Milwaukee is a hidden gem in the Midwest. It's a city that's often overlooked, but it's full of culture, history, and charm.
There's always something to do, no matter what your interests are. Whether you're a foodie, an art lover, or a sports fan, Milwaukee has something for you.
One of the best things about Milwaukee is its food scene. The city is known for its cheese curds and bratwurst, but there's so much more to try. From farm-to-table restaurants to classic diners, there's something for every palate.
And let's not forget about the beer. Milwaukee is home to some of the best breweries in the country, and you can take a tour or enjoy a pint at one of the many beer gardens.
Milwaukee is also rich in history and culture. The city is home to some of the best museums in the region, including the Milwaukee Art Museum and the Harley-Davidson Museum.
You can also explore the historic neighborhoods, like the Third Ward and Bay View, which are filled with unique shops, galleries, and restaurants. And if you're a sports fan, you can catch a Brewers game at Miller Park or a Bucks game at the Fiserv Forum.
In this blog post, we'll explore the best things to do in Milwaukee. We'll cover everything from the must-see attractions to the hidden gems that only locals know about.
So whether you're a first-time visitor or a longtime resident, get ready to discover all that Milwaukee has to offer.
1. Harley-Davidson Museum
The Harley-Davidson Museum is a must-visit for motorcycle enthusiasts and history buffs alike.
With exhibits spanning two floors and a top vault, visitors can explore the brand's iconic motorcycles and learn about their role in American culture, from military use to mail delivery and beyond.
The museum is well-organized and beautifully presented, with custom-made and decorated models that are truly works of art. Guests can also enjoy shopping, dining, and events on the museum campus.
Whether you're a seasoned biker or just curious about this legendary brand, the Harley-Davidson Museum is a fascinating and educational experience.
2. Milwaukee Art Museum
Milwaukee Art Museum is a must-visit for art lovers. With a wide variety of exhibits spanning across different periods and styles, there's something for everyone.
The museum's architecture is breathtaking and adds to the overall experience.
The art studio is a hit with children, and there are plenty of unique snacks and beverages available at the cafe.
The museum is conveniently located and easily accessible by transportation. Highly recommended for a day out exploring art and culture.
3. Milwaukee Public Museum
Milwaukee Public Museum is a state-of-the-art natural history museum with three floors of exhibits and a butterfly garden. It offers a modern anthropology and natural history experience for all ages.
The museum's exhibits are wonderfully detailed and interactive, making visitors feel like they are truly entering into a new world.
The layout is easy to navigate and there is something for everyone. It is a great place to visit and support their mission.
However, the museum will be closing and moving in the future, so visitors are encouraged to go sooner rather than later.
4. Mitchell Park Domes
Mitchell Park Domes is a botanical garden and conservatory that's a must-visit in any season.
It features three different biomes – desert, tropical, and seasonal – each with its unique flora and fauna. Visitors can also explore a fairy garden exhibit, a model railroad, and a koi pond.
The domes are well-maintained, and the staff is friendly and knowledgeable. It's an excellent place to spend a few hours, take some photos, and learn something new about plants.
Whether you're a local or a tourist, Mitchell Park Domes is a hidden gem that's worth exploring.
5. Lakeshore State Park
Lakeshore State Park is a 22-acre urban state park that offers visitors a chance to enjoy the great outdoors.
With a fishing pier, marina, and 1.7-mile paved trail, there are plenty of opportunities for hiking, biking, and fishing. The park is well-maintained and offers beautiful views of Lake Michigan and the Milwaukee skyline.
It's a great place to go for a walk or bike ride, or simply to relax and take in the scenery.
Whether you're looking for a quiet spot to enjoy nature or a place to get some exercise, Lakeshore State Park is definitely worth a visit.
6. Pabst Mansion
The Pabst Mansion is a must-see historical house museum in Milwaukee. Visitors can take a guided tour or go through the self-guided tour.
The mansion is beautifully decorated for Christmas season, with 80 Christmas trees throughout the three floors.
The woodwork is original and exquisite, and each room has its own story to tell. The docents are friendly, knowledgeable, and professional.
Don't forget to check out the Pabst-themed gifts at the gift shop/welcome center.
7. Veterans Park
Veterans Park is a must-visit attraction for anyone in the area. This beautiful park offers stunning views of the city skyline and Lake Michigan.
Visitors can enjoy walking, running, or biking along the paved trails that wind through the park.
The park also features a veterans memorial, fishing, restrooms, and several picnic tables. One unique feature of the park is the kite store, which sells kites, snacks, and cold drinks.
Whether you're looking for a place to relax and enjoy the scenery or get some exercise, Veterans Park is the perfect destination.
8. Urban Ecology Center at Riverside Park
Looking for a fun and educational way to experience nature in the heart of the city, check out Urban Ecology Center at Riverside Park.
This non-profit organization offers a variety of outdoor activities and programs for all ages, including hiking, canoeing, kayaking, and more. With a nominal annual membership fee, visitors can rent outdoor equipment and participate in free activities throughout the year.
The center is also accessible for people with special needs. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly, providing guidance to both children and adults.
The center is a great place to host meetings or small gatherings. With miles of well-groomed trails and beautiful scenery, it's the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.
9. Grohmann Museum
The Grohmann Museum is a hidden gem that explores the history of human work through paintings and a rooftop sculpture garden.
The museum's collection includes an impressive number of 17th-century paintings, as well as 18th and 19th-century paintings that depict forges and glass-blowing.
The museum also features hundreds of bronzes that portray muscular men engaged in various work activities.
Visitors can enjoy a stroll through the lively garden on the roof and explore the galleries on the three floors. The museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in history and art.
10. Milwaukee County War Memorial Center
The Milwaukee County War Memorial Center is a must-visit for those interested in American history and military service.
This historical museum and memorial features exhibits and displays dedicated to Wisconsin's armed forces and veterans. Visitors can explore vintage war posters, hand-carved soldiers, and a large model of a PT 105.
The building's design allows natural light to flow in, while providing scenic views of Lake Michigan. The center also serves as an event space and wedding venue with a stunning view of the lake.
The War Memorial Center is a great place to reflect on the sacrifices made by those who served our country and to honor their legacy.
11. North Point Lighthouse
North Point Lighthouse is a beautifully restored 19th-century lighthouse and maritime museum.
Visitors can climb to the top of the tower for panoramic views of the lake and city. The museum offers interesting historical perspectives and well-presented displays.
The surrounding park area is perfect for a leisurely walk and offers picturesque views of Lake Michigan.
The lighthouse is also a popular event venue, including weddings. A hidden gem worth visiting for those interested in history and stunning views.
12. Allen-Bradley Clock Tower
The Allen-Bradley Clock Tower is an iconic 283-ft clock tower built in 1962.
It is a part of the Allen-Bradley Building and serves as a historical landmark and tourist attraction.
The tower offers magnificent views of the city of Milwaukee, and visitors can see old pictures of Rockwell and the city on the walls of the viewing room.
Although tours are not given as often as before, the tower is still worth a visit for its historical significance and stunning views.
13. Jewish Museum Milwaukee
Jewish Museum Milwaukee is a must-see for anyone interested in Jewish history, heritage, and culture.
This small but powerful museum features exhibits on the local Jewish community, as well as historical events. The staff is kind and knowledgeable, making the experience even more enjoyable.
The museum also has a searchable archive of historical records, adding to the educational value.
Currently, the special exhibit focuses on the Partisan groups of WWII, making it even more timely and relevant. Don't miss out on this Milwaukee treasure.
14. Friends of the Domes
Friends of the Domes is a must-visit attraction for nature lovers and those seeking an educational experience. The facility houses three different ecosystems, each with its own unique set of plants and wildlife.
The domes are well-maintained and offer a fully immersive experience, allowing visitors to learn about different environments and their inhabitants. The venue is also suitable for events and offers delicious food options.
The Domes are a quiet treasure in the heart of the city and provide a great escape from the hustle and bustle. With changing blooms and themes, there's always something new to see, making it a perfect place for periodic visits.
The rainforest is particularly intriguing and offers a unique experience. Don't miss out on this opportunity to explore the world of plants and ecosystems!
15. South Shore Beach
South Shore Beach is a great spot to relax and enjoy nature. The beach area is perfect for families with children, thanks to the large play area and sand pit.
The park also has a playground and bike paths for visitors to explore. The beer garden is a popular spot for adults, featuring reasonably priced food and drinks.
The dock down the beach is perfect for jumping into the calm waters, making it an excellent spot for little kids. The park is clean and peaceful, making it a great place to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Whether you're looking for a fun family outing or a relaxing day by the water, South Shore Beach has something for everyone.
16. Milwaukee Riverwalk
Milwaukee Riverwalk is a must-visit tourist attraction for those who love to take a peaceful walk by the river.
The area is surrounded by beautiful restaurants and bars, making it a great place to grab a bite to eat or a drink.
The river walk also features an art market day, which is a great opportunity to explore the local art scene.
Although there may be some people sleeping on benches, the overall atmosphere is clean and welcoming. If you're looking for a serene spot to relax, Milwaukee Riverwalk is definitely worth checking out.