If you’re touring the Great Lakes, one of the must-see destinations you won’t want to miss is Lake Superior’s Apostle Islands in Wisconsin. Anybody who has witnessed the beauty of these islands will attest to the grandeur of the rock formations, the splendor of the sea caves and the tranquility of the beaches.
Acting as the gateway to these remarkable islands, Bayfield, Wis., nestles comfortably on the shores of Lake Superior. Here in Bayfield you’ll find Apostle Islands Marina, and with the status as the only full service marina in town, it has become a favorite spot and center point of the city.
Bill Peterson and his wife have managed this marina for the past six years, and they couldn’t be happier to be living in the small, friendly community of Bayfield. They love living here and they also enjoy meeting all the numerous Great Lakes travelers who come through their marina on their way to the Apostle Islands.
Apostle Islands National Lakeshore
Bayfield is actually considered a part of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, making it a national park. The park is comprised of 21 stunning islands, and Peterson mentioned that one of the great things about having so many islands in their vicinity is there are tons of great anchorages, bays, and beaches which can protect boats from the rough waters of Lake Superior.
“All the islands offer protection from the storms,” explained Peterson. “You can always sail into the lee or anchor into the lee shore.”
Because the islands are a national park, some of the islands have docks, but people mostly like to go out with their boats, drop an anchor, and visit the beach via dinghy. There are also some great hiking trails on the islands that attract adventurers.
Full Service Marina
When you stay at Apostle Islands Marina, you’ll feel right at home. They’ve got power and water for each of their 135 slips, and they also offer free Wi-Fi. Additionally, you’ll find some comfortable showers and bathrooms available at the marina. They even offer dinghy racks.
“We also offer service,” added Peterson. “We have a full service staff and we do everything from sailboat rigging to mechanical and electrical.”
Apostle Islands Marina also has a crane for putting up masts and doing repairs. In fact, the marina owner said theirs is the only crane in the area, which gives them some unique service capabilities.
Peterson explained that many of the boat owners who keep their vessels at the marina live outside of the area, but they have some locals who keep their boats there too. Apostle Islands Marina also has transient slips set aside for visiting boats, which come from all over the country.
Ultimate Great Lakes Stop
Seeing that the marina is in a prominent location downtown, you’ll find yourself neighboring a lovely park. Beyond that, you can walk to nearby restaurants, bars, shops and the grocery store from the marina. Bayfield has dozens of food options, so even if you’re a picky eater, you’ll be sure to find something to suit your tastes.
“We have everything from fine restaurants to burger joints,” described Peterson. “There are candy shops and numerous other kinds of shops.”
One of the nice things about Bayfield is that it’s small and easy to navigate, with the whole city being only 12 blocks by 12 blocks. As a community that attracts hoards of tourists from far and wide, the community works hard to accommodate the visitors and give them the best experience possible while they visit the breathtaking national park.
“Bayfield is a must-stop for anybody who’s taking a tour of the Great Lakes,” attested Peterson. “We get people from all over the Great Lakes area who want to leave their home waters and adventure out and see more of the Great Lakes. We also get quite a number of visitors from Canada.”
The Place To Be
Since buying the marina six years ago, The Petersons have never looked back. Both of them came out of professional careers and were ready to leave it all behind for a small community in a beautiful, peaceful area.
Bayfield has given them exactly what they were looking for. The city is home to many people found their way there like the Petersons did— attracted to the great beauty of the area and the diversity of the community.
“Between the community and the location, this is one of the best areas in the Great Lakes,” concluded Peterson.
For More Information
Apostle Islands Marina