Top things to do

Top Choice American in Madison

The Old Fashioned

With its dark, woodsy decor, the Old Fashioned evokes a supper club, a type of retro eatery common in Wisconsin. The menu is all local specialties, including walleye, cheese soup and sausages. It's hard to choose am…
Museum in Madison

Museum of Contemporary Art

It's worth popping into the angular glass building to see what's showing. Diego Rivera? Claes Oldenburg? Exhibits change every three months or so. The museum connects to the Overture Center for the Arts, home to jaz…
Gardens in Madison


The campus' 1260-acre arboretum is dense with lilac and 20 miles of trails.
Pub in Madison

Memorial Union

The campus Union is Madison's gathering spot. The festive lakeside terrace pours microbrews and hosts free live music and free Monday-night films, while the indoor ice-cream shop scoops hulking cones from the univer…
Asian in Madison

Himal Chuli

Cheerful and cozy Himal Chuli serves up homemade Nepali fare, including lots of vegetarian dishes.
Market in Madison

Dane County Farmers Market

On Saturdays, a food bazaar takes over Capitol Sq. It's one of the nation's most expansive markets, famed for its artisanal cheeses and breads. In winter it moves indoors to varying locations.
Food in Madison

World's Largest Brat Fest

More than 209,000 bratwursts go down the hatch; carnival rides and bands provide the backdrop.
Beer in Madison

Great Taste of the Midwest Beer Festival

Tickets sell out fast for this festival where more than 100 craft brewers pour their elixirs.
in Madison

Weary Traveler Free House

It’s global comfort food at this dark-wood pub, including Hungarian goulash and vegan chili.
Food in Madison


The state's best cheese shop specializes in small-batch and hard-to-find local hunks. Browse the basket of 'orphans' by the cash register, where you can buy small quantities for $2 to $5. The shop also sells sandwic…