Beautiful Wisconsin. Where else could you go where cheese curds flow like milk and honey and the badger is a mascot found on every street corner. We got the joy of exploring this delightful small city for 48 a few days while traveling for business. This was also the first big trip we took with our four-month-old daughter, which posed some interesting experiences. Here is how we spent our 48 hours in Madison Wisconsin and what we recommend you check out while visiting.
Get to the Capital Building ASAP
One of the first things that will capture your attention is the stunning capital building. Built-in 1917 the capital building offers beautiful mosaics, towering marble columns and free tours to the public! Climb to the observation deck which is 236 feet above the ground and get a commanding view of the entire city. Walk around the dome and take in the amazing architecture and statues. Perched on top of the dome is a statue known as “Wisconsin” which symbolized the state’s motto “forward”. Be sure to go into the rotunda overlook for a close up of the beautiful mosaics. Don’t worry, you won’t fall to your death. http://tours.wisconsin.gov/
EAT ALL THE CHEESE CURDS!!!
These crispy little nuggets of oozy cheesy goodness will have you contemplating what the acceptable number of pant sizes one can go up in during one trip. I highly recommend sampling them at many locations and making it your personal mission to find the best cheese curds in the city. In our pursuit, we popped into Great Dane Pub and Brewing Company to catch the Bengal/ Green Bay game and scored us some amazing cheese curds. Even the baby was wanting to get her hands on these tempting curds of glory. We also tried them at the Wisconsin Brewing Co., but in the words of Shania Twain…” that don’t impress me much.” Go elsewhere for your food and drinks, there are tons of great places to eat in this city.
Speaking of great places to eat I would recommend Tempest Oyster Bar. Peering behind the curtain you will feel like you entered a luxurious beachside lounge. This modern, sleek seafaring restaurant will satisfy even the saltiest sea-captain.
Squeeze in the Mustard Museum
Mustard lovers rejoice! That’s right, a museum devoted to the beloved yellow condiment! To add to your euphoria you can sample over 100 different mustards with the option to purchase them! Before you belly up to the sampling bar, go downstairs and see over 5,992 mustards from all 50 states and over 70 countries. There is more than just mustard jars to look at. Learn how mustard
is made, the various ways it was served and even get a bottle from the mustard vending machine. This museum got a thumbs up from the Soph, my four-month-old daughter. She was fascinated by all the color and didn’t really want us to leave. Once you are upstairs then it is time to get serious about sampling. I have never seen this much mustard in my entire life, and I highly doubt I will ever see that much again. Don’t be scared and try the exotic and different mustard flavors…you just might be surprised what you like. Not to mention, you only live once. So sample that teriyaki mustard and wash it down with nice spicy brown!
My advice, try something that is completely unique and then ponder what Poupon U merchandise you will be taking home. Clearly, we had to get the Poupon U bib for our little traveler. Learn more about the mustard museum here.
Memorial Union Terrace
We stumbled upon this gem after reading a local blog that said ignore the fact that this is located on a college campus and go where the locals go. We found parking fairly easily right next to the lakefront and started walking along the terrace. Folks from all walks of life can be found soaking up the sun, enjoying a beer or eating alfresco all while taking in the best sunset in Madison. I recommend grabbing an ice cream cone, pulling up one of the terraces famous sunburst chairs, sit back and relax. Even the littlest member of your family will enjoy a trip to the terrace.
Pat O’Malley’s Jet Room
Our flight left early in the afternoon so we had time to venture out for breakfast. We stumbled upon Pat O’Malley’s Jet Room by pure luck. If you are looking for good food close to the airport…this is your place. It is a diner so expect a little greasy spoon, but the food is top-notch. For those of you from Cincinnati, it is like the Sky Galley, only I feel they have way better food and you get closer to the jets. Kids young and old loved watching the planes come and go, which was quite often. The staff was great and was always over accommodating for young children and infants. We will definitely be returning here the next time we visit!
Our 48 hours in Madison Wisconsin went by too quick and left us wanting to explore more of this great city. We are hoping to return to experience more of what Wisconsin has to offer. We spent most of our days at the EPIC Headquarters which is truly a sight to behold if you are in the health care profession or just wanting to see an over the top corporate office.
Check out more great midwest travel destinations here!
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