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Exploring the Wonders of Wausau, WI: A Guide to Activities and Attractions

Exploring the Wonders of Wausau, WI: A Guide to Activities and Attractions

Wausau is a city located in the state of Wisconsin, United States. It serves as the county seat of Marathon County. The city is situated in the north-central part of the state and is known for its natural beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, and vibrant cultural scene.

Wausau is surrounded by picturesque landscapes, with the Wisconsin River flowing through the area. The city and its surroundings offer various activities such as hiking, skiing, boating, and fishing, making it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts. 

1. Exploring Nature through Hiking on Rib Mountain State Park

Rib Mountain State Park invites you to venture into a realm of natural wonder. This expansive park boasts a network of well-maintained hiking trails, catering to various skill levels. As you ascend the trails, the beauty of the landscape unfolds before you. 

Towering trees, wildflowers, and the gentle rustling of leaves accompany your journey. The pinnacle of your hike rewards you with an awe-inspiring panorama from Rib Mountain’s summit, offering vistas that stretch across verdant valleys, mirror-like lakes, and the charming city of Wausau below.

Rib Mountain State Park Wausau
Rib Mountain State Park – Wausau

2. Immersing in Art at the Wausau Museum of Contemporary Art

The Wausau Museum of Contemporary Art beckons art enthusiasts and curious minds alike. Within its walls, you’ll encounter a captivating collection of contemporary artworks that challenge conventions and ignite conversations. 

Admire thought-provoking sculptures that take on new dimensions as you circle them, and let vibrant paintings convey emotions and narratives that resonate with you. The museum’s rotating exhibitions ensure that every visit unveils fresh perspectives from both local talents and global artists, creating a dynamic space of creative exploration.

The Wausau Museum of Contemporary Art
The Wausau Museum of Contemporary Art

3. Winter Adventure: Skiing at Granite Peak Ski Area

Embrace the thrill of the winter season at Granite Peak Ski Area, a haven for snow sports enthusiasts. This ski resort boasts an impressive range of trails suited for skiers and snowboarders of all levels, from beginners to seasoned pros. Carve your way down the slopes, feeling the wind rush past you as you navigate the powdery terrain. 

The sense of accomplishment when conquering challenging runs or perfecting your technique is only matched by the camaraderie felt at the lodge, where you can warm up, share stories, and appreciate the stunning snowy landscape.

Granite Peak Ski Area - Wausau
Granite Peak Ski Area – Wausau

4. Discovering Downtown: Shopping and Dining in Wausau River District

Downtown Wausau’s River District is a bustling hub of activity that offers a blend of shopping and dining experiences. Stroll along charming streets lined with boutiques, where you can find unique treasures, artisanal crafts, and fashionable finds. After satisfying your shopping desires, treat your taste buds to an array of culinary delights. 

Whether you’re in the mood for cozy cafes with aromatic brews, farm-to-table eateries with local flavors, or upscale restaurants offering gourmet creations, the district ensures a fulfilling day of exploration.

Wausau River District
Wausau River District

5. Family Water Fun at Logger’s Landing Indoor Waterpark

Logger’s Landing Indoor Waterpark is a haven of aquatic adventures for families to enjoy together. Tropical-themed surroundings create a vibrant atmosphere as you explore an array of thrilling water slides and lazy rivers. 

Kids can’t resist the joy of splash pools and water features designed just for them. Whether you’re racing down the exhilarating slides or floating along the gentle currents, Logger’s Landing offers a fun-filled experience that leaves everyone with unforgettable memories.

Logger's Landing Indoor Waterpark - Wausau
Logger’s Landing Indoor Waterpark – Wausau

6. Relaxation and Picnics at Fern Island Park

Fern Island Park offers a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Nestled along the tranquil Wisconsin River, the park’s peaceful ambiance invites you to unwind. Spread out a picnic blanket on the lush grass and savor a leisurely meal while enjoying the picturesque views. 

Take a leisurely stroll along the river’s edge, absorbing the soothing sounds of nature and the gentle rustling of leaves. It’s a perfect spot to reconnect with nature and find moments of serenity.

Fern Island Park - Wausau
Fern Island Park

7. Thrills on the Water: Kayaking at Wausau Whitewater Park

Wausau Whitewater Park promises an adrenaline-pumping aquatic adventure. As you navigate the challenging twists and turns of the man-made whitewater course, the rush of the water and the thrill of conquering rapids will invigorate your spirit. 

Whether you’re an experienced kayaker seeking an exciting challenge or a beginner looking for an unforgettable introduction to whitewater, this park offers an exhilarating journey on the water.

Wausau Whitewater Park
Wausau Whitewater Park

8. Journey into the Past: Marathon County Historical Society

Step into the past at the Marathon County Historical Society, where history comes to life through meticulously curated exhibits and engaging artifacts. Delve into the stories of the region, tracing the evolution of culture, industry, and community. 

Gain insights into the lives of those who shaped the area’s history, from early settlers to contemporary figures. The museum serves as a bridge between eras, providing a deeper appreciation for the rich tapestry of Marathon County.

Marathon County Historical Society - Wausau
Marathon County Historical Society – Wausau

9. Outdoor Excitement: Mountain Biking at Nine Mile Forest Recreation Area

The Nine Mile Forest Recreation Area beckons outdoor enthusiasts with its extensive trails that cater to different seasons. During warmer months, mountain biking takes center stage, offering a diverse range of paths for bikers of varying skill levels. 

As winter blankets the landscape in snow, cross-country skiing becomes a favored activity, with the forested trails transforming into serene, snow-covered pathways. Embrace the invigorating outdoors and connect with nature as you explore this dynamic recreation area.

Nine Mile Forest Recreation Area
Nine Mile Forest Recreation Area – Wausau

Best Time to Visit Wausau 

SeasonMonthsWeatherEvents and Activities
SpringApril – JuneMild temperatures, blooming flowersLilac Festival, outdoor activities
SummerJune – AugustWarm to hot, peak tourist seasonConcerts, festivals, hiking
FallSeptember – OctoberCool and crisp, colorful foliageHarvest festivals, apple picking
WinterDecember – FebruaryCold, snowfall, winter activitiesSkiing, snowboarding, ice skating

Staying Options in Wausau

Type of AccommodationDescription
Hotels and InnsVarious options are available, catering to different budgets.
MotelsAffordable and simple accommodations.
Bed and BreakfastsPersonalized hospitality and charming stays.
Vacation RentalsApartments, houses, or cabins for a homely experience.
CampgroundsOutdoor options for tents and RVs.

Also Read – Things To Do In Los Angeles For A Memorable Experience

Wausau stands as a remarkable destination that seamlessly blends natural beauty, vibrant culture, and modern amenities. From its stunning outdoor attractions to its engaging local events, Wausau offers a unique experience for visitors and residents alike. 

Whether you’re seeking adventure in the great outdoors or a taste of its thriving arts scene, Wausau has something to offer everyone. 

So, plan your visit to this charming city and discover the hidden gems that make Wausau a true treasure in the heart of Wisconsin.


1. What are the must-visit outdoor attractions in Wausau?

Wausau boasts a range of captivating outdoor destinations, including Rib Mountain State Park, Marathon County Park, and the scenic River Edge Trail. These spots offer hiking, biking, and picturesque views that cater to nature enthusiasts of all kinds.

2. What is Wausau known for in terms of arts and culture?

3. Are there family-friendly activities in Wausau?

4. What local events can I experience in Wausau throughout the year?

5. Where can I find unique dining and shopping experiences in Wausau?

About The Author

A hub for wanderers and travel enthusiasts, Travelophia is dedicated to curating valuable insights, practical tips, and inspiring narratives to elevate your travel experiences. Whether you're seeking hidden gems off the beaten path, practical travel advice, or a dose of wanderlust, Travelophia is your trusted companion in exploring the world.

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