Officially established in the 1960’s, after the highway that connects Wawa to Sault Ste. Marie completed it’s construction. The Lake Superior Circle Tour is self-guided, world class touring experience. A tour like no other, it allows travelers to take the journey by preference of vehicle, duration of time and attractions to experience. Circling just over 2,000 kilometers (1,300 miles) and connecting 2 regions of Ontario to 3 regions of American States, you’re bound to find beauty and unique adventures all along the way.
Tour by Preference
Flip a coin on clockwise or counter clockwise and go! You can begin anywhere along the tour and continue following the road signs all throughout. As popularity of the tour has grown, so have means of travel. Some choose by car, RV, or motorcycle. Others choose to take it by boat, bicycle, or even on foot!
Some journey-goers have done the tour in as little as 4 days while others make the trip last 3 years! It’s all about preference. Are you looking to catch every sight and lookout? Or to paddle from every launch or chase every waterfall? Or maybe you prefer to stay in the comfort of your RV and experience the beauty that way. Either way, plan your Circle Tour using the Online Trip Planner or download the Mobile Trip Planner App!
Regions of The Circle Tour
Starting in Ontario, Canada: Superior Country, and Algoma Country are the two regions you’ll travel through. Superior Country is in North/Western Ontario and is known for world class wilderness adventures, fishing and hunting, natural beauty, and friendly communities. Some notable attractions to visit while in Superior Country include the Sleeping Giant, Nipigon River – home to the world record Brook Trout, Kakabeka Falls – the second largest waterfall in Ontario or venture the Casque Isle Trail!
Algoma Country connects not only to Lake Superior but Lake Huron as well and is situated in Northern Ontario. Here you’ll find flawless beaches, scenic views, a multitude of camping opportunities and endless outdoor recreation to experience. Home to the largest provincial park: Lake Superior Provincial Park where you can venture as much as your heart desires! Check out some of the amazing roadside attractions such as the giant Winnie the Pooh or Wawa Goose or stretch your legs at the marvelous Katherine Cove.
The first of the American States on the East of The Circle Tour is Michigan. The Sault Ste. Marie International Toll Bridge connects Ontario, Canada to the American State of Michigan. Known as the Great Lake State, Michigan has ample sights to see and adventures to endure. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is among the most significant locations to visit. Recognized for its impressive sandstone formations such as Miners Castle and Chapel Rock there are also plenty of trails and beaches to stroll through and explore. Be sure to also take the time to visit the impressive Big Bay Lighthouse located just 40-kilometers (25 miles) North of Marquette. The Lighthouse allows visitors to climb to the top to catch the breathtaking Lake Superior views from 120 feet above the surface.
Located between Michigan on the East side and Minnesota on the West side lies Wisconsin. Known as America’s Dairyland, it is that nation’s largest producer of milk, however, you will see more than dairy farms along your journey through Wisconsin. One of the most notable attractions are The Apostle Island Sea Caves, located along the shoreline of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. The caves can be visited in summer by kayak or in winter once the ice is thick enough for visitors to safely walk on. Apart from the caves there are 9 lighthouses, ample attractions to view by water (achieved by kayaking, sailing or even scuba diving!) and many campgrounds to spend the night at on the shore of Lake Superior.
The last of the American states we’ll touch base on is Minnesota. The state itself contains more than 10,000 lakes and endless attractions to visit. Along The Circle Tour in Minnesota, we suggest taking the time to visit Duluth’s Aerial Lift Bridge, the stunning Split Rock Lighthouse and State Park as well as High Falls which can be seen from either side of the border. Did you know the Split Rock Lighthouse is not only the most photographed lighthouse in Minnesota but also of all the United States? Be sure to click the “Add to Trip” icon on the Trip Planner to make it a stop along the way!
What to Expect
Simply expect the unexpected! We guarantee you’ll be left in awe of all the breathtaking views. You’ll open new doors of adventures and places to explore. In the spring and summer months discover the vibrancy of the turquoise waters along Lake Superior, the range of wildlife encounters and ample camping opportunities. Come fall, rediscover the beauty in the vast fall colors as you view the forest through the many hiking trails or atop the many lookouts. Winter months may be stereotyped as the blander of the seasons, however, Lake Superior delivers vast beauty achieved by the many frozen waterfalls, ice formations and seemingly endless unique winter experiences.
Before you start your journey, visit the official Lake Superior Circle Tour website to find resources to help you plan your trip. Read the many blog posts such as but not limited to: Lake Superior Lighthouses, Lake Superior Beaches, How to Plan a Lake Superior Circle Tour and Regions of the Lake Superior Circle Tour. Download the Trip Planner Mobile App to add all your desired destinations and routes. Check out the Lake Superior Circle Tour Group page on Facebook to get insider details from past and current travelers of the tour. Finally, expect a world class touring experience made for all travelers. Share your experience, photos and videos with us and the rest of the Circle Tour travel-goers!