Fall is a wonderful time to visit Illinois. The cooler weather, paired with its natural beauty, is what keeps visitors coming back again and again. The kinds of fall celebrations in most states in the midwest include corn mazes, apple picking, drinking apple cider, and even those delicious apple cider doughnuts. Outside of those classic autumn attractions, Illinois also has some unique activities to check out. Illinois residents are lucky enough to be aware of the awesome activities in their area, but visitors will be pleased to know about the interesting activities on this list. Check out these must-visit places in Illinois this fall.
1. Fright Fest at Six Flags Great America
There are many states throughout the country that are home to a Six Flags Amusement Park, Illinois included. A highlight of autumn in Illinois, for those looking for a more thrilling experience, is visiting Six Flags for their Fright Fest celebration, located in Gurnee, Illinois. Throughout the fall, the amusement park hosts spooky-themed events and hires on costumed ghouls that jump out and scare visitors on their way to ride roller coasters and eat funnel cakes. Fright Fest is surely a thrilling experience for visitors this fall.
2. Take A Scenic Drive
There are many long roads in Illinois that offer travelers unique, scenic views, especially during fall. The leaves changing colors gives a really lovely backdrop to an already beautiful drive. Some popular favorites are the route on the Illinois River Road Scenic Byway or the Grandview Drive in Peoria, Illinois. We would recommend packing a picnic to take along, pulling aside to a rest area with tables, or perhaps even setting down a picnic blanket to stretch out your legs while you enjoy your lunch.
3. Morton Pumpkin Festival
Since Illinois is home to so much farmland, of course, there are a number of pumpkin growers in the state that provide much of the pumpkins sold in stores throughout the country during fall. Morton, Illinois is commonly known as the Pumpkin Capitol of the United States, because they produce about ninety-five percent of canned and packaged pumpkins in the country. Morton hosts an annual pumpkin festival that is a local favorite. The festival features contests like ‘the largest pumpkin’ as well as an array of pumpkin-flavored foods. There are few things that will get you in the autumn state of mind like a pumpkin festival.
4. Hot Air Balloon Festival
Hot Air Balloon Festivals are a wonderful activity for adults and families alike. The majority of these events are free or extremely low cost, making them great options for a group. Illinois is lucky to be home to a number of hot air balloon festivals throughout the fall. These include the Touchstone Energy Balloon Festival in Shelbyville, the Centralia Balloon Festival, and the Harvard Balloon Festival in Harvard, Illinois. Consider showing up early to beat the crowd and get a good spot, and set up a picnic blanket with some snacks for an ultimate visual spectacle in the sky.
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