We walked all of Milwaukee. At least that's how it felt after a few full days on foot, traversing the big little city, a nickname we felt was pretty apt. Like its bigger neighbor the South (hi, Chicago!), Milwaukee is indeed a city of neighborhoods, each with its own icons and features and people. After we unhitched Elsie at the Wisconsin State Fair Campground, we spent the next few days touring Milwaukee step-by-step and block-by-block. Here's a few of our favorite highlights from our walking tour of Mil-town.
Milwaukee's East Side neighborhood hugs Lake Michigan's shoreline and is a great place to kill an afternoon. Parks and green space abound, plus it's home to Milwaukee's Museum Mile. We stopped in Colectivo, a locally renowned coffee house chain. This particular location was once the city's main flushing station; now you can grab a cup of joe and surf the internet here.
This trendy neighborhood is just south of city center, and features some hip new bars, restaurants and a thriving art scene. We stopped by Boone & Crockett for a couple afternoon cocktails and felt right at home among the worn-in couches, taxidermy lined walls and permanent food truck parked out back. I wish we'd only had more time here
Avenues West / Marquette
Truth be told, we headed to Marquette because Carson had an interview with Larry Watson, a well-known author / professor at the college whose recent book, As Good As Gone, was hitting shelves. We enjoyed wandering around campus and the gothic-inspired architecture. While we drove past it many times and ogled it from the road, this district is also home to the famed Pabst mansion.
Haymarket / Westown
We covered almost the entire downtown river walk in an afternoon, starting at Schlitz park and walking to Historic Third Ward and back. We kicked off the day near Brewer's Hill, headed through the Haymarket neighborhood, and as we moved along the walk eventually met Westown. It was hard to miss since this district's crowning feature is Old World Third Street, home to German-inspired pubs and beer halls. Stop for a beer, stay for the bratwurst.
Milwaukee's art museum is perhaps the city's most unique and defining structure. It looks like a yacht mixed with a space ship, and I mean that in the best possible way. We strolled from Westown all the way to the water, and then up the hill to cathedral square park, home to Jazz in the Park and a Solomon Juneau statue.
Historic Third Ward
Perhaps Milwaukee's best-known neighborhood: Historic Third Ward. If you follow our adventures much, then you know we love a good public market, and Milwaukee's didn't disappoint. Of course, you'd be silly not to window shop a bit here, too. The district is well-known for its retail offerings, including local boutiques and well-known shops like Anthropologie, too.