Whether you’re just taking the L a couple stops or hitting the highway with the windows down (and Taylor Swift remasters blaring), day trips with roommates are a blast. And while there’s tons to do in Chicago, getting out of town once in a while can unlock entirely new worlds.
Residents of our Chicago homes have the city’s best at their fingertips — along with attainable rates, member benefits, and amenities like bike rooms, coworking spaces, onsite laundry, and more. Community is at the heart of life at Common, and day trips with roommates and other members are a great way to find your tribe while exploring new places this fall. So pack a bag, queue up Fearless, and hit the road with your roommates.
Northerly Island Park
About a 15-minute drive from The Loop, Northerly Island Park doesn’t quite constitute “getting out of town.” The 93-acre park–with hiking trails, fishing holes, and pretty solid sightseeing–sits on the edge of Lake Michigan, and also houses the Adler Planetarium as well as the Shedd Aquarium. If you’re looking to make the most of your day trip, pay a visit to the Field Museum which counts the world’s largest T-Rex as part of its science and technology-heavy collection.
Frank Lloyd Wright House and Studio
It doesn’t take a master’s in architecture to appreciate the works of legendary American architect Frank Lloyd Wright. In fact, all it takes is a 25-minute drive from Chicago to neighboring Oak Park to visit the architect’s home and studio. Guided tours of the home immerse visitors in the world that Wright created his works in, but the largest collection of Frank Lloyd Wright-designed structures can be seen without even stepping foot in the museum. Oak Park’s Historic District is home to 21 Wright designs, and their signature style makes them hard to miss. Our advice? Grab a round of hot chocolate and sip while you study Wright’s masterworks.
Our next fall day trip takes us to the 1,700 acre Morton Arboretum. Billed as a living museum, the arboretum comprises a maze garden, sculpture, and 16 miles of hiking trails. Events–like photography courses and nature writing seminars–are hosted by the Morton Arboretum, but for the full fall effect we suggest timing your visit to coincide with Illumination: Tree Lights at the Morton Arboretum which runs from late November through the new year. Green-thumbed roomies and those in need of some fresh air alike will appreciate the restorative qualities of the Morton.
Our last day trip is by far the most ambitious on this list: we’re headed to Holland! Holland, Michigan, that is. Two-and-a-half hours from Chicago (set your alarms early!) is a town that needs to be seen to be believed. Shaped by Dutch settlers, Holland’s architecture is largely reminiscent of, well, Holland. For the full Holland experience, grab a pastry from deBoer Bakkerij as soon as you touch down, then head to Windmill Island Gardens–a park situated at the base of a 250-year old Dutch windmill. This might be a lot of driving for a day trip, but it sure beats an international flight.
Chicago is a gateway to the midwest with so many day (or even half-day) trips that can be taken from the Second City. Tour our Chicago homes and start planning your next Chicago fall day trip.