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Madison Vacations

As Madison-born author Thornton Wilder sagely reminds us, “We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.” While our lives are filled with precious gems like family, friends, and love, we get to add to add wonderful memories to that treasure trove while on vacation with those closest to us. Not surprisingly, Wilder’s hometown is the perfect place to create those keepsakes. The capital of the state of Wisconsin is a cultural, recreational, and educational jewel. A Madison getaway provides an opportunity to expand your artistic horizons with a stroll through the galleries along the museum mile, have some fun in and on the water in the city’s two lakes, and join in on the football frenzy at a University of Wisconsin Badgers home game on the gridiron. When you purchase a Madison vacation package through Travelocity, you’ll enjoy an abundance of savings that can be better spent creating those treasures that make us more alive.

Where are the Best Places to Stay in Madison?

The entire state of Wisconsin is a wonderful combination of natural beauty and charming hospitality—Madison is merely a microcosm of that. The downtown area delivers all the convenience and culture of a major metropolitan area, along with close proximity to the surrounding wilderness—making day trips with a rental car a solid option. Here are some of our favorite hotels in downtown Madison:

Downtown

  • Hyatt Place Madison Downtown – Sleek, contemporary, and newly remodeled, the Hyatt Place is more than just a convenient address. Start your day with a free breakfast, keep your fitness routine on track at the StayFit Gym, and get out and explore Madison. After you’ve experienced the city, unwind with either a dip in the indoor pool or a drink at the lobby bar…or both!
  • The Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor's Club – Impeccably glamorous and painstakingly detailed, the Concourse delivers the utmost in upmarket finery. And that’s just the standard rooms! The Governor’s Club—located on the hotel’s top three floors—takes the opulence to even greater heights, literally and figuratively. Enjoy fine dining at CIRC, sip on a craft cocktail at The Bar, and host your business meeting in the hotel’s state-of-the-art 27,000-square foot flexible conference space.

Madison West

If you are planning a family vacation in Madison, you might want to look into hotels on the western side of town. You’ll still be just a short drive from the downtown area and the university, but you’ll be much closer to shopping centers, family-friendly attractions, and the open areas outside of town. We recommend the following hotels in Madison West:

  • AmericInn Lodge & Suites Madison West – Your home away from home while in Madison, the AmericInn delivers all the comforts you normally leave behind when on vacation. Bookend your day with a free breakfast and a complimentary evening beverage reception. The kids will enjoy the heated indoor pool and hot tub, while the parents will love the fact that the kids stay for free!
  • Baymont Inn & Suites Madison West – Value, comfort, and service combine at the Baymont. You’ll be close to the University of Wisconsin campus, as well as the parks, golf courses, and open spaces west of town—there’s even a shuttle to take you to them all! Enjoy free breakfast, complimentary Wi-Fi, and an indoor pool. And if you get tired of eating out every night, you can show off your skills on one of the hotel’s available BBQ grills. Why not make your own feast?

Major Attractions

Wilder offered another helpful tidbit to help you determine what to do while on your vacation in Madison: “The more decisions that you are forced to make alone, the more you are aware of your freedom to choose.” In that spirit, the People’s Republic of Madison delivers many attractions to select from. Much of what Madison offers is packed into the isthmus between Lakes Monona and Mendota. The State Capitol rests high above the surrounding cityscape, with many of the city’s major avenues radiating outward from the domed edifice. No Madison vacation would be complete without a trek to the building’s observation deck—and be sure to admire the artwork that lines the rotunda on your way up.

State Street is a bustling hub of inventive eateries, energetic clubs, and eclectic shops perfectly situated between the capitol grounds and the university campus. The University of Wisconsin occupies a substantial area just to the west, with much of it lining the shores of Lake Mendota. You can go sailing, fishing, or even paddleboarding in the summer only a few hundred yards from where students are attending classes.

Recurring Festivals and Events

Summer kicks off in style in Madison—the grills are sizzling and loaded with bratwursts, burgers, and hot dogs during The World's Largest Brat Fest, held on Memorial Day weekend. Planning a trip at the tail end of summer? If you visit during Labor Day weekend, you can savor delectable treats offered by more than 100 food and beverage stands at Taste of Madison Festival. Music from three stages fills the air as visitors enjoy great local food, drink, and camaraderie.

Trust Travelocity to help you book your time in “the Berkeley of the Midwest.” Our excellent selection of affordable Madison hotels will keep you under budget—and check out our Madison vacation deals, which combine flights and lodging to offer even more value. The economics professors at the University of Wisconsin would surely award you an A+ for your wise purchase.

Frequently asked questions

Where to stay in Madison: Best areas for travelers