Day Trips From Chicago

7 Of The Best Day Trips From Chicago

While Chicago is a fun destination in and of itself, consider an adventure outside of the city limits. Try these day trips from Chicago for a change of pace and to see a different side of the region.

If you need a break from the busy metropolis then the good news is there’s plenty of half-day, overnight and day trips to discover.

Best Day Trips From Chicago

1. Madison

This picturesque city is the perfect escape for a day trip. For cheese lovers, this city is crowned as the cheese capital of Wisconsin, from local artisan cheeses to an oasis of craft beers. A truly indulgent day.

Lake Monona is the perfect spot to catch the sunset, and view the beautiful skyline! Also be sure to visit the Terrace at Memorial Union, where you can enjoy brats, beer, and live music during the summer months.

2. Fennville

This is the perfect day trip year-round, however summer is the best time: this is when peaches and cherries are ripe for picking. The petite town of Fennville offers bakery-restaurant houses, antique-strewn converted barns, and timbered cider houses.

Photo cred: mattdalman

3. Rockford

Only 100 miles northwest of Chicago, Rockford is a great family day trip; a visit to the Discover Center Museum is a must!

To experience the true beauty of nature, wander the grounds of Anderson Japanese Gardens, walk through towering trees, waterscapes and beautiful blossoms.

Photo cred: andersonjapanesegardens

4. Grand Rapids

Summer and fall are peak seasons to visit Grand Rapids. Regardless of when you go, Grand Rapids has you covered on the beer front with an endless amount of local craft breweries.

5. Michigan Wine Country

Giving Sonoma and Napa a run for their money, this region is quickly becoming a thriving hub for vineyards and wineries, with over 20 different wineries in Southwest Michigan.

Photo cred: peninsulacellars

6. Starved Rock State Park

The hiking trails are some of the best in all of the US with some challenging trails for experienced hikers.

Starved Rock State Park featured a whopping 18 canyons each distinct and beautiful in their own way. A true nature lover’s paradise, Starved Rock State Park is not to be missed.

day trips from Chicago

7. Holland

Holland is known worldwide for its famous Tulip Time Festival, a celebration of Dutch heritage. Tour the DeZwaan Windmill, learn how to Klompen dance at Nelis’ Dutch Village, and tiptoe through the tulips at Veldheer Tulip Farm. 

day trips from Chicago

Photo cred: wanderluv

Siobhan McKenny