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Whitewater Lake

Splendid trails and a cool, up-north vibe reign in this pristine Wisconsin college community

Welcome to Whitewater Lake

There is plenty to love about Whitewater Lake in Wisconsin’s Walworth County. Home to the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, the region abounds with lush beauty and a treasure trove of year-round recreational opportunities. Residents can find hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, and swimming in the warmer months, and snowmobiling, snowshoeing, sledding, and skiing in the winter. This flourishing enclave in the ever-enchanting Kettle Moraine State Forest also features a host of picturesque farms and charming homes for its part-time and permanent residents, all of whom enjoy the region’s abundance of peace and quiet.

What to Love

  • Close to the great city of Chicago
  • Within hours of Madison and Milwaukee
  • Ideal for those who love to spend time on the water
  • Serene and secluded 
  • A robust agricultural past and continued presence

Local Lifestyle

As a college town, Whitewater Lake has a buoyant, youthful energy that’s underlined by the bevy of land and watersports it offers its inhabitants and visitors. With waters teeming with walleye and Northern pike, it’s especially appealing to those who are fond of fishing and anyone who feels most at home when surrounded by nature. This is the sort of place where you’re just as likely to see your neighbor at a brewery as you are hiking solo on a trail.

Dining, Entertainment, & Shopping

Whitewater Lake and its neighboring towns offer an admirable selection of laid-back restaurants and chic cafes. Fresh, seasonal ingredients take center stage at The Black Sheep, whose lovely, industrial-hip interior serves as the backdrop for delicious and innovative dishes. Specializing in farm-to-table fare, they offer an excellent array of plates ranging from mushrooms and shallots bisque with herbs de Provence to several types of bruschetta.
Wisconsin’s thriving craft brewery scene is on display at 841 Brewhouse, which features gems like Warhawk wheat and oatmeal stout. Their food menu is just as impressive, with options such as a classic Reuben sandwich and cavatappi macaroni and cheese with sriracha chicken. 
Elevated bar bites and fantastic beers are found at Second Salem Brewing Co., where you can pair an ice-cold Black Mass stout with a Cuban brisket sandwich and truffle parmesan fries, or a Margarita flatbread pizza with basil and balsamic and a glass of creamy coffee porter.
The community is also home to a small handful of independent boutiques and businesses, such as La Grange General Store and Backyard Bikes, where you can grab a steaming-hot cappuccino while waiting for a tune-up on your bicycle.  

Things to Do

Whitewater Lake offers outdoor enthusiasts an abundance of choices for adventure. Kettle Moraine State Forest is a sight to behold. It contains over 22,000 acres of glacial hills, recreational lakes, hilly terrain, picnic spots, and both simple and rugged trails. The Ice Age Trail is particularly compelling. Frequently deemed one of the best trails in the state, the single-trek path winds past densely wooded areas and over glacial kettles. 
The John Muir Hiking-Biking Trails are also a must-try for Whitewater Lake visitors and residents. With paths ranging from moderate to advanced, you’re bound to find the trek that will suit you and perhaps your whole family.  
Locals are also avid fans of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater’s Young Auditorium, an opulent performing arts venue that features live comedy, dance performances, music, plays, university events, and more. 


In addition to the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, Whitewater Lake, and its surrounding towns have several remarkable schools, such as:
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