You already know that Wisconsin’s peninsula is a beautiful vacation destination. The question now becomes, where to stay in Door County?
Which Door County towns are the best hubs from which to explore the parks and shorelines of this remarkable place?
Which towns have the best restaurants?
These were the questions we asked ourselves when planning our first Door County vacation.
After many visits since then, we’ve gathered a list of our favorite places to stay. You’ll find that list below.
Top 4 Best Places to Stay in Door County
Deciding where to stay in Door County involves choosing between a lot of great towns and villages.
Our favorite places to stay all happen to be fairly close together. But this is for good reason:
- Location: These four places are centrally located for easy access to all the other destinations and attractions.
- Transportation: Speaking of easy access, the top four Door County towns and villages listed below are all located right off of the main highway. So getting around is quick.
- Accommodations: We wouldn’t recommend a place to stay if there weren’t great lodging options! Check out Airbnb, local hotels, or even campsites.
Now the choice is up to you.
We’ve given our best four recommendations first, but if you had another location in mind don’t worry. There are great reviews of other towns and villages at the end of the article.
You’ll know you’ve entered the heart of Ephraim when you see the red CocaCola signs on top of Wilson’s Restaurant and Ice Cream Parlor.
In fact, this picturesque location is home to four of our favorite places to eat.
We love this village because of its small feel and quaint charm.
If you plan to spend time exploring Peninsula State Park, then you can’t go wrong with Ephraim.
See it on Google Maps: Ephraim, WI
2. Egg Harbor
Not to mention the Landmark Resort. There’s no denying that this town has some of the best lodging options on the peninsula.
Besides having great places to stay, Egg Harbor is home to the Door County Trolley. If you haven’t already, check out their website for some high-quality tour options year around.
We love this town for its traveler’s convenience.
Between the fantastic stays, great restaurants, and awesome tours, Egg Harbor is the perfect home base for a Door County vacation.
See it on Google Maps: Egg Harbor, WI
3. Sister Bay
With the largest expanse of public shoreline in Door County, you can’t go wrong with Sister Bay.
Plus, this is the closest option to Newport State Park in our Top 4. Newport is our favorite park on the peninsula.
If all of that doesn’t convince you, then goats eating grass off the roof of a Swedish restaurant might pique your interest. Sister Bay is home to Al Johnsons and their Swedish pancakes can’t be missed.
Sister Bay, WI is also home to a great outdoor gear rental store called Bay Shore Outfitters. So if you need cross country ski’s or stand up paddleboards, this is a great place to stay.
See it on Google Maps: Sister Bay, WI
4. Fish Creek
Finally, Fish Creek is the last place on our Top 4 list of where to stay in Door County and it’s certainly one you should consider.
First of all, if you haven’t heard of Wild Tomato Pizza yet, then add it to your list right now. Fish Creek is home to its original location and is definitely one of our favorite places to eat on the Peninsula.
Similar to Ephraim but on the south side of the park, Fish Creek is another perfect home base for a Peninsula State Park vacation.
This Door County town is where we stayed on one of our first trips to the area. We used a really nice AirBnB but there’s also a great Inn and Restaurant called the Whistling Swan that would be a great place to stay.
See it on Google Maps: Fish Creek, WI
Other Places to Stay in Door County
Alright, we chose our favorite places for where to stay in Door County above, but these are certainly not the only options.
We love Baileys Harbor, Washington Island, and other places mentioned below for so many reasons.
Check out these other great places to stay for a perfect Door County vacation home base.
Baileys Harbor is one of the few places on the east side of the peninsula along the Lake Michigan shoreline that has a lot of cool things going on.
To begin with, Baileys Harbor is home to one of our favorite breweries in all of Wisconsin. Its appropriately named Door County Brewery Co. and has an amazing vibe and great live music.
Baileys Harbor is perfect for those wanting to get a little further removed from the hustle and bustle of other parts of the peninsula.
See it on Google Maps: Baileys Harbor, WI
The only reason Washington Island didn’t make our Top 4 is that its a little hard to get to. But if you’re willing to take the ferry across Death’s Door then you won’t be disappointed!
In fact, we camped out on the island during our first trip to Door County.
We wrote a really in-depth guide about it that you should check out by pressing the button below.
As I said, we went camping and stayed at Washington Island Campground, but there are also some great hotel options.
It may not make the best home base for exploring all of Door County, but if you’re looking to get away from people and enjoy some island time, Washington Island is where to stay.
See it on Google Maps: Washington Island
Home to one of the finest dining establishments in Door County, Ellison Bay has a lot to offer.
You’ll have to drive pretty far north, but Island Orchard Cider might be worth the drive.
Fun fact, one of Wisconsin’s largest and most expensive homes, called Sur la Baie, is located in Ellison Bay.
Besides all of that, we haven’t spent a whole lot of time in Ellison Bay. However, it’s definitely on our radar and worth checking out.
See it on Google Maps: Ellison Bay, WI
Being the largest town in Door County, you may be tempted to drive right past Sturgeon Bay in hopes of a smaller, more quaint village.
However, the town of Sturgeon Bay offers options and convenience when it comes to dining and places to stay.
If your planning to tour the Door’s many lighthouses, then the Sturgeon Bay Ship Canal North Pierhead Light will certainly be on your list.
With everything from large vessels to small charters, Sturgeon Bay is known for boats and the canal they travel through connecting Lake Michigan to Green Bay.
When asking where to stay in Door County, you can’t go wrong with Sturgeon Bay.
See it on Google Maps: Sturgeon Bay, WI
Finally, we’ll end this list of Door County towns with Jacksonport, Wisconsin.
On our list as one of only two towns along the Lake Michigan shoreline, Jacksonport is perfect for sunrises and hiking.
Cave Point County Park is only a ten-minute drive south of Jacksonport. No matter how much time you have on the peninsula, we recommend you make a stop at Cave Point.
For kayakers, Jacksonport has a great boat launch from which to start your maritime exploration of the Cave Point County Park caves.
Press the button below to check out our post on the best things to do in Cave Point County Park.
Between that and Whitefish Dunes State Park, the town of Jacksonport is perfect for those who love the outdoors.
See it on Google Maps: Jacksonport, WI