The Central Region
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If you were to put push pins in a map marking the favorite water getaways in Wisconsin, natural and manmade, you'd find the greatest concentration smack dab in the middle of the state.
Green Lake, the state's deepest lake, has been a favorite vacation destination for generations. Nearby golf courses are evocative of historic courses in the south with stunning landscaping and architecture.
With its bounteous natural resources and timeless charm, the Waupaca area draws visitors in all seasons. The Crystal and Waupaca Rivers and famous Chain O’ Lakes, a string of 22 spring-fed, pristine lakes, offer an ideal setting for water activities of all sorts. Hartman Creek State Park, two segments of the Ice Age Trail, and the unique River Ridge Trail all await your discovery. Fantastic golfing, great parks and beaches, ample shopping, and a variety of other diversions make every visit special. Biking, hiking, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing are all available on a wide variety of local public trails, and Hartman Creek State Park boasts excellent horseback riding trails as well. If you don’t own a horse, consider one of our fine area riding stables. Take a cruise through the Chain O’ Lakes on a real sternwheeler, rent a boat, go on a guided canoe trip down the Crystal River, or simply bring your inner tubes and float along!
Heading north, the Wausau area is where all the seasons come alive! Summer offers festivals and events on the weekends and golfing, hiking, biking, fishing, swimming, sailing, boating and canoeing on rivers and lakes. Whitewater Park on the Wisconsin River is famous for hosting world-class canoe and kayak competitions. Enjoy the Fall Colors at Rib Mountain State Park or the Dells of the Eau Claire River. Granite Peak Ski Area with 74 runs and the highest vertical in the state is just one reason why Wausau is a great place to play in the snow. There are 73 kilometers of groomed cross-country ski trails including the popular Nine Mile Forest. In addition to 750 miles of groomed snowmobile trails, there is indoor ice for hockey, curling and figure skating, plus snowshoeing, and the longest tubing runs in Wisconsin at Sylvan Tubing Hill. Downtown Wausau is a delightful place for dining, shopping, night life, and public events. Nestled around the town square are shops and restaurants, the Center for the Visual Arts gallery, and the Grand Theater which hosts a variety of Broadway shows, concerts, and live performances. At the top of East Hill is the Woodson Art Museum, nationally known for its annual Birds in Art exhibit (Sept – Nov).
To the west is Neillsville's historic downtown, where you'll find 21 buildings listed on the state and national historic registers. On the community's outskirts, visitors are also drawn to the solemnity of The Highground Veterans Memorial Park, a 140-acre park that is a place of healing and hope, with views from the plaza to a half-million acres of woodlands and glacial moraines.
Heading south, you'll find yourself it the “Waterpark Capital of the World,” Wisconsin Dells. Known for its nearly two dozen indoor and outdoor waterparks, the area has an alter ego too -- the ancient beauty of honey-hued sandstone bluffs that tower above the Wisconsin River, a waterway which literally bisects the community. Within a short drive, you can take in the Circus World Museum, visit the International Crane Foundation, and tour the Wollersheim Winery
Cities within the Central region: