Southern Hills, Wisconsin.
Things to do
American Players Theatre Pack a picnic to enjoy on a blanket spread in the meadow or at a table beneath oaks, then walk up a hill to the under-the-stars amphitheater for plays June through late October in Spring Green. (608) 588-2361; americanplayers.org
Cave of the Mounds Hour-long guided tours explore a cavern of colorful stalactites, stalagmites, waterfalls and other mineral formations. Aboveground, enjoy beautiful rock gardens and walking trails. In Village of Mount Horeb. (608) 437-3038; caveofthemounds.com
Photo courtesy of caveofthemounds.com.
Cheese Country Trail ATVs, dirt bikes and snowmobiles make it a busy trail for hikers or bikers, but everyone is welcome on this trail that roughly parallels the Pecatonica River for 47 miles from Mineral Point to Monroe. tricountytrails.com
House on the Rock Into quirky? We finished the self-guided tours thinking this was a bizarre, trippy riff on Frank Lloyd Wright. Not into quirky? Skip the Spring Green house and its collections, which feature every freaky image of childhood nightmares. (608) 935-3639, (800) 334-5275; thehouseontherock.com
Johnston Gallery One of the many galleries, artists' workshops and specialty shops filling Mineral Point downtown storefronts, most more than a century old. This one showcases works of more than 100 artists. (608) 987-3787; johnstongallery.com
Orchard Lawn Victorian mansions built by 19th-century mining magnates and wealthy merchants line Ridge Street of Mineral Point and grace surrounding residential areas. A tour of Orchard Lawn provides a look into that era’s architecture and garden design. (608) 558-1937; orchardlawn.org
Pecks Farm Market East Families come to this Spring Green spot for the petting zoo and train rides, but they don't leave without a big watermelon, salsa or other fresh find. (608) 588-7177; pecksfarmmarketeast.com
Pendarvis State Historic Site Costumed guides lead tours of stone cottages, a row house and Cornish pub dating to Mineral Point’s early mining days. (608) 987-2122; pendarvis.wisconsinhistory.org
Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts Creative writing, blacksmithing, bookmaking and painting are just a few of the workshops at this nonprofit arts center in Mineral Point. Classes for both novice and experienced artisans last up to a weekend. (608) 987-3292; shakeragalley.com
Taliesin Estate Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie-style home anchors the 600-acre Spring Green estate where the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture still functions. Tours of the home and hillside studio explain Wright’s genius. (877) 588-7900; taliesinpreservation.org
Taliesin. Photo by Ginger Crichton.
Where to eat
Brewery Creek Brewpub Only the finest local ingredients make it into the upscale brewpub food at this Mineral Point pub. (608) 987-3298; brewerycreek.com
Driftless Depot Organic Market, Deli and Cafe This Spring Green stop sells gourmet soups and sandwiches, and organic and imported groceries. (608) 628-1001; driftlessdepot.com
The Spring Green General Store Beyond the big blue front porch, this cottage-style restaurant serves savory and comforting food with a global, health-food bent. The retail side of this Spring Green spot stocks unique gifts, boutique clothing and groceries. (608) 588-7070; springgreengeneralstore.com
Red Rooster Cafe Come to this casual Mineral Point spot for Cornish specialties like pasties (hearty meat, potato and vegetable turnovers) and figgyhobbin (a raisin-studded dessert). (608) 987-9936
Where to stay
Brewery Creek Inn At this 19th-century inn, 20th-century luxury makes for pleasant stays above the brewpub by the same name. (608) 987-3298; brewerycreek.com
Shake Rag Alley Mousehole Lodging Look forward to plush furnishings, cozy quilts and a kitchen stocked with tea at these townhouse suites in Mineral Point. (608) 553-1966; mouseholelodging.com