Day Trip Idea: Travel Back in Time at Old World Wisconsin (2022)

Step back in time in Eagle, WI!

Recently our Calendar Editor Bridget McMahon visited Old World Wisconsin with her family. Here are her notes, tips, and tricks:

“Old World Wisconsin takes the whole family back in time with restored historic structures throughout its 600 acres in Eagle, WI (about a 50-minute drive from Milwaukee).

When you enter Old World Wisconsin there is a modern barn with a giftshop and bathrooms.

Before you explore the area, you have on opportunity to purchase tokens for $5 each, that you can spend at the General Store buying souvenir, making a leather stamped key chain, get a hook from the blacksmith, or get two old-fashioned sodas.  (If you decide later to purchase a token, you can do so in the Creamery.)

Behind the barn you can take a tram that runs continuously throughout the day to the tram stops throughout the site. The wait for the next tram is usually under 10 minutes.

You can ride an old-fashioned bicycle at the 1890’s Wheelmen’s Clubhouse.

One of the first stops is a 1890s Wheelmen’s Clubhouse where you can ride an old-fashioned bicycle around the track (best for age 6 & up because of height).

In the “Crossroads Village” area is an 1880’s is a Blacksmith Shop where forging is done continuously throughout the day.  Children usually have an opportunity to crank the forge blower to help the fire heat up.

There is also an 1880’s shoe shop, where you can try on reproductions of old shoes and a Creamery where you can purchase ice cream, among other buildings.

Visit the blacksmith in the Crossroad Village area.

In the back area there is a 1900’s school house where the whole family can sit in the desks and play games from the time, like Graces where you can use wooden sticks to throw a hoop to your partner to catch on their sticks.

You will also visit some immigrant farms and cabins, where you can help knead dough, see how yarn is made, see many animals, “help” with chores like laundry and try on clothes as you walk through the houses.

At the entrance they have a new brewhouse that they sell beer in, as well as a grill where they serve food. They have many picnic tables, if you choose to pack a lunch. Their hours are 10 am to 4 pm and you can spend the entire day looking at different things. Prices are a little less in Spring and Fall when they don’t have all the buildings open.

The employees of Old World Wisconsin are always in costume and in character.

Pro Tips:

Old World Wisconsin admission is included in a Wisconsin Historical Society membership. 

There is not a lot of shade, so it can get pretty hot, if there are high temperatures.  Make sure to bring your sunscreen and water bottles! 

There are a few modern bathrooms available in each area of the property. 

For more ideas, check out “101 Best Day Trips From Milwaukee“.

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