Leaves, Lakes, Shores & More
Join us on this brand-new leaf-peeping tour of the true Northwoods of upper Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. Enjoy the brilliant palette of the bronzing leaves and lush trees around every corner as we visit the Apostle Islands Grand Tour, Fall Color tour, Madeline Island, Osceola & St Croix Railway, and possible sightings of the northern lights.
Day 1: This morning we start our adventure for leaf-peeping in the Northwoods while getting acquainted with our traveling friends.
Day 2: Continuing north and east we make our way through Wisconsin. After lunch, what better way to define fall than autumn at an Orchard. By evening we check into our waterfront Lakeview rooms in Marquette MI for our 3-night stay. Be sure to look for the Northern Lights this evening! (B, D)
Day 3: Today a local guide joins us for a guided Marquette city and fall color tour. We also visit the Marquette History Museum with costumed interpreters who will entertain us with a historical skit about their region. Next, we visit the Maritime Museum and Lighthouse. This museum is one of the best-kept secrets in the Upper Peninsula featuring shipwrecks from Lake Superior. We also receive a guided tour of the Marquette Lighthouse, one of the most historic navigation beacons on Lake Superior and critical to the development of the Great Lakes iron ore trade. (B, D)
Day 4: This morning a local guide will once again join us as we drive deeper into the woods for a backroads tour of spectacular fall colors, waterfalls, and lighthouses. As we experience the autumn landscape, our drive takes us through cut rock, harboring a beautiful array of colors. Winding past Sugarloaf Mountain, Hogback Mountain, and over the Yellow Dog River. We will make scenic stops for breathtaking photo opportunities as we drive through the majestic mountains and past trees that arch over the roadways forming tunnels of color. (B, L, D)
Day 5: Scenic Byways awaits us this morning for more fall color gazing. We learn more about Michigan’s Iron industry at the Iron Industry Museum. Next, we visit Porcupine Mountain Ski Area for a stop at Lake of the Clouds Overlook. This afternoon we continue to enjoy the Northwoods colors. This evening we check into our hotel for a 2-night stay in Ashland, WI. (B, D)
Day 6: We are in for a real treat on this beautiful fall day. We are off to the Apostle Islands for the Grand Tour. This tour takes us on a narrative, informative 55-mile scenic tour. Throughout this cruise, we will pass extraordinary natural scenery, beautiful historic Raspberry, and Devils Island Lighthouses, standing rocks, extensive sea caves, and marine wildlife. We learn the rich history of centuries of human interactions with Wisconsin’s “Crown Jewels” on majestic Lake Superior. Lunch today is at the Old Rittenhouse Inn’s Landmark Restaurant. This afternoon we visit a local winery. This evening we dine at Legendary Waters Casino with local Native American entertainment. (B, L, D)
Day 7: After checking out of our hotel we take a ferry to Madeline Island. The 25-minute voyage provides spectacular views of the colorful trees around the lake and several of the 22 Apostle Islands. On the island, we have a guided tour including the village of LaPointe, Madeline Island Historical Museum Tour, Historic Catholic Mission Cemetery along with other points of interest. After lunch on the island, the ferry takes us back to the mainland. By late afternoon we arrive in Duluth MN and check into our hotel. Tonight, enjoy the best table in Duluth while taking in Northland’s exquisite fall season on the Vista Dinner Cruise of the harbor. Take in never-ending views with narrated highlights of all the harbor activities while enjoying a relaxing fall-themed dinner. (B, L, D)
Day 8: Today we visit the Minnesota Transportation Museum and ride the Osceola & St Croix Valley Railway. Enjoy the beauty of the St. Croix River Valley as it can only be seen from a train. What’s fall without a visit to the pumpkin patch on a crisp fall day for a hayride at Afton Apple Orchard. Then it’s time to continue south for our overnight stay in Des Moines IA. (B, L)
Day 9: This morning we continue towards Kansas while reminiscing about the beautiful, interesting, and educational things we have seen and experienced together during the last 9 days. (B)