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Museums in Madison

Whether you’re a history buff, art aficionado, or just love mustard, these 12 museums in Madison have it all.

Mastodon skeleton

Don’t forget to say “Hi” to the Boaz Mastodon and co. while at the UW Geology Museum.

Table of Contents

Museums are the cultural hubs of Madison. Whether you’re looking to learn something new about the 608 or plotting a way to spend your Saturday afternoon, here are 12 museums to visit in and around our city.

History

Wisconsin Veterans Museum, 30 W. Mifflin St. | Free
Learn about the ordinary people who made the history you’ve read about.

Driftless Historium, 100 S. 2nd St., Mt. Horeb | Free
From pre-history to today, take a journey through time in Southwestern Dane County.

Science

Geology Museum, 1215 W. Dayton St. | Free
This place rocks. Check out ancient rocks from Wisconsin’s volcanic past, preserved remains of corals and jellyfish, and stand beneath mastodon tusks from the Ice Age.

Physics Museum, 1150 University Ave. | Free
These exhibits offer a hands-on + kid-friendly approach to understanding concepts ranging from mechanics to modern physics.

Wisconsin Science Museum, 2300 S. Park St. | Free
Topics from lasers to nanotechnology to cancer treatment are accessible to visitors of all ages.

Don’t miss: Stop by Saturday mornings from 10-11 a.m. for Saturday Science Workshops.

608 WI sci museum

A nail-powered battery? Learn more at the WI Science Museum. | Photo via WI Science Museum

Arts

Chazen, 800 University Ave. | Free
This 176,000-sqft museum boasts some of City Editor Ally’s favorite pieces.

"Oriental Pharmacy Lunch Counter" sculpture by Adolph Rosenblatt

“Oriental Pharmacy Lunch Counter” sculpture by Adolph Rosenblatt | Photo by 608today

James Watrous Gallery, Third floor of Overture Center | Free
Get a bird’s eye view of the Overture’s rotunda while browsing a rotating display of art exhibits.

Local lore

Middleton Area Historical Society Museum, 7410 Hubbard Ave., Middleton | Free
Learn all about Middleton via artifacts, photographs, documents, and a large collection of Depression glassware.

Sun Prairie Historical Museum, 115 E. Main St., Sun Prairie | Free
This local museum offers access to research material as well as free walking tours of Historic Downtown Sun Prairie on the first Saturday of each month during the summer.

McFarland Historical Society Museum, 5814 Main St., McFarland | Free
Immerse yourself in Norwegian culture by walking through the cobbler shop, kitchen, and toy displays that recreate slices of life circa the 19th and 20th centuries.

Don’t miss: Peruse the Historical Society’s Larson House Museum just down the road at 6003 Exchange St.

19320 Norwegian kitchen museum display

See what’s cookin’ at the Mcfarland Historical Society Museum | Photo via McFarland Historical Society

Picasa

Quirky

National Mustard Museum, 7477 Hubbard Ave., Middleton | Free
Founder Barry Levenson began collecting mustard in 1986 which quickly culminated into the world’s largest collection of the condiment.

Don’t miss: Hundreds of mustards are available to try at the tasting bar.

House on the Rock, 5754 WI-23, Spring Green | $10-$36
This one’s for the road trippers. Take a day trip out to Spring Green to check out this phantasmagorical attraction featuring unique displays of art, architecture, and knick-knacks.

Don’t miss: The Dark Side exhibit is not for the faint of heart.

Carousel

House on the Rock has 20 exhibits to explore. | Photo by Chris Malchow (The Colorful Kid)

What did we miss? If you know a museum that’s not on the list, let us know using this survey.

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