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“This old capitol ain't what she used to be”

Wisconsin State Capitol
Ranked #2 of 96 things to do in Madison
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The majestic Roman Renaissance-style State Capitol has the only granite dome in the U.S. and inside has over 40 different types of stone from around the world as well as murals and handmade furniture. The observation deck, open in the summer, offers views of the city and surrounding lakes. Capitol Square plays host to state events throughout the year including Farmers Markets and Folk Festivals.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
67 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“This old capitol ain't what she used to be”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2013

If you go to Madison its hard to miss the capitol building and it is worth stopping for a short walking tour. The building is impressive, both is design and execution. The rotunda and the main hall are impressive, as are the grounds outside. Just go walk around, explore the floors and the views. Lately there have been (nearly) constant political protests going on, you can pretty much expect to see some of their (sometimes) nonsense. Stay clear of them! You could find yourself suddenly under arrest. Groups over twenty need a permit to have a protest these days. If any of the houses are in session you can pretty much count on not getting in to see them. But if your just there to see the architecture, then gaze away. If your shooting with a camera you need a tripod, its not the brightest lit building. And, long exposures will blur people and allow some of the subtle colors to come out. Kind of cool. On weekends you can park on the square, during the summer months there is the farmers market on Sat morning. During week days and Sat morning you will have to park off the square, the are ramps just outside the square, pretty much in every direction. After the protests started the hours have changed, early or late it is best to double check the opening and closing times. Its free, so that is good. There is usually (or at least it used to be) only one set of bathrooms open for the public. When someone "HAS TO GO!", you could be in trouble.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Jeff T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Madison, Wisconsin, United States
Level Contributor
65 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“One of the Best Capitols Around”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2013

Everytime I visit the Capitol in Madison, I'm in awe. Simply gorgeous, awe-inspiring and one of the most beautiful state capitols. Take the tour and learn about the interesting history of the WI State Capitol. Make sure to visit the observation deck for a grand view of the Isthmus, Madison lakes & beyond. And wave to Miss Wisconsin as you leave the Capitol grounds.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
Thank DebrahG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
13 reviews
“A must see for visitors to Madison”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2013

Not quite as grandiose as our nation's capitol building but exceeds most other state capitol buildings in beauty and stature. A lot of interesting information about the state and the city of Madison can be learned while visiting. It is a must see for visitors to Madison.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank zita49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
26 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“History, beauty, and free”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2013

I finally took my tour for the first time. tours are free, need to find out the times before your visit.
The tours I hear are different? so if you have been on one already, make sure to do it again with a different guide. They tell you a lot about WI, and history of the capitals. The Marble used to decorate the capital is from all over the world. And did I mention Free? My family and I spent around 90 min's just walking around on our own and having a tour. Some of the days, you can go up top and walk around on the observatory. See all of Madison from the top of the world. (360 degree look)

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Jim S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin, United States
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Don't miss the observation deck!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2013

Again, the price is right, in other words FREE! The art and architecture is great. Lately there has been a good amount of local culture to see. For example almost constant though small protests daily. But the best part for me (especially if you have kids) is the Observation deck accessible from the third or fourth floor. Great views of campus, the lakes, the capital area and the countryside!

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank ChrisGodar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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