2024 Illinois Visitors Guide
Illinois has everything for visitors. Foremost is the city of Chicago with its fantastic museums and cultural scene. Must-sees include the Museum of Science and Industry and the Brookfield Zoo. Go to Peoria and visit the nearby historic town of Galena. Here, you can take a riverboat cruise on the Mississippi River. Southeast Illinois is home to the city of Champaign, beautiful Lake Shelbyville, and the Upper Mississippi National Wildlife and Fish Reserve. In Southwest, Illinois don’t miss the city of Springfield and the Lincoln Home National Historic Site.
Chicagoland Visitors Guide
As the name implies, this area of Illinois encompasses not just the city of Chicago but the surrounding area as well, offering a wealth of traveler services and attractions. Located in the Northeastern corner of the state, Chicagoland is also home to such notable cities as Joliet, Des Plaines, Schaumburg, Skokie, and many other small towns that help to give the area its distinct flavor. The city of Joliet features a number of historic attractions including a defunct Iron Works site and a Historical Museum chronicling the area’s past. Joliet is also the place to book boat cruises on the Illinois River. The town of Skokie boasts a Sculpture Park with two miles of parkland that is adorned with 60 contemporary art installations. Nearby Schaumburg regales visitors with the Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament, a recreation featuring knights and damsels in addition to an old-fashioned feast. The town of Des Plaines is home to a replica of the first McDonald’s restaurant, complete with a 1950s-style kitchen and antique cars parked outside. And, of course, Chicago offers a range of attractions that include the Sears Tower, the Brookfield Zoo, and the Museum of Science and Industry.
Quad Cities Visitors Guide
Located on the northwestern border of Illinois, the Quad Cities area consists of Rock Island, Moline and East Moline in Illinois and Davenport and Bettendorf in Iowa. Although the area was originally an amalgam of four towns, growth has bolstered the population of Moline and in turn, raised the number of local attractions and traveler services available. The Ben Williamson Park in Rock Island is home to free water ski shows put on by the Backwater Gamblers Water Skiers, a group of stunt performers in the area. The city of Moline boasts the Taste of the Quad Cities, an annual waterfront festival that showcases local chefs and cuisine along with live entertainment and fireworks. The John Deere Pavilion in Moline is another draw for visitors to the Quad Cities and features a history of the man as well as the farm implements that bear his name.
Chicago is a major cultural center and has a multitude of attractions for visitors. Among the many excellent museums in Chicago is the Museum of Science and Industry. Be sure to ascend the Sears Tower and don’t miss Chicago’s renowned Brookfield Zoo. While in Chicago be sure to visit the shore of Lake Michigan—the downtown Chicago skyscrapers and the lake helps make for an impressive skyline. The lakeshore also offers beaches and other water activities.
Springfield Visitors Guide
The area surrounding Springfield features a number of Illinois attractions that are not to be missed. History is well represented in the area, with different museums dedicated to everything from funeral customs to gas stations. The Illinois State Museum can be found in Springfield and offers visitors a comprehensive look at the history and people of Illinois. There is also a Fire Museum in Springfield dedicated to the men and women who risk all in the face of emergencies. Families enjoy the Knight’s Action Park and Carribean Water Adventure, a dual amusement park that features carnival rides in addition to a waterpark. Jungle ‘O’ Fun is another local children’s favorite with three stories of soft playground equipment, slides, a ball pit and more. The Greater Springfield Area also features a number of parks and green spaces that offer visitors picnicking, hiking, biking and more.
East St. Louis Visitors Guide
East St. Louis is located just across the river from the city of St. Louis, Missouri. This unique border location provides a good base for travelers in the area, opening a wealth of amenities, services, and attractions in both Illinois and Missouri. The area around East St. Louis includes towns such as Edwardsville and O’Fallon, each with its own allure for visitors. The Scott Air Force Base is a big part of the community in O’Fallon and is active in local events. One of O’Fallon’s annual festivals is May Fest each spring, which features live entertainment, food concessions and more. The Southern Illinois University can be found in nearby Edwardsville, a town that is also home to the Madison County Administrative offices. For local entertainment, free concerts in Edwardsville can be enjoyed Thursday nights during the summer as part of the Arts-in-the-Park series.