Wisconsin Dells is the self-proclaimed Water Capital of the World, so it is obvious that a trip to Wisconsin Dells could include water parks, resorts and all that goes along with it. We would challenge you to explore Wisconsin Dells outside of the water parks and tourist craziness. Originally The Dells was a popular area not because of water parks but because of the landforms and nature. There are not many places in Wisconsin that you will find these types of bluffs or the magic of the Wisconsin River.
First, get on the water. There are plenty of places to rent a pontoon boat, jet ski, or motor boat. We suggest Holiday Shores Marina. Spend the day on the water, look at the bluffs, swim, ski, tube and explore. If you are not a captain by nature (if you can drive a car on the interstate, you can drive a boat) then have a private tour. Many places offer a private tour of the dells by water.
Second, visit a state park. You will find over ten state park or nature areas in and around the Wisconsin Dells area. Our favorite is Devils Lake but Buckhorn State Park takes a close second. If your family likes to hike, bike, swim or kayak spend a little time researching which state park would be best for you, then go!
Third, go camping! If you are a camper you will absolutely love the Wisconsin Dells area and all of the different types of camping available. If you like remote, hike in camping…check out Buckhorn State Park.
If you like bells and whistles like inflatables and fire trucks you can find that too. We stayed at Holiday Shores Campground and Resort. One of our favorite things to do is rent a pontoon to go tubing or skiing. The Wisconsin River is the BEST place to take in the beauty and go boating.
Fourth, experience an alternative to camping. Maybe you don’t like camping or you don’t have the supplies to camp. That is ok, many of the campgrounds have luxury campers to rent, as well as cabins. All the supplies are provided, you will just need to pack like you are going to a hotel. If you want your kids (and yourself) to experience boating, a night of campfires, star gazing and ice cream cones or s’mores, then this is a great option for you!
Fifth, go to the Theater! The Palace Theater in Wisconsin Dells “The Palace Theater is a state-of-the-art, theater destination, producing classic Broadway musicals, as well as bringing to life many of your favorite Disney classics and Tribute Artists”
While we were visiting The Wizard of Oz was in production and it was absolutely excellent. Our kids loved it and we loved it too. You do not have to skimp on quality theater while visiting the Wisconsin Dells.
Fifth, Go river tubing! It is hard to beat soaking up the sun while floating down the Wisconsin River with friends and family. Sandy Shores Tubing was the perfect place for our group. The float was super fun and we even were able to bring in a cooler to stock lunch and drinks. We stopped at a beach island and ate lunch and to get out of the sun for a short time. We all had a great time and we had kids aged 3-15!