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What's NOT to love about Door County, Wisconsin?

Real Estate Agent with The Kellstrom Ray Agency, Inc. (Est. 1948)

What's NOT to love about Door County, Wisconsin?


Ahh, February.  The month of romance.  ❤️

Door County, Wisconsin, is very well known as a destination wedding location, and the place of tens of thousands of proposals.  And why not?  This little peninsula jutting into Green Bay and Lake Michigan is the stuff that dreams are made of!  And I consider myself an expert---I've sold many Inns throughout Door County where engagements take place, honeymoons are celebrated and SO much more.  So I consider myself a little bit of an expert in the Door County romance department!

Door County Bed and Breakfast for Sale

If I write about the wildly beautiful area that I call home, I can't just concentrate on Sister Bay (the village where I currently reside, after living in Liberty Grove on and off for a good portion of my life).  I need to focus on ALL of the areas I love in Door County, and the places where love is celebrated from engagements through diamond anniversaries.  I started out with a featured photo of Northport/Gills Rock:  the place where the Washington Island Ferry Line will take you to Washington Island....where you'll pass several other islands and lighthouses (how romantic is that)?  So in honor of this month of the heart holiday, let me relay some of the places that I feel are the most romantic you may find in Door County, Wisconsin.  

1.  Gills Rock/Northport:  Yes, that lovely photo is the iconic Northport Ferry Dock where many a ring has been presented with the beautiful islands as a backdrop.  However, there are a few off-the-beaten path areas that you will also find in this area that just beg for you to get down on one knee.  Romantic areas in Gills Rock/Northport include the town park of N. Portes des Mortes Road, Isle View Park, Newport State Park and especially Europe Lake.

Beautiful Europe Lake Facing Newport State Park

Europe Lake Homes for Sale

2.  Ellison Bay:  Ellison Bay brings a WEALTH of romantic opportunities.  First and foremost, I should mention Ellison Bay Bluff Park off of Porcupine Bay.  This park has an overlook for watching sunsets, and this is one of Door County's PRIME locations for romance.  In fact, our son proposed to his future wife while she sat at the lookout and the rest of us were sitting out on a fishing boat holding up a "Will You Marry Me?" sign (true story).  But that's not the ONLY romantic place in Ellison Bay.  Wills Park, next to the Ellison Bay marina, is truly ideal for sunsets, as is the Ellison Bay Beach.  And in terms of romantic dining, you can't beat Ellison Bay's Wickman House (a recent James Beard nominee at the time of this writing).  Alas--they are already full for Valentine's Day weekend, but you can book for next year!

After dinner, you can walk to the water in Ellison Bay to catch a sunset

Ellison Bay Sunset

3.  Sister Bay:  I love 🥰 Sister Bay.  This is the year-round village where you can walk to most everything and where music plays in the streets from late April through October.  Sister Bay has Northern Haus, a stately Door County wedding barn on expansive acreage, and many other venues that will provide the perfect backdrop for a wedding, including Thyme (one of the area's premier caterers) and Twelve Eleven.  However, I believe that MANY a romantic proposal has been made at any of Sister Bay's incredible venues for food or drink, as well as the Sister Bay Beach and Sister Bay Marina.  Looking for a Sister Bay honeymoon spot?  You can't beat Roots Inn & Kitchen, the Sister Bay Inn or the Dorr Hotel!

This historic Sister Bay B & B/inn became Roots Inn & Kitchen with new owners in 2016 (see the site above for current photos!)

Door County Bed & Breakfasts

4.  Ephraim:  Ephraim is one of the cutest, quaintest villages in the State of Wisconsin.  With a carefully preserved downtown Historic District, you can grab some ice cream at Wilson's and stroll down the clean, beautiful streets along the water.  Ephraim is also home to the Ephraim entrace to Peninsula State Park, which is not only well-known for proposals (there are many scenic water-view sites in the park), but it's also an incredible place to host a wedding.

5.  Fish Creek:  Another year-round Village, Fish Creek is home to many scenic vistas (and the other entrance to Peninsula State Park), great food and drink and lots of extensive shopping.  If you're looking for a special ring for your beloved, you can check out the Fish Creek branch of Rummele's Jewelers (open May-October) or the beautiful Trilliant Diamonds.  And, of course, no actual Valentine's Day celebration would be complete without delicious chocolate--you can get delicous chocolates that taste as good as they look at Fish Creek's Top of the Hill shops at DC Chocolate Designs (one of my absolute favorites). 

6.  Baileys Harbor:  Baileys Harbor is home to one of Door County's most pristine places--The Ridges Sanctuary.  Whether you are looking to propose on a beach (The Ridges has one) or in a pristine wooded setting, a visit to The Ridges is a year-round opportunity to make any engagement or any VISIT to Door County memorable.

7.  Door County Romance 💕:  Of course, there are dozens of other places that are truly romantic in Door County and well worth a visit for romantic dining, prime shopping, snuggling, a weekend away or, of course, Valentine's Day.  Many of our year-round inns and restaurants offer special promotions to make this day of romance very memorable.  And Door County is truly lovely year-round---imagine a proposal in autumn, when Door County is full of color, or in spring--when it is full of blooming cherry blossoms.  Or a romantic walk overlooking the water at Whitefish Dunes or Cave Point--the possibilities for romance in Door County are endless!  You WILL fall in love with Door County, Wisconsin.  

Door County Cherry Blossoms

My job, however, isn't to make you fall in love--my job is to make you fall in love with Door County!  I've been turning visitors and vacationers into Door County residents for over 19 years.  When you are ready to make Door County a permanent part of your life, please contact me and view all Door County MLS-listed properties for sale online at moredoorcounty.com today.  

What's NOT to love about Door County, Wisconsin?

Door County Waterfront Listings

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All information is deemed reliable as of date of publication only and is subject to change without notice.


Thank you for reading this Door County real estate blog!  MaryKay Shumway, ABR®, CRS®, Realtor® loves to laugh and her passion is working with people that love the Door Peninsula.  She is a full-time real estate Broker, a mother and a stepmother, loves dogs and serves as a senior Broker Associate at the Kellstrom-Ray Agency, Inc. in beautiful Sister Bay, Wisconsin.  MaryKay represents listings throughout the Door County peninsula and also represents many Buyers annually that want to purchase the perfect property to make Door County a part of their lives.  CONTACT MARYKAY ABOUT YOUR DOOR COUNTY PROPERTY QUESTIONS TODAY.

MaryKay Shumway has been an extremely consistent multi-million dollar MLS producer for over twenty years, as well as the top producing broker for The Kellstrom-Ray Agency, Inc. since she joined the firm in late 2015.  Representing both listing clients and buyer clients and cusomters full time, MaryKay is extremely active in the Door County community with nonprofit groups, the Door County Board of Realtors and in local governmental affairs.  A member of the Door County Board of Realtors Honors Society from 2005-2021 and now recipient of Excellence in Professionalism honors since 2022, she is a former Door County Realtor of the Year, a former member of The Real Estate Group's Chairman's Circle from 2010-2015, and a former member of the Coldwell Banker International Diamond Society for 2014 & 15.  She has served as President and President-Elect of the Door County Board of Realtors.  MaryKay is a top MLS producer and has held the position of top producer at The Kellstrom-Ray Agency, Inc. since 2016.

Contact MaryKay today.  "As a multi-million dollar producer and senior associate at The Kellstrom-Ray Agency selling Door County real estate, I focus my balance on both  featured listings in Door County and representing Buyer Clients looking for the perfect Door County Property.  I turn Door County vacations into Door County traditions by helping you own your own Door County real estate, and I represent exceptional properties in all price points on the Bay of Green Bay, Lake Michigan, and all inland lakes and properties in between. Local experience with GLOBAL connections.  Call, text or e-mail me today."

Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Hello MaryKay - you have nicely tied together the many parts of Door County Wisconsin that make it an ideal place to visit and maybe stay a bit longer.  Nicely packaged post.  

Feb 11, 2023 03:12 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Mary Kay loved your  Sunset photo, that is ground to love Door County Wisconsin, Endre

Feb 11, 2023 10:23 PM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, Mary Kay... amazing photos and what a wonderful post about living in and enjoying life in Door County.

Feb 12, 2023 05:10 AM
Kat Palmiotti
eXp Commercial, Referral Divison - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Door County Wisconsin sounds wonderful! Thank you for the photos and overview!

Feb 12, 2023 05:42 AM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate Services

I am learning so much about places all around the US reading post entries MaryKay Shumway - reading your post did not disappoint.  As I prepare for my retirement and leave my home state, my eyes are opened to so many possibilities. 

Feb 12, 2023 11:36 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

I never knew that about Door County but now I do!  It definitely sounds like a beautiful place!

Feb 13, 2023 03:51 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

Door County home buyers and sellers are certain to value your community report, MaryKay.

Feb 14, 2023 07:50 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude


You are such a wonderful ambassador for Door County in everything you write, but in this post in particular. All I know about this area comes from reading your posts and you bring such life to the area. Thank you. Anyone interested in learning more, or moving here, can see you are the expert to contact.


Feb 14, 2023 07:57 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
Savvy + Company (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC

Oh my goodness, you've sold me on Door County, WI, MaryKay! I'm a water person and could definitely see myself living there. How perfectly beautiful.

Thank you so much for your participation in this month's challenge - this one was perfection!

Feb 23, 2023 10:47 AM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
CEO of Vision Drive Realty - Coastal San Diego

MaryKay Shumway you certainly made a great case for your beloved Door County...great "hot spot" tips and wonderful photos! This is a wonderful submission!

Feb 26, 2023 06:54 AM
Patricia Feager, ABR,CRS,GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

MaryKay Shumway - What a wonderful blog post and photos too! I had friends who were faithful to travel vacations in Door County. They absolutely loved it. The only place I went to several times was Bailey's Harbor on several retreats at St. Joseph's. I understand the retreat house is no longer there, but I do have fond memories of Kagaroo Lake. Bailey Harbor was a special place for me. I just wish I would have know all these other beautiful places you chose to showcase in your home town. You live in a beautiful corner of the world!

Mar 01, 2023 01:26 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Your post definitely makes us want to visit your area.

Have a very productive March.

Mar 02, 2023 11:07 AM