Things to Do

Top Things to Do in Madison

How we rank Top Things to Do in Madison.

1. Top-notch weekend destination

Madison is so routinely written up as one of America’s most livable communities that it’s easy to forget Wisconsin’s capital and second-largest city (metro population 555,000) also ranks as a top-notch weekend destination.

2. Dane County Farmers’ Market

Madison’s legendary Dane County Farmers’ Market is the country’s largest producer-only market.

3. Olbrich Botanical Gardens

Stroll amid 16 acres of outdoor gardens, including a 2-acre Rose Garden that showcases hardy shrub varieties in a space inspired by Wisconsin native Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie style, a Perennial Garden, a Sunken Garden and an Herb Garden.

4. Babcock Hall Dairy Store

The flagship of the University of Wisconsin’s respected dairy program is the Babcock Hall Dairy Store, known for generous scoops of campus-made ice cream.

5. Madison Museum of Contemporary Art

The striking architecture at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art’s free State Street facility is open, with lots of glass and natural light. Both levels have changing exhibitions, and there’s a sculpture garden on the rooftop.