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Staying in Ellison Bay, need suggestions..

Indianapolis, IN
Level Contributor
39 posts
3 reviews
Staying in Ellison Bay, need suggestions..

My husband and I are spending 3 days in Ellison Bay last week in May- looking for suggestions of outdoorsey things to see and do. I noticed several parks within a short distance. Any stand-out activities, parks, sites (nature and historical) to see besides enjoying the quiet and water? Any other tips appreciated too- dining, cool drives, quirky things.

1st time to this area of Wisconsin.



Munich, Germany
Level Contributor
242 posts
23 reviews
1. Re: Staying in Ellison Bay, need suggestions..

You've picked a great spot for enjoying the outdoors. You're really close to my favorite beach on Europe Bay in Newport State Park; you can hike from it along the shoreline.

You're also really close to the Mink River, an estuary where you can canoe or kayak and see a lot of herons. Nature Conservancy trails lead into the estuary from each side (from County Road P/Mink River Road, watch for a green-and-yellow sign marking a small parking lot; from there, it’s a beautiful hourlong walk). You can rent kayaks from Door County Kayak Tours or Bay Shore Outdoors Store in Sister Bay.

Don't miss Ridges Sanctuary in Baileys Harbor; late May is the BEST time to see lots of rare wildflowers, and the naturalist will give you more ideas about where to go, such as Toft Point Natural Area, just down the road.

You can take the ferry to Washington Island, a good place to bicycle, or you can take your car on the ferry to Washington and drive across the island and get the ferry to Rock Island, where you can hike to the lighthouse and swim off beautiful beaches (plan carefully so you can get the most time there).

And here's a nice 25-mile bike route I mapped out around the tip of the peninsula. From Ellison Bay, take Garrett Bay Road to Hedgehog Harbor. Cottage Road leads to Gills Rock and joins Wisconsin 42, which ends at the ferry landing in Northport. From there, Porte des Morts Road leads to Park Lane, which leads to Weborg Park, a tiny park atop a rocky beach that’s fun to explore. Heading west, take Park Drive to Timberline Drive and south to Europe Bay Road.

From there, a bicyclist has three options: east to Europe Bay beach, south on Newport Drive to the east trailhead leading to the Mink River (look for the “Schonbrunn’’ sign), or west to Wisconsin 42, in which case you’ll turn right on Badger Road, left on Birchwood Road and return to Ellison Bay on Garrett Bay Road.

Ellison Bay itself has a nice town park with sand beach and pier. And of course there are all the great places farther south: Peninsula State Park, Cave Point County Park and Whitefish Dunes State Park.

Beth at MidwestWeekends.com

2 posts
2. Re: Staying in Ellison Bay, need suggestions..

Where did you stay? I am looking for a clean, updated cabin style place to spend 3 days in Door County with my family!

Indianapolis, IN
Level Contributor
39 posts
3 reviews
3. Re: Staying in Ellison Bay, need suggestions..

We rented a house from www.RentDoorCounty.com but I can't recommend the rental company as they misrepresented the house (web listing said fireplaces, well- the holes were cut out, but fireplaces were not installed, they since changed the ad.) Also the furnace for the master bdrm was off and we didn't want to mess with the property, so we slept on another bed since it was so cold. The unforgivable part is they wouldn't return our calls while we were on site complaining about the missing fireplaces and lack of heat in the master bedroom. We left messages with the office and on the emergency cel numbers- no response, and they wouldn't return my husbands call once we got home.. In all the places we've ever stayed, we've never run up against a rental agency this uncaring. It's a shame since it appears they have some decent properties and we do plan on going back to the area again with friends, but will be using another company.. still a great trip otherwise, very nice area up north on the penninsula.

4. Re: Staying in Ellison Bay, need suggestions..

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