Lake Geneva Cruise Line’s boat excursions are a good way to get the lay of the land—and the lake—in this popular tourism community. Options include a two-hour Full Lake Tour, a Sundowner Cruise and a U.S. Mailboat Tour, where guests can tag along to see how “jumpers” deliver the mail to lake homes from a moving boat.
The Geneva Bay Tour cruises along the eastern end of the lake aboard the Lady of the Lake paddleboat as tour guides provide local history and trivia. Glaciers formed Geneva Lake 20,000 years ago; today, it’s the second-deepest spring-fed lake in Wisconsin. Its Native American name translates to "clear water," or Lake of Sparkling Water. The spiel also describes some of the magnificent properties built along the shore. For instance, German immigrant Otto Stone constructed an impressive estate called Stone Manor in 1900 after buying up property in downtown Chicago following the 1871 fire and reselling it at enormous profit. The Wrigley family—of chewing gum and Chicago Cubs fame—also owns a mile of Lake Geneva shoreline, valued today at $25,000 to $45,000 per linear foot.
Tour tickets run $23 to $64 plus optional tip.