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Anyone familiar with Wisconsin, Chicago - Frank Lloyd Wright


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My son is attending a weekend seminar at Taliesin this summer and I am trying to plan a trip around it. Anyone familiar with this area of Wisconsin and where to stay, other things to do in the area? Places between there and Chicago?

Also thinking about doing the Oak Park tour in Chicago, and a Chicago visit for a few days.

Just getting started planning, so any help or ideas are appreciated!

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I would definitely try to take in "House on the Rock" in Wisconsin. Not Frank Lloyd Wright but still architecturally amazing.


I tried linking this to an article about it but am on my phone and I can't figure it out. I'd recommend you look it up!


What a neat opportunity for your son!

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Taliesin is between Madison and the Wisconsin Dells. Lots to do in either place. It just depends on the ages of the people involved and what type of things you enjoy.  


North of Madison there is a ferry (free I think) over Lake Wisconsin which heads north through Baraboo. Devil's Lake State Park has some climbing. The Wisconsin Dells is the waterpark capital of the world (or so they say). 


Madison is the capital and a university town. The farmer's market on the capital square is a must-see if you're in the area on Saturday. It has decent Vietnatmese and Hmong food and some interesting small museums on the square. 


If you have younger kids and are coming up 90, Janesville has a nice park called Camden. Nice short stop to get all the wiggles out. 

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Thanks for the tips. I am starting to get my bearings.

We will be traveling with kids ranging 12-17 years old, nerdy and intelligent  :lol: 

We will be combining this weekend trip with several days in Chicago, where we will for sure do the Frank Lloyd Wright tours.  Not sure what else yet.

I really want to see Madison and that will be on our way back to Chicago, so a good stop. I don't think it will be a Saturday though.

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I haven't been there in years, but the House on the Rock (mentioned earlier) is pretty cool.

Ella's Deli in Madison!

Discovery World in Milwaukee is really cool for all ages. It's next door/across the street/very near (it's been a while LOL) the Milwaukee Art Museum.

Are there any guitar players in your group? If so, Dave's Guitar Shop in La Crosse is a must-see. His personal collection is on display upstairs. It is amazing. 

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In Madison -


The Monona Terrace (also Frank Lloyd Wright)

Ian's Pizza on State St (sells piza by the slice, good way to fill kids up economically)

Ice cream @ Babcock Hall (UW Madison)

The Memorial Union (UW Madison)

Chazen Museum of Art (free)

Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (free)

Historical Society Museum (small admission fee)

Veterans Museum (free)

State capitol


You might also find www.visitmadison.com helpful in planning your visit.

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Taliesin is actually west of Madison and not near the Dells, which are north of Madison.  I would not put the two together as a side trip unless you are big waterpark fans.  House on the Rock is a sight. American Players Theater is excellent and nearby if that is of any interest. Nearby Spring Green has some interesting art galleries and other shops. 


With those ages, in Madison itself, I would park either on UW Campus or near the Capitol or Monona Terrace and walk between the two on State Street. The Capitol building is open for visitors and has a fabulous observation deck (free) if you don't mind heights and climbing some stairs. State St. has interesting shops and restaurants from around the world. Himal Chuli has excellent Nepalese food and State Street Brats has good Wisconsin fare.  On Campus walk the Lakeshore path, check out the free events on the waterfront and visit Babcock Hall for the ice cream made at the UW Dairy. If its closed, the Chocolate Shoppe on State is nice too. There are a few museums on campus and they are doing things with the new Institutes for Discovery. I would check out the events calendar because a lot of the neat stuff in Madison is related to fun summer events. 


I'm not sure if you'd rather drop off your son and drive into Madison to see the city or just stay out near Spring Green. There is camping, canoeing, and other outdoor pursuits out there. 

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Baraboo/the Dells are about an hour north of Spring Green so it wouldn't be too bad of a drive, but if I had to pick one or the other I'd lean more towards Madison. Spring Green is quite art-y so I suspect it wouldn't hold the interest of your younger travel companions. The Spring Green General Store is kind of a neat shop. My mom and I had a fabulous lunch there once. I don't think 12-13 year olds would agree with my assessment, however. Aside from the American Players Theater that was mentioned, there's also Tower Hill State Park (http://www.saukcountyhistory.org/areaattractions/towerhillstatepark.html). That's about the best I can offer that way out. Well, aside from the art fair which is lovely if you're in the area when it's running. Again, not something the kids would probably like.

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The Laurent House in Rockford is the only FLW house built for a handicapped client and it's opening for tours beginning in June. It's a fabulous house and would be a nice side trip between Madison and Chicago.





Oak Park is beautiful and the FLW house and studio tour is wonderful.

Rockford has an amazing Japanese garden too!

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