The classic college spring break destination takes place on a beach and under the sun. Taking the entire family on a tropical adventure can become very costly and stressful. But, what if we told you it’s possible to plan your vacation right here in Chicago and the surrounding area? Have fun while saving money for the future! Checkexpress is here to help you navigate the city with the convenience of purchasing and loading your Ventra card.
Are you ready to explore your city like never before? Chicago has so much to offer and fun for the entire family! Be a tourist in your own city by visiting a museum, planning a city tour or venture outside the big city to a peaceful forest preserve…
Museums and Attractions
Chicago is home to some of the greatest museums. There is the Shedd Aquarium for all things aquatic and The Field Museum for the world’s largest (and most complete!) T.Rex. Don’t forget about the Museum of Science and Industry offering hands-on learning for visitors of all ages! BONUS: Chicago museums grant free admission throughout the year!
Welcome to the ledge and explore the city like never before! Step outside the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. At 1,353 feet in the air, the Ledge’s glass box extends out 4.3 feet from the Skydeck! https://theskydeck.com The Skydeck is located in The Willis Tower basically at the heart of downtown Chicago, with buildings and busy Chicago streets all around it.
360 Chicago, similar to the Skydeck, but with views over Lake Michigan and the city of Chicago. 360 Chicago is located the 94th floor of the 100-story John Hancock building. You have water on basically two sides, and Chicago on the others. Which one will you visit?
As one of the country’s finest zoological attractions, the Milwaukee County Zoo will educate, entertain and inspire you! Visit over 3,100 mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles in specialized habitats spanning 190 wooded acres. Explore educational wildlife shows, fun attractions and enticing special events. The Zoo is a place where everyone can laugh and learn — it’s a place to be amazed and inspired — a place where nature and wonder meet!
Outdoor Fun & Adventure
Troll Hunt at The Morton Arboretum
Journey through our far-reaching forest to hunt for six colossal trolls crafted from reclaimed wood by Danish artist Thomas Dambo. Marvel at these 15- to 30-foot-tall (and one 60-foot long) sculptures that have been created to serve as protectors of our environment.
Voted the #1 attraction in Illinois.
Starved Rock Park is a world apart from anything else in Illinois! You will feel the magic as soon as you enter the park as your car winds through the towering trees. Amazing waterfalls are active in the spring and after heavy rains. We have 13 miles of trails to explore and the Illinois River offers fishing (ice fishing, too), boating, extraordinary views and great places to relax. Visit the Lodge and see the largest two-sided fireplace in Illinois! Or for the full Park experience, stay in a cozy Lodge room or Cabin right inside the park! Starved Rock State Park is a free state park with no entrance fee.
Devil’s Lake State Park
Devil’s Lake State Park is visited by over 3 million visitors each year! This incredible state park offers on-site camping and private campgrounds. There’s more to explore in the Baraboo area! There’s an impressive amazing number of natural areas, bike trails, paddling opportunities & popular attractions within minutes of Devil’s Lake State Park. Enjoy plenty of small galleries, unique shops & family owned restaurants as well.
Lake Geneva Canopy Tours & Outdoor Adventure
Lake Geneva, WI.
Thrill-seekers can get their fix — and an ecology lesson — at Lake Geneva Canopy Tours & Outdoor Adventure Center, about 80 miles northwest of Chicago. Offering a 2.5 hour Zip Line Canopy Tour of the treetops, the expansive 100-acre property is also home to a High Ropes course made up of 16 suspended obstacles, and approximately 12 miles of Arbor Trails for hiking or biking. TreadHead Cycling, a local bicycling group, created paths using the natural terrain in keeping with LGCT’s Green Initiatives.
Wisconsin Dells, WI.
You’ll find the best indoor waterparks in Wisconsin Dells! The Dells is home to many incredible waterparks connected to world-class hotels and resorts. During spring break, no resort with an indoor water park is a cheap getaway. You’ll have to work the angles to get a deal. The best deals are for midweek stays at water parks outside the Dells. Visit Great Wolf Lodge or Wilderness Hotel and Golf Resort.
Before you go…
Prices, event dates, and hours vary, so be sure to check specific days and hours on their websites. You’ll also find up-to-date information on upcoming events and special deals!