This summer we stayed close to home. Sometimes playing tourist is a great way to learn more about the area around us and we can appreciate new discoveries. We have spent most of our time in Illinois, so a Wisconsin getaway was a new idea for us. A quick drive up from the Chicago area, we met up with family in the suburbs of Madison and went out for a quick bite for dinner. Our hotel was situated outside of the city. We chose it because it made it easier to wander around and never have a long drive.
Here are the highlights:
We decided to explore the town of Mount Horeb. It’s a must-stop place to look around and take pictures of their trolls. Yes, you read that correctly, trolls. If nothing else, there is no place like it! It’s cute and quaint and funny. We got a pastry at a small café, wandered over to the Duluth Trading Post, and checked out the trolls. Mt. Horeb provided us with a scenic way to ease into the day.
Then we went to downtown Madison. Date night for the parents was started by a walk by the lake and then we made our way through the beer garden. We wandered through an eclectic neighborhood, past the Capitol, up to Naples 15 for dinner. This location may seem small at first, but most noteworthy is a menu with so many options! We selected a seafood appetizer and two individual pizzas. There were plenty of choices so that most guests probably will be satisfied. We continued to Eno-Vino bistro for drinks and a view. Located on the 10th floor of the AC Hotel, it features a spectacular view of the capitol as we sat near a window and watched the sunset. I highly recommend it!
The next day, we visited the Henry Vilas Zoo. It is free to the public and it offers a nice range of animals. It was clearly a hit with families. Then there was a return trip to the center of the city so we could visit the Capitol up close. I’ll offer a tip that the Capitol was open on a Sunday. Traffic was light, we could park easily and the crowd was also pretty small. We wandered upstairs for a closer view of the dome.
We also ventured over to the Wisconsin Veterans Museum. This stop offered a very interesting, educational experience for my family. You can choose to focus on a specific war or travel through history and see the evolution of guns, equipment, and even planes are on exhibit. Well worth the visit with multiple generations.
We closed out the day at the Old Fashioned. It’s a fixture in the square and we all enjoyed it. Madison as a worthwhile weekend adventure for your family.