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Nestled between lakes Mendota and Monona, our capitol city is surrounded by more than 15,000 acres of beautiful lakes that boast activities on the water--and in it--from canoeing and kayaking to swimming and sailing.

Beyond Madison, there's even more to explore! Visit the surrounding areas for activities on Lake Waubesa, Lake Kegonsa and Lake Wingra. Read on to discover how you can add aquatic adventure to your itinerary the next time you visit Madison!



Lakes Mendota, Monona, Wingra, Waubesa, and Kegonsa contain a variety of different fish species such as perch, crappie, bluegill, walleye, bass, and northern pike.

Enjoy fishing Madison lakes for a variety of fish species with Captain Joe Okada at Madison Fishing Charters.

If you choose to hit the lakes by yourself, be sure to obtain a fishing license from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources before you cast your line!



Bring your boat and take advantage of Madison's plentiful lakes! A complete listing of boat landings along with detailed information about Lake Access Permits from the City of Madison Parks Department will help you get started. More information of Lake Access permits can also be found through the Dane County Parks Division.

If you'd like sit back and relax while taking a tour of Lake Monona or Lake Mendota, check out Betty Lou Cruises or enjoy a pontoon ride courtesy of the Madison School & Community Recreation Boat Program.



Try Brittingham Boats and Wingra Boats when you'd like to rent a canoe, kayak, rowboat, paddle boat, stand-up paddleboard or sailboat. (You can rent pontoon boats starting in May!) They also offer sailing and windsurfing lessons on peaceful Lake Wingra.



The Madison area has 13 beaches to be enjoyed throughout the summer months. Learn more about beach amenities, including which beaches have lifeguards, swim ropes, concessions and more.

In addition to the beaches, Madison also has a new public swimming pool. The Goodman Pool, complete with two water slides and several play areas for children, is a great way to beat the heat of summer!

Madison Spotlight