10 Great Reasons to Walk at Lakeshore State Park

There’s still plenty of good walking weather left, and with over 2.2 miles of paved trails, Lakeshore State Park (LSP) is a terrific place to get your steps in! Here are 10 reasons why you’ll want to choose this beautiful urban landscape for enjoyment and exercise.

  1. It’s free. No fees. No need to buy fancy equipment. Plenty of free parking. Just lace up your walking shoes, put on some sunscreen and grab a water bottle. That’s a pretty great deal.
  2. It’s convenient. LSP is the state’s only urban park, which means it’s conveniently located to people who work, live and visit the downtown area. Do you work nearby? Stop by during lunch break or before you start your shift. Do you live nearby? There’s probably an easily accessible trail that will connect you to LSP (check out #7 and #8 below). It’s also compact enough that you can fit a quick walk in after a business meeting, before a trip to the Milwaukee Art Museum, or any of the many nearby sites and activities.
  3. It’s got plenty of variety. Paved and unpaved, prairie and shoreline, Lake Michigan and the city skyline, Pier Wisconsin and the Summerfest grounds — there is a wealth of different walking experiences at LSP. You can choose different routes and loops on each visit.
  4. It’s great for people with limited mobility. Whether you’re recovering from an injury or you have other mobility limitations, LSP’s smooth, paved paths are just right for you. The entire park is designed to be accessible to people who use wheelchairs or walkers.
  5. It’s great for families and kids. Those well-paved paths we mentioned? They’re great for strollers, too! And while you’re walking, your kids will love exploring the prairie trails, chasing butterflies and watching vessels come and go from Port Milwaukee.
  6. You can take guided hikes. Watch our calendar for guided hikes that will help you learn about plant life and wildlife while you walk. Guides will help you explore everything from dragonflies to flowers, birds to medicinal plants. Many are bilingual, too.
  7. It’s part of the Hank Aaron State Trail. Want something a little more challenging? LSP is part of a 14-mile trail stretching west from the lake to the Milwaukee/Waukesha county line. As you walk, you’ll pass the Harley-Davidson Museum, Miller Park, the Urban Ecology Center, the Historic Soldiers Home and more, plus a variety of urban and natural settings.
  8. It connects with the Oak Leaf Trail. Add even more challenge and variety by including the Milwaukee County’s Oak Leaf Trail on your walk, which stretches north. It’s a multi-use system with over 135 miles, nearly a quarter of them hugging the shoreline.
  9. It’s good for your body. Physical activity has been called “the closest thing we have to a wonder drug,” and walking is one of the easiest, most affordable and most accessible ways to move for all ages. Aside from burning calories, walking has been shown to ease joint pain, boost immune function, improve circulation, help maintain bone mass, tone your muscles … and the list goes on.
  10. It’s good for your mental health. Walking, especially in nature, is often touted as a way to relieve stress along with a wide variety of other benefits. Your mind will appreciate a chance to step away from laptops, phones and tablets to enjoy nature. Many use walks as a meditative, therapeutic self-care routine. And it’s a terrific way to meet up with friends and family for a little together time.