10 great day trips from Chicago that deliver nature, culture and superb food

Posted July 8, 2024

WBEZ Chicago Banner 2024

Laruen Viera, WBEZ Chicago

Even if you live for summer in the greatest city on the planet, breaks are warranted. Whether you’re escaping big festivals that choke downtown or the Democratic National Convention’s swarm of lanyards, there are plenty of roads less traveled that are worth taking.

Grab tickets to the American Players Theatre a few miles east: a truly lovely amphitheater with exceptional theater productions and free concerts during summer weekdays. Even more bizarre than Taliesin’s history is House on the Rock: a literal house built onto the chimney of a rock. For a cozy breakfast or lunch, “I love the Spring Green General Store!” says City Lit Books owner Stephanie Kitchen, who often passes through while visiting extended family in the Driftless region. “There is a cute downtown area that includes a great local bookstore/cafe, Arcadia Books. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention it!”

Find Full List Here