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Lions Den Gorge - Wisconsin's Hidden Gems And Pathway That Only The Locals Know About

Wisconsin’s 7 Hidden Gems And Pathways That Only The Locals Know About (2024)

How much do you know about Wisconsin? Only till the extent of whatever is preached? Oh, hold your horses because Wisconsin is so much more than what is stated as ‘Famous.’ America’s Dairyland, Wisconsin, is perhaps home to some of the quirkiest hidden gems. A few of them are so secretive that not even many residents know about it. You may have been to the Capitol Building in Madison several times. But do you know there’s a hidden viewing deck? Or have you ever been to the Candlewood Cabins? They do book up fast, but because of their locality, not everyone knows about them.

Similarly, Wisconsin has multiple hidden pathways and attractions that not many visitors have walked upon. While some are far from easy reach, others the State itself has managed to keep secretive.

Wisconsin’s 7 Hidden Gems and Pathways That Only The Locals Know About

And with that, without any further ado, let’s consider adding some of Wisconsin’s hidden gems into our next itinerary. Here we go:

1. Lions Den Gorge

Lions Den Gorge is a gorgeous preserve lesser-known to even the locals of Wisconsin. Though it is one of the registered sights, not everyone has been lucky enough to explore it. It is one of the last stretches of undeveloped bluff land along Lake Michigan; thus, the view next to your eyes holds only water. The preserve has mesmerizing panorama all around, be it that of Lake Michigan or the plantation in between. While you walk across the trails, you have continuous lake views on one side and woodland on the other. On most days, it is difficult to find many fellow explorers at the Gorge. So, the next time you are looking for some peace and solitude, do choose to cross these pathways.

2. Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant

Famous amongst the locals, Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant is definitely a Wisconsin’s hidden gem. What’s great about this restaurant is its goats. Yes, you read it right. The restaurant has a sod roof that becomes home to goats from May through October. While you have your authentic Swedish meal inside, goats are probably munching on their greens. Or you can choose to sit at one of the outdoor seatings and relish your meal watching goats do their deeds. The locality and surroundings, too, are serene in themselves. Although it is not popular amongst tourists, you can always find it crowded with locals.

3. Claire d’Loon

Being a tourist, you may easily miss it, but locals swear by this site. Claire d’Loon is 16 feet tall loon that weighs around 2,000 pounds. It is known as the largest talking loon in the world. Though it only talks in loon sounds, it has a fabulous singing voice. While crossing the US 51 in town, you can spot it in front of the Chamber of Commerce on the north side of the road. You can pre-plan a picnic and enjoy yourself in the nearby lakefront park. Or take out 10 minutes, stop your car and click yourself some quirky shots with the roadside wonder.

4. Antiques on Piece

Located in Milwaukee, Antiques on Piece is a one-of-a-kind mall. While tourists often overlook the site, locals insist you to spend some time here. While the building from the outside looks old and distressed, from the inside, it is a hub of antiques. Here you can find an array of things from furniture to jewelry, toys, ceramics, books, clothing, and whatnot. Because they have three floors full of antique treasures, you will never fall short of options. You can come here either to take a stroll and observe or shop back the things you like. However, the vendors here tend to quote prices mainly on the higher side. Though if that is one fine condition with you, Antiques on Piece is definitely a place you must not miss.

5. Anaway Place

Formerly known as Candlewood Cabins, Anaway Place is fascinating than you can think. What makes them considered as a hidden gem is the fact that they are somewhere right in the middle of woodlands. Reaching here is accessible via hiking 6 miles long wooded trails or two-wheeler/ small cars. Across miles of woodlands and walking trails are a few rustic-chic cabins featuring all basic amenities. You get a functional kitchen, spacious patio, living room, free WiFi, and BBQ arrangements. If you are in the mood for some hiking, climb up the peak of the region and overlook a vast grassy vista. Close enough, there’s also a cool suspension footbridge and an extensive park system. Anaway Place is ideal for couples or someone who is looking to take a break from the modern lifestyle.

6. World’s Largest Penny, Woodruff

Wisconsin is home to quite a lot of ‘Largest’ in the world, and the Lincoln-headed Penny in Woodruff is one fine example of that. This huge penny was originally built to acknowledge those 1.7 million pennies that were raised to build a local hospital. The one you see today is 12 inches thick, 15 feet high, and weighs nearly 9 tons. Who would believe that back in time, just by collecting loose change, an entire hospital could have been built? Even today looking back to the time, it feels how determination and efforts made something so unusual turn possible. However, even if you aren’t interested in the story, you can still stop and click a fun photograph together.

7. Concord Zoo

Concord Zoo is free to visit petting zoo hidden literally. It is sitting right beside the Concord General Store located off I-94 and Highway F, which hides it from the public eye. Until you are unknown to its existence, you may not even find it manually. Concord Zoo is small, with a visitors’ capacity of only 20 people. Here you can meet miniature horses, cows, sheep, donkeys, goats, and a few other animals. When here, walk through the sight petting, feeding, and interacting with the resident animals. Going back, you can shop for some locally made organic produce from the shop at the front.

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