Great River Road Trip Guide: Alma and Stockholm | Midwest Living

Great River Road Trip Guide: Alma and Stockholm

A charming town along Wisconsin’s Great River Road, Alma has pleasant restaurants, galleries and inns. Founded by Swedish immigrants, Stockholm, a town of 66 (23 miles northwest of Alma), also has an artsy rep.
Downtown Alma
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Nelson Cheese Factory
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At 7 miles long, Alma is impressively carved out of the towering 500-foot limestone bluffs flanking the Mississippi River. Don't miss Buena Vista Park on a bluff above town; you can catch sweeping views of the majestic river. The scenic overlook will whet your appetite for experiences along Wisconsin's slice of the Great River Road, which stretches 250 miles and includes 33 towns. The combination of Alma and nearby Stockholm provides a great weekend escape.

What to do

Buena Vista Park Grab your camera and follow signs from State-35 along County-E, or walk from Second Street to reach a spectacular overlook.

Maiden Rock Winery and Cidery The complex and surprising ciders include the sweet Honeycrisp Hard and robust Scrumpy. (715) 448-3502;

Ingebretsen’s av Stockholm Scandinavian Gifts This satellite of a popular Minneapolis store carries handwoven textiles and blown glass. (800) 279-9333;

Mississippi River Pearl Jewelry Company Pearls in this Alma shop come from Mississippi mussels—natural, unique and increasingly rare. Pieces range from simple earrings to designer necklaces. (651) 301-1204;

Wings Over Alma Nature Center On Main Street, this combination nature center, arts and crafts gallery shows visitors where to spot birds along the river.  (608) 685-4067;

Where to eat

Bogus Creek Cafe and Bakery Get Swedish pancakes with lingonberries, or try stuffed toast made with Swedish doughnuts. In Stockholm. (715) 442-5017;

Monarch Public House Wisconsin’s oldest bar (open since 1894), the Monarch in Fountain City has an ambitious menu including old Irish family recipes. (608) 687-4231;

Pier 4 Cafe and Smokehouse This BBQ “shack” overlooks Alma’s Lock and Dam. (608) 685-4964;

The Stockholm Pie Company Flavors include blackberry-pear with cardamom. Seasonal hours; check before you go. (715) 442-5505;

Where to stay

Hotel de Ville Housed in three restored historical buildings, this Alma hotel’s elegant suites have antique furnishings, wood floors and flat-screen TVs. (612) 423-3653;

For information: Stockholm Merchants Association (715) 442-2266; or Alma Chamber of Commerce (608) 685-4442;

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