Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Ozaukee County, WI

  • Published 2022/10/30

As part of the Metropolitan Statistical Area, Ozaukee County is a thriving, well-established community in Wisconsin.

It was home to many different tribes of Native Americans in the early 19th century.

The name “Ozaukee” comes from one of the most prominent communities within the vicinity, the Sauk people.

If you’re interested in lively, diverse attractions, Ozaukee County may be for you.

It’s got natural destinations, historical sites, modern amusement, and a vibrant cultural scene.

Whatever your preference, there’s something for everyone in Ozaukee County.

Pair that with warm, friendly people and you’ve got a destination to remember!

Check out this list and the best things to do in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin.

Experience Pure Nature at Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve

Trail lined with trees at Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve


Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve is one of the few remaining lands in the county that remain relatively undeveloped.

It’s home to many kinds of animals—from migratory birds and fishes to all sorts of land creatures.

A trip to this preserve offers countless stunning views of Lake Michigan and its surrounding shoreline.

Get your fix of adventure from complex wetlands spanning 44 acres.

Wildflowers at Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve

Robb Shaffer /

Travelers can pass through sturdy bridges, walk along stairways, and hike along multiple trails in the area.

It’s a place where you can truly immerse yourself in nature’s pure, untainted side!

As one of the most popular preserves in the county, you shouldn’t miss out on Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve.

You can find it in the village of Grafton, along High Bluff Drive.

Appreciate Arts in Cedarburg Cultural Center

Cedarburg Cultural Center is a jack-of-all-trades for anything creative and related to the arts.

This venue pins the spotlight on various innovative mediums in the heart of Cedarburg City.

You can watch performing arts, see visual creations, and book one of their gothic history tours.

For over 30 years, Cedarburg Cultural Center has fostered the community’s beauty of arts and culture.

They also provide a space for local artists to display their works and find potential customers.

While entrance to the gallery is free, you can purchase most works in their changing exhibits.

They host open mic nights, live music concerts, comedy shows, plays, and more for performing arts.

At Washington Avenue, Cedarburg Cultural Center is a destination for local crafts and talents.

Paint a Masterpiece in Glaze

Instead of simply browsing artworks, why not create one yourself?

Glaze is a pottery store in Thiensville Village that allows customers to paint their masterpieces.

They’ll provide colorful paints, fine brushes, and all sorts of materials you need for the activity.

You can also ask the staff for advice on how you can best use your imagination!

All you need to do is choose from their pottery designs and paint them the way you want.

When you’re done with painting, the staff will “overglaze” the pottery and fire your pieces in one of their kilns.

Glaze offers a fun, interactive experience, no matter your skill level in arts and crafts.

Head to Green Bay Road for this creative attraction!

Admire Handcrafted Works in the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts

Along Portland Road, the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts hosts exhibits of modern and traditional art.

The founders aim to preserve the time-honored tradition of weaving quilts and other fiber-related crafts.

It’s housed in a historic farmstead from the 1850s, adding to the museum’s old-world charm.

You can browse through splendid woven materials displayed in an interior composed mainly of wood furnishings.

The museum boasts of having more than 8,000 kinds of items within its exhibits!

Visitors can also join classes and workshops to learn more about quilts and fiber arts.

Within the city of Cedarburg, the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts offers a peek into a one-of-a-kind craft.

Try the Rides at Buechler Farms, LLC

Buechler Farms, LLC takes pride in how far they’ve come as a family-owned business.

From raising beef cattle, they’ve expanded the farm into hosting lively attractions and events for guests of all ages.

They have varied activities and exhibits with each passing season!

These activities include rodeos, circus celebrations, harvest pickings, Christmas tree farming, and much more.

You can also join weekly events like open mic nights and live concerts.

Buechler Farms, LLC is a great place to learn about the idyllic life of people on farms.

The farm is positioned in a beautiful, rural area with sweeping greens and clear views of the vast sky.

Check out what the city of Belgium has to offer at Royal Avenue.

Dine and Watch in the Memories Dinner Theater

For a unique dining experience, this theater serves meals with engaging performances on-site.

The Memories Dinner Theater is embraced in the classy ambiance of the 1930s, featuring twin stone fireplaces and a maple dance floor.

It’s a nostalgic trip back to the elegant era, paired with interactive murder mysteries, comedy, or theater shows.

The repurposed facility had been a vibrant, top-of-the-line ballroom establishment in 1934.

It wasn’t until 2003 that the building was rebuilt into the alluring dinner theater it is today.

Guests may partake of dinners in different forms—either through buffets or full-course plated meals with complimentary drinks.

At Port Washington, you mustn’t miss out on this one-of-a-kind venture!

You can find the Memories Dinner Theater along Lake Drive.

Visit the Observation Tower at Mequon Nature Preserve

Mequon Nature Preserve is what it would look like if man takes care of nature.

Formerly an urban area, volunteers worked to return the preserve to the natural habitat it was in the past.

It now features diverse landscapes, including lush forests, unique wetlands, and a beautifully restored prairie.

The preserve has also become home to various kinds of animal wildlife.

Nature-friendly amenities were also built in Mequon Nature Preserve to attract tourists.

It contains an observation tower, an education center, and natural play space.

You can also explore several miles’ worth of trails loaded with different environmental terrain.

Located in Mequon City, this nature preserve is at County Line Road.

Unwind at Harrington Beach State Park

Bench overlooking the waters at Harrington Beach State Park

MarynaG /

Once a busy town, Harrington Beach State Park was transformed into a serene, natural destination.

The houses on the premises were then moved to the village of Belgium.

This park features a mile-long beach that spans Lake Michigan and a unique swamp that’s fun to explore.

It also boasts many amenities, including campgrounds, picnic areas, nature trails, and other attractions.

Trail at Harrington Beach State Park

Yinan Chen, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons

As a popular destination in the county, this park attracts thousands of visitors each year.

No matter your age, Harrington Beach State Park offers a space to immerse in pure nature.

You can also try many kinds of active recreation, like hiking, biking, or swimming.

Coupled with gorgeous all-around views, you shouldn’t miss out on visiting this venue along Co Road.

Learn City History at Port Washington Historical Society

Founded in 1991, Port Washington Historical Society aims to preserve and share the city’s long-standing history.

It has kept strong over the years with the help of hardworking, talented volunteers!

They host seasonal tours for people who want to learn more about the city and see some of its original artifacts.

One of the highlights is the 1860s light station, carefully rebuilt to have the features of its first model.

You can enter the keepers’ quarters and see sweeping, gorgeous views from the lantern room.

There’s also the Resource Center, another historic building from the 19th century that the organization maintains.

Port Washington Historical Society is positioned along Franklin Street.

Taste Award-Winning Wines in Cedar Creek Winery

Cedar Creek Winery has come a long way in popularizing the establishment as a family-owned business.

It’s won several awards for a wide assortment of local wines!

Before that, it had been a simple mill factory in 1864 that went out of business at the emergence of new technology.

Cedar Creek Winery has become a popular venue offering tours and wine-tasting daily ventures.

One of the secrets to their delectable wines is the underground limestone cellar, where they age and ferment wines in oak barrels.

They serve various flavors, from reds and whites to sweet and dry drinks.

The underground cellar is set inside a warm, cozy tasting room that offers a casual, memorable experience.

You can locate Cedar Creek Winery along Bridge Road within the busy city of Cedarburg.

Swim in Lime Kiln Park’s Aquatic Center

Even though it’s a public and free destination, Lime Kiln Park has much to offer its guests.

Have your pick from its wide array of amenities for various kinds of active and leisure recreation.

The park has loads of potential activities, from picnic shelters and open space areas to golf courses and sports fields.

This place even has its own Family Aquatic Center, offering pristine swimming pools during the summer season.

Paired with a casual and quiet ambiance, Lime Kiln Park can be a place for both fun and rest.

It will just be up to you, depending on your preference.

Lush, dense trees also surround the park, which add to its charming appeal.

In the village of Grafton, you can find Lime Kiln Park on Green Bay Road.

Join the Annual Tradition at Ozaukee County Fairgrounds

The thriving city of Cedarburg is home to Ozaukee County Fairgrounds.

At Washington Avenue, these grounds host one of the most famous festivals in the area, the Ozaukee County Fair.

Visitors across the region come to the city to experience this lively event!

It’s loaded with exhibits, activities, demonstrations, and other fun adventures.

From live music concerts and truck-tractor pulls to demolition derbies and contests, there’s so much to explore at the fair.

You can also witness colorful fireworks at the Ozaukee County Fairgrounds!

Whether you’re a child or an adult, there will likely be something for you to enjoy at the annual fair.

It’s been a long-honored tradition for about 160 years, so give it a chance!

Enter the Historic Juice’s Ghost Town Tavern and Restaurant

The Juice’s Ghost Town Tavern and Restaurant has a long history as a town’s meeting/dance hall in the early 1900s.

Sadly, the town’s population declined until only a few buildings remained of its community.

This restaurant is one of the few buildings that display remnants of the formerly vibrant town, Ulao.

Even though it’s housed in a historic building, the menu is as modern as they come!

They offer changing specials daily, from all-you-can-eat ribs and seafood to warm, homemade meals.

It’s no surprise that Juice’s Ghost Town Tavern and Restaurant has remained in business for decades!

It’s located in the village of Grafton along Ulao Road.

See Wonderful Works in Cedarburg Art Museum

Cedarburg Art Museum takes pride in being an inclusive space for displaying the works of local and regional artists.

Its founders aim to provide a gathering place for the community that fosters town culture, together with the arts.

The building had been a prosperous wooden mill since the 1860s.

Now, it’s an elegant red brick establishment with features from Romanesque, Queen Anne, and Classical architecture.

From jewelry and paintings to potteries and wall art, you can find all sorts of mediums in Cedarburg Art Museum.

There’s also a quaint gift shop with affordable trinkets and souvenirs for travelers on a budget!

If you’d like to drop by, this charming venue is at Washington Avenue in Cedarburg.

Travel Back in Time With Ozaukee County Pioneer Village

Reenactment at Ozaukee County Pioneer Village

Dori, CC BY-SA 3.0 US, via Wikimedia Commons

Ozaukee County Pioneer Village offers a nostalgic visit to the area’s past lifestyle.

This place consists of 24 historical buildings and structures from the 1840s to the early 20th century.

A walk along this village can give you a glimpse into what Ozaukee County was like in the past when traditional architecture was the trend.

It’s great for a simple, idyllic stroll with pleasant sights of charming houses and buildings.

Actors at Ozaukee County Pioneer Village

Dori, CC BY-SA 3.0 US, via Wikimedia Commons

Set within a rural setting, Ozaukee County Pioneer Village is the perfect leisure destination for those seeking peace.

Sometimes, volunteers will hold special tours and events inside the village.

This place is kept alive with the help of the Ozaukee County Historical Society.

If this interests you, it’s located at County Road in the village of Saukville.

Actors walking along Ozaukee County Pioneer Village

Dori, CC BY-SA 3.0 US, via Wikimedia Commons

Final Thoughts

With its diverse history, Ozaukee County has gathered a variety of attractions in its locale.

Visitors can experience both casual and active ventures in this large county!

No matter your age and preference, there can be something for everyone.

All these options offer a long list of things to do in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin.

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