9 Fun & Interesting Day Trips From Chicago

Here are nine of our favorite day trips, all within 3 hours from the Windy City with superb scenic driving routes and byways, interesting historic towns, and sensational state parks to explore.

It’s a favorite among hikers, with over 13 miles of trails where you can traverse through canyons and see waterfalls created by melting glaciers.

Starved Rock State Park, IL

It’s known for its stunning bluffs along the Galena River, its rich history dating back to the early 19th century, and warm, welcoming residents.

Galena, IL

This quirky city is about 2.5 hours from Chicago and is known for its arts scene, craft beer breweries, and unique attractions.

Kalamazoo, MI

Located in the heart of Illinois, Arthur is located less than 3 hours south of Chicago and is home to Illinois’ largest and oldest Amish community. There are no stoplights or billboards, and horse-drawn buggies are a common sight on the roads.

Arthur, IL

The city is known for its many historical sites and museums, including the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, which chronicles the life of America’s 16th president.

Springfield, IL

A small city with a number of historical sites, including the Kankakee Railroad Museum, which chronicles the history of the local railroads.

Kankakee, IL

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