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Best things to do in East Central Wisconsin

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Where in the world: USA  /  Wisconsin  /  East Central Wisconsin

Top 15 things to do in East Central Wisconsin

1. EAA Aviation Museum, Oshkosh

The EAA Aviation Museum, formerly the EAA AirVenture Museum (or Air Adventure Museum), is a museum dedicated to the preservation and display of historic and experimental aircraft as well as antiques, classics, and warbirds. The museum is located in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, United States, adjacent to Wittman Regional Airport, home of the museum's sponsoring organization, the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), and the organization's EAA AirVenture Oshkosh event (the world's biggest fly-in and airshow) that takes place in late July/early August.

With over 200 aircraft, indoors and outdoors, and other exhibits and activities (including occasional aircraft rides nearby), the AirVenture Museum is a key tourist attraction in Oshkosh and is a center of activity throughout the AirVenture fly-in and airshow each summer. The museum is open year-round with the exception of a few holidays.

Suggested duration: 4 hours
Learn more about EAA Aviation Museum

2. Kohler Waters Spa, Kohler

Recognized with a Five-Star Award by Forbes Travel, one of only 48 in the world, Kohler Waters Spa at The American Club is centered around therapeutic benefits of water. As water ebbs and flows, so do our lives. We are here to help you release stress, reconnect with loved ones, and, most of all, with you.

The American Club Resort offers world-renowned golf, dining, yoga, nature trails and a variety of relaxing activities in five-star, five-diamond accommodations.

Kohler Water Spa locations:

The American Club | Kohler, WI

Burr Ridge | Burr Ridge, IL

Old Course Hotel of St. Andrews | Scotland, UK

Coming 2017: Lodge Kohler | Green Bay, WI
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Kohler Waters Spa

3. Lakeside Park, Fond du Lac

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Lakeside Park
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4. Wisconsin Maritime Museum, Manitowoc

The Wisconsin Maritime Museum is a maritime museum in the Lake Michigan port and shipbuilding city of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, U.S.. It preserves and teaches about the maritime history of the Great Lakes and Wisconsin.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
Learn more about Wisconsin Maritime Museum
Tours including Wisconsin Maritime Museum:

5. John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan

The John Michael Kohler Arts Center is an independent, not-for-profit contemporary art museum and performing arts complex located in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, United States. The center preserves and exhibits artist-built environments and contemporary art. In 2021, the center opened the Art Preserve, a satellite museum space dedicated to art environments.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about John Michael Kohler Arts Center
Tours including John Michael Kohler Arts Center:

6. Paine Art Center and Gardens, Oshkosh

The Paine Art Center and Gardens is a preserved historic estate with a mansion and gardens located in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. It includes public art galleries and botanic gardens on 3 acres (1.2 ha), and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
Learn more about Paine Art Center and Gardens

7. Building for Kids, Appleton

When families play together at The Building for

Kids Children’s Museum, something wonderful

happens. Curiosity is linked to community.

Kids begin to associate the outside world

with excitement, energy and possibility.

What better way to encourage intellectual,

social and emotional growth?

Play is a vital platform for healthy development. It opens the mind like no schoolbook can. It invites connection while fostering autonomy. And it lights a fire in every kid’s heart to never stop imagining, wondering, questioning.

That fire is why we exist.

The Building For Kids Children’s Museum offers specially designed exhibits, programs and family events that engage parents, empower children and energize communities.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Learn more about Building for Kids

8. Hughes Home Maid Chocolates, Oshkosh

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Hughes Home Maid Chocolates

10. Hearthstone Historic House Museum, Appleton

The Hearthstone Historic House Museum is a historic home in Appleton, Wisconsin, United States that has been converted into a museum. On September 30, 1882, it became the first residence in the US powered by a centrally located hydroelectric station using the Edison system. At that time, the house was the residence of Henry James Rogers, a paper company executive and entrepreneur. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on December 2, 1974. The house was previously known as the Henry J. Rogers House.

Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
Learn more about Hearthstone Historic House Museum
Tours including Hearthstone Historic House Museum:

11. Menominee Park, Oshkosh

The Oshkosh Parks Department consists of Oshkosh’s parks, cemetery, zoo, urban forestry programs, Lakeshore Municipal Golf Course, Pollock Community Water Park and the Leach Amphitheater.

The Parks Department system has thirteen rentable shelters located in four different parks and six boat launch areas. The park system consists of 332.58 acres with an additional 97.5 acres for the Lakeshore Municipal Golf Course.

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Menominee Park

12. Bookworm Gardens, Sheboygan

Bookworm Gardens is a vibrant, playful botanic garden that enhances literature, the natural world, and the imagination. Located in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, the garden is adjacent to UW Sheboygan and is across from the UW Extension offices which house the Sheboygan County Master Gardeners.

The seven-acre garden offers the young and young at heart the opportunity for free, unstructured play in a beautiful and secure environment.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Bookworm Gardens

13. Road America, Elkhart Lake

Road America is a motorsport road course located near Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, United States on Wisconsin Highway 67. It has hosted races since the 1950s and currently hosts races in the NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series, WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, IndyCar Series, SCCA Pirelli World Challenge, ASRA, AMA Superbike series, and SCCA Pro Racing's Trans-Am Series. NASCAR will replace Road America with street racing through Downtown Chicago starting in 2023.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Road America

15. Bubolz Nature Preserve, Appleton

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Bubolz Nature Preserve