My S.O. and I get along very well because we are very similar in so many ways. We love travel, food and learning new things, so it was just right that this year’s Valentines day had to be an adventure!
Being terribly busy with work for the past few months, we decided on a quick, cheap and interesting long weekend retreat to some place near, a bit familiar, but has so much to do during the winter months. So we picked Milwaukee, WI!
It only took us a little over an hour drive to get there from Chicago, so it’s not so bad just in case the weather turned out horrible or if we had to head back home ASAP. What I love about this place is it has a perfect mix of urban and rural with only a few minutes apart from each attraction. From the hotel (which was located right at the border of Milwaukee), it was only 10 minutes away from the Domes at Mitchell Park, 18 minutes to down town (close to the Discovery World Museum and Milwaukee Arts Museum), and 15 minutes from Sprechers Brewery.
Just as suspected, it was freezing at 9 degrees and windy on Saturday morning during Valentines. If we’re going to stay inside, might as well spend time indoors to some place warm and get our minds off the weather. So, we decided to go to the Domes first.
We picked the domes because of the very sci-fi looking exterior. For $7 per person, you can feast your eyes on amazing flora from all over the world. I’ve been to a lot of arboretums and conservatories, but this place did a really good way of mixing plants that came from different continents into the same area, as opposed to grouping them by place of origin.
I have an immense love for flora and fauna, and going to these types of places always awaken the horticulturist-wannabe in me! Each dome had a different theme- tropical, dessert, and the exhibit dome where they hold concerts and shows but currently housed a model train exhibit showcasing valentines day themed plants, etc.
Ahhhh…just pretend you’re some place exotic while there’s icy wind and below 10 degrees out there!
The globes also light up at night, and the globe found at the top of the dome in the dessert area turns into the moon at night.
Then off to downtown Milwaukee for the Discovery World Museum.
For less than $20 a person, you have access to the Aquarium and the Technology Building. The best part about being in this museum is you can partake in creating science/technology inspired DIY’s and take it home with you.
After touring the Aquarium, we stumbled upon the Thirst Lab, where we learned a bit of chemistry and how to create a room mist out of different essential oils extracted from flowers and oils inspired by smells in your surroundings.
I made a mist with potting soil mixed in with tuber rose oil, and it smelled surprisingly pleasant!
Kohl’s Design It Lab had a ton of cool projects that you can do under 30 minutes. And yes, it’s free and you can take your creations home with you!
The chocolate mold was a fun project- you use heat and vacuum with this machine to make your molds.
The rest of the building housed the Innovation gallery, Clean Air trek, a sound and video studio and Les Paul’s house of sound!
We went to Sprechers Brewery the very next day to sample their regular and seasonal beers, and most importantly my favorite root beer! Less than $10 for 4 free beer tastings and unlimited refills on their crafted sodas.
So much more to see, in so little time.
We didn’t have enough time to go to Milwaukee Arts Museum and the other breweries in town, but we’ll definitely be back this summer (right after going to Bristol Renaissance Faire!).
Whether you’re going with you’re special someone or decide to take on the adventure by yourself, you should definitely stop by these places and check them out!
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