail System offers some of the best autumn vistas. Don’t forget your hiking boots!

3. Milwaukee

Milwaukee Wisconsin skyline

Who said cities can’t boast fall charm? Milwaukee, Wisconsin’s largest city, proves otherwise with its colorful parks, riverwalk, and an array of fall events.

Experience the city’s culture by attending the Milwaukee Film Festival, which showcases independent films from around the globe. If you’re a beer enthusiast, you’d love the city’s Oktoberfest and its beer gardens – there’s nothing like savoring a local brew amidst the fall ambiance.

Travel Tip: For a unique fall experience, book a cruise on the Milwaukee River to witness the city’s autumn beauty.

4. Apostle Islands

apostle island sea caves in wisconsin

If you’re looking for an adventure, the Apostle Islands should be your go-to. This group of 22 islands in Lake Superior becomes a paradise in the fall, with the maple, aspen, and birch trees transforming into hues of yellow, orange, and red.

From sea kayaking among the Fall colors to witnessing the spectacle of the Fall bird migration, Apostle Islands offers a unique fall experience that you wouldn’t want to miss.

Travel Tip: The ferry service to the islands operates till October; plan your visit accordingly.

5. Madison

madison wisconsin downtown skyline

Madison, the state capital, is not just about politics and universities; it’s a city that offers an exceptional fall experience.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s campus is a vision in fall, with tree-lined paths showcasing vibrant colors. Don’t forget to check out the Dane County Farmers’ Market, which overflows with the bounty of the autumn harvest.

Travel Tip: Visit the Olbrich Botanical Gardens, which offers stunning fall colors, especially in the Japanese garden.

6. Hayward

aerial of Hayward Wisconsin

Heading north, we arrive at Hayward, a charming town that embodies rustic allure. Hayward embraces the fall with the annual Musky Festival, an iconic event that will give you a glimpse into the local culture.

Beyond the festival, immerse yourself in the outdoors. Whether it’s fall fishing in the clear waters or exploring the Chequamegon National Forest which flaunts a beautiful array of autumn colors, Hayward guarantees a memorable fall experience.

Travel Tip: For an adrenaline rush, try your hand at fishing for musky, the region’s legendary fish.

7. Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

Speaking of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, it deserves a mention of its own. Spanning over a million acres, this national forest turns into a vivid canvas of reds, oranges, and yellows in the fall.

The forest offers a multitude of activities – hike through the fall foliage, watch wildlife in their natural habitat, or capture the stunning scenery in your lens. Take a walk along the North Country National Scenic Trail, and you’ll be left spellbound by the forest’s autumn beauty.

Travel Tip: Fall is hunting season in the forest. Make sure to wear bright colors while hiking.

8. Appleton

Appleton Wisconsin

Appleton is a quintessential American city that provides a blend of culture and nature. The city’s Octoberfest is a grand fall celebration, complete with music, food, and of course, plenty of apple treats.

While in the city, do visit the Paper Discovery Center and dive into the history of paper, an industry that played a significant role in shaping Appleton. And, of course, the city parks come alive with fall colors, making a simple walk a wonderful experience.

Travel Tip: Attend Appleton’s Downtown Farm Market which runs until October for some fresh fall produce.

9. Spring Green

Joseph Kranak photo of House on the Rock Wisconsin
Source: Joseph Kranak

Spring Green, a small town with an artistic spirit, shines in the fall. The town is home to the House on the Rock, a fascinating architectural marvel that’s even more captivating amidst the fall colors.

The town also houses the American Players Theatre, a world-class classical theater nestled in the woods. Catch a fall performance if you can, the experience is enhanced by the surrounding autumnal beauty.

Travel Tip: Take a drive along the Wisconsin River for a spectacular fall-colored scenic route.

10. North Woods

north woods wisconsin

Finally, we head to the North Woods, a region that exemplifies wilderness. As fall arrives, the region transforms into a panorama of breathtaking fall colors.

Spot wildlife preparing for winter, hike or bike on trails that offer magnificent views of the autumn landscape. It’s truly an outdoor lover’s paradise.

Travel Tip: A canoe trip in the Turtle Flambeau Flowage offers a unique perspective on the fall colors.


So, there you have it! The best places to visit in Wisconsin in the fall, each offering a unique autumn experience. From vibrant landscapes and city festivals to forest hikes and charming towns, Wisconsin truly is a treasure trove in the fall.

Your autumn adventure awaits in Wisconsin, so why wait? Start planning your fall getaway and discover the autumnal beauty that Wisconsin has to offer.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Best Time to Visit Wisconsin in the Fall?

The ideal time to visit Wisconsin for fall colors is typically from late September to mid-October. This period allows you to witness the peak fall foliage across most parts of the state.

Can I Enjoy Outdoor Activities in Wisconsin During Fall?

Absolutely! Wisconsin offers a plethora of outdoor activities in fall, including hiking, biking, fishing, and scenic drives. The changing colors provide a beautiful backdrop for all these activities.

Is it Safe to Travel to Wisconsin During Fall?

Yes, it is generally safe to travel to Wisconsin in the fall. However, it’s always recommended to check the latest travel advisories, weather conditions, and COVID-19 guidelines before planning your trip.

Which Fall Festivals Can I Attend in Wisconsin?

Wisconsin hosts several fall festivals, including Oktoberfest in Milwaukee, Pumpkin Patch Festival in Egg Harbor, and the Musky Festival in Hayward. These events provide a fantastic opportunity to enjoy local culture and cuisine.

Are National Parks in Wisconsin Open in the Fall?

Yes, National Parks such as the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and Kettle Moraine State Forest are open during the fall. They offer stunning views of autumn colors and are great for hiking, wildlife watching, and photography.

If you’re inspired by the best places to visit in Wisconsin in the fall, you might also be interested in exploring other places to see in the US:

About Ronaldo Stewart

Wantigo was born out of a deep passion for exploring new places and experiencing different cultures. With a keen sense of adventure and an insatiable thirst for knowledge, I’ve traveled far and wide, immersing myself in the beauty and wonder of the world.

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