By Melissa Barclay, senior communication specialist in the Office of University Relations at Marquette University
Marquette calls Milwaukee home — fortunately, Wisconsin’s largest city has a ton to offer. Recently named a top 25 worldwide destination and a place travelers should go in 2023 by National Geographic, this guide will help you explore this urban playground that’s home to great eats, national sports teams, moments in nature, arts and culture, and so much more.
Arts, history and culture:
- Milwaukee Art Museum is a Milwaukee icon set on the lakeshore, featuring a pair of gigantic metal wings that weigh 90 tons and open to a wingspan of 217 feet. The wings were part of a $130 million addition designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava.
- Harley-Davidson Museum proves Milwaukee’s rank as the most hog-friendly city in the world. Visit to see 100 years of H-D motorcycle history — and stay for lunch.
- America’s Black Holocaust Museum builds awareness of slavery’s legacy, how it influenced our society’s economic, political and legal systems, and commemorates individuals who struggled for justice and fought for freedom.
Brew City sports:
Milwaukee has a multitude of options when it comes to cheering on sports teams.
- Party in the parking lot at American Family Field before a Brewers game. Tailgating is a Milwaukee tradition and it’s your chance to enjoy tossing some bags and munching on brats before taking in a ballgame!
- Watch the Bucks hoop it up on the hardwood at Fiserv Forum during the regular NBA season. Make a full night of it and head to the Deer District early. Grab some dinner at Good City Brewing Co. or watch the game on a 38-foot high-definition big screen TV at The MECCA Sports Bar and Grill.
- Ice hockey isn’t just for our neighbors to the north. Take in a Milwaukee Admirals game at the UW–Milwaukee Panther Arena. Don’t forget to give their mascot Roscoe a high five when you see him.
- And of course, cheer on the Golden Eagles! The men’s basketball team plays at the Fiserv Forum; the women’s basketball team calls the Al McGuire Center on the Marquette campus home. Visit gomarquette.com to see schedules for soccer, volleyball and more!
Out and about:
Put on your shoes, grab a bike or hop on a bus. The best way to get to know Milwaukee is block by block. Check out these great stops:
- Bradford Beach fills with thousands of sun worshippers most summer days to play beach volleyball, build sandcastles, soak in the sun or revel in a season that comes too late and leaves too early but never disappoints.
- Historic Third Ward is a pocket-sized neighborhood that’s best toured on foot. Visitors can pop into innovative restaurants, shops and theatres housed in the same brick buildings that thrived as factories in Milwaukee’s early days as a city. It’s also home to Summerfest and the Milwaukee Public Market.
- Brady Street has given generations of Marquette students a spot to go to Mass at St. Hedwig Church, load up on Italian treats at Peter Sciortino Bakery and get a cigar, a tattoo or delicious locally brewed coffee at one of its cafes.
- Milwaukee Riverwalk is a place to stroll for a bite and a pint on patios at sundry waterside restaurants. Take a selfie with the Bronze Fonz or just admire the views along this stretch of Milwaukee’s namesake river.
- 3rd Street Market Hall offers food, drinks and entertainment in a renovated historic space. A massive central bar is in earshot of shuffleboard courts and The Turf, a space where families can play giant Jenga, soccer billiards, bags and other games.
Keep ‘er movin’ outdoors:
Milwaukee is home to some amazing biking and hiking trails. The Oak Leaf Trail system is used for biking, walking, running, roller blading and birding all over Milwaukee County.
- Grab a Bublr Bike and ride to the lakefront.
- Climb to the top of the Marquette Hall bell tower for a breathtaking panorama of the city.
- Rent a swan paddle boat at Veteran’s Park or ride a Milwaukee cruise ship — who says you have to do all the work?
- Outdoor activities shouldn’t be just for the summertime. Strap on ice skates at Red Arrow Park and once there’s enough snow on the ground, go snowshoeing.
All about the eats:
- You can’t live in Milwaukee without trying one of the most popular burgers in town. Take a trip to Sobelman’s @ Marquette or Sobelman’s on St. Paul.
- Our Marquette experience isn’t complete without a visit to Real Chili, a tasty tradition that dates to 1931. Originally located in the basement of our early Jesuit rectory, the chili counter is now just west of the Alumni Memorial Union on Wells Street.
- From tacos to ice cream, discover some good eats at Zocalo Food Park, a.k.a. food truck heaven, in the Walker’s Point neighborhood.
- The Milwaukee Public Market is a unique destination that’s bursting with uniqueness. You can experience a taste of the East Coast by trying a fresh lobster roll from St. Paul Fish Company or for the java lover, grab an espresso from Anodyne Coffee Roasting Company.
To read more of Marquette Magazine’s MKE 101 CLICK HERE.