Family Road Trip! Our Favorite Things to do in Door County with Kids

Things to do in door county with kids
Anderson's Dock, Ephraim, Door County

Just north of Green Bay, Door County Wisconsin is a family vacation favorite but close enough for a fun day trip.

Door County is such a fun place to feel like you are really getting away.

Sister Bay, Door County

Tips for your Family’s Visit

  • List, Itinerary, and Map it Out. It takes about an hour to travel from Sturgeon Bay to the top of the peninsula. Use our ultimate list of things to do as a guide. List out what you want to do most and then map it out. We use google maps or download a door county map here. Maps are also available at the Visitor’s Bureau. Find things that are nearby to maximize your time and minimize your driving.
  • Research. Check for high water and COVID-19 updates. Which places require masks? Is the beach you’re visiting free from water-dwelling nasties? We have not included this information because it changes often. 
  • Plan for the Weather. It might be unthinkable in Appleton that day to throw on a sweatshirt, but it is often windier and cooler thanks to the lake. Especially, if you plan to be there in the evening.
  • Start your morning with coffee. One of our favorite parts about heading out on a road trip in the morning is grabbing a special coffee and treat. Some of our favorite stops are Happy Bellies, Acoca, and for a drive-through, try All Tied Up or Seth’s. 
  • Carry Out. Look for restaurants that offer carryout. Order and pay ahead of time to skip long lines. Find a picnic table at a nearby park with a waterfront view.
  • Picnic. 
  • Pick up a bottle of Door County wine or cider for winding down at the campground or motel.
  • Plan a weekday or off-season visit. If you’re not a fan of crowds, 
  • Schedule downtime. It is tempting to schedule every minute of a short trip, but magic is often found in the unscheduled moments. Remember to make time for those also.
  • Schedule a return visit. There is so much to do and you won’t be able to fit it all into a couple of days. 
  • Take in a sunrise or sunset on the water. Use this guide to plan when and where.
  • Pick up some local goodies to enjoy on the way home or to put away for another day. There is no shortage of tasty treats to bring back with you. Cheese, cherries, apples, wine, chocolate, fudge…we’re sure you’ll find something. 
  • Document your family vacation. Be present, but give your future self a present by both taking photos and getting in the photos! If you’re posting a perfect snap to Instagram, don’t forget to tag us, we love to see your adventures.

Door County is full of unique, fun things to do and we couldn’t have possibly fit everything here. We included our favorites from our family trips and recommendations from friends.

The Door County Visitors Bureau, Destination Door County, has a wealth of information. You can stop in on the way into town for maps, brochures and guides.

We have rounded up personal and reader recommendations of the best kid-friendly options in Door County. Did we miss your recommendation? We would love to hear about it. Leave a comment below.

Door County Creamery
Door County Creamery, Sister Bay, Door County

Sample Itinerary

Day 1: Hello Door County!

  • Stop at Wequiock Falls on the way
  • Explore in Sturgeon Bay and stretch your legs
  • The Farm or Plum Loco
  • Dinner
  • Unwind

Day 2: Explore

  • Coffee is a must followed by morning hiking
  • Farmers Market or Market Store for local goodies
  • Picnic Lunch
  • Afternoon Beach
  • Dinner
  • Mini Golf, Movie, Ice Cream
  • Sunset

Day 3: Repeat and Mix up Day 2

  • Have a delicious breakfast. Visit a restaurant with outdoor seating or pack a picnic with items from home or a local bakery and enjoy a rare breakfast outside.
  • Explore a state park or landscape a different way – biking, kayaking, trolley
  • Shopping in Fish Creek

Day 4: Head Home: Goodbye Door County!

  • Stop at Renards Cheese on the way out for ride home snacks

READ MORE: 25 Picturesque Scenic Drives to Enjoy From Your Car Window

The Farm Door County
The Farm, Sturgeon Bay, Door County

Where to Play and Explore with Kids in Door County

Animal Lovers

  • The Farm, 4285 WI-57, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
    • Described as a living museum of rural America, The Farm has been a family favorite since 1965. Families enjoy a completely immersive experience with farm animals, history and culture. Bottle feed baby goats, lambs and piglets. Stroll around the grounds for a nice nature walk.
  • Stoneboat Farm Exotics, 9511 Townline Drive, Sister Bay, Wisconsin
    • Get up close and personal with a hands-on interactive Bactrian Camel experience with feeding, petting and rides. Spends some time learning more about alpacas, miniature horses, ponies and camels on the farm. Visits by reservations only.
  • Door County Sled Dogs, 10355 Water St S, Ephraim
    • The Door County Sled Dogs are a recreation sled dog team made up of all rescued Huskies. Learn more about dog sledding, rescues and training with this non profit organization.
  • Door County Creamery Farm Tour, 10653 N Bay Shore Dr, Sister Bay
    • Enjoy a walking tour of the farm where the creamery’s goodies start including gelato and cheese. Learn about how the farm is operated, how the animals are raised and how to make cheese. Meet lots of goats and enjoy a patio lunch. Tours can be purchased and reserved from the main store in Sister Bay.

CLOSED for 2020

  • Plum Loco, 4413 Plum Bottom Rd, Egg Harbor, Wisconsin
  • Imaginative Play Area and petting farm.
Plum Loco, Egg Harbor
Plum Loco, Egg Harbor, Door County

Where to Find Art Things to Do with Kids

  • Anderson’s Dock, 3083 Anderson Ln, Ephraim, Wisconsin
    • A fun photo opp at this graffiti dock. Bring paint (or a sharpie) and leave your mark. Enjoy a remarkable sunset here as well!
  • Hands-on Art Studio, 3655 Peninsula Players Rd, Fish Creek, Wisconsin
    • Projects offered daily with no reservations needed in ceramics, canvas and wood-ware painting, spin art, mosaics, fused glass and metal sculpture.
plum loco farm door county
Plum Loco, Egg Harbor, Door County

Where to Find Farms, Markets & Orchards that are Kid Friendly

  • Wood Orchard Market, 8112 WI-42, Egg Harbor, WI 54209
    • Kids can enjoy a corn maze, pedal car track, and playground.
  • Seaquist Orchards Farm Market, 11482 Hwy 42, Sister Bay, WI 54234
    • Kids can enjoy a rope maze, pedal car track, sandbox, corn hole game, and playground.

READ MORE: Our 10 favorite family friendly Fall things to do Door County.

Seaquist Orchards
Kids Playground at Seaquist Orchards Farm Market, Sister Bay, Door County

Where to Find Mini Golf & Adventure

Washington Island, Door County
Schoolhouse Beach, Washington Island, Door County

Other Unique Experiences

Peninsula State Park
Peninsula State Park. Fish Creek, Door County

Beaches in Door County to Explore with Kids

These beaches are also perfect for catching the sunrise or sunset. We noted the West Side (the Bay) for sunsets and East Side for sunrises. Most beaches are located on the Bay Side. The water is generally warmer on this side.

READ MORE: Where to Swim in Lakes and Beaches in Northeast Wisconsin

Inland Lake

West Side of the Peninsula – Bay Side (off Highway 42)

East Side of the Door County Peninsula (off Highway 57)

Water is generally cooler on this side of the peninsula.

  • Bailey’s Harbor Ridges County Park, 2301 Ridges Rd, Baileys Harbor
    • Beach is suffering from high waters 
  • Anclam Beach Park
    • Playground, grills, bathrooms, and amazing panoramic views of the harbor. Walk to the end of the pier to look back over the downtown district. It is located on the south end of town on Hwy 57.

Washington Island

Cave Point County Park, Sturgeon Bay
Cave Point County Park, Sturgeon Bay, Door County

Where to Hike in Door County with Kids

  • Cave Point County Park, 5360 Schauer Rd, Sturgeon Bay
    • Underwater caves, hiking trails & limestone cliffs along scenic Lake Michigan
    • sharp, high, cliffs – difficult with little kids
    • FREE
  • Ridges Sanctuary Family Discovery Trail
    • The Cook-Albert Fuller Nature Center, exhibits, and Nature Store are closed to the public due to COVID-19.

Wisconsin State Parks

  • State Park Admission Required: Annual Pass (Vehicle with WI license plates): $28
    Daily Pass (Vehicle with WI license plates $8 (Not available for 2020.)
  • Whitefish Dunes State Park, 3275 Clark Lake Rd, Sturgeon Bay
    • Some of the largest dunes on Lake Michigan
    • Updates for 2020: The Boardwalk on the Brachiopod Trail at Whitefish Dunes State Park is temporarily closed due to safety concerns. The boardwalk section is closed until further notice. The 1st beach access at Whitefish Dunes is closed until further notice due to high water on Lake Michigan and shoreline erosion. The 2nd and 3rd beach access points and other trails in the park are open.
  • Peninsula State Park & Nicolet Beach, 9890 Shore Road, Ephraim
    • Not Licked is right outside of the entrance and a perfect treat after a hike at Peninsula. Outside dining on the creek.
  • Newport State Park, 475 County Rd NP, Ellison Bay 
  • Potawatomi State Park, 3740 Park Dr, Sturgeon Bay
  • Rock Island State Park, 1924 Indian Point Rd, Washington 
    • Closed for 2020.
Fred & Fuzzy’s Waterfront Bar & Grill, Sister Bay

Family-Friendly Places to Eat in Door County

Skip the lines at some of the best restaurants in Door County by checking to see if you can order and pay online. 

  • Wild Tomato Wood-Fired Pizza and Grille, WI-42, Fish Creek
    • A family-owned and operated outdoor seating restaurant with unique wood-fired pizzas, salads, sandwiches, and burgers
  • Not Licked Frozen Custard, 4054 Main St, Fish Creek
    • Lunch, Dinner, and Dessert
    • Buy popcorn to feed the ducks.
    • Outdoor seating on a creek. Shaded. Playground.
  • Door County Creamery, 10653 N Bay Shore Dr, Sister Bay
    • Charming cafe offering artisanal cheeses, sandwiches and gelato plus lunchtime goat farm tours with tastings.
  • PC Junction, 7898 CR-A, Baileys Harbor
    • The family fun restaurant where food is delivered on a train. Closed Mondays and Tuesdays.
  • Door County Ice Cream Factory, 11051 WI-42, Sister Bay
    • A Door County Favorite since 1912. The Door County Ice Cream Factory and Sandwich Shoppe serves its own Super Premium Ice Cream which is made on site. Patrons can watch the ice cream being made during production hours.
  • Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant & Butik, 10698 N Bay Shore Dr, Sister Bay
    • Stop by to see the goats eating on the roof of this Swedish restaurant.
  • Wilson’s Restaurant & Ice Cream Parlor, 9990 Water St S, Ephraim
    • This soda fountain established in 1906 has a super fun atmosphere and a great menu for kids. There’s also ice cream, delicious house-brewed root beer, and jukeboxes at the tables!
  • Fred and Fuzzy’s Waterfront Bar – Door County, 10620 Little Sister Rd, Sister Bay
  • Good Eggs, 9820 Brookside Lane, Ephraim
Wild Tomato Wood-Fired Pizza and Grille, Fish Creek, Door County

Reader Recommended: Where to Camp in Door County with Kids

  • Washington Island Campground, 745 Eastside Rd. Washington Island
  • Frontier Wilderness, 4375 Hillside Rd, Egg Harbor
    • Located in the middle of the peninsula with an indoor pool and easy access to beaches and Door County amenities.
  • Harbour Village Campground & Waterpark, 5840 WI-42, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
    • Door County’s largest water park.
  • Aqualand Campground, 2445 County Q, Sister Bay
  • Timber Trails Campground, N8326 Co Rd M, Algoma
    • The campground is on the Ahnapee State Trail which connects to Sturgeon Bay, about 17 miles away. Enjoy a heated pool or a short walk to The Ahnapee River for great fishing, ,and canoeing. Family activities on the weekends, heated pool,and large play area!

Wisconsin State Park Camping

  • Peninsula State Park, 9462 Shore Rd, Fish Creek
    • A Wisconsin State Park loved by many in the heart of Door County. Beautiful trails overlook the bluffs. Great traditional camping.
Not Licked Frozen Custard, Fish Creek, Door County

Reader Recommended: Inexpensive Places to Stay in Door County with Kids

Sister Bay Public Beach
Sister Bay Public Beach, Door County

Did we miss your recommendation? We would love to hear about it. Leave a comment below.

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5 thoughts on “Family Road Trip! Our Favorite Things to do in Door County with Kids”

  1. Avatar

    Just an FYI. The name of the falls is spelled Wequiock Falls. I was trying to google it under the name listed and couldn’t find it.

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