Lake Geneva Travel Guide

Do you want to plan an adventurous vacation where there’s never a dull moment? Look no further than Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Get ready to kayak, parasail, fish, and show off your water skiing skills. The cherry on top to the ultimate outdoor adventure is a spacious vacation rental. Let VacationRentals.com provide the missing puzzle piece to your summer vacation—then start daydreaming about boating, golfing, and delicious Lake Geneva restaurants!

What to Do in Lake Geneva

lake geneva lake

Get Out on the Lake

Lake Geneva is nine miles long and offers almost endless opportunities for a bit of fun while splashing around. Rent a kayak and set off to explore the lake. Watch your kids happily spend their days waterskiing or wakeboarding. Plan a parasailing adventure for the ultimate thrill and see the lake from a different perspective. There are more leisurely ways to enjoy Lake Geneva as well. Sign up for a boat tour, get up early enjoy the stillness of dawn while fishing or simply sunbathe along the shore. From private charters to canoes, there are many ways to enjoy the stunning scenery of Lake Geneva!

Adventure Activities by Land

If you prefer your adventure on dry land, there are plenty of activities to fill your days. The Geneva Lake Shorepath Walk is perfect for a brisk morning stroll while tennis, horseback riding, and hiking, are all popular options. Bring along your mountain bike and hit the trails surrounding Lake Geneva. After a challenging cycle, plan a picnic or jump into the lake to cool off. From zip lines to climbing towers there are plenty of chances to get your heart racing besides water-based activities.

Relax—Lake Geneva Style

Word has spread about the beauty of a Lake Geneva spa. While sunbathing on the beach and reading a good book can be relaxing, the spa provides the pampering necessary to really unwind. Splurge on a spa treatment, and you will leave the Lake Geneva spa feeling like a million dollars.

It is also possible to incorporate the great outdoors in your relaxation routine. Make reservations for a carriage ride, plan a picnic in a nearby park, or head out for a round of 18 on one of the nearby golf courses. From peaceful walking trails to quiet boat docks there are many places to enjoy the beauty of nature at Lake Geneva.

lake geneva skiing

Winter Wonderland

Some people wrongly think that Lake Geneva is only for the summer months. The truth is Lake Geneva becomes a winter wonderland of activities that will make your holiday season even more memorable. From ice skating to sleigh rides and snowmobiling to sledding, it is possible to make the best of the snowy season. Enjoy skiing, ice fishing, or give cross-country skiing a shot.

More Opportunities for Family Fun

While adults will be dreaming of the Lake Geneva spa, kids will be dreaming of the petting zoo. Lake Geneva is home to a couple opportunities for kids to be acquainted with local wildlife. From Fantasy Hills Ranch to Rushing Waters Fisheries, encountering wildlife will put a huge smile on your kids’ faces and be slightly educational too.

For a rainy day, families can enjoy an afternoon of bowling or visit the Dancing Horses Theatre & Animal Gardens. For an eco-thrill, make a reservation for Lake Geneva Canopy Tours where you will zip through trees and get a birds-eye view of the landscape.

Back to top

What to See in Lake Geneva

lake geneva spa

Unwind at the Spa

Many people plan an entire trip just around visiting a Lake Geneva spa. The opportunity to unwind and rejuvenate is a rare one for many people with hectic schedules, but Lake Geneva spas provide the perfect escape from that hustle and bustle. Be sure to make reservations for spa treatments in advance to book a time that is convenient for you.

The Avani Spa at the Abbey Resort is known for being one of the most luxurious along the lake. The spa at the Grand Geneva Resort is another popular option that has been recently remodeled. Whether you make an appointment for a massage or spend the day, you’ll be glad you made time for the Lake Geneva spa!

Just for the Kids

The Waterpark at Timber Creek Lodge is an all-year long attraction for families. Gigantic waterslides, a lazy river, activity pool, and arcades will keep the kids happy and entertained for hours. While the kids are entertained, why not take a course at the Lake Geneva Cooking School? Culinary classes are offered all year.

Bring a Little Education to Your Vacation

There is plenty of history around to make your trip to Lake Geneva an educational one, and it doesn’t have to be boring. For example, the East Troy Electric Railroad offers scenic rides on historic trolleys. Old World Wisconsin is an outdoor museum re-creating the 19th century. For a traditional educational experience, explore the Geneva Lake Museum where Native American artifacts are on display.

Back to top

Where to Shop and Eat in Lake Geneva

lake geneva shoppingBetween Lake Geneva restaurants and the variety of shopping offered here, there will be plenty of ways to spend money during your vacation! With all the money you’ll save by choosing a vacation rental over a hotel you can splurge on antiques, jewelry, gifts, and home décor.

Shopping Sensations in Lake Geneva

Some of the top shopping options in Lake Geneva include Always Remember That Antiques, 9 Lives Boutique, The Bootery, and Geneva Jake’s. From fashion and bridal to artisan food and wine, you will always find something to bring home after a trip to Lake Geneva!

Save Room for Dessert: Dining in Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva restaurants provide a sensory experience that keeps customers coming back year after year. After an adventurous afternoon of kayaking or hiking, the best way to end the day is with a good meal. Whether you crave classic American, Italian, or a fine dining experience, Lake Geneva restaurants will be as fresh as the air outside!

For a harbor-side view, grab a table at the Waterfront Restaurant & Bar. Baker House is a relaxing place to nibble on some American tapas while Bistro 220 boasts balcony seating with a lake view. For fine-dining, sample the famous steaks at Fontana Grill or enjoy the romantic atmosphere of Café Calamari. Duck Inn is a local favorite while Grand Geneva is the perfect brunch location. There will be too many Lake Geneva restaurants to try during just one trip!

Back to top

When to Visit Lake Geneva

The most popular time of the year to visit Lake Geneva is during the warm summer months. Families can enjoy activities from kayaking to parasailing, and al fresco dining at Lake Geneva restaurants makes this season even more attractive.

On the other hand, winter is gaining popularity for its activities as well. After a day of skiing or sledding get cozy by the fire or warm up with a massage at a Lake Geneva spa. The shoulder seasons of spring and fall can be great for avoiding the crowds and enjoying hiking and cycling in the brisk air.

Back to top

What to Bring to Lake Geneva

Pack for Lake Geneva depending on the season of your vacation. During the summer, don’t forget insect repellent, sunscreen, bathing suits, and sturdy shoes if you plan on doing some hiking. To best enjoy the winter, pack layers of warm clothing that can be removed as necessary. Also bring along anything that helps you relax—from soothing music to your most comfortable pajamas.

Back to top

Local Services in Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva is known for its local services. From luxurious spas to picturesque restaurants, Lake Geneva is a destination designed for visitors. You won’t have any problem finding quality groceries; in fact, the selection of wine and cheese at many places is quite impressive. And always try and bring along any prescriptions you'll need on your trip; otherwise, sit back, relax, and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of Lake Geneva.

Back to top

What to Know About Lake Geneva

It would be easy to spend all of your time doing one thing while in Lake Geneva. Your kids might want to devote all of their time waterskiing or your rental might be so comfortable you won’t want to leave. However, there are many things worth seeing and doing. Make an itinerary and try and do one thing every day, whether it is enjoying Lake Geneva restaurants or cruising down a zip line.

Back to top

Getting to Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva is conveniently located just 40 miles from Milwaukee and 66 miles from Chicago. Many visitors choose to drive, but it is also possible to fly to these nearby cities and rent a car from the airport. A rental car will give visitors independence to explore Lake Geneva. Close enough to the city, but at the same time miles away, traveling to Lake Geneva is a breeze.

Back to top

Why Lake Geneva vacation rentals?

The peaceful atmosphere of the lake should be mirrored in your accommodation. Instead of a cramped hotel room where you can hear your neighbor through the wall, choose a quiet vacation rental that will help you make the most of your experience in Lake Geneva. With all the money you will save versus an overpriced hotel, spoil your family with jet ski adventures and delicious meals out. Maybe even spoil yourself with a day or two at a Lake Geneva spa.

Back to top