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12 Best Things to Do in Hudson, Wisconsin

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Are you looking for a wonderful visit to St. Croix County, Wisconsin? If you don’t want to miss out on seeing Hudson, add it to your list of places to visit. There are lots of exciting things to do and see in Hudson.

It is located in a fascinating county with many beautiful scenery and attractions, and various adventures await you. The St. Croix River Valley is one of the most scenic areas in the entire state.

Visiting the fantastic city of Hudson is one of the highlights of exploring both the state of Minnesota as well as the riverbanks of Wisconsin. It’s a great day trip from Minneapolis and a stopover town for anyone traveling along Interstate 94.

If you’re up for a long trip packed with fascinating views and fun activities, adding Hudson to your travel plan is a great idea. Check out the list below for the best things to do in Hudson.

Downtown Hudson

TL;DR

  • Most significant landmark – Octagon House Museum
  • Park to visit – Willow River State Park
  • Free activity – Lakefront Park
  • Activity for kids – Hudson GNG
  • Activity for adults – Cracked Barrel Winery
  • Place to eat – Agave Kitchen
  • Place to stayHoliday Inn Express & Suites – Hudson I-94

Things to Do in Hudson, Wisconsin

Hudson, Wisconsin Aerial View

Let’s get into some of the top attractions and things to do in Hudson, Wisconsin, in the middle of the iconic St. Croix Valley.

1. Octagon House Museum

The great town of Hudson, Wisconsin, has impressive attractions and museums. One of these fantastic places to check out is the Octagon House Museum.

The unique Octagon House was built in 1855 and was originally the home of Judge John Shaw Moffat after he moved to the state from New York. It is one of the most significant structures in downtown Hudson. This is a great place for tourists to behold some of the beauty of historic Hudson and learn about the town’s fascinating history.

The marvelous, Victorian eight-sided house has transformed into a museum under the stewardship of the St. Croix County Historical Society. Beyond the main house, visitors can also enjoy the estate’s gardens, garden house, and carriage house.

The museum features exhibits of artifacts that trace the buildings’ and cities’ illustrious histories. It is open for public visits from May to October and December on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 pm.

If you’re looking for a peaceful and comfortable place during your stay in Hudson, the Holiday Inn Express & Suites – Hudson I-94 is a great option. The hotel features free Wi-Fi, an indoor pool, and free breakfast.

See Related: Best Restaurants in St. Paul, Minnesota

2. Lakefront Park

Lakefront Park Entrance

Address: 1st St, Hudson, WI 54016, United States

Aside from enjoying the great and dynamic city life, Lakefront Park in Hudson, Wisconsin, offers a terrific adventure and is a great free thing to do in downtown Hudson.

Lakefront Park

This scenic park boasts excellent facilities for engaging in thrilling outdoor activities and basking in the splendor of the environment. Visitors can enjoy a sandy beach, beach volleyball courts, and a playground. It’s a lovely place to visit in the summer to swim and enjoy the St. Croix River.

Lakefront Park provides excellent and handy outdoor facilities. In the summer, the park’s bandshell comes to life with live music and performances throughout the season. You won’t want to miss out on that!

Lakefront Park Walking Trail
Thomson200, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

A boat launch is also available (for a fee) if you plan to bring your boat down to Hudson with you. You can also purchase a season boat launch pass if you spend much of the summer here.

See RelatedThings to do in Wabasha, Minnesota

3. Birkmose Park

Birkmose Park
Image from TripAdvisor

Address: 50 Coulee Rd, Hudson, WI 54016

Hudson, Wisconsin, is a must-see spot because it has many natural wonders and lovely parks to explore. Birkmose Park should not be overlooked when you visit Hudson.

It is a lovely family destination with lots of fun and a local park where you can enjoy a variety of outdoor recreation. The park is an excellent site for various enjoyable leisure activities, whether alone or with family or friends.

Birkmose Park features picnic tables and a fun playground area. It is in an outstanding location with a breathtaking St. Croix River Valley view.

Aside from the park’s beautifully maintained grounds, the serene environment and the stunning views make Birkmose Park a fantastic spot in town to relax, read, or take in the beautiful surrounding nature.

The park is also home to multiple American Indian Burial Mounds. This adds to the town’s history and is maintained by the City of Hudson.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Taylors Falls

4. Hudson Dike

Hudson Dike
Image from TripAdvisor

Address: Unnamed Road, Hudson, WI 54016, United States

Indulge in the wonders of nature and the tranquil setting at Hudson Dike, a terrific place to visit and enjoy the scenery. It is a great location accessible to individuals, couples, and families to spend quality time immersed in the city’s beauty. The pathway along the river’s shore provides the best route for exploring and sightseeing.

The dike serves as a great place to unwind and relax after checking in and exploring some of the great destinations in Hudson. It’s a fantastic getaway spot for unwinding and enjoying magnificent panoramas with your family while still close to the town.

The lovely Hudson Dike pathway is conveniently located near several of the town’s most notable bars, restaurants, coffee shops, antique shops, and other local businesses. Lakefront Park is one of the closest things to see on the dike.

If you’re a Tex-Mex fan, head to Agave Kitchen, just one block from the Hudson Dike. The restaurant offers a mouth-watering mix of cuisine, including tacos, burgers, and wings.

They also offer several keto options, but they’re best known for their Legendary Nachos, which can be ordered in a full or half portion. Don’t miss out on their signature cocktails, beer, and ciders!

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5. Willow River State Park

Address: 1034 Co Hwy A, Hudson, WI 54016

The remarkable town of Hudson, Wisconsin, has beautiful attractions and stunning parks. The Willow River State Park is five miles north of the town and is one of the most gorgeous parks. It’s a lovely 2,891-acre park with stunning views and a variety of activities to keep you busy.

Willow River State Park is one of the most important parks in northwest Wisconsin. In its heart lies the spectacular Willow Falls. Within its land, the beautiful Little Falls Lake can also be spotted.

Popular outdoor activities in Willow River State Park include camping, canoeing, fishing, hiking, and hunting. In the warmer months, visitors can swim in Little Falls Lake and relax by the waterfalls after a successful trek to locate them.

Winter is also a magical time to visit the park. There are miles of cross-country skiing trails and two miles of hard-packed trails that are great for snowshoeing and dog sledding. Other winter activities in Willow River State Park include sledding, ice fishing, and camping.

The park also features three playground areas with fun play structures and hiking trails suitable for kids. It’s incredibly kid-friendly and a great place to enjoy a day out with the whole family.

Don’t forget to reserve your camping spot in advance if you plan to stay in the park overnight, and make sure to have your fishing and hunting permits if you plan to participate in these activities.

See Related: Best and Fun Things to do in Minnesota

6. Grandview Park

Grandview Park
Image from TripAdvisor

Address: 1100 Carmichael Road, Hudson, WI 54016

One of the community parks not to miss when checking out the town is Grandview Park. It is a beautiful family spot that offers lots of space for the whole family to run around and have fun.

Grandview Park provides pavilions, picnic spots, charcoal grills, and a playground. The wooden play area will be your kids’ highlight and take you down memory lane. A separate dog park area and four regulation softball fields are used for adult and youth softball games.

With its proximity to I-94, Grandview Park is easy to reach from some of the notable attractions in St. Paul if you’d like to make a day trip to Hudson. But if you want to stay in this quiet area, check out this cozy apartment.

Amenities include a fireplace, sauna, and hot tub. It would definitely be a cozy place to stay warm if you’re visiting in the winter months.

See RelatedBest Things to Do in Tomah, Wisconsin

7. Prospect Park

Prospect Park Scenery

Address: 511 Wisconsin St, Hudson, WI 54016

Many beautiful parks surround the charming little city of Hudson, and one of the finest not to be missed is Prospect Park. It’s above the town’s bluff, offering lovely panoramic views of the Hudson and St. Croix Rivers. The park offers a chance to experience nature’s beauty while learning about the city’s fascinating history.

Prospect Park offers covered pavilions, grill areas, an open play area, swings, and a volleyball court. It is situated in an ideal location that provides easy access to several of the great businesses and attractions in the charming city of Hudson.

Not far from the park, you’ll find POST American Eatery, just north of the park on Locust Street. The family-friendly restaurant offers satisfying soups, Wisconsin cheese curds, and a variety of flatbreads. After your meal, head to Lotus Creamery for delicious handmade ice cream. Their flavor offerings are unique and always changing.

See Related: Best Small Towns in Minnesota

8. The Phipps Center for the Arts

Phipps Center for the Arts Building

Address: 109 Locust St, Hudson, WI 54016

If you’re searching for a bit of art and entertainment, check out The Phipps Center for the Arts. The Phipps Center hosts yearly musical, theatrical, and artistic performances in their 247-seat theater.

For a small town, you’ll be impressed by the performing arts center and the talent that will provide you with a night of entertainment. The Phipps Center’s website has all upcoming performances.

In addition to the theater, The Phipps Center includes five art galleries that feature art and exhibitions by regional artists. The center is open from 9:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. and Sundays from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

If you’d like to stay nearby, the Comfort Suites Hudson I-94 is just six minutes from the Phipps Center. The hotel offers heated swimming facilities, free Wi-Fi, and free coffee. Each room is a spacious suite, and pets are welcome!

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9. Hudson GNG

Hudson GNG
Image from Hudson GNG Facebook Page

Address: 2760 Enloe St, Hudson, WI 54016

The city of Hudson is a picturesque location with an exciting selection of outdoor activities. However, when it’s cold outside, you might be looking for a place indoors where the kids can burn off some energy.

In this case, the indoor playground at Hudson GNG is a must-see attraction in the area, with many interesting indoor amusements. It is a fun and interesting place in the city where families can play in a safe and clean environment. The spot features various play areas with appealing and creative play structures for kids to enjoy.

This indoor playground provides a place to play, learn, and have fun. It includes a huge indoor jungle gym, a 3D blacklight mini golf course, and an event space. The jungle gym is a spacious area with play structures for kids to play, interact with other kids, and run their creativity wild.

The fun-filled mini golf course is open for all ages, including adults. The pirate and underwater theme will be a hit with the kiddos. You can also pay a reduced rate to play more than one round.

Hudson GNG is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 pm. It’s a great place to beat the heat in the summer and get out of the cold during the winter.

See Related: Things to Do in Hayward, Wisconsin

10. Cracked Barrel Winery

Cracked Barrel Winery Sign
Management / TripAdvisor

Address: 570 Coulee Trail, Hudson, WI 54016

Wisconsin is well-known for its dairy products, but the state also has a long history of winemaking. In the 1840s, Hungarian immigrant Agoston Haraszthy established Wisconsin’s first vineyard. Today, more than 50 wineries operate in the state.

Cracked Barrel Winery is located in Hudson, just two minutes from the St. Croix River. You can stroll through the winery’s vineyard and sample some of its delicious wines in the tasting room. Order the tasting flight to try out various kinds of wines before moving on to a glass of your favorite or purchasing a bottle or two.

In addition to the tasting room, Cracked Barrel also features a beautiful outdoor patio where visitors can enjoy a glass of wine while enjoying the scenic views. It’s truly a great place to enjoy Hudson’s views with friends or loved ones.

Cracked Barrel Winery is definitely worth a visit whether you’re a wine lover or just looking for something new to try. This isn’t some stuck-up winery; the owners have cultivated a fun and friendly environment where everyone can relax, unwind, and feel comfortable.

See Related: Things to Do in Madison, Wisconsin

11. SEASONS Gallery

Exhibit at Seasons Gallery in Hudson, Wisconsin
Seasons Gallery / Facebook

Address: 401 2nd St, Hudson, WI 54016

If you love visiting art galleries in a new town, SEASONS Gallery is necessary. It is the perfect place to find a unique gift or souvenir from your trip to Hudson.

The gallery features the work of over 160 local, regional, and national artists, so you’re sure to find something to suit your taste. It’s conveniently located right on the town’s main street.

Contemporary crafts and fine art you’ll find here include jewelry, sculptures, mixed-media pieces, textiles, and wood pieces, as well as two-dimensional work in watercolor, oil, acrylic, and photography. The gallery also hosts regular events and exhibitions, so be sure to check the website for upcoming dates.

Whether you’re an art lover or just looking for a special memento of your trip, SEASONS Gallery is well worth a visit. The gallery is open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from 12:00 to 4:00 pm. Admission is free, so be sure to check it out the next time you’re in the area!

12. White Eagle Golf Club

White Eagle Golf Club Scenery
Management / TripAdvisor

Address: 316 White Eagle Trail, Hudson, WI 54016

While there are several golf courses in the Hudson area, White Eagle Golf Club is one that you must check out. The scenic golf course spans 350 acres and offers five tee boxes, so golfers can enjoy their time on the green at any level.

The course is on the hillsides of the St. Croix River Valley, surrounded by a golf community, wetlands, and so much natural beauty. The surroundings create a calm, tranquil golf experience that any golfer enjoys. Junior golf and golf lessons are also available at this golf club.

After your time on the course, head to the White Eagle Bar & Grill, open daily for lunch and dinner. The restaurant offers yummy sandwiches, wraps, salads, and burgers.

Even if you don’t plan to play a round, the restaurant is still an awesome place to enjoy lunch and the stunning views. The White Eagle Golf Club is open daily from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 pm. Book your tee time today!

FAQ

How big is Hudson, Wisconsin?

Hudson is a small town with an area of just 7.65 square miles. As of 2020, the population is 13,912.

What is Hudson, Wisconsin, known for?

Hudson is known for its beautiful scenery and location on the St. Croix River. The city’s top attraction is the Octagon House Museum.

How far is Hudson from the Twin Cities?

Though located in Wisconsin, Hudson is just 15 minutes east of St. Paul and 30 minutes east of Minneapolis in Minnesota. It’s the perfect addition to a day trip to the Twin Cities.

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