the Milwaukee Art Museum drone photo from over lake Michigan with city skyline in the background

Museums in Milwaukee | 2022 Guide

A museum trip is a great way to spend the weekend with your family or friends. This list will give you everything you need to know about the best museums that Milwaukee has to offer.

There is something for everyone, no matter your age or interest you can go out, learn and explore some really amazing places. So take some time and find a great place to spend the day in a great way.


Drone Photo of the Harley Davidson Museum in Milwaukee

Harley Davidson Museum

The Harley Davidson Museum is like walking through the history of America. They feature bikes of all kinds and years. Its 20-acre campus has a park-like feel and has activities going on every week. It is one of Milwaukee’s top things to do. They have over 450 motorcycles dating back to the very first Harley Davidson motorcycle. You can tour archives, some have never been seen before. The riverfront provides excellent views from the museum.

They also have a fun shop full of great gifts. The Motor, a delicious restaurant on the Musume campus has some great offerings like loaded tots, patty melts, and cool ranch wings. They have lighter fare like salads and soups that are just as wonderful. You can visit the restaurant without having to purchase a ticket to the museum. Children under 5 have free admission, children 5-17 have $8 admission, students, military, and seniors have $16 admission, and adults have $22 admission.


Inside the glass walkthrough aquarium tank inside the Discovery World Museum in Milwaukee

Discovery World Museum

This science and technology museum has fun and educational experiences for everyone in the family. They have a ton of exciting experiences like interactive exhibits, the on-site aquarium, and educational labs. The labs cover more than 10,000 square feet. The Kohl’s “Design It! Lab” has guides that will help your kids create new and unique projects (currently not operating).

The virtual explorer uses virtual reality to immerse an audience in a story. These are just a few of the great offerings at Discovery World. Children 2 and under have free admission, children 3-17 have $16 admission, students, the military has a $14 admission, seniors are $16 admission, and adults are $20 admission.


Sunset behind the Milwaukee Art Museum - Best Museums in Milwaukee

Milwaukee Art Museum

The Milwaukee Art Museum has over 30,000 pieces of art for you to explore with family and group trips available. Like all other art museums, they have a no-touch policy in the exhibits but they do have some fun days where you and your kids can get interactive. Kohl’s Art Generation Family the weekends feature fun arts and crafts at the museum. They have special programs for teens to explore art and make some themselves and even an internship program.

They are open every day from 10 AM- 5 PM and they stay open until 8 PM on Thursday. They also have really affordable rates and discounts for students and seniors, plus kids under 12 are always free.


View of the brown and tan exterior of the Milwaukee Public Museum

Milwaukee Public Museum

The Milwaukee Public Museum is an awesome natural history that has something for everyone.

They have tours for people of all ages, an added bonus is that they are all really affordable. The Highlights Tour will take you to look at the best the museum has to offer. It is a guided tour for groups of 20. It lasts about an hour and you’re sure to be impressed.

Overnight in the Museum – An overnight stay can be arranged as well. They are $55 dollars per person and each comes with a fun theme like mummies or dinosaurs. The evening will be full of hands-on activities, shows, and a sleepover in one of the exhibit areas. The standard admission for the museum is $12 dollars with an add-on for other exhibits available. Monday through Friday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. They are open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Saturdays and 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Sundays.


Interior view of the Betty Brinn Children's Museum - Milwaukee, WI

Betty Brinn Children’s Museum

This is a fun museum for any child. They have hands-on experiences that help build cognitive function. And promote early learning. All of the exhibits are interactive. This museum opened in 1995 by three women in southeastern Wisconsin. The exhibits constantly change so there is always something new for everyone.

They are available for parties that include a 90-minute private room for up to 20 guests. You can bring in your own food and drinks as well as decorations (no wall decorations, latex balloons water guns, or silly string). They can receive delivery from many local restaurants to make that easy.

The hours of operation are Monday through Saturday from 9 AM to 5 PM. They are open on Sunday from 12 Pm – 5 PM. The cost of admission is $12 for everyone over the age of 1, $11 for seniors, and children under 1 are free. Check for free days in Milwaukee.


Haggerty Museum of Art

The Haggerty Museum of Art is located on the campus of Marquette University. They have a constantly rotating amount of exhibits. The art is diverse and interesting. This museum is one that is best for interested teens and adults. This is a great afternoon activity and an opportunity to see some truly unique pieces. They are open from Monday through Sunday from 10 AM through 4:30 PM. On Thursday they stay open from 10 AM to 8 PM and on Sundays, they are open from 12 PM to 5 PM. Admission is free for everyone, every day.


Old South Side Settlement Museum (Temporarily Closed)

This specialty museum is a great trip in the making. You can only visit this historic location through tours. It’s like walking through history. Every section of the small museum is set up like home used to be with every section dedicated to the different ethnic groups. The dining room is in a polish theme, ad the kitchen has a tribute to the area’s Hispanic community. You can wander around the rooms and really great to see everything without any roped off areas. Admission varies and calling to make reservations will ensure there are tours available.


Milwaukee Fire Museum

The Fire Museum is perfect if you have a little firefighter in your home. They are open every Saturday, April through Sunday from 1 AM through 3 PM (That’s right! Middle of the night field trip anyone?). What great is that the trip is completely free of admission. They do appreciate donations though.

The firefighters are great when you visit. They tell wonderful stories and are great for kids. Everything is displayed well. The events are the Fire Museum host family events like antique fire truck shows. They welcome photographs which are a fun benefit that many museums don’t allow.

It’s fun to see how fire stations worked years ago before the advent of fire trucks and the construction and style of the old firehouse compared to new ones. You can follow a tour guide while they explain the ins and outs to you. If you prefer you can go on a self-guided tour and wander around to discover all that the building has to offer.


Spring time photo of the Chdnow Museum of Yesteryear in Milwaukee

Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear

A quirky look at the late Avrum Chudnow’s collection of early 20th Century Americana. A fascinating and educational look at the world of the 1900s.


Grohmann Museum

The collection here is dedicated to the evolution of human work. A fascinating idea, and one that is well worth a few hours wandering. Also, this museum is housed in Milwaukee School of Engineering’s Campus, which is worth another wander. Take an afternoon and explore!

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