Awash in corn fields, Illinois has more than meets the eye. Tucked into the Midwest, this vertically stretched state shares a border with five other states and the mighty Lake Michigan.
Before colonization, these lands were home to several Native American nations: the Cahokia, Kaskakia, Michigamea, Moingwena, Tamaroa, and Peoria. Many of the names of cities and counties in the region come from these tribes, including the name of the state, itself.
During the civil war, Illinois was one of the strongest fighters for the Union Army, becoming a safe zone for slaves who were making their way up through the Underground Railroad.
Surprisingly enough, Illinois is the fifth most populous state in the USA, thanks to huge Chicago in the northeastern corner. As the 21st state, Illinois joined the union in 1818.
Hang out in big, beautiful Chicago for a couple of days. There are endless opportunities to attend cultural events, go to museums, and take long walks down the city streets.
Out in the country, explore the woodlands, lakes and rivers that make Illinois so unique.
Flying into Chicago is probably your cheapest bet, though busses run into the city from many states across the nation. Once in Illinois you will probably need to rent a car.