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Friday, May 29, 2015

Great weekend gateway: Lake Geneva

I hope you all had great memorial day weekend. I am very much spontaneous but for long weekend we have to plan in advance otherwise will not get hotel booking and prices will high as you delay booking. So these time we decided to have one days trips and visit different places in three days.

So to enjoy very first day of the weekend we want to start it real slow and relaxing so we choose lake Geneva to enjoy our day and its just 1 hour drive from Milwaukee so no early wake up calls and no long drives.

How to get there

Chicago o'hare international airport or Milwaukee General Mitchell International Airport or Dane county regional airport are nearest airport from Lake Geneva. You can rent a car from Airport and drive to Lake Geneva. Drive will be more or less than 1 hour.

Tip to explore Lake Geneva

  • If you are planning to walk on hiking trail than wear proper shoes which comfortable for walk. Do keep water bottle and granola bars in your hiking bag.
  • As there is not parking spot at each and every place do park your vehicle on street parking lot around visitor center.
  • If you are planing to spend whole day at Lake Geneva take parking for 5 hrs (max allowed hours at a time) so you don't have to go every now and than to renew your parking.
  • If you have short time than 1 day will be enough to explore lake, beach and little bit of hiking.
Places to visit in Lake Geneva

As soon as you reach to Lake Geneva very first thing is do parking for 5 hours and keep receipt with you because you can renew parking from any of pay station. I would say go to visitor center first. They will give you map and tell you places to visit. You can ask your questions and they help you find your answers. Even they have menus for some restaurants so you can identify where you want to go for lunch.

I don't prefer hiking after lunch so very first thing we did is hiking on Lake Geneva shore path. 

Map of Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva Shore path

Lake Geneva shore path is incredible hiking trail i had ever seen. Whole path is parallel to lake. These is 21 miles long hiking trail and no doubt i haven't covered whole trail we walk hardly few miles but experience was amazing. I have decided to walk on these trail all the way to complete 21 miles trail in future. The beauty of trail will make you forget how long you walked. And another most incredible thing of hiking trail is million dollar houses oops my bad Mansions. Never seen such a beautiful houses and green grassy yards around mansions.

Mansion with huge yard

Amazing white house

If you are not hiker but love to see architecture than i would suggest you to walk little bit in opposite side of riviera beach within few steps you will able to see great mansions.

Riviera Beach

These is the only beach near visitor center. Riviera beach has admission fees for above 6 years. Children 7-12 years pay $4 and 13 to adult pay $7. They have different passes if you are visiting frequently.You can buy ticket from the pay station for beach. There are some rules which you have to keep in mind. They don't allow Glass containers, Alcohol, drugs, smoking, pets and weapons. You can take your food and beverages which are in plastic.

Riviera Beach
These is small beach but but nice and clean. You will enjoy swimming but it has small boundary for swimming as with in few feet boat tour deck is situated.

The Riviera building
Boat tours

Lake Geneva boat tour offers three different type of tours.
You can see in map very first tour red line indicates is full lake, Mail boat and all meal cruises. These tour covers whole lake even Fontana and Williams bay area also. In these tour you can see some of the Mansions as well as Yerkes Observatory and George Williams college. These tour takes 2 or 2 and half hour according to which tour you are taking.

Boat tour deck

White line indicates  Expanded bay & Black point tour which cover almost 2/3rd of the shoreline of Lake. These tour will return just before the Williams bay. Expanded Bay is 1 and half hour tour. Black point estate tour is 3 and half hour long tour.It is guided tour of the 1888 home and grounds. If you are taking small kids or infants with you than take stroller as its long tour you need one. :-)

Blue line indicates Geneva Bay, Sun-downer and Ice cream social tour. These tours are around one hour. If you want to enjoy at beach and do hiking than take these small tour and explore the lake.

Lake Geneva Boat tours
Water adventures

Lake Geneva has lot to offer. Some people like to sit back and relax so they take boat tours. But some are crazy like me, who like adventures. So don't worry Lake Geneva has boat rentals and Jet skies. They have different size of boats so depend on how many people you have in group, you can book. If you are planning on weekend than please book in advance otherwise you will not get the boat which you desire. There are plenty of rentals on bay of Lake Geneva. Marina bay rentals, Elmer's Lake Geneva boat line, Water craft rentals of Lake Geneva, Leather Lips water sports

Rentals for Water sports
Big Foot Beach state park

Big foot beach state park has Campsite, Picnic area and Sand beach. You can carry your own kayaks and do kayaking around the beach park. These park is open year around from 6 in the morning to 11 at night. It has six and half miles long hiking trails.  And remember no alcohol allowed in anywhere in the park. And you also required Vehicle admission sticker.

Big foot beach park


  1. Ooh, this is definitely a place I need to take my family to visit! Thanks for the thorough travel-log!

  2. By the way, if you could add a Pinterest button, I'm sure that lots of readers would enjoy pinning your content!

    1. Thanks Amy for suggestion. I have added pin button on all images

  3. What a big lake! Looks like you had a lot of fun. =)

    1. Yeah it was huge lake and had fun weekend