It’s true that the fastest way to Baileys Harbor is Highway 57 but we take Highway 42. It’s only a four mile difference but it takes us around two hours longer this way, but it’s time well spent. By the time we get to the Baileys Harbor we are all in vacation mode.
Our first stop on 42 is the Door County Coffee & Tea Company located in Carlsville. It takes about 3.5 hours to get here from home in the northern Chicago suburbs and Door County coffee is the official start of our vacation. I will order a 16 oz. dark roast drip, a 12 oz. skinny vanilla latte, a fruit smoothie, and an oversize chocolate cupcake while my wife and son pick out a half pound of beans for the week. They have at least 20 local named blends to choose from. The Light House, Inn Keepers, and Harvest Blend generally make it home with us.
After about 10 minutes, and a good shot of caffeine, we are back on 42 driving north towards Fish Creek. After about 6 miles we pull into the Egg Harbor Fun Park for a quick Go-Cart race. I purchase a couple punch passes good for a variety of activities. Today we will use a punch for one go kart race. We will come back during the week for paintball, video gaming and maybe some min-golf.
After about 20 minutes we are back on 42 but just for a mile this time. On the left I see the familiar “Knockin Heads Red” statues at the entrance of the Harbor Ridge Winery. This will be a quick stop, just need to grab a bottle of one of our favorite wines, Carmen’s Last Dance, for the room. We will back later in the week for a wine tasting and some shopping. Their retail store has a variety of fun/comical wine themed gifts.
After about 15 minutes we are back on 42 and in minutes we are driving through downtown Egg Harbor. We are not going to stop now because we will back this way several more times this week. Egg Harbor is our favorite shopping, dining and tasting destination in Door County.
Our last stop before Baileys Harbor is just past Highway E on the right side of the road. You cannot miss Wood Orchard Market, it has a giant apple in front with a peddle cart track around it. We will stop at Wood Orchard every day over the next week for fresh corn, eggs, cherry bratwurst and so much, much more. Today we get three ears of corn, cherry juice, green eggs and some cheese curds. After about 20 minutes of shopping and sampling various local dips and mustard’s we are back on 42 heading north, but only for about half a mile this time. We take right on Highway EE and drive 8 miles east towards Baileys Harbor.
Highway EE is a wonderful Door County road that calmly curves and dips through orchards, farms, cow pastures, and grave yards between Egg Harbor and Baileys Harbor. Going east, EE ends at Baileys Harbor Town Hall, where there is a farmers market on Saturdays through the first weeks of October.
Quick family meeting in the car. Do we take a left on 57 and head to the resort and check in? Or do we take a right and make a stop at the Yum Yum Tree for salt water taffy and a
double scope of Door County Cherry Ice Cream.