Too Hot in Arizona?  Come to Bayfield, Wisconsin!

Too Hot in Arizona? Come to Bayfield, Wisconsin!

Long before Phoenix hits the 110 degree mark, retirees head north to find a cooler climate to spend the summers.   We found a great little town for you that will make you sad to leave when the leaves start to change and its time to go home.   Bayfield, Wisconsin sits at the very top of the state along the shores of Lake Superior.   There is a cute downtown, a really nice marina, and the Apostle Islands are just offshore.   You can take your car/bike on the ferry to go exploring.

Apostle Island Caves Photo By Jim Sorbie via
Apostle Island Caves
Photo By Jim Sorbie via

Come May, Bayfield is in bloom!  The local gardens are in their splendor and the you can join the “Bayfield in Bloom Garden Tour” to see the carefully tended gardens and learn about local species.  Drive along the “Wisconsin Lake Superior Scenic Byway” and see magnificent fields of wildflowers and orchards full of apple blossoms.   The galleries are open, the museums are ready for you, and right downtown you will find the big canvas pavilion where music events happen all summer long.

If you decide to have a summer home in Bayfield, here’s what you will find:

Housing:  The median list price of homes is $240,000.    We found these cute little condo’s with one bedroom/bath with 511 square feet and a great view of the lake and islands for $129,000.   This would be a perfect little get-away without breaking the bank!

$129,000 Condo on Zillow
$129,000 Condo on Zillow

Population:  There are less than 600 year round residents in Bayfield but this is a very popular destination in the summer!

Healthcare:  The closest hospital is in Ashland, just 23 miles to the south.

Crime:  Very little crime is reported in Bayfield.

Airport:  There is a small private airport in Bayfield and a commuter airport with commercial flights in Ashland with connecting flights to Duluth, Green Bay and Milwaukee.

Stay in a historic inn! Photo By Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources via
Stay in a historic inn!
Photo By Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources via

Recreation:  The Apostle Highlands Golf Course  is open 7 days a week – par 72 18 hole course above town with stunning views of the lake and islands.   The Apostle Island Marina is right downtown with seasonal slips for rent if you want to bring the boat.  You can also charter a boat or go on a day cruise.  There are several city and state parks nearby with hiking and biking and fishing.  Take a kayak out to the islands to explore the caves and see birds and other wildlife.   There are a couple of campgrounds if you come in the RV.  Those who stay for the winter can join the fun of the annual sled dog race in February.

Weather:   The average high in January is 22 degrees F and it gets down to 5 degrees at night.   (Brrrrr!)  The average high in August is 76 with a low of 56 at night.  Bayfield gets 31 inches of rain per year.   January has 9.6 hours of daylight and June has 16.5 hours.  84 inches of snow falls annually.

The Madeline School of the Arts is a great place to take a class in everything from quilting, photography, painting, writing, and all manner of creative arts.   There are day classes as well as week long classes from June through September.

Bayfield is a great place to visit at anytime of the year, but especially in the summer when the flowers are in bloom.

 Photo By Aaron Fulkerson via

Zoom in and out on the map below to see Bayfield and the surrounding area!



Cheryl and her husband have just recently retired and live in the Pacific Northwest. She has been enjoying her herself by traveling around the world, playing with her grandchildren, and she frequently volunteers in her community. There is certainly never a dull moment with Cheryl. She cheerfully co-founded RetireBook and wants to share her energy, hoping that it inspires her readers to live life at its fullest.