Best Places to visit in Appleton


Appleton, Wisconsin, often referred to as the “Heart of the Fox Valley,” is a charming and vibrant city that offers a wide range of attractions and activities for visitors. 

Historic House Museum

Start your Appleton adventure with a step back in time at the Hearthstone Historic House Museum. This Victorian-era mansion holds the distinction of being the world’s first residence powered by a centrally located hydroelectric station. Guided tours take you through the beautifully restored home, showcasing period furnishings and providing insight into life in the late 19th century. The picturesque gardens and riverfront location make it a perfect spot for history enthusiasts and photographers alike.

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Lawrence University

Lawrence University, located in the heart of Appleton, is a renowned liberal arts college known for its top-notch education and cultural contributions to the community. Take a leisurely stroll through the campus to admire its historic architecture and well-maintained grounds. Don’t miss the Lawrence Memorial Chapel, a stunning architectural gem that hosts numerous concerts and events throughout the year, featuring both students and world-class performers.

 Kids Children’s Museum

If you’re traveling with children, a visit to The Building for Kids Children’s Museum is a must. This interactive museum offers a wide range of hands-on exhibits and activities designed to engage young minds and foster creativity. From a mini grocery store to a climbing wall and an art studio, there’s no shortage of fun and educational experiences for kids of all ages.

Fox Cities Performing Arts Center

For those looking to experience the arts, the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center is the place to be. This state-of-the-art venue hosts a diverse array of performances, including Broadway shows, concerts, ballet, and more. Check the schedule to see what’s playing during your visit and immerse yourself in the world of performing arts.

Fox River Mall

Shopaholics will find their paradise at the Fox River Mall. This sprawling shopping center features over 180 stores, ranging from high-end retailers to popular brands and boutiques. In addition to shopping, you can enjoy a meal at one of the many dining options or catch a movie at the cinema within the mall.

High Cliff State Park

For outdoor enthusiasts, High Cliff State Park is a short drive from Appleton and offers a natural escape like no other. Situated on the eastern shore of Lake Winnebago, the park boasts hiking trails, a marina, and stunning views of the lake from the 40-foot limestone cliff it’s named after. Camping and picnicking facilities are available, making it a great spot for a day trip or a weekend getaway.

Paper Discovery Center

Appleton has a rich history in the paper industry, and you can learn all about it at the Paper Discovery Center. This interactive museum takes you on a journey through the history and science of papermaking. You can even try your hand at making paper and explore the process from pulp to finished product. It’s an educational and unique experience for visitors of all ages.

Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve

For a peaceful escape into nature, visit the Gordon Bubolz Nature Preserve. This 775-acre nature reserve offers hiking trails, wildlife viewing, and educational programs. The preserve is especially beautiful in the fall when the trees display their vibrant autumn colors. It’s a serene spot to reconnect with nature and enjoy some quiet time away from the city.

History Museum at the Castle

Delve deeper into Appleton’s history by visiting the History Museum at the Castle. Housed in a historic mansion, this museum showcases exhibits that highlight the city’s past, including its connections to famous residents like magician Harry Houdini. The interactive displays and engaging exhibits make learning about Appleton’s history both informative and entertaining.

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Fox River Trolley Museum

End your tour of Appleton with a ride through history at the Fox River Trolley Museum. Located just a short drive from downtown, this museum offers rides on vintage electric streetcars that once plied the streets of cities across the United States. It’s a nostalgic journey back in time and a unique way to experience the Fox River Valley’s heritage.

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