Archive for the ‘Area Attractions’ Category

Hike while staying at Port Washington Inn July 16, 2014

View from Lions Den Gorge

2012-10-20 15.35.22

Wild flowers at Lions Den Gorge October 2012

Wild flowers at Lions Den Gorge October 2012

Lake Michigan has the effect of lengthening the season of autumn along its shorelines; a hike through Lions Den Gorge or Harrington Beach State Park will nourish your senses with their natural beauty.

These photos were taken October 20, 2012 at Lions Den Gorge where leaves had fallen to create a carpet of autumn colors underfoot while random wildflowers still bloomed and some golden leaves held fast to a tree along the beach. Along the trail vibrant orange leaves proclaimed the season!

Make memories this fall at Port Washington Inn August 8, 2013



We just celebrated our 46th anniversary and, in years prior to innkeeping, we often spent the first two weeks of August celebrating Dave’s birthday and our anniversary while on vacation. Most typically we vacationed at our modest lakeshore place on Little Spirit Lake which is part of the Iowa Great Lakes.

On a map, the Iowa Great Lakes look like puddles compared to the Great Lakes we now know and love. But they afforded our family the opportunity to go to the beach, to row a boat, to fish, and to cook over a campfire; we have years of great memories! Often we made a trip back to our garden to harvest fresh vegetables to enjoy at the lake, and the lugs of peaches we would buy at Fareway were exquisitely sweet and juicy.

One of the perks of being at the lake was that there was no phone! Imagine that… way for anyone to reach us. It was family time, pure and simple. What a luxury to experience those days. With only our appetites and the beach to impose structure on each day, they truly felt like ‘the endless days of summer’.

How many ‘endless days of summer’ have you experienced this year? It feels to us that
summer took such a long time arriving that it has been short-changed. All the more reason for each of us to enjoy fall to the fullest! Here along the lakeshore, fall is extended, and it is truly a beautiful season to enjoy the outdoors.
We are now offering single night stays (Monday through Thursday) at the discounted midweek rate during September and October.

Weekends, single night stays may be booked one week in advance of arrival. All to help you take advantage of the lovely season of fall.

Those of you who have been challenged by weather to get in your quota of biking or hiking this summer will love the Interurban Trail in September or October. As you may recall, Port Washington is approximately mid-point on the Interurban and Port Washington Inn is three blocks from the trail.

We have a new restaurant in town! The Twisted Willow is making many people’s dining experience happy these days. We appreciate their atmosphere, their service, and their commitment to food that is fresh, creative, and reasonably priced.

Port Washington also has a new lakeshore park, Coal Dock Park. It’s in its infancy, but the walking paths are in place and there is an aerial video that gives an idea of how this space connects to the marina area. Our W.J. Niederkorn library has collected images of the coal dock’s history.

And we’ll pass on to you what recent guests shared about the teriyaki smoked salmon they purchased on a stick from Ewig Brothers…..”hands down, the best smoked salmon we’ve ever had!”


Photos taken by Rita from Upper Lake Park, Port Washington

A walk in the park (Harrington Beach State Park) July 2, 2012


It would be the rare person who would describe their life as “a walk in the park” these days. Have you wondered about the origin of that expression? I would have to answer, “frankly, no!” But after taking a walk around Quarry Lake in Harrington Beach State Park on a beautiful day last week, the expression seems apt. Reconnecting with nature in a beautiful setting outside the parameters of the technology that rules so much of our lives can be, literally and figuratively, a breath of fresh air. Our lives can benefit from the balance that a ‘walk in the park’ and ‘a breath of fresh air’ can provide.

Many guests at the Port Washington Inn either ride bikes or drive to Harrington Beach State Park, just 10 miles north. There are plentiful park opportunities in Port Washington, too. So a stay at the inn very often includes a visit to a park to enjoy Lake Michigan, or a nature center such as Riveredge Nature Center which is 10 miles inland from us.

Take advantage of our multiple night discounts to take a walk in the park and draw a breath of fresh air! A recent guest who was giving herself a bit of time away from her normal routine affirmed as she checked out that it was the best investment she had made in awhile.

Sometimes we need to reconnect, sometimes we need to disconnect; finding the atmosphere that makes it easy can make all the difference!

Opalescent Lake Michigan at dusk from South Beach, Port Washington August 27, 2011

Timing, as they say, is everything.  In the world of photography that is especially so and this photo is credited to chance, not planning!

Last weekend as Port Washington’s Maritime Festival came to a close late Sunday, Dave and I took off for a walk to enjoy the beneficent weather.  The tall ships were still in the harbor and we ventured to Upper Lake Park to enjoy the view, then crossed the festival grounds to South Beach where we were rewarded with this view of Lake Michigan.  Opalescent is the word that always comes to my mind when the lake’s surface reflects these subdued pastels.

South Beach is officially the launch area created for kayaks and canoes and, sure enough, four kayakers were paddling serenely in the calm waters.

June 18th “Treasures of OZ” highlights Lake Michigan’s shoreline June 7, 2011

Capture nature on film while you visit the lakefront

Treasures of Oz will be held from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m June 18.  A silent auction, food and music will be provided at the end of the day at the Forest Beach Migratory Preserve.

Come stay at the Port Washington Inn and make this event the centerpiece of your weekend while enjoying 15% off a two night stay or 25% off a three night stay! The Port Washington Inn is one of the Top 10 Eco Elegant Inns of Wisconsin (2010) and the grounds of the inn provide a parklike setting encouraging you to enjoy the outdoor seating areas and views of Lake Michigan from atop Sweetcake Hill!

“The lake is a wonderful resource,” said Ozaukee County Parks and Planning executive director Andrew Struck, and for this reason Lake Michigan is the primary focus of this year’s Treasures of Oz nature tour.

On June 18, individuals are invited to seven lakeside parks throughout the county to explore the ecological treasures the area has to offer.

Treasures of Oz was started last year by a group of dedicated volunteers. Event coordinator Marjie Tomter said, “The mission is to raise awareness of the environmental treasures in Ozaukee County.”

Tomter, Struck and other volunteers will be present at Sauk Creek Nature Preserve, Lion’s Den Gorge, Virmond Park, Donges Bay Gorge, South Beach Boat Launch, Forest Beach Migratory Preserve and Harrington Beach State Park to show visitors the natural wonders located close to home.

Struck said that the tour, now in its second year, “highlights the green spaces wonderfully.”

The seven sites this year provide visitors with ample trails to wander, and Tomter said that the event is “perfect for people who like hiking.”

However, she said the locations are ideal for avid birdwatchers as well.  Several sites, especially the Forest Beach Migratory Preserve in Belgium, lie in different birds’ migratory paths.

But the lake is the star of many of the sites, like Harrington Beach State Park in Belgium and Port Washington’s own South Beach Boat Launch.  The launch is a great a resource for kayakers, according to Tomter.  The location is along Lake Michigan’s water trail, a safe passage of water that follows the coast.

Last year Tomter said that 700 individuals visited the various sites, and she hopes that this year’s collection of outdoor spaces draws a similar crowd.

When it comes to choosing a favorite, Tomter said, “All these spots are amazing.  I can’t favor one.”

Copied from “Treasures of Oz Highlights Natural Wonders”, Port Washington-Saukville, WI Patch June 7, 2011

Sauk Creek Nature Preserve June 14, 2010

Located in the heart of Port Washington, this 20+ acre natural area offers hiking trails, bird-watching, and fishing in the rapids of the Sauk Creek. Owned and maintained by the Ozaukee-Washington Land Trust, the area is accessible from Moore Rd. or Grant Street.