You don't have to travel far for incredible dining options, fantastic shops, and exciting entertainment. St. Charles, Illinois offers all of this, and more, and it's right in your own backyard. Instead of dealing with the headache of traveling a far distance for your Spring Break getaway, plan a Staycation right here in this city, and enjoy some terrific activities that you may even be trying for the very first time.
Home Away from Home
The beauty about staycations is that you have the flexibility to do whatever you want. While some people choose to stay home, others like to treat themselves to a night out. We recommend staying at one of the 10 lodging options that this city offers. This way, you feel like you really are away from home, and can solely focus on days packed with activities. Below are the excellent places that you can stay at throughout St. Charles:
Photos Courtesy of Brigette Burgman Photography, Courtyard by Marriott, Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott, and Hilton Garden Inn
Best Western - 1635 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174
Courtyard by Marriott - 700 Courtyard Dr., St. Charles, IL 60174
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott - 2096 Bricher Rd., St.Charles, IL 60174
Geneva Motel - 100 S. Tyler Rd., St. Charles, IL 60174
Hampton Inn - 2875 Foxfield Rd., St. Charles, IL 60174
Hilton Garden Inn - 4070 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174
Holiday Inn Express - 155 38th Ave., St. Charles, IL 60174
Hotel Baker - 100 W. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174
Quality Inn & Suites - 1600 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174
Super 8 - 1520 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174
Now that you're all settled in to where you are staying, it's time to start planning out days jammed-pack with activities!
Taste the City
One of the best things about taking a trip is trying different cuisines of where you're visiting. This is a perfect opportunity to spend some time trying spots in St. Charles that you may haven't had a chance to try, even if they've been at the top of your list. Here are some restaurants that are sure to give your trip some flavor.
Photos Courtesy of Coroco Coffee
You've got a full day of activities ahead of you, so you'll need to fuel up with breakfast! Coroco Coffee is a great spot right on First Street to get your morning cup of joe, as well as baked goods such as scones and muffins to go with it. Being right downtown, this female-owned boutique coffee roastery is in walking distance of some shops and other activities to fill your day with.
Photos Courtesy of Brigette Burgman Photography and Kava Diem
Situated right by the Fox River, Kava Diem can help you start your day with an organic, grass-fed, sustainable breakfast, including favorites like their "Can't Beet it Avocado Toast". They also pair with local coffee roasters who provide them with direct, fair trade coffee beans, and offer a full vegan menu. After you've got your fill, you'll already be right next to the Fox River Trail to take a nice morning stroll.
A Made in St. Charles award recipient, Smitty's on the Corner is the go-to place to pick up a delicious sandwich for lunch, made with only the freshest ingredients. This has been a staple in the community for some time, and for good reason, too! You won't find sandwiches like this anywhere else in the area, and their pickles that they make in-house with an over 100 year old recipe are the "cherry-on-top" of the meal.
Photos Courtesy of Brigette Burgman Photography
Take some time to relax mid-day and head over to Gia Mia on First Street. Here, you can find some of the best wood-fired pizza in the area, as well as pastas, salads, a wide selection of wines and more. During lunch (11am-3pm), they have a special menu where you can get an entire meal for only $13.
Photos Courtesy of Shakou
One of OpenTables Top 100 Hottest Restaurants in America in 2016, Shakou should certainly be on your list of restaurants to try on this Staycation, as you can enjoy an award-winning sushi meal. With a stylish interior decor, and a menu filled with unique rolls, this is the perfect way to spend a special a night out.
Photos Courtesy of Club Arcada Speakeasy
Go back in time to the "Roaring 20's" at the Club Arcada Speakeasy. Not only is this a fun atmosphere to dine at, but they have offer delicious culinary creations, like their "Charlie Chaplin Chicken", and a large variety unique, hand crafted cocktails. They frequently host live entertainment for you to experience while enjoying your meal.
Photos Courtesy of Kimmer's Ice Cream
Add some sweetness to your trip and stop by Kimmer's Ice Cream! You can taste the difference in their ice cream, as it's all homemade and in small-batches. With fun flavors that are always rotating like "Yellow Cake Batter" that you can get on one of their fresh-baked "Sparkle Cones", a stop at Kimmer's Ice Cream is always a treat.
Photos Courtesy of Mochinut
If you like donuts, you are going to absolutely love Mochinut's Mochi Donut - a mix between an American donut and Japanese Mochi. With it's unique shape and wonderful texture, you'll be hooked after eating just one. Make sure that you wash it down with one of their refreshing bubble teas, too!
Photos Courtesy of The Lewis
Named after St. Charles' first mayor, The Lewis is this town's premier cocktail, wine and whiskey lounge right in the heart of downtown. The Lewis offers a vintage, 70's feel and has an impressive menu of incredible drinks, including a variety of non-alcoholic cocktails, as well.
Photos Courtesy of Brigette Burgman Photography and The Wine Exchange
Sit back and relax with a bottle of wine at The Wine Exchange this Staycation. The Wine Exchange frequently hosts live music and wine tastings (click here to view upcoming events), and offer wine and spirits by the glass, as well as by the bottle. Pair a glass with one of their gourmet boards and dips, and you've got yourself an excellent afternoon.
Explore the Shops
Now that you've got your fill of some tasty food and drinks, it's time to shop. You can't go on vacation without bringing something back home, and St. Charles is filled with unique shops that offer products that you just can't find anywhere else. Here are some places you have to explore during your Staycation.
Photos Courtesy of The Pep Line
Located inside one of St. Charles' oldest buildings, The Pep Line has everything that you need if you're planning on giving your home a makeover. From furniture, artwork, rugs, and much more, all their products are "designer approved". Right now, their Spring Collection is now available online and in-store, and is the perfect way to bring the season into your home.
Photos Courtesy of Brigette Burgman Photography
Located inside the St. Charles History Museum, is where you'll find the Curious Fox Gift Shop. If you're looking for something to bring back to remember this Staycation, this the place to go. They carry a wide-range of items that showcase this city, such as t-shirts, home goods, and prints. This is an ideal chance to visit the History Museum, too, and learn about how St. Charles came to be.
Photos Courtesy of Double Take Consignment
You never know what you'll stumble upon at Double Take Consignment. Filled with quality clothes and accessories for both adults and children, as well as toys, books and more, you'll have a blast exploring every inch of this store. There is a lot to look at, but their friendly, experienced is staff is there to help you find what you're looking for and to answer any questions that you may have.
Photos Courtesy of Ghoulish Mortals
Looking for a scare? Ghoulish Mortals is Chicagoland's only retail monster and horror store that offers unique artist-created merchandise that you just can't find anywhere else. From art prints, stickers, and jewelry, this shop is a great time that everyone will love, as long as you don't mind a little bit of a spook!
What Do You Look Forward to Most When Going on Vacation?
- Trying New Restaurants
- Going Shopping
- Spending Time Outdoors
- Seeing Live Entertainment
Have Some Fun
With both food and shopping all planned out for your Spring Break Staycation, next up is figuring some activities to put on your calendar. St. Charles offers tons of way you can have some fun, and with there being so much, you may even find something you've never done before. Below are some excellent activities that will make your Staycation a memorable one.
Rent a Bike from Sammy's Bikes
Photos Courtesy of Sammy's Bikes and Brigette Burgman Photography
Want to explore the trails but don't have a bike? There's no reason to worry. At Sammy's Bikes, you can rent a variety of different bikes for the day, including road bikes and mountain bikes. Once you've got your ride, pedal on over to the Fox River Trail that runs right by the shop and enjoy the ride.
Create at Board & Brush
Photos Courtesy of Board & Brush