We’re proud to be “The Waterpark Capital of the World!®” and we know that many of our guests come to town for our lazy rivers, wild raft rides and mat racer slides, not to mention the other 90 attractions found in just 19.5 square miles. But many visitors might be surprised to know that we are surrounded by a trio of incredible state parks – Devil’s Lake State Park, Mirror Lake State Park and Rocky Arbor State Park.
Devil’s Lake State Park is the most visited state park in Wisconsin and for good reason. The park boasts incredible views of picturesque bluffs, hiking trails that range from easy to advanced, a beautiful lake set down right in the middle of the bluffs, sandy beaches framed by plenty of places for a picnic, and canoe and kayak rentals. As you drive down the curvy, tree-covered entrance of the park, you’ll find guests enjoying the calm water, fishing from a non-motorized boat or sweating through a good hike. If you’re up for the challenge, don’t miss a good workout by trekking to the top of the East Bluff Trail where you can see for miles out to the Wisconsin River and take a perfect picture in front of the park’s famed rock formation, Devil’s Doorway. If you have small kids in town, Tumbled Rocks Trail along the west side of the lake is the perfect place to start.
Mirror Lake State Park is aptly named, as the surface of the lake is calm and can appear glass-like. This is a favorite spot for kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding, with rentals available from locally owned Mirror Lake State Park: Boat & Kayak Rental. Head into one of the narrow gorges that trail off on the sides of the lake and you’ll be enveloped by the cool shade of trees and catch of glimpse of sandstone cliffs. If you time your visit right, you can beach at Ishnala Supper Club and head into their TeePee Bar for happy hour. The trails at Mirror Lake make for a great and relaxing hike. Check them out in the winter too, when they are perfectly groomed for cross-country skiing.
Rocky Arbor State Park is located just outside of downtown Wisconsin Dells and features sandstone outcrops and large pines. The short trails and close proximity to downtown make it ideal for introducing little ones to a little fresh air.