As the cold winter months approach, it can be hard to find ways to stay entertained.

But don’t worry—Illinois has plenty of fun activities for you and your family to enjoy this season!

From skiing down snowy slopes or ice skating on frozen ponds, there is something for everyone in Illinois during the wintertime.

Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure or indoor entertainment, here are some of the best things to do in Illinois this winter.

1. Ice Skating at Millennium Park in Chicago

Ice skating at Millennium Park in Chicago is one of the most fun activities you can do this winter.

Located in downtown Chicago, it’s a great place to spend an afternoon with family and friends.

The rink is surrounded by breathtaking views of the city skyline and Lake Michigan, making it an unforgettable experience.

With its central location, there are plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby for snacks or warm drinks after your skate session.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced skater, everyone will enjoy gliding around on the ice while taking in the stunning scenery!

2. Snowshoeing at Starved Rock State Park

Starved Rock State Park is the perfect place for a winter adventure. With nearly thirteen miles of trails, you can explore some of Illinois’ best scenery while snowshoeing.

Not only will you get to take in the beauty of the park’s canyon walls, but you may also spot some wildlife along your journey!

3. Enjoy the Winter Illuminations at The Morton Arboretum

The Morton Arboretum is a great place to explore during the winter months.

Every year they host their Winter Illumination event, where you can walk around the grounds and take in the beautiful light displays.

It’s a magical experience that you won’t soon forget. Plus, there’s an adult-only night version called Electric Illumuniation to check out too! Electric Illumination can be the perfect end to a fun adult-friendly day!

4. Ice Fishing on Lake Michigan

Ice fishing is a great way to spend time outdoors during the winter months. Head out to Lake Michigan for some of the best ice fishing in the region.

You can rent a shanty from one of the local companies, or bring your own equipment if you have it.

Either way, be sure to dress warm and have fun trying your luck! And while Lake Michigan offers some of the best fishing options, there are plenty of other lake options as well.

5. Skiing at Chestnut Mountain Resort

Chestnut Mountain Resort is the perfect place to hit the slopes this winter. With 20 trails and a terrain park, there’s something for everyone!

Whether you’re an experienced skier or just starting out, you’ll have a blast at this resort.

Plus, the views of the Mississippi River Valley are breathtaking and make for some great photo ops!

Not into skiing? There are plenty of other activities to participate in at the resort as well.

6. Take a Winter Hike Along The Riverfront Trail in Peoria

The Riverfront Trail in Peoria is a great spot for a winter hike. With its picturesque views of the Illinois River and surrounding wildlife, it’s an unforgettable experience.

You can even see bald eagles soaring overhead or white-tailed deer grazing in the fields near the trail.

So don’t forget to bundle up and take a peaceful stroll down the Riverfront Trail this winter.

7. Visit the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum is a great place to visit during the winter months.

Not only is it likely less busy, but the warm indoors will be a great reprieve during the harsh Illinois winters.

You can explore interactive exhibits, take in the beauty of their period gardens, or watch one of their award-winning films about Lincoln’s life and accomplishments.

There’s something for everyone at the museum – it’s sure to be an educational and enjoyable experience!


Illinois is a great place to visit this winter, with plenty of activities and attractions that are perfect for the cold weather season.

From ice fishing on Lake Michigan to snowshoeing at Starved Rock State Park, you’ll find something fun and exciting in Illinois.

No matter what activity you choose, make sure to bundle up and have an amazing time exploring all that Illinois has to offer during this special season!