The right way to Expertise Milwaukee Like a Native in 2024

The skyline of downtown Milwaukee during the evening
Posted: 3/15/2024 | March fifteenth, 2024

The next visitor publish is by my buddies Adam from the web site Getting Stamped. He and his spouse are very long time residents of Milwaukee and, since I’ve by no means been, I’ve invited him on to share some tips on visiting the town.

Milwaukee is underrated, for my part. I like it!

The biggest metropolis in Wisconsin and only one.5 hours north of Chicago, it’s the good dimension: not too small not too large. It gives tasty meals and drinks, nice sports activities groups, and enjoyable festivals. Plus, it’s inexpensive. And don’t neglect the pleasant locals!

I’ve lived right here my entire life, and my spouse has lived right here for 20 years. We’ve traveled world wide many occasions, and when it got here time to plant roots and begin a household, we may have gone wherever. However we select to come back residence to Milwaukee, which has a lot to supply.

If you wish to know expertise it like an area, listed here are my insider suggestions:


1. Keep central

I extremely advocate staying downtown or the Third Ward. That is the place a lot of the fashionable points of interest are situated. The accommodations is perhaps barely dearer than elsewhere, however you’ll save on transportation prices since all the things is walkable.

These are two accommodations I like:


2. Benefit from free rides

Milwaukee doesn’t have a subway system, nevertheless it does have an incredible free streetcar service referred to as the Hop, with quite a few stops downtown and across the Third Ward space. Merely hop on and off — no tickets or reservations are wanted! The Hop runs each quarter-hour throughout peak occasions and each 20 minutes off-peak and weekends. Click on right here for the map and schedule.

Insider tip: In case you are heading to a sporting occasion, many bars and eating places provide free shuttles to American Household Subject for Brewer baseball video games and live shows, Summerfest Grounds for festivals and live shows, Fiserv Discussion board for Bucks basketball video games, and different occasions round city.

3. Eat like an area

The popular Public Market at night in bustling Milwaukee, USA
You would possibly suppose Milwaukee’s all beer and cheese (and there’s no scarcity of these), however the meals scene has much more to supply. Milwaukee has its personal (typically quirky) meals traditions and staples, like ButterBurgers and frozen custard.

It additionally has some unbelievable markets, the place you possibly can take pleasure in a few of the metropolis’s greatest meals from many distributors, multi function place and in a enjoyable and inexpensive food-hall ambiance. These are two of my favorites:

  • third Avenue Market Corridor – This can be a must-visit vacation spot, because it gives a spot for vacationers and locals alike to take pleasure in Milwaukee’s various delicacies. Right here, you will discover the aforementioned frozen custard, plus pho, pizza, burgers, artisan sandwiches, tacos, sizzling canine, home-cooked meals, ramen, sushi, arepas, and a lot extra — all at inexpensive costs.
  • Milwaukee Public Market – Situated within the historic Third Ward, this superior market is one of the best place to patronize all kinds of distributors with distinctive merchandise, meals choices, and drink pairings. It’s a novel spot to expertise the flavors of Milwaukee’s culinary scene, all below one roof, and soak within the native tradition whereas buying or grabbing a chew.


4. Take pleasure in native delicacies

Feasting at Vanguard, a restaurant in Milwaukee known for its amazing house-made sausages
There are a couple of meals that it is advisable strive that you just (perhaps for good motive) is not going to discover many different locations. They’re distinctive, tasty, and total fairly inexpensive!

  • Deep-fried cheese curds – Sure, it’s a factor, and they’re wonderful — get them organized and thank us later. Lakefront Brewery is our prime decide.
  • Frozen custard – It could appear to be ice cream, nevertheless it’s a lot richer and creamier, with a couple of further substances. Kopps is one of the best place for it (and nice burgers) — and in addition a kind of locations that, in case you don’t go, did you even go to Milwaukee?
  • Bratwursts – One other Milwaukee staple. No person does them at the next stage than Vanguard Restaurant within the Bayview neighborhood. It’s best identified for its wonderful house-made sausages, together with vegan choices, with many at an inexpensive value of below $10.

On this checklist, now we have solely targeted on the Milwaukee favorites, however foodies who wish to delve deeper into the culinary scene may additionally wish to take a look at our full checklist of the greatest eating places in Milwaukee.

5. Discover brewing historical past

Whereas microbreweries aren’t precisely a brand new pattern, Milwaukee has been brewing since earlier than it was cool. At one time, it brewed extra beer than any metropolis on this planet. That historical past is clear throughout city in breweries, eating places, and pubs.

Lakefront Brewery gives in all probability one of the best brewery tour within the metropolis. It’s much more enjoyable than simply shiny tanks and sniffing a pungent jar crammed with hops. The tour guides are hilarious (some are actually comedians from an area membership), and your tour will embrace 4 beer samples. That is by far one of the best worth and our private favourite tour — plus, the beer corridor is a whole lot of enjoyable. The excursions are tremendous fashionable and promote out on the weekends, so it’s suggested to buy tickets upfront.

If you wish to preserve sampling native beers, ensure to take a look at a couple of different of my favourite Milwaukee breweries:

  • MobCraft Beer – This brewery gives excursions and in addition has an awesome taproom with tasty pizzas, in addition to actually good IPAs and bitter beers.
  • Eagle Park Brewing Firm – They don’t provide excursions, however they do have an enormous choice of distinctive bitter beers.
  • Good Metropolis Brewing – There are two places: the Eastside one gives excursions, and the downtown one doesn’t. However the latter is correct throughout the road from Fiserv Discussion board and great spot for a beer earlier than a recreation.


6. Do some inexpensive actions

The relaxing Riverwalk along the river in Milwaukee, USA
Milwaukee has far more to do than we may squeeze onto this web page, however we’ve narrowed it down, specializing in must-do and budget-friendly choices (some are even free!):

  • Bradford Seaside – This can be a sandy park on the shorelines of Lake Michigan. Carry a towel and go for a swim, take part a recreation of seashore volleyball, or seize custard at MooSa’s or lunch at The Dock Waterfront Bar & Grill.
  • Stroll the Milwaukee Riverwalk – Expertise the center of the town, and immerse your self in its tradition. Most of the Milwaukee’s greatest outlets and eating places may be discovered alongside the three-mile route alongside each side of the Milwaukee River.
  • Disc-golf at Milwaukee County Parks – Milwaukee has 11 disc-golf programs — six full ones ($5) and 5 short-practice ones (free).
  • Bike the Oak Leaf Path – Milwaukee County gives over 135 miles of trails for biking, a lot of which function scenic views of Lake Michigan. Yow will discover the path map right here.
  • Bronze Fonz – Cease to take an image with a bronze sculpture of Arthur Fonzarelli, aka the Fonz, from Blissful Days (a sitcom a few Milwaukee household within the Nineteen Fifties).
  • Indoor garden video games at third Avenue Market Corridor – Get pleasure from a wide range of distinctive eating places and free indoor video games, together with large Jenga, cornhole, shuffleboard, and golf simulators. It’s a enjoyable place, particularly when the climate isn’t nice!

After you’ve scoured this information, if it is advisable fill any clean spots in your itinerary, now we have an in-depth checklist overlaying the entire issues to do in Milwaukee.

7. Get pleasure from free-admission days

A few of Milwaukee’s prime points of interest welcome guests without spending a dime on sure days. Watching the calendar can rating you free tickets that in any other case would set your group again a whole bunch.


8. Chase low-cost completely satisfied hours

For higher or worse, the individuals of Milwaukee take pleasure in their enjoyable occasions intertwined with a beer or three. To kick off an thrilling night time in Milwaukee, head to the place the locals go: discover a good completely satisfied hour, or go to a budget-friendly dive bar.

  • McGillycuddy’s – $1 faucets, $2 craft beers, $4 rails and mixers, and $5 appetizers (Tuesday–Friday, 3–7pm).
  • Mo’s Irish Pub – $2.72 drafts, $5 wines (Tues–Thurs 4–6pm, Fridays 3–6pm); additionally free brewery shuttles.
  • Milwaukee Brat Home – Blissful hour specials change every day (Mon–Fri 3-6pm).


9. Discover the colourful public artwork scene

Many locations round city have large-scale public artwork shows which you can go to without spending a dime. Most of those items are in a few of the most enjoyable and stylish areas. These are a few our favorites:

  • Black Cat Alley – One of many largest areas devoted to public murals is situated close to North Avenue, within the Eastside neighborhood. Along with the artwork, you’ll additionally discover nice eating places, breweries, and artisanal outlets.
  • Sculpture Milwaukee – Yearly, this city-funded program shows sculptures by artists from internationally on Wisconsin Avenue. Some are everlasting and a few are modified out yearly, so there are all the time new issues to see.


From meals to free days and bratwurst to beer, Milwaukee has a ton of issues to do and see on a funds. Hopefully this checklist provides you with a good suggestion of the place to begin!

Hannah & Adam Lukaszewicz are full-time journey writers and run the journey web site Getting Stamped, which is devoted to firsthand guides to their favourite locations world wide. Once they aren’t touring the world, Milwaukee is the place you’ll discover them, and so they cowl their hometown in-depth on the web site Milwaukee Insider. You’ll be able to comply with their adventures on Instagram and social media @gettingstamped.

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