Discover the Best of Summer: 10 Must-Do Activities in Naperville, IL
Naperville, Illinois, is a vibrant city that offers an array of exciting activities to make your summer memorable. From scenic parks to cultural events, this charming town has something for everyone. Whether you're a local resident or planning a visit, this guide will highlight 10 must-do activities in Naperville this summer. So, grab your sunscreen and get ready to explore the best of what this delightful city has to offer!
1. Explore the Riverwalk
No visit to Naperville is complete without a stroll along the picturesque Naperville Riverwalk. Spanning two miles, this beautifully landscaped pathway winds along the DuPage River, offering stunning views, lush gardens, and charming bridges. Pack a picnic or grab a coffee from one of the nearby cafes and relax by the river. Make sure to stop by the stunning Moser Tower and Millennium Carillon, a 160-foot bell tower that offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city.
2. Visit Naper Settlement
Immerse yourself in Naperville's rich history by visiting the Naper Settlement. This living history museum transports you back in time with its meticulously restored 19th-century buildings and costumed interpreters. Explore the charming Main Street, step inside historic homes, and learn about Naperville's early settlers. During the summer, the settlement hosts various events, including concerts and outdoor theater performances, providing a unique and educational experience for the whole family.
3. Enjoy a Day at Centennial Beach
Cool off on a hot summer day at Centennial Beach, a historic quarry turned community pool. With its sandy beach, crystal-clear waters, and diving boards, this family-friendly attraction offers hours of fun. Rent a paddleboat, challenge friends to a sand volleyball match, or simply soak up the sun on the spacious grassy areas. Don't miss the opportunity to take a refreshing dip in the historic stone quarry pool—a Naperville tradition!
4. Indulge in Local Dining
Naperville's culinary scene is a food lover's paradise, offering a diverse range of dining options. From trendy gastropubs to upscale restaurants, you'll find something to satisfy every craving. Explore Downtown Naperville, where numerous eateries line the streets, offering everything from international cuisine to mouthwatering desserts. Don't forget to try a scoop of ice cream from one of the charming local parlors. Sample the flavors of Naperville and treat your taste buds to a delightful summer dining experience.
5. Attend the Naperville Ale Fest
For beer enthusiasts, the Naperville Ale Fest is a must-visit event. This annual summer festival showcases the finest craft beers from local and regional breweries. With live music, food trucks, and a lively atmosphere, the festival offers a great opportunity to discover new brews and mingle with fellow beer lovers. Raise a glass and savor the flavors of summer at this popular event.
6. Discover Art and Culture
Naperville's thriving arts scene provides ample opportunities to explore and appreciate creativity. Visit the Naperville Art League, a vibrant gallery that features the works of local artists. If you're a fan of performing arts, catch a show at the Naperville Municipal Band Concerts or enjoy a performance at the Naperville Performing Arts Center. The city also hosts the annual Naperville Fine Art & Artisan Fair, where you can admire and purchase unique artworks.
7. Explore Whalon Lake
Nature lovers will appreciate the natural beauty of Whalon Lake. This scenic spot offers hiking trails, fishing opportunities, and serene picnic areas. Rent a kayak or paddleboard and explore the calm waters, taking in the tranquility of the surroundings. Keep an eye out for the abundant wildlife that calls the lake home, including birds, turtles, and even the occasional deer. Whalon Lake is a hidden gem for outdoor enthusiasts seeking relaxation and a connection with nature.
8. Attend the Naperville Independent Film Festival
Film aficionados shouldn't miss the Naperville Independent Film Festival. This annual event showcases a diverse range of independent films, providing a platform for emerging filmmakers to present their work. From thought-provoking documentaries to gripping narratives, the festival offers an opportunity to experience cinema beyond the mainstream. Engage in post-screening discussions, meet industry professionals, and gain insights into the art of filmmaking.
9. Discover Naperville's Golf Courses
For golf enthusiasts, Naperville boasts several exceptional golf courses. Challenge yourself to a round of golf at the Naperbrook Golf Course or Springbrook Golf Course, both known for their well-maintained greens and scenic layouts. Whether you're a seasoned golfer or a beginner, these courses offer a rewarding experience amidst lush landscapes and picturesque fairways. So, tee off and enjoy a relaxing day on the links.
10. Attend the Last Fling Festival
Wrap up your summer in Naperville by attending the Last Fling Festival, a four-day extravaganza that marks the end of the season. This community event features live music, carnival rides, a parade, and a fireworks display. Explore the vendor booths, sample local treats, and participate in the various activities and contests. The Last Fling Festival is a fantastic way to celebrate the end of summer and create lasting memories with family and friends.
Naperville, IL, is a destination that truly comes alive in the summer, offering a plethora of activities to suit every interest. From leisurely walks along the Riverwalk to immersing yourself in history at Naper Settlement, the city offers a delightful blend of natural beauty, cultural experiences, and community events. Whether you're a nature lover, food enthusiast, art aficionado, or simply seeking a fun-filled summer, Naperville has it all. So, plan your visit, soak up the sun, and create unforgettable memories in this charming Midwestern city.