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Category: Parks

Door County is the only county in Wisconsin with five state parks, plus one state trail. No visit to the peninsula is complete without exploring these pristine open spaces that are home to historic landmarks, rare flora and fauna, hiking trails, and much more.

Peninsula State Park

The crown jewel of the Wisconsin State Park system, Peninsula State Park offers more than 3,700 acres for exploration.

Bike or hike on the Sunset Bike Trail, or challenge yourself on more than 12 miles of off-road biking trails weaving through the woods. Rent kayaks and peddle boats at Nicolet Beach Concessions at famous Nicolet Bay beach, where you can also get snacks, burgers, supplies, and ice cream.

The park is also home to the beautiful Peninsula State Park Golf Course, award-winning Northern Sky Theatre and historic Eagle Bluff Lighthouse. The 75-foot Eagle Tower was closed in May 2015 for structural concerns, but is expected to reopen in 2018. More>>

Potawatomi State Park

Home of the eastern trailhead of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail, 75-foot observation tower and views of Green Bay from the escarpment, overlook of the park’s old ski hill, several picnic areas and playgrounds, more than 2 miles of shoreline, canoe, kayak, paddleboat and bicycle rentals, boat launch and fish cleaning station, nature center and park store. More>>

Newport State Park

Newport State Park is Wisconsin’s only formally designated wilderness park, with miles of sand beach, secluded hike-in camping on the lakeshore, quiet hiking and biking trails, and great skiing in winter. More>>

Rock Island State Park

If you want a quiet beach, Rock Island is your place. The sand beach on the north side of the island was recently lauded in Minnesota Monthly magazine as one of the last “remains of old Door County.” More>>

Whitefish Dunes State Park

It was the rare botanicals, unique beauty and the largest and most significant dunescape on Lake Michigan’s western shore that led noted landscape architect Jens Jensen to recommend Whitefish Dunes as a state park site in 1937. More>>

Ahnapee State Trail

We are quick to praise Door County’s five state parks as the crown jewels of the county, but we often forget about the Ahnapee State Trail. The county-operated trail runs 48 miles between Sturgeon Bay and Algoma and its history as a railroad predates the founding of the parks system. More>>

  • Bike This: Rowleys Bay Loop at Newport State Park

    Biking is the perfect way to tackle a lengthier trail without taking the entire afternoon – so you can include time for a picnic stop – and Newport State Park offers a quiet, immersive cycling experience. The Rowleys Bay Loop starts across from the visitor center at the park’s first parking lot. You’re immediately introduced […]

  • DNR Hosts Eagle Tower Ribbon-Cutting

    The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will host the official ribbon-cutting ceremony at the base of the newly constructed Eagle Tower at Peninsula State Park at 10 am Friday, July 9. Members of the public are invited to join in the ribbon-cutting celebration, a co-sponsored event by the Friends of Peninsula State Park and […]

  • Eagle Tower Offers More Accessibility and New Experiences

    When I visited Peninsula State Park for the first time in the summer of 2015, my parents were excited to show my sister and me the famous Eagle Tower. They recalled how a hike up the tower revealed a brilliant, panoramic view of the park and the islands across the bay. After a winding drive […]

  • Ellison Bluff Park Closing June 1-4 for Paving

    Ellison Bluff County Park will close at dusk on Monday evening on May 31 for paving operations. Roadbed grading and compacting will commence on Tuesday with paving to follow on Wednesday and  Thursday. The Park is anticipated to re-open around 8 am on Friday, June 4. These dates and times are subject to change due […]

  • Rock Island Prepped for Reopening

    Rock Island State Park will reopen to visitors this summer after being closed in 2020 because of high water levels that made the pier inaccessible to the Karfi ferry.  On May 21, Randy Spevacek of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources shuttled Friends of Rock Island volunteers so they could help to get the park […]

  • DNR Shifts from Demolition to Repair of Potawatomi Tower

    When the Wisconsin Assembly and Senate gaveled in and out without any action on Gov. Tony Evers’ special session Tuesday, the $5 million question for those who support the historical repair of the Potawatomi State Park observation tower was whether the tower had become another political chip in the partisan world of Wisconsin politics. Rep. […]

  • Finally, Eagle Tower is Back

    After six years, $3.7 million, and multiple setbacks and delays, the members of the Friends of Peninsula State Park’s (FOPSP) board of directors took their first steps up the new ramp to Eagle Tower with little fanfare Tuesday morning.  For them, that was just fine.  “Let’s do it,” President Chris Holicek said, and with that […]

  • Help Restore Algoma’s Crescent Beach

    Join Algoma’s Friends of Crescent Beach (FOCB) in its ongoing beach-restoration effort by helping to replace invasive species with native plants. Lovers of nature and Crescent Beach are encouraged to become Crescent Crew volunteers and attend an information session May 20, 6 pm, at Knudson Hall, 620 Lake St. in Algoma.  The first work day […]

  • Facilities, Infrastructure Upgrades at Peninsula State Park

    Visitors to Peninsula State Park this year will be in for a treat, courtesy of a major transformation that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has carried out during the past year.  Facilities and infrastructure upgrades include a new shower/restroom facility at the South Nicolet campground, restroom upgrades at the South Nicolet and Weborg Point […]

  • A Tower Reborn…Almost: Eagle Tower opening delayed again

    In a move fitting for the start-and-stop journey to rebuild Eagle Tower, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources announced Wednesday that the planned April 30 opening of the tower will be delayed for an unspecified length of time.  That means folks will have to wait a little longer to climb to the top and take […]

  • Ellison Bluff County Park Entrance Getting Blacktop

    The Door County Board of Supervisors voted to transfer money to cover higher-than-anticipated costs to pave the gravel road leading into Ellison Bluff County Park.  The work has been scheduled, but the only bid for the initial plan to double-chip-seal the road came in higher than anticipated, at $101,386.25. Instead, the Door County Highway Department […]

  • Potawatomi Tower Achieves National Historic Status

    It’s now official. The Potawatomi State Park Observation Tower has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places by the Secretary of the Interior, and listed on the State Register of Historic Places by the Wisconsin State Historic Preservation Office. The Sturgeon Bay Historical Society Foundation, which has been fighting to save the neglected […]

  • Skate This: Teresa K. Hilander Community Ice Rink

    The recent cold snap isn’t great for a lot of outdoor activities, but it makes for a great base of ice at the Teresa K. Hilander Community Ice Rink in Sister Bay. The rink has been a popular spot this winter as people seek safe, outdoor activities. Founded in the late 1990s by a local […]

  • Bruemmer Provides Matching Donation for New Zoo Exhibit

    Kewaunee County is planning to break ground this year on a new exhibit at Bruemmer Park Zoo (bruemmerparkzoo.com) through a $100,000 matching donation from Steve Bruemmer, grandson of Leo Bruemmer and great-nephew of Otto Bruemmer. Steve Bruemmer also recently provided $20,000 to purchase four life-sized animal statues for the zoo’s green space.  Now he’s working […]

  • Skate This: Teresa K. Hilander Community Ice Rink

    The recent cold snap isn’t great for a lot of outdoor activities, but it makes for a great base of ice at the Teresa K. Hilander Community Ice Rink in Sister Bay. The rink has been a popular spot this winter as people seek safe outdoor activities. Founded in the late-1990s by a group of […]

  • Donors Can ‘Name’ a Bench Near New Eagle Tower

    With the opening of the new Eagle Tower anticipated later this spring, the Friends of Peninsula State Park are offering an opportunity to preserve tower and park memories through a limited number of benches near the tower. They are available to “name” to honor a loved one or acknowledge a personal or family connection. Gift […]

  • VIDEO – Lesser Known Door County: The Dark Sky

    In the latest video produced by Peninsula Film Works for Destination Door County, get a look at the dark skies of Newport State Park. The park is one of the few International Dark Sky Parks in the country. “This place is special,” says Beth Bartoli, naturalist at Newport State Park. “You really don’t know until […]

  • Bike This: Skyline Road to Sven’s Bluff (Even in Winter)

    Winter biking seemed to be an endeavor for the crazy or the nerveless just a few years ago. Now it’s a common sight thanks to the rise of the fat tire. There aren’t many groomed trails in the county for the most exhilarating riding experience, but you can still get a great ride in through […]

  • DNR Announces Temporary Trail Closures at Potawatomi State Park

    Temporary trail closures to the northern half of Potawatomi State Park’s trail system are in immediate effect while logging operations are underway to improve safety for visitors and the health of the ecosystem. During the scheduled logging operation, a commercial logger contracted by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will remove hazardous trees impacted by […]

  • Kewaunee County to Open Ice Rink, Winter Park

    The Kewaunee County Promotions and Recreation Department (KCPRD, kewauneeco.org or visitkewauneecounty.com) will soon open the new Dana Farm Ice Skating Rink, funded primarily with a donation from Kewaunee County Farm Technology Days 2017. The free, lit, outdoor rink – at N3787 Ransom Moore Lane, adjacent to Winter Park – is freezing over and will open as […]