Touring Milwaukee can mean a traditional tour of the city, exploring a local brewery or sailing down the river and are perfect for both a group outing or as a fun activity for family members to do during the day.
Untapped Tours takes you on a three-hour excursion through some of Milwaukee’s “greatest hits” and most famous attractions. Taste beer, cheese and ice cream and take photographs of some of Milwaukee's most beautiful landmarks along the way.
Explore the city at your own pace on a hop-on/hop-off tour with Milwaukee Food & City Tours. The bus picks up passengers at four downtown hotels, then embarks on a 60-minute, fully-narrated tour with stops at Milwaukee’s most popular attractions. Hop off the bus at any stop that catches your interest, then reboard the bus when it loops back again.
Historic Milwaukee walking tours give a fun and informative look at Milwaukee’s history and architecture. “Downtown thru the Eras” is offered seven days a week (June–October), taking you from the classic architecture of the Plankinton Arcade to the stunning modernity of the Milwaukee Art Museum with plenty of facts about the founding and growth of the city along the way, and a tour entirely through the downtown skywalk system is offered during the cooler months.
Milwaukee Food & City Tours, the city’s premier food tour company, hosts food and cultural tours by foot and by bus all year round! Try one of their neighborhood-focused tours to get a unique look at one of Milwaukee’s neighborhoods (including Historic Third Ward, Brady Street, Bay View and Walker’s Point), or traverse the city on a themed tour like the historic bar tour or popular pizza bus tour.
Clock Shadow Creamery, Milwaukee’s only urban creamery, offers an inside look at one of Wisconsin’s most famous products. Learn about the history of cheesemaking, what makes a cheese curd “squeak” and sample some delicious fresh cheeses made right here in Milwaukee. If possible, schedule your tour for a weekday morning – that’s when the cheesemaking happens!
Milwaukee’s only pizza factory tour is at Palermo’s Villa. Watch Palermo’s Pizzaiolos craft their delicious pizzas on the factory floor, then enjoy a slice of hand-stretched pizza at Pizzeria 3301.
Visit Growing Power’s urban farm, the last remaining farm and greenhouse in operation in the City of Milwaukee. On your tour, learn more about the sustainable growing methods used here, including worms eating waste, fish fertilizing plants and honeybees pollinating the neighborhood. Many local restaurants use Growing Power’s produce – see where it all starts!
Milwaukee is still the “Brew City,” so a brewery tour is an iconic local experience. You’ll see the full 150 years of Milwaukee’s brewing heritage at MillerCoors, from the historic underground caves where Frederick Miller cooled his brews to the modern, high-speed production lines (Miller himself makes an appearance in the caves – in hologram form, of course). Lakefront Brewery is famous for their hilarious quirky tour guides. Milwaukee Brewing Company is another local favorite – their laidback, beer-in-hand tour is led by their “brewery scoundrels.” Just north of the city, Sprecher Brewing Company’s Black Bavarian ranked as one of the top American beers in the country, and their root beer was named best in the U.S. by the New York Times – after the tour, guests of all ages are welcome to unlimited samples of their specialty sodas (while the adults can try some brews).
Milwaukee is also home to several artisanal distilleries, two of which are located in the up-and-coming Walker’s Point Neighborhood. Stop by Great Lakes Distillery and Central Standard Craft Distillery for a tour, a tasting or just a cocktail.
Enjoy sightseeing, dining and cocktail cruises down the Milwaukee River and out into Lake Michigan with Edelweiss Boats – Milwaukee River Cruise Line. Locals love the iconic European-style canal vessels that host the majority of the public cruises, but the bi-level Lakeside Spirit and Harbor Lady are also available for certain cruises and for private events.
Milwaukee Boat Line offers sightseeing tours with history and trivia, cocktail cruises and even live music, all out on the rivers and harbors of Milwaukee. Enjoy a narrated tour of the city’s history and architecture, or just enjoy a happy hour or concert while you float through the city, cruising on the Milwaukee River, Harbor and Lake Michigan.
Set sail on the Lake aboard a 38-foot yacht, the Quinn Marie, with Sea Dog Sailing. Take a day sail or a sunset cruise, or charter a private excursion for a one-of-a-kind experience on the water. You can sign on as a guest or a sailor, making it the perfect compromise for those who want to relax and those who would rather get in on the action.
Wisconsin’s official flagship is the world’s only recreation of a Great Lakes schooner, the Sailing Vessel (S/V) Denis Sullivan. Become part of the crew when you set off on a day sail on this three-masted vessel, or take a relaxing sunset sail with drinks and appetizers.