Illinois is home to the amazing city of Chicago with world class shopping, shows, and museums but there is so much more to check out in Illinois than this one spectacular city. The mix of attractions and range of interests make Illinois an ideal spot for a getaway. Whether it is a family bonding weekend, outdoors adventure, a romantic rendezvous, or simply a chance to slip away Illinois has something great to offer.
Anyone who has ever driven through Illinois is sure to remark on the beauty of the landscapes with a mix of wheat fields and mountains forever displaying their seasonal charms. Those who cannot get enough of the beautiful outdoors will find Starved Rock State Park an ideal getaway destination. Their website touts their rating as the number one attraction in Illinois, and the range of offerings proves why. A state park with waterfalls, fishing, scenic vies, peaceful tranquility, and boating is a great getaway in itself. However, Starved Rock is also home to an amazing collection of art, which they call Art in the Park, consisting of many dead trees reborn in art through the skillful use of chainsaw chiseling. Outdoor activities from horseback riding to hunting and all that is between, along with nearby wineries to visit allow guests to stay as busy as they like. Hiking for all skill levels, and camping in tents or pampered stays in the beautiful lodge accommodate all varieties of nature lovers. This can easily be a romantic retreat or a family fun weekend with activities for everyone.
Bed and Breakfasts
There is something so cozy about sneaking away for a weekend stay at a bed and breakfast. Typically these places cater to other couples, making at an ideal escape from the kids and everyday responsibilities. Galena is a town beloved for its many bed and breakfast choices. Charm does not even begin to describe the area’s Main Street which has been recognized nationally for its beauty and preservation of a time gone by. While the look may be reminiscent of the past, the shops are vital and active offering a great place to shop, eat, and take in the art. Trolley cars play into the picturesque scene and also serve to transport wine lovers to nearby wineries. Spas, golf, river cruises, and live music make up the leisurely activities of Galena’s visitors. Eagle Ridge Resort is one of the favorite places to stay in Galena with unique options such as hot air ballooning, ice skating, and skiing.
Practically every outdoor park and big city in Illinois has a host of offerings for the kids, but there are also places that would fulfill any kid’s fantasy getaway. Rockford, Illinois is home to the Coco Key Water Resort. An indoor water park resort with heated pools, playgrounds, water slides, video arcades, and tennis courts is a great pick for the active family. Even in the chilly winter temperatures, guests can enjoy a tropical themed weekend getaway in Chicago. Eaglewood Resort is located in Itasca Illinois, home to Six Flag as well. This a great option for families who are planning to visit the theme park, as the resort caters to kids with over the top amenities such as bowling, basketball, kid’s camps, and poolside movies.
This is a destination in and of itself, which can easily stretch into a weeklong stay. However, the weekend visitor will never be bored with a range of museum offerings, incredible shopping, and endless dining. Weekend guests should take full advantage of their time in the city by staying on the Magnificent Mile at any of the luxury hotels that offer up the city’s feature destinations at one’s doorstep. The Drake Hotel is one of the area’s oldest and most celebrated hotels in term of luxury and elegance. Staying for a weekend should mean a splurge on a great room. A visit to the city would not be complete without at least one deep dish pizza, a steak dinner, seeing the Sears Tower, a show, and live music. If the kids are coming along the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum will offer hours of entertainment and learning.
The variety of weekend getaways to be found Illinois are truly incredible. One can choose a different adventure or retreat every weekend without leaving the state. Taking the kids is always an option with many family friendly choices, but going alone allows for full enjoyment of late night entertainment.
Burt Webbs is a freelance writer based in Galena, Illinois who enjoys studying historical landmarks. Burt has a passion for writing about Galena lodging, especially the historical www.anniewiggins.com.