5 Cabins for Your Escape to the Lake
cool family cabins in Northern Wisconsin
For adults, vacations to the lake promise relaxation – a chance to leave work behind, let the kids run free, and get back to who you are without all the hustle and bustle. For kids, it means excitement and adventure; days are spent swimming and tubing, hiking and biking and … well, we could go on! You’d think it’d be hard to find a place that does both – but these up north, lakeside cabins do just that. So go for it! Let your hair down, go barefoot, jump in the lake, and soak up those precious moments with the people that matter. Read on to discover where to head next – we’ve saved you a spot by the fire.
Boondoggle Resort / Chetek
The tongue-in-cheek name for this up-cycled 1950s resort in northwestern Wisconsin refers to two couples’ “expensive mistake” opening a resort in 2016 with no prior experience. It turns out the joke is a misnomer; families are clambering after the cabins on Lake Chetek, complimenting the fun hosts, retro chic decor, and classic water activities. You can go fishing off the dock, take one of the kayaks out on the lake, or watch the sunset from the screened-in overlook. Boondoggle also provides vintage bikes you and your family can ride around the island or to the nearby public beach. If you love cabin life, but appreciate trendy design and fun quirks, Boondoggle is for you.
Buckhorn Lake Cabin / Merrillan
Imagine you and your kids designed a cabin specifically for spending quality time together. That’s exactly what one mother, stepfather, and young son did; they built the Buckhorn Lake Cabin from the ground up and now rent it to other families looking to reconnect with each other without technology.The impressive, 2,200-foot log cabin overlooks Buckhorn Lake, where you can kayak, swim, and fish. You’ll also be close to Black River, a natural lazy river perfect for floating down on tubes or hiking alongside. Inside the cabin, your kids will love playing ping pong and foosball, making family meals in the big kitchen, and stargazing from the wraparound deck.
Brekke's Fireside Resort / Rhinelander
If you’re looking for a classic “Up North” community, book a lakefront cottage at Brekke’s Fireside Resort on Lake George. Cabins are small and rustic, but they are immaculate, detail-oriented, and comfortable. The bigger draw of Brekke’s is the endless activities in the summer. You can rent a pontoon boat, or use the free kayaks, canoes, and paddleboats to explore the lake. In the beachside rec room, play pool, darts, and pinball over pizza and old records. The resort also features tennis courts, shuffleboard, volleyball, and badminton. No kid could be bored at Brekke’s!
A Lot of Lakes Resort / Three Lakes
Located on Big Stone Lake and near Nicolet National Forest, the large, modern log cabins at A Lot of Lakes Resort offer peace and quiet. Wake up to wind rustling the pine trees and waves hitting the shore. Then start the day on the water fishing for northern pike or swimming. In the afternoon, explore the woods on a family hike. Retreat at the end of the day to your cozy lodging, playing cards or curling up to watch a movie together. This is the perfect place to reconnect with nature and each other – with no one else around.
BJ's Lake House / St. Germain
If you grew up going to your grandma’s lake house, BJ’s will tap into your nostalgia and provide your kids the same kinds of joyous lakeside experiences you had. The recently renovated 1930s cabin is full of wicker and antique furniture, colorful quilts, and homey touches. One of the best features is the large porch that looks out on uninterrupted lakeshore. You’ll enjoy a private dock and fishing boat, and your kids will love the sandy-bottom lake for swimming. At night, throw dinner on the grill and share your favorite ghost story around the campfire. By the end of your stay, you will wish this really was your grandma’s house.
For a comprehensive list of cabins, lodges, and other accommodations in Wisconsin, visit travelwisconsin.com and click on “Places to Stay.”