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Best things to do in Madison

Discover the city according to locals. Find the best things to do, places to eat, and get priceless advice from the people who live here.

Capitol Building
“Views from the upper level of Madison and surrounding lakes. Saturday enjoy the farmer's market around the square, Wednesday nights music or Thursdays at the Union. ”
66local recommendations
Garden
“Unrivaled free botanical garden, year round ticketed conservatory, free parking and educational programs make Olbrich Gardens a natural destination. Major renovation underway 2019.”
48local recommendations
Student Center
“There are tons of eating out options, both inside and outside the Union. Enjoy a brat and a beer (or ice cream) while sitting outside on the terrace overlooking Lake Mendota. Check the Union website for events - there is usually live music on weekend nights! ”
63local recommendations
Zoo
“The Madison Zoo is amazing, it is one of the few remaining free zoos in the US. Beautiful landscaping and treats are available as well. It borders one of Madison's wonderful lakes as well, Lake Wingra.”
39local recommendations
Gastropub
$
“You can't come to Wisconsin and not enjoy our signature drink, an Old Fashioned! We drink ours with brandy, and it's a perfect cocktail in hot or cold weather. The fare at this restaurant is great also. ”
53local recommendations
Performing Arts Venue
“Beautiful venue on State St where a wonderful variety of plays, concerts and other entertainment is always occurring.”
42local recommendations
Grocery or Supermarket
“For any grocery needs you can't find at our market next door. Excellent produce, grocery, butcher, bulk isle, and health&beauty needs.”
36local recommendations
Food
“A must for first time Madison goers! One of the biggest farmer's markets around. On the square during summer and fall months on Saturdays until early afternoon. ”
49local recommendations
Art Gallery
“The Chazen is home to the second-largest collection of art in WI: more than 20,000 works include paintings, sculpture, drawings, prints, photographs, and decorative arts. ”
22local recommendations
Shopping Centre
“Outdoor shopping with stores: Lululemon, Anthropologie, Evereve, Free People, etc”
28local recommendations
American Restaurant
$$
“wine/cocktails and warm friendly neighborhood bar/lounge restaurant, very good food + board games. ”
33local recommendations
Stadium
“Fall in Madison means football! The good news is that it's only a 10-15 minute walk away and you have your own driveway!”
25local recommendations
Park
“1200 acres of plants, trees, and shrubs and nearly 20 miles of hiking trials!”
25local recommendations
Museum
“Fun for a rainy day, or a day that's too hot, or a day where you just need something else to do!! They offer reciprocal memberships so if you have a membership to a children's museum elsewhere you may be able to get free admission here...”
24local recommendations
Point of Interest
“There are free concerts on the rooftop as well as gorgeous views of Lake Monona”
33local recommendations
Gastropub
$$
“Locally sourced fare prepared by some of Madison’s best chefs. Classy casual over looking the capital. ”
30local recommendations