Lake Geneva, Wisconsin audio tour: Geneva Lake Shore Path Audio Guide: 21 miles of stories

Geneva Lake Shore Path Audio Guide: 21 miles of stories

Walking Tour

120 mins

About the Tour

The shore path has been an integral part of life on Geneva Lake for hundreds of years – and because it’s rich in history and uniquely accessible to the public, there are 21 miles of stories along it. Let me share my favorites with you while we walk. You’ll be entertained, I’m sure, whether it's your first time on the shore path or you come here all the time.

You'll find out how some of the owners of the incredible lakeshore estates made their fortunes and were able to build such magnificent homes. These titans of the beer, washing machine, chewing gum and even bicycle industries took refuge here after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, while the city was rebuilt, in the process they made Geneva Lake one of the Midwest’s favorite vacation destinations.

This tour covers the entire Geneva Lake Shore Path. You can start and end it at any point and come back to it as many times as you like. Whether you go for a long walk or a short one, there are plenty of restaurants and bars to relax at when you get back to one of the three lakeside towns.

Tour Producer


Robert Bougadis

As a local resident, avid path walker, and armchair historian, this was a passion project to create this tour and share some of the history of Geneva Lake.

Major Landmarks

  • Wrigley Properties

  • Stone Manor

  • Black Point Estate and Gardens

Directions to Starting Point

The best starting points are going to be the public access points in Lake Geneva, Williams Bay, and Fontana. The entire path is about 21 miles and would take 8-10 hours to complete so consider breaking it up into smaller segments.

Here are some distances and estimated walk times:

Lake Geneva to Chapin Road- approximately 3.8 miles, about 80 minutes.
Lake Geneva to Big Foot Beach-approximately 1.9 miles, about 40 minutes. Fontana to Shadow Lane-2.5 miles, 50 minutes.
Shadow Lane to Big Foot Beach-6.25 miles, 130 minutes.
Williams Bay to Chapin Road-3.5 miles, 70 minutes.
Fontana to Williams Bay-3.3 miles, 65 minutes.
Linn Pier to Big Foot Beach-3.3 miles,65 minutes
Shadow Lane to Linn Pier-3 miles, 60 minutes

Consider parking a car at the end of one of the sections and driving another to where you want to start.

Show Directions
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Places to stop along the way

Some great places to take a break are Gordy's in Fontana, Pier 290 in Williams Bay, Geneva Inn near Big Foot Beach, and any number of establishments in Lake Geneva.

Best time of day

The best time to go is anytime from the Spring through Fall . If you go in the summer be sure to have sun block and a bottle of water. The piers are pulled out of the water for the winter so late fall through early Spring may bring about some obstructions on the path due to the piers.


Use a restroom before you begin as restrooms are limited to the public access points. Stay on the path. Piers, yards, boathouses are private property. Some parts of the path could be sloppy if there was a recent rainfall so be prepared.


I absolutely love the Geneva Lake Shore Path. I’ve walked it, in its entirety, four times to date. I love the history of the lake, its properties, and its people. This audio tour was such a cool accompaniment to my most recent 21 mike trek around the lake. Lots of interesting info and history. Would highly recommend!!

Posted by Anonymous Explorer , 3 months ago

Such a great idea. I thought I knew a fair amount of the history of these homes and learned so much more. Really enjoyed listening to the tour while I walked. Black Point Estate was my favorite part.

Posted by Alexandra Noel Lopez , 6 months ago

Anyone who walks the path should have this audio tour on their phone! I was thrilled at how well this tour worked...commentary came on at the right times and was so informative. Love it!

Posted by Anonymous Explorer , over 1 year ago

Heard about this on Geneva Shore Report. Awesome idea. Will it work for a slow boat tour around the lake or will it only work on shore path?

Posted by Anonymous Explorer , over 1 year ago

Thanks for your interest. If you can wait until the end of August there will be a boat version of this audio tour.

Posted by Robert , over 1 year ago

Worth every bit of $9.99! I walked 5 miles and didn’t want to stop because it was so interesting. This audio tour is very well produced and I can’t wait to do another segment of the path!

Posted by Michael , over 1 year ago

I've walked the path many times and always wondered about the history that surrounds Geneva Lake. Now I know! This walking tour is very informative and so interesting!

Posted by Sandy , over 1 year ago

FANTASTIC TOUR. Lake Geneva has needed this for so long. So much history in this area and this captures all of the unique stories. Highly recommend!

Posted by Blake Bougadis , over 1 year ago
Preview mode limited to first 3 locations.
Geneva Lake Shore Path Audio Guide: 21 miles of stories