I just got back from an amazing vacation.  DH is on block leave before things pick up for the fall, and we decided to take a much-needed vacation…to Milwaukee!  Our criteria was for the plane tickets to be reasonable and for the weather to be less hot than here.  Neither of us had ever been there before, and essentially we threw a dart and landed on Wisconsin.

We had an amazing time.  I love it there!!  I highly recommend visiting Milwaukee even if you’re not a Midwesterner.  The city is beautiful and old.  There’s tons and tons of stuff to do.  Culturally it’s super diverse and funky and traditional all at the same time.

Day one– We landed mid afternoon and found our hotel.  We stayed just outside the city itself, closer to the airport.  It was only about a fifteen to twenty minute drive into the city.  It was cheaper for us, but the city is super walkable and you can rent little Vespas if you stayed closer to downtown.  Anyway, we found a little gastropub downtown at a place that’s been in magazines (actually just Maxim…) for being bad ass and had real Milwaukee sausage.  I took a picture but it’s on DH’s phone.  I should have known I’d never get it off.  Anyway, after that we ended up at the big casino in town.  We had dessert and watched at sketch comedy bit before calling it a night.

Day two– We got an early start and spent the morning at the Harley Davidson museum.  They do the self-guided audio tours with the headphones, which I think is super cool.  More and more museums are going to them, and I think it’s great.  No one wants to listen to a boring docent while they lead you around.  It’s more fun to roam as you please and listen to only the parts that are of interest to you.  I took a ton of pictures and spent an obscene amount of money in the gift shop.

One of the oldest motorcycles in existence.

I thought this was so cute.  It is an early rain suit.  Anyone care for the smell of wet wool?

Evil Kenievel?

Elvis’ bike!

It was used for mining I think.  Anyway, it was cool.

After the HD museum, we stopped by the lakefront so I could put my feet in my third Great Lake.  We had lunch at a yummy Mexican restaurant that Diner, Drive-ins, and Dives has visited, although I haven’t looked up yet what they ate.  Probably their beans because they were out of this world.  We went back to casino (totally DH’s idea) until supper.  We walked around the historic Third Ward neighborhood downtown and ended up eating at the Benelux Cafe.  Oh. My. Gosh.  It had food from the Lowlands region of Europe and it was seriously some of the best food I’ve ever had.  It was totally authentic and exactly what I remember from visiting there.  They had a ton of local and European alcohols, although we didn’t try any.  Seriously, make it a stop on your bucket list.  We also stopped in the Public Market with tons of local, fresh products.

Day three– We started our third day by going a little south of Milwaukee to the Jelly Belly factory.

It was a cute little tour, and I again spent way, way too much in the gift shop.  We had to stop by the casino again after that (ugh), and then we went to German Fest.  Milwaukee has a huge German population, which is who brought over the beer and brewing culture that is so big there.  I heard that this fest was the largest German Fest in the US, and there were legit German acts from Europe performing.  Milwaukee has some great fests!!  They are festing all the time up there.  But yeah, more great food along the lakefront.

Day four–  We were starting to feel it on day four.  We spent the morning going through the city’s art museum because there was a big China exhibit I wanted to see.  That place is huge!  I was very surprised to find they had an extensive collection of pre-Renaissance art and sculpture.  Again, the gift shop was not my friend.

This was the view from the museum lobby.  It looked right out over the lake.  The modern architecture was breathtaking.  We left there and spend the afternoon on Brady Street at the local fest.  Brady Street is fun, young, and funky.  It has a lot of multi-cultural restaurants and weird, quirky shops.  The fest had so much food!  There was a lot of live music and local vendors.  I got cheese!!  DH and I got tattoos at a little shop there just because we could.  On the way home we swung by German Fest again to ride the gondolas and enjoy the night air.

Day five– Our last day in Milwaukee we spent on the lake.  We rented paddle boats and enjoyed the sunshine.  It was so gorgeous.  Milwaukee has a great park and trail system that runs along the lakefront.  We were so jealous of the people who where running along the beach… mostly because I think we were both feeling the large amount of food we had over the last few days.  We found the coolest local bookstore downtown and wandered through the dusty stacks for awhile after that.  We ended the day with some of Milwaukee’s famous frozen custard at Kopp’s.  It’s a bit outside the city itself, but it is totally worth the drive.

We got back yesterday evening, and I so didn’t want to resume my normal life.  My Milwaukee life was so much more glamorous.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. ziggyfontz
    Aug 02, 2011 @ 22:31:30

    photos of the tattoos?! your trip sounded like it was so much fun!!!


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