With the blue waters of Green Bay to the west and Lake Michigan on the north, east, and south, Wisconsin's Door County is a 75 mile long peninsula of dramatic limestone cliff faces, white sand dune lined lakeshores and abundant pristine water views. Interspersed through the splendid natural scenery are inviting small towns and villages—each one charmingly different from the next. Well-kept dairy farms and cherry and apple orchards dot the horizon with their ever-present red barns. No matter where you are, the wealth of rural or water views and fabulous lightly traveled roads create perfect conditions for cyclists of all abilities. Come with us to find out why Door County, WI has earned the nickname, “the Martha’s Vineyard of the Midwest!”
The terrain is a mix of gently rolling hills and flat terrain, making it accessible to all ability levels. Road bikes and hybrid style bikes are both appropriate. This 6 day tour offers routes of 25-50+ miles each day (at your option). Less ambitious cyclists can take advantage of short cuts and "leap frog" van shuttles along the route to tailor the route to their needs.
From Wisconsin De Pere to Fish Creek
Tour DifficultyRolling Hills & Flats
Duration6 Days, 5 Nights
Meet/DepartChateau De Pere, De Pere, WI
Nearest AirportGRB Green Bay–Austin Straubel International Airport
PricingFrom $2275 per person
The trip begins in a suburb of Green Bay, De Pere, located on the banks of the Fox River. In the late 1600's, New France established a settlement where modern day De Pere sits. The region's early explorers and trappers produced more wealth in this area than any other area in New France. The many waterways that lead from Green Bay through De Pere and on to the Fox River Valley were essential to the area's booming fur trade, creating a foundation for De Pere's and Green Bay's growth.
Today, De Pere's historic downtown offers unique shopping, casual and fine dining, scenic beauty, historic architecture, and is the home to St. Norbert College, a top ranked Catholic liberal arts school. Many theater and music events are scheduled at the college which sits in the heart of De Pere’s historic downtown. Take some time before or after our tour to explore the campus or to visit the neighboring city of Green Bay, home to the famous Packer Museum.
Our group will meet in the early afternoon to allow time for a casual spin ride hugging the shore of the Fox River and offering beautiful views of St. Norbert College, popular local fishing spots, the De Pere historic locks and dam, and quintessential Wisconsin countryside. We will reconvene in the early evening for dinner as a group. Chateau De Pere, our charming home for the night, was built on the foundation of a 19th century mill. Visible remnants of the mill’s original brick walls can be seen on the first floor of the inn.
After a breakfast on the banks of the Fox River, we will head into the heart of Door County. Our day's ride will start in an area of Door County known as Southern Door and will take us north through gently rolling fields through the heart of what was once the largest concentration of Belgian communities in the New World. Along the route, see beautiful barns, rolling fields, and the ever-present water views of Green Bay.
After lunch en route, we will spend time in the afternoon exploring one of Door County's jewels, Potowatomi State Park. The park is named for one of the tribes that inhabited Green Bay’s shores when the Europeans first arrived. They called themselves Bo-De-Wad-Me, meaning “keeper of the fire.” The tribal name and spelling were changed over time on maps to become Potowatomi. Walk one of the many shaded birch-lined trails. Watch the deer graze and hawks soar above the tree lined lakeside cliffs that form the western edge of the Niagra Escarpment stretching from Wisconsin to New York. Or, just take in the panoramic view from atop a 75-foot observation tower. On clear days, you can see 16 miles across the majestic waters of Green Bay from its 225 feet high vantage point above the water.
We end our day today in the charming town of Sturgeon Bay. Named Wisconsin’s friendliest small town, Sturgeon Bay is the county seat of Door County and the only city on the peninsula. Settled in 1835, its economy originally was based on lumbering. That changed, however, when the canal linking Green Bay and Lake Michigan opened to shipping in 1881 and altered the economy of the town of Sturgeon Bay.
We will spend our evening at the Stone Harbor Resort on the shores of Sturgeon Bay. Savor the sunset views before dinner as a group this evening at one of the many charming options in town.
Our morning starts with a ride heading east along the shipping canal connecting Green Bay and Lake Michigan, before turning north along the shoreline of Lake Michigan. At this point, take a moment to see two of Door County's eleven lighthouses. Many of Wisconsin’s early settlers came by Great Lakes steamships. These shipping lines eventually petitioned the US Government to commission lighthouses along the dangerous rocky shoreline of Lake Michigan.
Our ride continues, winding along the lake shore, catching glimpses of the water between unique waterfront homes and cottages. Spend a few miles spinning lakeside, and then head inland to ride through some of Door County's many orchards. We will be visiting during the heart of Door County’s cherry season. Roads sprinkled with cherry trees greet us with shiny red globes of fruit peeking out from beneath the green leaves. We might even see some harvesting in progress with mechanized “tree shakers” able to harvest 4 trees per minute!
We will lunch this afternoon at a local winery, where you can choose to stay and sample wines, possibly including a vintage or two of cherry wine. Or, you may continue pedaling to the picturesque town of Fish Creek, our home for the next three nights. The afternoon is yours to explore nearby Peninsula State Park, charter a fishing boat to try your hand at catching the local walleye, pike, trout or salmon, or wander the flower box lined streets and shops of charismatic Fish Creek.
Our home in Fish Creek is the elegant White Gull Inn. Settle in prior to enjoying dinner on your own at one of the many options Fish Creek has to offer.
Today is a cyclist’s dream day! We make our way to the largest island in Door County, Washington Island. Once home to large fishing operations, the island now houses only 650 residents year-round creating an ideal cycling destination filled with miles of quiet roads. Opt to bike or shuttle to the 30-minute ferry that will take us to the island across the strait after which Door County was named. Originally named by early French explorers as Porte Des Mortes, meaning "Door of Death", the strait was known for its treacherous currents and climate which caused many early navigators to be lost in the strait. Upon our safe arrival on the island, we will spin along empty scenic roads, catching views of the lake, surrounding islands, and sleepy island villages. Watch for fishing pelicans soaring above the water as we pedal the roads along the rocky shoreline.
After lunch in the early afternoon at one of the local gourmet eateries, we will make our way back toward Fish Creek via the road network winding its way through Northern Door County. The “Top of the Thumb” is highlighted by the communities of Ellison Bay, Rowleys Bay and Gills Rock. These charming villages are home to an abundance of small museums, artists’ galleries, shops and restaurants. In between is quintessential Door scenery. We will reconvene this evening to recount the day’s adventures and tell stories of our successful navigation through the “Porte Des Mortes” prior to dinner on your own in yet another wonderful option in Fish Creek.
We begin our day today with yet another bountiful White Gull Inn breakfast – perhaps their award-winning cherry stuffed French toast! Today is a day to take advantage of the spectacular views offered in nearby Peninsula State Park. Gentle climbs are rewarded by bluff top views of sparkling Lake Michigan and descents to the sandy beaches along the shoreline. There is an option to continue pedaling a short distance to lunch in the quaint fishing town of Bailey's Harbor. Named for a ship captain who took refuge from a violent 1840’s storm in the natural cove which defines the village waterfront, the appealing town of Bailey’s Harbor has a mix of shops and galleries to explore. Along our route returning to Fish Creek, take a minute to stop at the Edgewater Gallery sculpture garden - a worthwhile stop even if art is not "your thing." The late afternoon is yours to enjoy strolling the charming streets of Fish Creek before we finish our evening with dinner as a group.
Our final day returns us to the Chateau De Pere, biking from Fish Creek on low traffic roads along the shores of Green Bay and through pastoral Wisconsin scenery. Pedal the marigold lined streets of Egg Harbor, voted one of the “Coolest Small Towns In America” by Budget Travel in 2010. We make our way back to the heart of Southern Door and are greeted by the rolling fields dotted with the distinctive red brick Belgian farmhouses. One last picnic lunch will be available on the shores of Green Bay. A short shuttle returns us to De Pere where showers will be provided upon our return.
What's Included in Your Tour Price
5 nights at boutique inns and resort hotels
Dinner on Nights 1, 3, & 5; All lunches except 1; All breakfasts; Snacks; and Hors d'eourves some nights.
Services of Expert Local Guides
Carolina Tailwinds maintains a guest to guide maximum ratio of 7:1 on all our tours. Guides are ready to show you the hidden wonders of each and every destination.
Full Route Support & Luggage Transfer
Service of 1 – 2 support vans on route every day.
More details on what's included:
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Chateau De Pere, 201 James Street, De Pere, WI. | (920) 347-0007 (also available for additional nights prior). Chateau De Pere is a charming 36 room, en-suite hotel located near Green Bay in De Pere, Wisconsin, constructed on the foundation of a 19th century mill. Café Chanson (French Song) offers traditional French country cooking at reasonable prices.
Stone Harbor Resort, 107 North First Ave, Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235. | (920) 746-0700. This full service lakeshore resort has a full range of amenities, including indoor and outdoor pools, tiki bar, and beautiful lake views.
Nights 3, 4 & 5
The White Gull Inn, 4225 Main Street, Fish Creek, WI, 54212. You won't want to leave this Select Registry inn, which is why we are staying for three nights! The beautiful accommodations are walking distance to everything in the heart of charming Fish Creek.
The Main Street Motel, 4209 Main Street, Fish Creek, WI 54212. An alternative lodging option, this quaint, meticulously maintained family owned property offers some additional room types and a small discount in the tour price.
The terrain is a mix of gently rolling hills and flat terrain, making it accessible to all ability levels. Road bikes and hybrid style bikes are both appropriate.
This 6 day tour offers routes of 25 - 50+ miles each day (at your option). Less ambitious cyclists can take advantage of short cuts and "leap frog" van shuttles along the route to tailor the route to their needs.
Tour Point of Origin:
Chateau De Pere, 201 James St, De Pere, WI (920) 347-0007
Getting to the Tour Start (De Pere, WI)
Driving: Approximate travel distance to De Pere--
- Minneapolis, MN: 283 miles
- Madison, WI: 132 miles
- Milwaukee, WI: 115 miles
- Chicago, IL: 206 miles
- Indianapolis, IN: 393 miles
Austin Straubel International Airport (GRB) is served by American, Delta and United, with connections to Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit and Minneapolis.
Uber, Taxi, limo, and shared sedan service is available to and from the airport.
Parking: We have arranged for complimentary long term parking there for the duration of your tour. We will end the tour at the same inn with an opportunity to shower there prior to departure.
Arrival time on the first day of the tour is no later than 11:00 a.m. if renting equipment from us, or 11:30 a.m. if bringing your own bike. Guests will want to meet us at these times dressed in bike clothes, or ready to change into them.
We plan to wrap up around 3:00 p.m. on the last day of the tour. Your return flight should be no earlier than 5:00 p.m. that evening.
Extend Your Vacation
There is a lot to do in and around nearby Green Bay if you have time. The downtown riverfront district hosts festivals and farmers markets each weekend in the summer and is home to numerous Wisconsin craft breweries! http://www.greenbay.com/visit_us/
Everyone also knows that Green Bay is "Titletown" and home to the Green Bay Packers. A trip to the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame and Lambeau Field is a must even for those whose first love may not be football!
We plan to wrap up around 3:00 p.m. Your return flight should be no earlier than 5:00 p.m. that evening.