Is a weekend getaway calling your name?? As many of you know, I moved to Madison WI in January and now that it is finally getting nice out I have been able to go out and explore! I am going to tell you my favorite spots in Madison so far and if you need some time away they will be inexpensive (mostly) ideas to do with your friends/husband/kids/aunt/grandma..you get the point! I’m still a newbie here so these may be popular finds, but I promise give me time and I will find some more!
- Verona Beach – There is a reason this is my top choice and it is because I was dumbfounded a place like this was so close to me and so inexpensive!! It is a small lake (pond?) with a beach, swimming, water slide, splash pad for small children, concession stands, park, fishing, & bike trails. What else would you need? It is so much fun and you could easily spend an entire day there!
- Paoli, WI- Spend a few hours in Paoli at my new favorite coffee shop called Vert Cafe and Plant Gallery then right next store is Lily’s Mercantile and Makery! They have the cutest items in the entire world, and they are all so unique! Find some special items for your wardrobe, or favorite room in your home! They have home decor, clothing, jewelry, plants, anything you can think someone would need in life. Also Lily, hand paints a lot of items sold there and they are INCREDIBLE!!! You NEED to go!
- If you are an outdoorsy type, go kayaking or paddle boarding on the Mendota Lake at Marshalls boat dock! It is very inexpensive and a lot of fun!! They also have a beach area if you have kids who want to swim! The water is not deep at all close to the shore line so it is very safe, but there are no lifeguards so be sure you are responsible, anything can happen.
- Watch a movie and get served food and alcohol during the movie at Flix Brew House!!! I haven’t been yet since they have closed due to the pandemic but the second they open I am definitely going! I can’t wait to share my experience and if you are interested be sure to keep an eye out on there FB page!
- Exploring downtown – State street. I think this is mostly what Madison is known for..the stores, food, drinks, small businesses, and so much more!! OH and go to every coffee shop you can find in honor of me. hehe I LOVE finding new ones, there’s so many here I don’t think I would even visit all of them in a single year! LOL. But I will make it a mission, don’t worry.
- Hiking and bike trails, rent an e-bike, or rent a bar bike. Biking here is HUGE and if you have a bike of your own bring it up and go explore the 1,000s of miles of trails up here!! You can also rent an e-bike downtown to explore OR get a group of friends together and rent the Bar bike! Bike around downtown and drink!! Sounds like a good time to me, until my legs start aching.
- Picnic at the Arboretum – It is beautiful there!!! Grab a blanket, and pack up some sandwiches, fruit, and drinks and go have a picnic!! This is on my bucket list for sure!! I have only ever taken pictures there so I am excited to go back and explore more!
- Olbrich Botanical Gardens..ok, I have not known this place is real, until recently and YOU GUYS. If it wasn’t raining this weekend I would be there in a heartbeat. O M G. It is beautiful, I will report back with my experience and if you go please send me your pics!!!! Google it, you will fall in love!
- The Memorial Union – Stop here at this GORGEOUS place right on the lake! It is beautiful and such a good place for date night! This place is hard to explain online, it is definitely something you MUST experience in life. The Union has many different restaurants, live music, beer gardens, lake views, and just an all around AMAZING vibe. You MUST visit here at least once!
- Hilldale – Amazing shopping at places like Lululemon, Anthropology, Madewell, Apple, and so much more! When you get hungry stop at cafe Hollander for a Bloody Mary, Great Dane Pub for a beer, or Bar Taco for the ~aesthetic~ and for some amazing tacos! SO YUM! You can’t go wrong at any of these places!
If you decide to do any of these activities listed please send me pictures!! I am so excited about this list and I am SO ready to complete this summer bucket list! I hope you found some helpful things here, and I wish nothing but the best times ahead for you!! xoxox
Please note- not everything is pictured, I will be experiencing more and getting more pictures but for now if you are curious about anything please reach out!!