5 Favorite Summer Activities to Do in Chicagoland

There’s a palpable shift in the air, and no, I’m not talking about all the dandelion snow piling up on the grass. I mean, what is the deal with that? 

I’m referring to the start of summer, only weeks away. That’s right, it’s summertime in the Windy City and surrounding areas, and there are plenty of ways to soak up the sun. 

Whether you’re a local or a tourist, today I present five favorite activities to do in Chicagoland during the summer months.

1. Lakefront Leisure

First off, if you’re not spending at least one summer day lounging by Lake Michigan, you’re doing Chicago wrong. 

This massive body of water has the uncanny ability to make you forget you’re in a bustling city. Stroll, bike, or rollerblade along the 18-mile Lakefront Trail, or simply lounge on one of the many beaches. 

Don’t forget to swing by Navy Pier for a classic Ferris Wheel ride, because who doesn’t love a good dose of nostalgia?

2. Festival Frenzy

Chicagoans, like moths to a flame, are drawn to outdoor summer festivals. It’s a science, and I’ve conducted studies and produced meta data. Actually, I haven’t, but still. 

The city offers a smorgasbord of summer street festivals, from foodie heaven Taste of Chicago to the tunes of Lollapalooza. Each neighborhood has its unique flair, so be sure to check out a few. 

3. Architectural Adventures

Architecture buffs, this one’s for you. 

The Chicago River Architecture Cruise is an absolute must-do and just for tourists. Not only do you get to chill on a boat (sailing, so fancy!), but you’re also treated to stories of the city’s rich architectural history. 

It’s a perfect combination of relaxation and education, like watching a National Geographic documentary from a hot tub.

4. Green City Market Treks

Visiting the Green City Market in Lincoln Park is like walking into a food-lover’s dream.

Every Wednesday and Saturday, farmers and artisan producers gather to sell fresh, local goodies. Don’t be surprised if you leave with bags brimming with rainbow chard, organic blueberry jam, and a newfound appreciation for artisanal cheeses.

By the way, there are farmers markets in neighborhoods throughout the city and suburbs. 

5. Starlit Cinema

Finally, if you’re a movie buff, you can’t miss the city’s Movies in the Park series.

Spread across various parks throughout the summer, it’s like Netflix but with fresh air and no need to dispute over what to watch. Just remember, BYOB – Bring Your Own Blanket!


Our Natural Goodness Gift Basket is a great companion for any of the above activities. Built in an elegant bamboo bowl, this basket features almonds, sea salt caramel chardonazyns, pistachios, cashews, veggie straws, and more. And all items are naturally gluten-free!   

About BasketWorks

BasketWorks is a woman-owned gift basket company located in the north suburbs of Chicago (specifically Northbrook, IL) since 1997. We are proud to offer a variety of gifts and gift baskets appropriate for all occasions. Each of our packages is built to order, allowing for customization at no additional cost to our clients. Contact us today!

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