Milwaukee was the last city we visited with my dad before he left us in Chicago to fly home. He’d been travelling with us for three weeks through Canada and northern USA.
As soon as we realised that there was a Harley Davidson Motorcycle Museum in Milwaukee (where the famous Harley movement was born) we knew we had to check it out. My dad and I are both massive motorbike fans so we set aside a whole morning to spend together visiting the museum while Michaela explored Milwaukee’s city centre.
The museum is awesome. Harley Davidson is the only vehicle manufacturer in the world that made sure to keep at least one of each motorcycle model they produced. This means there’s at least one motorbike each year dating back to 1903! You can check all of them out from close range and see how motorcycles evolved over the years.
For those who don’t know about HD’s history – check out the new series ‘Harley and the Davidsons’. It shows how the company has gone from glory to bankruptcy and back again, how they participated in WW1 and 2 and how a whole cult has now been created around the brand name.
If you’re ever in Chicago, USA its well worth the hour’s drive up to Milwaukee just to check out the museum. There’s heaps of different things to see including Harley art (a wall of fuel tanks, each one painted individually from a different year), unique and interesting bikes you’ve never seen on the roads before and even a Harley Davidson restaurant and brewery!
If you’ve got a Harley, you automatically become a HOG member and get free entry into clubs all over the world (including this museum). Very cool to see the way the company has marketed the brand and made it into something more than just a company that sells motorbikes.
You’ll even be able to touch and sit on all different sorts of bikes – thats me imagining myself riding into the sunset on route 66!
The last section of the museum is dedicated to custom bikes. There is a strong culture for Harley owners to completely customise their own bike however they like – something completely unique to HD. Unfortunately only members can enter this area.
There’s even a sort of outdoor museum right in front of the building – the museum gives free parking to anyone who arrives on a motorbike, so the parking lot is full of fancy, unique and historic motorbikes all day long.
On the other side of the street you’ll find the Harley Bar, where hundreds of riders and tourists stop to have a beer or something to eat. Some nights of the week you can enjoy a reasonably priced BBQ buffet here! Pretty cool.
My dad and I sat down to share a beer together before returning to pick up Michaela after a truly enjoyable morning. I can’t recommend the Harley Davidson Museum enough to those who love motorbikes of any kind.