Tucked in the southeastern most corner of Wisconsin lies Washington County–a beautiful escape–especially during autumn. The amazing fall foliage vibrantly showcases the natural landscapes and creates a picturesque backdrop for the season’s fun-filled festivities. Come along as we discover the brilliant scenery in Washington County, from artistic displays and fall leaves to exciting autumn activities.
Washington County is home to an array of scenery that extends beyond the breathtaking natural landscapes–local artistic creations that are put on display! With a montage of colorful art works to view, from West Bend to Hartford, let’s start this scenic exploration.
Our journey starts in West Bend, Wisconsin at the Museum of Wisconsin Art, otherwise known as MOWA, which has been exploring “the art of place” for over 60 years now! Their new building, dubbed the “Mothership” for its modernist design, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Discover an impressive showcase of art created by artists from our very own state. With astounding art collections of various forms, including paintings, sculptures, and mixed media works, this museum is truly a marvel.
As we make our way to the next stop in Hartford, more spectacular sights are in store at the Schauer Arts Center–a hub of creativity and community pride. Housed in a canning factory built in 1912, the center’s unique flare doesn’t stop there. They offer a vast variety of top-notch performances, educational programs, and, of course, art exhibitions. No matter what form of art you love, it’s right here in Hartford.
From awe-inspiring art to enchanting foliage, this scenic excursion in Washington County is just getting started! With panoramic views of the colorful countryside from one of the most distinguished architectural features in the state, you won’t want to miss this.
Any guesses on where we are headed? The one-and-only Holy Hill Basilica and National Shrine of Mary Help of Christians. Each year, nearly half a million people world wide come to visit this gorgeous gem, especially during this scenic fall season. Built in 1926, Holy Hill Basilica still stands tall and in pristine glory with beautiful architecture and stained glass windows. This basilica is one of 85 that have been designated in the United States, only adding to its unique and cherished significance.
On site, there’s a popular gift shop where visitors can select a special souvenir to remember their visit. But don’t stop there… climb a nearby tower to take in the magnificent autumn views that surround Holy Hill and the countryside of Washington County. This visit will undoubtedly be one to remember, from the glorious basilica to the all-encompassing glowing leaves.
Ready to have some fall fun? You’ve come to the right place. Washington County captures the spirit of the scenic season with pumpkin farms to a marvelous winery–all nestled in the vibrant hues of reds and golden yellows.
Off we go to Colgate, home of Basse’s Taste of Country. During the fall, it’s prime apple-picking season. On site, they also offer an epic 8-acre corn maze the whole family will love. Happening now and through October 28th, join in on Basse’s Pumpkin Fest! Besides picking out your favorite pumpkin, there is a plethora of exciting family entertainment. Enjoy Pig Races, a Candy Cannon that makes candy rain from the sky, a Dog Tricks Show, Wild West Cowboy Showdown, LumberJack Show, and even a Wild World of Animals!
Another Colgate adventure awaits at Peck & Bushel Fruit Company–a certified organic apple orchard that’s family owned and operated. Growing over 30 different types of apples, there’s a flavor for everyone. Handpick fruits fresh off the tree and relish in the homemade flavors from organic cider to baked goods. Want to know the secret recipe? Their apples! Taste the essence of autumn at Peck & Bushel Fruit Company.
On to Aspen Sky Winery of Slinger, where the flavors are fine and divine! Serving as a winery, distillery, and event center, Aspen Sky is the place to be for fall. Throughout the season, attend one of their many fall networking events or delicious wine pairing dinners. Or, simply stop in to savor their selections of smooth wines and spirits. Trust us, it’s a must-stop.
Autumn in Washington County is hard to beat with a vibrant backdrop everywhere you go. This fall, plan your scenic exploration to Washington County and marvel in their artistic displays, magnificent foliage, and fall festivities. A memorable stay is only one drive away.
For more to love about Washington County, watch Discover Wisconsin episode, ‘Washington County: Love Your Neighbor’ below:
Hailey Rose: Writer for Discover Mediaworks. A born & bred Wisconsinite with a love for fishing, hunting, and enjoying the great outdoors.