Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center

Visit... Learn... Return!

Open 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, 7 Days a Week!

Upcoming Events




The Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center, located on the northern edge of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, specializes in connecting people of all ages with engaging activities related to the outdoors.

Designated as a National Children’s Forest, the Visitor Center offers opportunities for youth and the general public to become more connected with the natural world.

The staff at the information desk, led by employees of the National Park Service (one of the partners at the Center), provides orientation to and detailed information about the Lake Superior Region. The staff is always eager to spend some time with visitors and perhaps even help them plan a fun day in the Northwoods.

Our exhibits illustrate the heritage and history of the Lake Superior Region, taking you back in time from the Ice Age to present day -­ illustrating stories of people who made this land their home. The Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center has two theaters, the Martin Hanson Theater and the Northern Voices Theater.  The Martin Hanson Theater offers a selection of film topics ranging from delightful stories of animals to modern-day mysterious shipwrecks. The Northern Voices Theater features an engaging show using special lighting, music, sound effects, images, and unique objects to weave an entertaining story about the women and men who wandered, trapped, fished, logged, mined and farmed this rugged country.

Immerse yourself in the beauty of the northwoods wetlands on our diverse ¾-mile interpretive boardwalk trail that winds along a black ash swamp, sedge meadow, and mature cedar and tamarack swamp. In our Nature's Discovery Area, children interact hands-on by exploring nature’s secrets: crawling inside a beaver lodge, finding animal tracks, building sandcastles, creating masterpieces with wood, and catching butterflies and dragonflies.

Be sure to catch a view from our five-story observation tower. Take a peek through the high-power viewing scope. The Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center is a multifaceted facility that has something to interest everybody who comes through our doors.

Calling all citizen scientists! The NGLVC has recently teamed up with Northland College, Professor Jon Martin, and the WDNR to monitor the wetlands around the boardwalk trail surrounding the Center, and they're leaving the data collecting up to you! New signs have been posted with information on this new project along the boardwalk trail. Find the facebook page 'Northland College: NGLVC Environmental Monitoring', and post your observations on the health and color of vegitation, the level or amounts of water under the boardwalk, and plant and animal species you find along the way! If you have a smartphone, you can also scan a data box on the project signs mentioned above to take you right to it! Help insure a healthy wetland forest around the NGLVC for years to come! 

Assistive communication devices were recently installed at the Center. This new equipment includes an UbiDuo, a two-way communications device used to overcome communication impairments. It is a compact device with a small keyboard and screen on either side allowing two-way communication between visitors and staff. The Center also has several sets of Bellman Audio Domino assistive listening devices that amplify and clarify sound by cutting down or eliminating background noise. The third device, the Topaz, is a magnifying closed circuit monitor. The Topaz enlarges anything placed under its camera, allowing viewers to see fine print and details on maps or other small objects.

Support the Center!

By making a phone contribution to the Friends of the Center by Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express by calling 715.685.2659


about giants on our historical frontier: women and men who explored, trapped, fished, logged, mined, and farmed this rugged country!


our amenities at your leisure! We're conveniently located along the South Shore of Lake Superior between Minnesota and Michigan on US Hwy 2.


regional visitor information services, interactive exhibits, five-story observation tower, boardwalk, and interpretive trails!


enchanting tales of Regional folklore, from Native American ghost stories, spirited songs of the voyageurs, to modern-day mysterious shipwrecks!


The Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center helps people connect with the historic, cultural, and natural resources of the Northern Great Lakes Region through customer-based information, services, and educational programs.

Our Vision

The Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center will be a leader in advancing the sustainability of the region's cultural, historic, and natural resources through innovative partnerships that engage people and communities in positive change.

Our Goal

The Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center's goal is to be a leader and partner in delivering regional education, information and tourism services.