All the Tours You Can Take in and Around Milwaukee

Extra points if you take more than one on the same day.

Distillery Tours

Central Standard Craft Distillery Tour

Guided tastings with Central Standard allow guests to taste craft spirits right in front of the still where they’re made. 
Where: 613 S. Second St.
Tickets: from $8

Great Lakes Distillery Tour

Sample and learn about Great Lakes’ award-winning spirits in Wisconsin’s first distillery since Prohibition. Including a free cocktail in the tasting room and a flight of six different products to try, tours run Sunday through Thursday every two hours from 1-5 p.m., Fridays at 1, 3, 5 and 6 p.m. and Saturday on the hour from 1-5 p.m. Great Lakes Distillery is Travel Green Wisconsin-certified.
Where: 616 W. Virginia St.
Tickets: $10

Factory Tours

Clock Shadow Creamery Tour

Learn the basics of making cheese and get an answer to the question every Wisconsinite has been asking: what makes a cheese curd squeaky? Tours take place in the factory’s observation room every half hour from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Book a tour online or by calling 414-273-9711.
Where: 138 W. Bruce St.
Tickets: $3

Harley Davidson Factory Tour

Watch real people “channel their pride and expertise into machines that capture the imagination” by getting up close with assembly lines at the Pilgrim Road location. The factory offers its “Steel Toe Tour” at 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. Monday through Friday and the Original Factory Tour at regular intervals between 9 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Where: W156 N9000 Pilgrim Rd., Menomonee Falls
Tickets: varies

Harley Davidson Factory
Harley Davidson Factory; photo by Megan OttoA

Jelly Belly Warehouse Tour

Thirty minutes south of Milwaukee, the Jelly Belly Express Train runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily, taking visitor center guests on a ride throughout the warehouse. Guests learn about the process of producing a gourmet jelly bean on this 25-30 minute tour.
Where: 10100 Jelly Belly Ln., Pleasant Prairie
Tickets: free

Palermo’s Pizza Factory Tour

Home to the “first frozen pizza with a crust that rises while it bakes,” Palermo’s offers a bird’s eye view of their pizza production floor along with some samples included in tour packages. From the “Bambino” package, for ages two to four, to the “Hungry” package, for ages five and up, guests can take home a variety of souvenirs and try Palermo’s hand-stretched pizza.
Where: 3301 W. Canal St.
Tickets: $8-$15

Milwaukee Food and Drink Tours

Milwaukee Pizza Bus Tour

This three-hour bus tour highlights Milwaukee’s variety of pizzerias – from old-school joints to newer, upscale establishments, the sample portions make for a filling tour.
Where: varies

Pedal Tavern Pub Crawl

Guests make their way around the Third Ward and Walker’s Point areas, choosing from over 25 bars with drink specials – by 16-person bike. Guests must be 5’3” or taller to pedal, but there are seats without pedals for those with less in the height department. Tours given daily between the hours of 10 a.m.-10:30 p.m.
Where: 800 S. Second St.
Tickets: varies

Pre-Prohibition Historic Bar Tour

Visit some of the bars that have quenched Milwaukeeans’ thirst since 1847 over the course of a three-hour bus tour.
Where: varies

Bloody Mary ingredients
photo by Adam Ryan Morris

Tacos and Tequila Bus Tour

Departing from Walker’s Point, this three-hour bus-driven tour takes guests to three different restaurants to enjoy Latin food as well as a half-sized margarita or tequila-infused drink at each stop. Although the food portions are substantial, churros are served at the last stop, a local Hispanic bakery, for dessert.
Where: varies

Third Ward Bloody Mary Brunch Tour

What’s brunch without a few bloodys? This tour reveals the origins behind the Third Ward’s reputation as the “Bloody Third Ward” and the history of Milwaukee’s relationship with the bloody Mary. Tours are offered 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Sundays.
Where: varies
Tickets: $65

Holiday/Special Tours

Christmas Around Milwaukee Bakery Bus

This tour showcases many of Milwaukee’s ethnic and holiday traditions, bringing guests to bakeries throughout the area to sample various holiday cookies, candies and pastries. Christmas attire is not required, but encouraged.
Where: varies

Christmas Lights and Desserts Bus Tour

Experience Milwaukee’s holiday traditions and treats with this combination of history and holiday spirit. Caroling on the bus from stop to stop and Christmas attire encouraged. Tours given Fridays and Saturdays throughout December.
Where: varies
Tickets: $60

Historic Milwaukee German Christmas Tour

A variation of Historic Milwaukee’s German Heritage Tour, this tour takes guests around Old World Third St. to stop in various buildings and shops for holiday goodies while tour guide Bob Giese explains German Christmas traditions. The last stop along the way is the Old German Beer Hall for assorted meats and cheese and giant pretzels, to celebrate German heritage in Milwaukee. Offered one time only at 4 p.m. Dec. 16.
Where: 225 E. Michigan St.
Tickets: $30 for non-members and $25 for members

Historic Milwaukee Post-Thanksgiving Day Downtown Tour

This tour, starting at the Mackie Building, explores Milwaukee’s historic downtown architecture, including the Wells Building, Federal Courthouse, Pfister Hotel and Milwaukee Art Museum. Tour offered one time only at 10 a.m. Nov. 25.
Where: 225 E. Michigan St.
Tickets: $20 for non-members and $10 for members

Ghost Tours

Shaker’s Cigar Bar Tours

Take Shaker’s Original Ghost Tour, Shaker’s 2.0 or the Cream City Cannibal tour at “Milwaukee’s Haunted Bar. The bar even offers overnight stays in its haunted penthouse. Original tours given Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7 and 8:30 p.m.
Where: 422 S. Second St.
Tickets: $15-25

History and Architecture Tours

Captain Frederick Pabst Mansion Tour

This Milwaukee historical landmark is decked out every year for A Grand Avenue Christmas. The public can tour three floors of the mansion and experience the holiday magnificence. Doors open for self-guided tours only from Nov. 17-Jan. 7, 10 a.m.-3:15 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon to 3:15 p.m. Sundays.
Where: 2000 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Tickets: $12.50 

Skywaukee Walking Tour

See a variety of downtown landmarks from the comfort of Milwaukee’s indoor skywalk system. Starts at the Plankinton Arcade in the Grand Avenue Mall and takes about one and a half hours. Given Saturdays at 1 p.m.
Where: 161 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Tickets: $10 for non-members and free for Historic Milwaukee members

St. Josaphat Basilica Tours

1901, St. Josaphat Basilica became a beacon of Polish heritage in Milwaukee. In 1929 it was named the third basilica in the United States. Come see the iconic dome in a self-guided tour from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, or take a formal tour at 11 a.m. Sundays.
Where: 2333 S. Sixth St.
Tickets: contact for more info

Basilica of St. Josaphat
Basilica of St. Josaphat; photo by Emanuel Rios

Tours of Milwaukee Public Library – Central

Since 1898, this spacious limestone building has served as a hub for the Milwaukee Public Library system. See inside this block-long landmark for free Saturdays at 11 a.m.
Where: 814 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Tickets: free

Tripoli Shrine Center Tour

Observe the Grand Dome and Foyer, Humphrey Hall Ballroom and the Melham Parlor in a guided tour of the Tripoli Shrine Center. Dates, times and tickets are available online or call 414-933-4700.
Where: 3000 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Tickets: $16.95

Brewery Tours

Beer History Tour, Best Place at the Historic Pabst Brewery

This Beer History Tour re-tells the story of the Best and Pabst families and the Pabst brands. Kicking off with a Pabst Blue Ribbon, Schlitz or Sprecher Root Beer in Blue Ribbon Hall and rounding out at the original Guest Center, this tour celebrates the interwoven history of Pabst and Milwaukee. Tours are given year-round every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 1 and 3 p.m.; Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., noon and 1 p.m.
Where: 901 W. Juneau Ave.
Tickets: $8

The Pabst Brewery
The Pabst Brewery; photo by Adam Ryan Morris

Lakefront Brewery Tours

Lakefront Brewery offers several variations of their tour, including tours in Spanish, Saturday “mini” tours, and “technical tours” aimed for home-brewers and others interested in the process of making and pairing beers, including the equipment used. Guides lead guests through the entire brewery on weekend tours (Friday through Sunday), when production is usually not underway. Tours given every day of the week. Lakefront Brewery is Travel Green Wisconsin-certified.
Where: 1872 N. Commerce St.
Tickets: vary by tour and date

Miller Brewery Tour

Here, guides lead guests through the 155-plus years since Frederick Miller’s arrival in Milwaukee. The free, one-hour tour focuses on the evolution of brewing technology and the Miller Brewing Company itself. Tours run every thirty minutes from 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Sundays seasonally. Miller Brewery Tours are Travel Green Wisconsin-certified.
Where: 4251 W. State St.
Tickets: free

Milwaukee Brewing Company Tour

The Milwaukee Brewing Company hasn’t been around as long as Pabst or Sprecher – it produced its first beer in October 1997 – but it does offer a glimpse into the world of crafting and creating beers with local ingredients. Samples are available at check-in and the tour is given “beer-in-hand” every thirty minutes 4- 6:30 p.m. Fridays, 1-4 p.m. Saturdays and 2-3:30 p.m. Sundays. Half of all available slots are reserved to reinforce the brewery’s belief that “a spontaneous brewery tour in your day aligns your attitude with the bold creative passion of craft brewing.”
Where: 613 S. Second St.
Tickets: $10

Sprecher Brewery Tour

See how Sprecher brings Old World brewing traditions to modern-day beer production on this tour of the Sprecher Brewery and beer garden, including four beer samples and a take-home beer tasting glass. Tours given Monday through Friday at 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday on the hour from noon-3 p.m.
Where: 701 W. Glendale Ave., Glendale
Tickets: $8