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An aerial view of a kayaker on the open water.

Photo by Focal Flame Photography

Outdoors & Recreation

From kayaking to fishing, an abundance of outdoor activities await in Madison.

Outdoors & Recreation

All four seasons are fun in Madison. Yes, even winter. Skiing and skating. Sailing, swimming and golf. You'll wish you could spend all year here.

You may have heard, we have more bikes than cars. And over 200 miles of scenic biking and hiking trails to explore. Plus, more than 260 parks and beaches. It's no wonder Wisconsin is accustomed to earning accolades in this area. 

Madison has two unique ways to explore no matter the season. Follow a University of Wisconsin student through an aquatic adventure. Paddle through the placid waters of Lake Mendota as you learn its storied history. When winter blows into town, take a surreal snowshoe walk over the lake’s frozen waters to get a distinct view of Madison. Both are part of a new line of hands-on experiences designed to take you deeper into Madison’s unique culture.

If spectator sports are more your thing, sit back and enjoy nearly every event a fan can wish for. Football at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. IRONMAN WisconsinForward Madison FCCrossFit Games. The list goes on and on. 

Use the search below to find some of Madison's best outdoor spaces to enjoy.


Biking & Hiking

Greater Madison is the bike capital of the Midwest. We have more bikes than cars! And more than...

Parks & Beaches

Whether you want to relax or play, Madison has an ample amount of parks and beaches, with a variety...


Hit the links on Madison's affordable and accessible golf courses that have hosted PGA events....

On the Lakes

Fishing. Boating. Sailing. Swimming. There's plenty for all to do on Madison's five lakes:...