Maritime History
Group Tour Itinerary

Maritime History Group Tour

Day 1:

10:00 AM  Arrive at the Door County Maritime Museum located on the Sturgeon Bay waterfront. Enjoy a docent guided tour of maritime related exhibits that span the nautical history of Door County from early American Indian canoes to post World War II bulk carriers. If there's time, take a tour of the John Purves, a 1919 ocean-going tug boat that has been everywhere from the Great Lakes to the Caribbean and Bering Sea. For further information contact Jon Gast by calling (920) 743.5958. 

12:30 PM  Choose from a selection of soups, salads, wraps, burgers and sandwiches for lunch at Waterfront Mary's Bar and Grill as you watch boats pass through the Sturgeon Bay ship canal. For more call (920) 743.3191 

1:30 PM  For your next stop, walk along the break wall at the Canal Station Pier-head Light located at the Lake Michigan end of the ship canal. Built in 1882 and automated in 1972, it's now manned and maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard. 

2:30 PM  Journey north on Hwy 57 to the charming community of Baileys Harbor. Here you will find the historic Baileys Harbor Range Lights which sailors once used to guide them safely into the harbor for 100 years beginning in 1869. 

3:30 PM  Continue six miles northeast until you reach one of Door County's most recognizable lighthouses, Cana Island Lighthouse. Wander through the oil room and keeper's house before climbing 97 stairs to the top of the tower for a spectacular view of Lake Michigan. Afterwards, take a stroll around the grounds and search for the historical marker of the Frank O'Conner shipwreck, one of the largest wooden ships ever built.

4:30 PM  Check into your hotel for some R&R. 

6:30 PM  Experience a traditional Door County Fish Boil at Pelletier's Restaurant & Fish Boil located at Founder's Square in downtown Fish Creek. Just as Scandinavian settlers of the Peninsula did 100 years ago, fresh locally caught whitefish are cooked outside over an open fire along with small baby red potatoes and sweet boiling onions. During the cooking process, fish oils naturally rise to the surface which "boil over" along with water in fiery spectacle signaling the end of the cooking process and the beginning of dinner. Seats fill quickly, place your reservation by calling (920) 868.3313.

Day 2:

8:00 AM  Depart for the Northport Pier where you will board the Washington Island Ferry. Visit www.wisferry.com for or call (800) 223.2094 for additional information. 

9:00 AM  Once onboard the ferry, sit back, relax, and enjoy a half-hour scenic cruise across "Death's Door" en route to Washington Island. The name of this four mile passageway arises from early French settlers who referred to it as "La Porte des Morts" or "the door of the dead" signifying the dangerous character of this narrow strait.

10:00 AM  Explore Washington Island on-board the Cherry Train and embark on a serene ride along quiet, pastoral roads while taking in the history and sights of this island community. Call (800) 223.2094 for more information.

12:00 PM  Have lunch at one of many welcoming local restaurants. 

1:00 PM  Explore School House Beach, one of only five beaches in the world that is covered completely in smooth, white limestone rocks! Don't forget sturdy shoes as the rocky shore can be difficult to walk. 

2:00 PM  Board the Washington Island Ferry once again to return to the Peninsula. 

3:00 PM  Return to the hotel for some R&R. 

4:30 PM  Prior to dinner, journey through the streets of Sister Bay. Visit the shops and boutiques, stop for a glass of wine or simply enjoy the scenery at Waterfront Park.

5:30 PM  Enjoy a locally sourced dinner at Grasse's Grill in Sister Bay. Known for their commitment to using locally sourced products throughout their menu, your group is sure to enjoy. Call (920) 854.1125 for additional information. 

7:00 PM  Travel to the Birch Creek Music Performance Center for an evening of symphony, jazz, or percussion and steel band entertainment. Just three miles east of Egg Harbor, the Birch Creek Music Performance Center is where 200 students and 100 faculty members study by day and present concerts by night in a century-old, 500-seat Dutton Concert barn. Immerse yourself in the music, the moment and the fond memories to follow. Call (920) 868.3763 for more info.

Day 3:

8:00 AM  Begin the day with breakfast at Julie's Park Cafe and Motel. Located near the entrance to Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek, Julie's offers everything from classic omelets and old fashioned oatmeal to praline French toast and Door County cherry crepes. Awaken with an eye-opening cup of espresso, coffee, or cappuccino made just the way you like it. Have your picture taken in the oversized purple Adirondack chair and enter it for a chance to be featured on their website. Call (920) 868.2999 for additional information. 

10:30 AM  Take a two hour cruise along the scenic Door County shoreline. Pick one of three narrated tours offered by Fish Creek Scenic Boat Tours or hop aboard a retired Chicago Fireboat Legend Cruises in Sturgeon Bay, coast through the ship canal and venture to Sherwood Point Lighthouse before returning home. Don't forget your camera for some breathtaking photography opportunities!