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What to see & do in Ashland on Lake Superior

Ashland is filled with stunning places to explore, from the shores of Lake Superior to sprawling natural forests to towering waterfalls.

St. Peter’s Dome, Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest (Credit: Travel Wisconsin)

A trip to Ashland in northwestern Wisconsin is a trip into stunning scenery, unparalleled outdoor recreation, friendly communities, and so much more. Here’s a look at some of the best things to see and do in Ashland County.

Chequamegon Bay & Lake Superior

Ashland sits on the southwestern shore of Lake Superior, making it a great destination for anglers, boaters, paddlers, and anyone else who loves the water. Chequamegon (pronounced “Sha-WHA-ma-gon”) Bay covers 33,000 acres (134 square kilometers) and is a popular destination for smallmouth bass fishing and deep-water fishing on Lake Superior. The area is also home to the stunningly scenic Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, which draws hundreds of thousands visitors every year and is a haven for kayaking, boating, camping, hiking, beachgoing, and more.

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

The massive Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest  spans 11 counties in northern Wisconsin, from Ashland County in the northwest to Oconto County in the east. The forest covers 1.5 million acres (6,000 square kilometers) and is home to more than 2,000 lakes, more than 800 miles (1,300 kilometers) of trails, and hundreds of campsites. The forest comprises One of the top attractions in the forest near Ashland is St. Peter’s Dome, which offers a stunning view of Chequamegon Bay, Lake Superior, and the Apostle Islands.


Visitors will find some of the state’s most scenic views at Copper Falls State Park in Mellen, a half-hour drive from downtown Ashland. The park is known for its eye-catching waterfalls on the Bad River, and there are 17 miles (27 miles) of trails to explore, many with overlooks of the park’s waterfalls. The Doughboys Nature Trail cuts through the heart of the park, offering impressive views of Copper Falls, Brownstone Falls, and the smaller Tyler Forks cascades. Morgan Falls—25 minutes directly south of Ashland near St. Peter’s Dome—is Wisconsin’s tallest waterfall, cascading diagonally down a 70-foot (21-meter) slab of granite. The falls can be reached by a roughly 1.5-mile (2.4-kilometer) out-and-back accessible trail.

Historic murals & other attractions

Ashland was named the Historic Mural Capital of Wisconsin in 2005, and it’s home to more than 20 murals that depict the people and events that made Ashland into what it is today. The murals can be found throughout the eight-block Main Street business district, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Those looking for a further adventure can “Follow the Mural Brick Road” to find additional works of art in the communities of Butternut, Glidden, Marengo, Mellen, and La Pointe. Downtown Ashland welcomes visitors with a wide array of restaurants, shopping options, and fun events.