Pack your swimsuit, your snorkeling equipment and your nautical map: Apostle Islands underwater exploring is a trip back into the past. The shorelines of the Apostle Islands are a rich source of both history and geology. You can find old coins, old musket balls and Ojibwa bugle beads-even agates-just by looking underwater near the shoreline. Plan your Apostle Islands vacation around some water adventures! You can stay on historic Madeline Island and enjoy the scenery in the evening: vast panoramas of the largest lake in the world. Lake Superior water is so cold that items found underwater are in nearly perfect condition. Madeline Island, a two-mile ferry ride from Bayfield, Wisconsin, offers cabin-style lodgings as well as luxury condominiums and campgrounds. Check with the Madeline Island Chamber of Commerce regarding availability. An outfitter can provide you with a navigational map: Apostle Islands shipwrecks can be located by contacting the national park service in Bayfield. While you’re on the Island, visit the historical museum for inter-active displays that show the history of the local Ojibwa Indians. The Island also offers many hiking trails along the lakeshore and through the wetlands. You might also be interested in renting a moped or bike, or a kayak. The local marina also offers charter rental-both bare boat and with captain. The marina will provide you with a nautical map. Apostle Islands vacation destination-yours to enjoy.
Bayfield, Wisconsin, nestled against the south shore of Lake Superior, is an excellent destination for your Apostle Islands vacation. It’s an easy drive from Chicago and the Twin Cities, and many choices await you there. In Bayfield you can find water sports ranging from fishing and kayaking to sailing and power boating. Complete boat charters are available. Walk the brick-paved streets of this quaint old fishing village and shop in the specialty and souvenir shops. Or read a book on the porch swing of a beautiful Victorian B & B. The Apostle Islands Cruise Service offers daily cruises to see the Apostle Islands and their lighthouses. The Chamber of Commerce in Bayfield can help you with hotels. Apostle Islands camping is fun for the more adventurous. Just make sure you check with the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Park Service Headquarters before you make your plans. No trip to the Apostle Islands is complete without crossing the lake on the Madeline Island Ferry Line to visit scenic, historic Madeline Island. Cars are allowed on the Island, but you may prefer to rent a bike or moped and ride out to see Big Bay State Park and Town Park. Hike the lakeshore trail and see ancient rock formations. Or hike the lagoon trail for wetlands at their best. Madeline Island also offers complete charter services, and you may prefer to make the Island your base of operation. The Chamber there can help you. Start planning today for your Apostle Islands vacation.
1 Washington Avenue
Bayfield, WI 54850 (ferry landing on mainland)
Many Apostle Islands tourist attractions will bring you to the Bayfield Peninsula in both summer and winter. In the summer you can enjoy the many water sports that are available. You may like to kayak; kayaks as well as kayak lessons can be found in Bayfield, Wisconsin and nearby Madeline Island also. Charter fishing and sailing boats may also be rented in both locations. If it’s nature you’re interested in, Madeline Island boasts both Big Bay State Park and Town Park. Both offer scenic views of Lake Superior as well as beach and rock formations. Bikes and mopeds, available for rental on Madeline Island will get you there. The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Park is headquartered in Bayfield; several water taxi services can get you there, but you should check with the park headquarters before you go. Bayfield also has an Island cruise service. Madeline Island is accessible by the Madeline Island Ferry. The dock is easy to find in Bayfield, and the ferry runs every half hour in the summer time. If it’s winter activities you seek, you’ll want to see the Apostle Islands ice caves. The ice forms beautiful stalactites. Dog sledding, snowmobiling, ice fishing and skiing are just a few of the Apostle Islands tourist attractions awaiting you in northern Wisconsin.
In 1963 President Kennedy was so impressed with the beauty of the Apostle Islands, that he decreed that they should become the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore and be protected for all time. You can enjoy their undisturbed wildness by visiting northern Wisconsin The headquarters of the park is located in Bayfield, Wisconsin, which is an easy drive from most places in the Midwest. Several water taxis operating out of Bayfield will take you out to the islands to camp, but you must check in with the park service before you go. Or, if you prefer, there is a cruise service that goes to the Islands and visits the lighthouses of the Apostles. Your visit to Apostles Islands National Park should include time to spend in both the quaint village of Bayfield and neighboring Madeline Island. Madeline Island is the only one of the Apostles that has year-round inhabitants, and they will gladly share with you their experiences, history and culture. Ask any local what it’s like to live on an island in the severe northern winter and you’ll hear stories of both high jinx and grim survival. A wide variety of both summer and winter activities await you in this area. In the winter you can ice fish, snowmobile-most of the islands are accessible by snowmobile and ATV, but again check with the locals regarding safety-or just cozy up to the fire. In the summer you can swim, fish, sail, kayak or hike. Do it all at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.
Come and explore the “Unholy Apostles” and find out how they got that name. For scuba divers, ship wrecks abound in the Bayfield, Wisconsin region. Or for a tamer introduction to the Apostles, you can tour Apostle Islands lighthouses. The local cruise service in Bayfield offers tours daily that will show you all around the Islands and their historic lighthouses. Several of them have been restored to look exactly as they did when they were operating lighthouses. You can tour them and see how these “keepers of the light” and their families lived a hundred years ago. Apostle Islands facts are available at the National Park Service Headquarters in Bayfield, and, should you choose to camp on any of the Islands, you must check in with them. While you’re in the area, there is much more to do in the quaint village of Bayfield and the nearby historic Madeline Island. For sportsmen, fishing, sailing and kayaking are all available for charter-either bare boat or with a captain. For shoppers, Bayfield and La Pointe (the only town on Madeline Island) both offer a variety of specialty and souvenir shops. You can stroll Bayfield and see the Victorian homes built by captains and their wives over a hundred years ago. Or, a twenty-minute ferry ride will take you to Madeline Island where you can rent bikes or mopeds and visit the beautiful Big Bay State Park. Apostle Islands lighthouses will bring you to the northland; gorgeous scenery and friendly people will bring you back.