Located just 94 minutes from downtown Chicago, this beautiful state park offers tons of activities to suit any day-tripper’s fancy. Depending on the season, you’ll find ample bird-watching, fishing, and even hunting throughout the park. Starving Rock is also home to 200 different species of wildflowers, and with plenty of hiking and trails, you’ll get to see all of them.
Join the Walker’s Club that departs from the lodge every Thursday at 9:00am, or if you come on the right weekend, they offer themed guided hikes like Winter Wilderness Weekend, Wildflower Pilgrimage, and Fall Colors Weekend. If you decide to stay the night, you’ll have plenty of cozy cabins to select from as well as several on-site restaurants in which to dine.
Door County, Wisconsin
About 230 miles from Chicago, Door County has an enormous range of appealing activities. Numerous parks offer hiking trails and bike paths, or check out the limestone sea caves at Cave Point County Park. You’ll also get to see one of the last five beaches in the world covered in white limestone rocks on Schoolhouse Beach on Washington Island (just a ferry ride away).
Depending on your mood, your interests, and the time of year, the Door County Visitor’s Bureau’s website (www.doorcounty.com) offers suggested itineraries along with information about local businesses, attractions, lodging, and dining.