Truth be told, Wisconsin Dells does not come to mind when you think of an adult fall getaway destination since it’s best known for its family-friendly waterparks. Which is a shame because it’s a hidden treasure filled with miles of outdoor activities, delicious cuisine and relaxation. Fall is among the best time to visit since most of the kids are in school and the weather (usually) cooperates so you can get some nature time in. Devil's Lake State Park — Photo courtesy of Devil's Lake State Park
What To Do
- Take a hike. One of biggest, most beautiful and most visited parks in the upper Midwest, Devil’s Lake State Park is known for its spectacular 500 feet of quartzite bluffs overlooking a sparkling 360-acre lake. Walks range from wheelchair-friendly asphalt to difficult steep trails through woods, valleys and meadows. Distances range from short .3 mile distances to 13.7 miles of the 1,000-mile Ice Age Trail.
- Go Zipling. BigFoot Zipline Tours get your adrenaline running all year round and offers panoramic views of BigFoot Zipline Tours — Photo courtesy of BigFoot Zipline Toursthe amazing autumn colors– that is if you can see them as you zip under, through and over tree tops at speeds to 40 miles per hour with Sky Ranger guides as escorts.
- Wollershiem Wine Tasting — Photo courtesy of Wollersheim WineryWinery Tour. About 30 minutes away, the Wollersheim Winery sits on a scenic hillside overlooking the Wisconsin River. Try its Prairie Fume, a crisp and fresh semi-dry white wine with citrus and tropical fruit highlights. The winery is open for tours and tastings daily and throughout the year.
- Looking for some nightlife fun and live music?Head downtown to Showboat Saloon and Mama’s Garage which feature live indoor and outdoor music.
Where To Eat & Drink
Ishnala Supper Club — Photo courtesy of Ishnala Supper ClubWisconsin is known for its supper clubs and its Old-Fashioned whiskey drinks. Just off the beaten path and through the woods (literally) is Ishnala Supper Club. Giant Norway pines grow through the roof and each seat in the restaurant provides a breathtaking view of tranquil Mirror Lake and its surrounding bluffs. Enjoy the prime rib of beef, the house specialty, or any of its seafood which includes foods from the lake and sea. The restaurant does not take reservations but be sure to visit before October 20 when it officially closes for the winter.
Prefer something a little more casual?Although Moosejaw Pizza and Dells Brewing Company is popular among families with kids, it’s also one of only two microbreweries in the Dells (the other is Port Huron Brewing Company). Order one of their year-round or seasonal brews at the bar and bypass the kiddies sporting the moosehead hats in the other room. Try the Rustic Red, a medium-bodied, amber-colored ale.
Sprecher’s Restaurant & Pub serves 14 of its own Wisconsin-brewed beers on tap. It recommends beer pairings to go along with their specialties or try the Wisconsin Cheese Curd Burger, topped with yellow and white cheese curds.
Where To Stay
Sundara Inn and Spa is adults-only and nestled within a 26-acre pine forest. In addition to a relaxing stay, walk the Meditation Trail in the woods on the grounds, rent one of their red bikes and hit the countryside, try a seasonal spa service only offered through October such as the Pear and Green Apple Body Polish and Massage or swim outside in the heated infinity pool. Sundara Pool — Photo courtesy of Sundara Inn and Spa
Wisconsin Dells is so much more than a waterpark wonderland. It’s an easy weekend getaway for grownups whether you want to take a break and unwind, explore and enjoy great dining or drinks.
Wisconsin Dells is approximately 55 miles from Dane County Regional Airport (MSN) in Madison, 116 miles from General Mitchell International in Milwaukee (MKE) and 150 miles from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport (ORD).