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30 Best & Fun Things To Do In Galena (Illinois)

Nestled in the hills and valleys of Illinois sits the quaint city of Galena.

This former mining town and home to our 18th president, Ulysses S. Grant, is a great little tourist town with so much to see and do.

Packed with significant historical sites as well as several breathtaking natural settings, it’s truly a midwestern gem.

Known for its historical 19th-century architecture as well as a smattering of pristinely restored museum-esque homes and mansions, there’s so much history to guzzle up when in town.

Other notable things to do in Galena include art centers, theaters, outdoor adventures, and beyond.

If you’re looking for more of a chill vibe while in town, you’re in luck.

Galena is also home to world-class spas, an epic golf course, magnificent vineyards, and incredible shopping.

Finally, Galena is a town known for its incredible eateries, thrilling mountain resorts, and parks aplenty.

If you’re considering a visit to this awesome Illinois city, take a look at some of the many reasons you should book your trip now.

Things To Do In Galena, IL

1. Ulysses S. Grant Home

Ulysses S. Grant Home

Gabrielle Hovey / Shutterstock

This state’s historic site was home to the 18th U.S. president.

If you’re looking for interesting things to see in Illinois, be sure to check out this attraction.

Interestingly, the house was gifted to Grant upon his return to Galena from his heroic duties during the Civil War.

At the time the house was gifted to Grant, it was fully furnished, with the same furnishings that remain in the home today.

Notably, the home opened for tours to the public in 1904 and has been a mainstay on the Galena travel circuit ever since.

Within the Ulysses S. Grant Home you can enjoy a 30-minute guided tour.

You’ll experience Grant’s living quarters as well as decor, furnishings, and aesthetics relative to the late 19th century.

A unique slice of history, the Ulysses S. Grant House is one of the coolest places to visit when in Galena.

What’s more, it’s a great site to see with history buffs as well as children and adults alike.

Address: 500 Bouthillier St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

2. Galena History Museum

Galena History Museum

Galena History Museum

The Galena History Museum is a great place to learn about the history of Daviess County wherein Galena is situated.

Housed in the old Masonic Lodge of Galena’s Main Street, the museum sits central to the Galena business district.

Within this small establishment, you can explore archives and exhibits that share artifacts concerning the founding of Daviess County up to the present day.

Of note, the museum is chock full of educational and entertaining artifacts that tell the history of Daviess County.

Current exhibits showcase the historic rail system and pioneering tools among many other subjects.

The society impeccably preserves the more-than-200-year-old history of the quaint community known as Daviess County.

Open seven days a week, you can easily visit the small museum today or this weekend.

Furthermore, there is no cost for admission so it’s one of the few free things to do in town.

If you’re wondering what to see when you’re in town, be sure to visit the Galena History Museum.

Address: 211 S Bench St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

3. Chestnut Mountain Resort

Chestnut Mountain Resort

Chestnut Mountain Resort

One of the most beautiful destinations near Chicago, Chestnut Mountain Resort is a Galena mountain resort like no other.

Despite being incredibly popular during the winter months, Chestnut Mountain Resort has outdoor activities available during all four seasons.

Of note, Chestnut Mountain Resort provides guests with warm and welcoming lodging suitable for the whole family or even a romantic getaway.

Each of the hotel rooms offers sweeping views of the gorgeous mountainside which means any room is a great choice.

As for recreation, during the winter months, Chestnut Mountain Resort is a popular slopeside destination.

With skiing, snowboarding, and a mountain bike trail system, the resort offers an epic setting for winter sports aplenty.

During the summer months, the mountain is home to an alpine slide, ziplining, river cruises, segway tours, and more.

Moreover, the resort is home to an awesome mountainside restaurant serving up delicious eats and libations.

If you’re interested in incredibly fun places to go in the Galena area, be sure to pay a visit to Chestnut Mountain Resort.

Address: 8700 W Chestnut Mountain Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

4. Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site

Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site

IvoShandor, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This Greek revival house located in the heart of Galena, Illinois opened in 1845 and has been a mainstay on the city’s historical circuit ever since.

Built in 1843 for a prominent local attorney, congressman, and advisor to Presidents Lincoln and Grant, Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site is of political and historical repute.

Noted as the first prominent Republican in Galena, Washburne was a trailblazer who played an integral role in political matters of the time.

Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site is symbolic of Washburne’s political and economic clout.

Every turn in this museum-like home depicts pomp and circumstance.

Great entryway pillars, incredible hallways, private rooms, an opulent receiving parlor, and servants’ quarters are just some of the images you can interact with during a tour of the Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site.

Significantly, the house has been restored and preserved to capture a true image of its aesthetic when it was once occupied by Washburne.

One of the best Galena attractions, be sure to carve out a place on your itinerary for the Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site.

Address: 908 3rd St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

5. Chicago Athenaeum

Chicago Athenaeum

Chicago Athenaeum

The Chicago Athenaeum is a unique Galena museum that houses a niched focus: architecture and design.

Specifically, the museum is home to a wide array of artifacts that encompass all disciplines germane to architecture and design: industrial, graphics, landscape, and urban design are just a few of the areas you can learn about during a visit to the Chicago Athenaeum.

Laudably, the museum’s mission is to educate the public about this focused yet interesting field of study.

Of note, some of the museum’s collections share exhibits on Chicago architecture, European furniture, ethnographic art, Japanese graphics, and beyond.

Some of the mediums showcased in the museum include books, photographs, drawings, and publications among others.

Furthermore, over the years, the museum has hosted countless traveling exhibits so you never know what might be on display while you’re in town.

One of the most astounding places to go when you’re in Galena, you won’t be disappointed in a visit to the Chicago Athenaeum.

Address: 601 S Prospect St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

Visiting other parts of Illinois? Why not check out some of the best things to do in Chicago?

6. P.T. Murphy Magic Theater

According to locals and tourists alike, the P.T. Murphy Magic Theater is the best theater experience in Galena, Illinois.

This magic show is delivered in an intimate, 24-seat setting that makes for an incredible night.

One of the most romantic things to do, the P.T. Murphy Magic Theater makes for a perfect date night activity.

Situated in the heart of historic, downtown Galena, the show is hosted by local celebrity, P.T. Murphy who is both the proprietor and headlining act.

Murphy is known for his engaging style, endearing personality, and incredible illusions.

His shows are delivered with a slick sense of humor and mystifying professionalism that will leave you scratching your head.

Tickets to the show should be purchased in advance and the spectacle lasts for just over an hour without intermission.

A P.T. Murphy Magic Theater show is the perfect way to kick off or end your date night, leaving plenty of time before or afterward for a local bite to eat.

If you’re in the market for unique stuff to do when you’re in Galena, be sure to get your tickets for a P.T. Murphy Magic Theater show.

Address: 204 Hill St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

7. Casper Bluff Land and Water Reserve

Casper Bluff Land and Water Reserve

Michael John Maniurski / Shutterstock

Situated adjacent to the Mississippi River, the Casper Bluff Land and Water Reserve is one of the most picturesque places to visit.

The reserve sits on 170 acres of incredible land that’s even dubbed an “archaeologically significant site.”

Known for the Aiken Mound Group, a group of archaeological mounds that were founded in the early 1900s, the reserve is the setting for some truly magnificent sights.

With a whopping 51 documented formations, the mounds run the gamut from wall-shaped to cylindrical and all are naturally-occurring wonders.

What’s more, the preserve is home to a teaching forest where you can bring your whole family to learn about and explore local forestry.

A bird sanctuary and water preserve are other park facets that act as a big draw to the Casper Bluff Land and Water Reserve.

One of the best ways to spend some time outdoors with friends and family, be sure your trip to Galena includes a visit to Casper Bluff Land and Water Reserve.

Address: 870 S Pilot Knob Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

8. Dowling House

Dowling House

Chris Light at en.wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

One of the coolest places to visit when in Galena is the historic Dowling House.

Of note, this historic site is the town’s oldest house; it was built in 1826 by John Dowling, thus the name.

Constructed of limestone, the house was once a bustling trading post.

Outfitted with bunk rooms, the Dowling Host historically hosted tradesmen from far and wide.

Today, the house is restored to its original outfittings making it a unique site to visit.

When visiting the Dowling House, you’ll be treated to a brief history of Galena by knowledgeable tour guides.

Additionally, you’ll have an opportunity to peruse the house which will give you a taste of what life was like in historic Illinois.

The house is packed with interesting artifacts and relics of yesteryear.

Pay the Dowling House a visit if you’re looking for free things to do.

Address: 220 Diagonal St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

9. Galena Golf Club

Galena Golf Club

Galena Golf Club

One of the most beautiful tourist attractions in Galena is the Galena Golf Club.

This 18-hole historic golf club is the perfect destination for the golf lovers in your group.

Situated just outside Galena, the club was established in 1927 as a small-scale course with just nine holes.

Since that time, the course has been renovated and expanded upon several times.

Today the impressive course features pristinely manicured greens ranging in difficulty level with a par-71 layout.

The Galena Golf Club is also home to a state-of-the-art pro shop featuring equipment, apparel, and beyond.

Furthermore, the club is home to the Galena Golf Club Grill where you can enjoy tasty bites such as burgers, salads, and french fries.

If you’re wondering what to do in Galena in the way of outdoor activities, consider scheduling a tee time at the Galena Golf Club.

Address: 11557 US Hwy 20 W, Galena, IL 61036, United States

10. West Street Sculpture Park

West Street Sculpture Park

West Street Sculpture Park

Galena’s West Street Sculpture Park sprawls across two acres of a beautiful open-space park.

The park features more than a dozen steel sculptures dispersed about the park.

All of the sculptures featured within the park are the work of one man: local artist John Martinson.

Each of the sculptures is outfitted with an informational plaque that details the work’s name and year of conception.

Some of the sculptures include a 40-foot tower and an obtrusive Tinkertoy among others.

Notably, the park is open each day from dawn to dusk and it’s one of the few free things to do in town.

Tours of the park are self-guided although maps are available to help you best navigate the artwork.

Another interesting fact about the park is that Martinson keeps a studio on-site; if you’re lucky enough to visit while he’s at work, this is a bonus to what will prove an interesting visit in the first place.

Address: 620 S W St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

Exploring other areas of Illinois? Why not check out some of the things to do in Springfield, IL?

11. Galena Center for the Arts

Galena Center for the Arts

Galena Center for the Arts

Illinois is fraught with artsy attractions to visit, but the Galena Center for the Arts is a top choice.

One of the top 10 places to see in town, the center makes art accessible to all.

Notably, the center features an array of art mediums as well as incredible exhibits, educational programs, workshops, and art for sale.

The atmosphere is inviting and colorful making a visit to the center one of the best places to visit in town.

Current exhibits include the works of local, regional, and youth artists as well as historic artwork.

In addition to in-person exhibits, the center also hosts virtual exhibits, truly living up to its mission of making art accessible to all.

In addition to physical art, the center also hosts performing artists.

Show types include table readings, short plays, and musical presentations as well as others.

Check out the center’s event calendar to plan your visit; with so many things to see in one place, you won’t want to miss your opportunity to visit.

Address: 971 Gear St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

12. Miss Kitty’s Grape Escape

If you’re looking for cool things to do when you’re in Illinois, be sure to visit Miss Kitty’s Grape Escape.

This adults-only attraction is a local watering hole that provides you with the makings for a great night out.

Miss Kitty’s Grape Escape is first and foremost a cocktail lounge serving up a full monty of spirits; from delicious wines to tasty martinis and everything in between, Miss Kitty’s Grape Escape has it all.

Best of all, the lounge has a great food menu, serving delicious appetizers and desserts.

Fan favorites include the cheese and meat tray, the salmon wrap, and the homemade pie of the day.

What’s more, Miss Kitty’s Grape Escape provides live entertainment every weekend, year-round.

Other fun weekly events include Sunday Funday, Open Mic Night, and Quiz Nights.

If you’re looking for ideas to have some adult fun, be sure to visit Miss Kitty’s Grape Escape; it’s the perfect spot for couples on a date night or just to gather with friends.

Address: 242 N Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

13. The Old Blacksmith Shop

If you’re wondering what to do in the way of historical attractions, be sure to check out The Old Blacksmith Shop.

Established in 1897, it’s a working shop with functioning forges.

Packed with historical tools that date back 100 years, the shop is stocked with local tools and mechanical devices.

During tours of The Old Blacksmith Shop, there’s always a historian on-site to regale you with historical tidbits about the art of blacksmithing, Galena history, and information about the relics you’ll observe.

Best of all, during a visit to The Old Blacksmith Shop, you’ll have the opportunity to “watch sparks fly” as blacksmiths forge new tools.

Both a museum and a shop, admission to The Old Blacksmith Shop allows you to meander tool displays, shop for hand-forged tools to purchase, and enjoy the craft of blacksmithing in action.

One of the most unique points of interest with historical repute, a visit to The Old Blacksmith Shop is highly recommended.

Address: 245 N Commerce St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

14. Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery

Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery

Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery

Established by the Lawlor family of vintners in 1976, Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery has been an Illinois mainstay since its inception.

Since opening their first winery, the Lawlors have opened two subsequent wineries in 1980 and 1983 respectively.

Today, the Lawlors offer tours of both the vineyard and the winery, both of which make for a pretty awesome day.

The downtown cellar location offers wine tastings, small bites, and cellar tours.

A visit to the vineyard is an altogether different experience.

Set amid a picturesque countryside, the vineyard is a great way to get outdoors to enjoy some of the most epic natural views.

During a visit to the vineyard, you can enjoy wine tastings, meander the grounds, and even enjoy live music and other fun events.

Finally, the vineyard is home to a sweet cottage that you can reserve for a few nights; this experience is second to none.

If you’re looking for something great to do this weekend, Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery is your best option.

Address: 4746 N Ford Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

15. Blaum Bros. Distilling Co.

Blaum Bros. Distilling Co.

Blaum Bros. Distilling Co.

Blaum Bros. Distilling Co. is a local distillery that makes some of the best spirits in the midwest.

Founded in 2013, the distillery was established by two brothers “that found the only way they could along was to drink whiskey…”

Since this revelation, the brothers have been in the business of distilling fine spirits.

Known for their whiskeys, bourbons, and vodkas, the brothers use locally-sourced ingredients to make what they call the best spirits.

Blaum Bros. Distilling Co. offers public tours wherein you can enjoy a glimpse into the distilling process.

Tours are offered seven days a week so anytime is a good time to visit.

One of the coolest tours around, the distillery provides in-depth information about the liquor-making process.

During a tour, you’ll enjoy guided tastings in an intimate group setting.

Both public and private tours are available and reservations can be made online.

One of the coolest points of interest in town, be sure to book a tour with Blaum Bros. Distilling Co.

Address: 9380 US Hwy 20 W, Galena, IL 61036, United States

16. Great American Popcorn Company

Great American Popcorn Company

Great American Popcorn Company

Great American Popcorn Company claims to have the tastiest popcorn in the country.

The company opened in 1994 as a Galena storefront but has blossomed into an online business with widespread acclaim.

Great American Popcorn Company makes fine, gourmet popcorn that any popcorn lover would die for.

Each of the handcrafted popcorn recipes is made fresh in small batches before being packaged and delivered.

Of note, Great American Popcorn Company procures seasonal and standard flavors that run the gamut from an autumn blend to bacon & cheddar and birthday cake to buffalo ranch.

The unique blend of popcorn flavors makes a great treat, gift, or souvenir.

Family-owned and operated with popcorn made fresh daily, Great American Popcorn Company is a unique pitstop on your visit to Galena.

One of the greatest confectioners around, a visit to the Great American Popcorn Company is a must!

Address: 115 N Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

17. Galena Brewing Company

Galena Brewing Company

Galena Brewing Company

Galena Brewing Company is a family-friendly, family-owned brewery and brewpub that’s a must-see when you’re in Illinois.

If you’re looking for places to go with the whole family, check out this brewery.

Because the last brewery before this one left Galena due to Prohibition, the owners sought to restore Galena to its history-rich tradition of brewing.

Today, you can visit the brewery to enjoy their homemade microbrews; there are 12 brews on top at all times.

The brewery hosts live music, karaoke night, trivia night, and other weekly events all year long.

The brewery has a full bar, a great grill menu, a kids’ menu, and even gluten-free and vegan selections.

The brewery truly aims to serve everyone who walks through its doors.

Finally, a four-course beer-pairing dinner is a great way to spend an evening.

One of the coolest Galena attractions, be sure to set some time aside for the brewery.

Address: 227 N Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

18. Horseshoe Mound Preserve

Horseshoe Mound Preserve

Wirestock Creators / Shutterstock

If you’re looking for scenic places with magnificent things to see when you’re in Galena, make sure to add Horseshoe Mound Preserve to your itinerary.

Notably, Horseshoe Mound is a 200-acre scenic property boasting some of the top views in Illinois.

This outdoor nature preserve contains gathering areas, public observation scopes, and incredible scenic overlooks.

What’s more, the preserve has an incredible system of hiking trails that provide you with a recreational way to enjoy the outdoors.

Furthermore, Horseshoe Mound Preserve’s hiking trails offer magnificent panoramic views of Galena, a few cities in neighboring Iowa, the Mississippi River, and breathtaking geological mounds, thus the preserve’s name.

The popular Spiroff Overlook is a newer addition to the park; its trail delivers you directly to astounding views of the stunning countryside as well as parts of Wisconsin.

If you’re looking for beautiful things to see when you’re in Illinois, Horseshoe Mound Preserve is the place to visit.

Address: 1679 N Blackjack Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

19. Belvedere Mansion

Belvedere Mansion

Thomas Barrat / Shutterstock

This historic mansion and gardens are a step back in history; the mansion is a museum setting with historically restored architecture, decor, gardens, and beyond.

Notably, Belvedere Mansion is one of the most interesting places to visit in Illinois.

Open to the public for tours, the mansion immerses visitors in the history and traditions of Galena.

Tours of the Belvedere Mansion are open to the public and reservations are not required; simply ring the doorbell and you’ll be welcomed into the incredible 19th-century mansion.

Of all the things to do in Galena in terms of historical sites, the Belvedere Mansion is a top attraction.

Some of the mansion’s historical features include a Victorian wicker porch, a magnificent grandfather clock, original furnishings, historical decor, and so much more.

Moreover, the mansion’s botanical gardens can be perused with your admission to Belvedere Mansion.

The formal country gardens provide visitors with an intimate and beautifully landscaped setting to enjoy some quiet time.

A visit to Belvedere Mansion is the answer to your question of what to do when you’re in Illinois.

Address: 1008 Park Ave, Galena, IL 61036, United States

20. River Bend Gallery

River Bend Gallery

River Bend Gallery

Owned, stocked, and operated by a Galena local who was born with Down Syndrome, River Bend Gallery is the heart of this sweet town.

River Bend Gallery is one of the top Galena attractions.

In fact, of the things to do in Galena, visiting River Bend Gallery will leave you with a feel-good spirit.

Owner Geoffrey Mikol is a photographer whose artwork is stunning and elusive.

His knack for capturing the most breathtaking moments is unprecedented.

Best of all, with a visit to River Bend Gallery, you’ll have the chance to experience Mikol’s incredible breadth of work.

Within the gallery, you can shop Mikol’s prints, snow globes, cards, puzzles, panoramas, and beyond.

Of note, much of Mikol’s work consists of local landscapes that make for the perfect memory to bring home from your visit to Illinois.

One of the most epic galleries around, River Bend Gallery is a great place to check out this weekend.

Address: 112 N Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

21. Galena Goat Yoga

If you’re in the market for truly unique activities, Galena Goat Yoga is one of the coolest things to do in Galena.

Goat yoga is exactly what it sounds like; it’s a practice of traditional yoga alongside adorable goats…yes, real ones!

Though the trend of goat yoga has been popularized throughout the country, this is the site at which it originated.

Dare we say that these pioneers have the top goat yoga spot in the country?

Of note, sessions are hosted at the nearby Silver Linings Farm.

As such, the backdrop for this yoga experience is breathtaking.

If you’ve never been to goat yoga, here’s what to expect: professionally-led yoga classes in a state-of-the-art pole barn with sweet goats meandering about.

Picture your downward dog with a goat perched upon your back.

The goat yoga experience features a 45-minute session of yoga with the goats, followed by 45 minutes of playtime with the livestock.

Finally, you can end your visit to the farm with a “coffee & goats” session where you can gather with friends to enjoy a cup of joe amid wandering goats.

Address: 7306 US-20, Galena, IL 61036, United States

22. Long Hollow Canopy Tours

Situated near the Galena city limits, Long Hollow Canopy Tours is one of the coolest outdoor activities to experience while you’re in Illinois.

Here’s what you need to know about this super fun attraction.

Long Hollow Canopy Tours opened in 2016 and has been a forerunner in aerial experiences ever since.

The adventurous canopy tours provide you with thrilling opportunities to take in the views from a new vantage point.

Significantly, canopy tours begin with an ATV ride to your starting point, followed by six ziplines, rappelling, a short hike, a quick jump, and crossing a sky bridge.

Another option is Long Hollow Canopy Tours’ obstacle course wherein you’ll race through a challenging aerial course that features zip lines, ladders, and tree houses.

One of the most fun things to do in Galena, Illinois, be sure to add Long Hollow Canopy Tours to your itinerary.

Address: 3247 W Longhollow Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

23. Fried Green Tomatoes

Fried Green Tomatoes

Fried Green Tomatoes

One of the greatest places to dine when you’re in Illinois, Fried Green Tomatoes is a local hotspot.

Housed in a building rich in history and character, the restaurant opened in 1993.

Dining at Fried Green Tomatoes is an immersive experience.

The vintage charm, exposed brickwork, and incredible history of the building set the ambiance for a visceral dining experience.

Notably, the restaurant comprises two floors and is situated in the town’s downtown area.

Serving fine USDA steaks, the freshest seafood, and an award-winning wine list, Fried Green Tomatoes is the perfect spot for a special date night.

The moody atmosphere coupled with incredible service makes for an excellent experience.

What’s more, the restaurant offers both indoor and patio dining.

Finally, menu offerings feature butcher block selections, comfort food, and seafood choices aplenty.

Address: 213 N Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

24. Vinny Vanucchi’s Little Italy

Another fine option for dining during your stay in Illinois is this quaint and rustic eatery.

Vinny Vanucchi’s Little Italy serves up an old-world vibe with sophistication and grace.

As soon as you set foot in the restaurant you’ll swear you walked into your favorite Italian grandma’s kitchen.

The aroma of wafting marinara marinating in the kitchen will make you feel warm and fuzzy while you patiently anticipate your dinner.

Speaking of dinner, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to an authentic Italian villa with menu selections such as fettuccine carbonara, penne chicken romano, and sausage ragu to name a few.

What’s more, you can enjoy your eats with a drink from the establishment’s full bar; from martinis to margaritas and fine wines to draft beers, there’s a spirit for every palette.

If you’re looking for a fun and delicious dinner when you’re in Illinois, be sure to visit Vinny Vanucchi’s Little Italy.

Address: 201 S Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

25. Thunder Bay Falls

Thunder Bay Falls

Nejdet Duzen / Shutterstock

Thunder Bay Falls is one of the best places to travel to when you’re in Illinois.

Thunder Bay Falls sets the scene for magnificent sights and epic outdoor fun.

Located just outside the town’s center, Thunder Bay Falls are arguably the most beautiful waterfalls in the midwest.

Easily accessible by hiking a short, beginner-friendly trail, the falls take about 10 minutes to access.

The falls are a hidden Illinois gem and most out-of-towners don’t even know they exist.

Because you’re now in the know, you’ll likely experience a relatively quiet experience.

The base of the falls is the best vantage point from which to enjoy the breathtaking views, sounds, and spray of the waterfalls.

Pack a picnic and bring your camera and you can easily enjoy a few hours relishing the splendor of Thunder Bay Falls.

Lastly, the cool breezes that the falls generate are the perfect respite from the Illinois summer heat; so if you’ll be in town during the summer months, this attraction is especially recommended.

Address: 233 Thunder Bay Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

26. Galena Trolley Tours

Galena Trolley Tours

Tohuwabohu1976 / Shutterstock

One of the coolest Galena attractions and arguably one of the most unique ways to see the city is aboard one of these old-timey trolley tours.

Notably, these tours are narrated by local historians who point out significant landmarks, prominent architecture, and notable historical sites along the way.

Of note, the trolley was built in 1988 and travels along open-air cables reminiscent of San Francisco trolleys.

A tour with this group is an hour long, non-stop, and suitable (and fun) for adults and children alike.

The tour traverses a majority of the historic downtown vicinity.

Some of the notable sites you’ll pass include the historic Grant Home and Belvedere Mansion.

Along the way, the trolley will pause for photo opportunities.

Lastly, when you return to the trolley depot, be sure to visit the gift shop and snack bar.

One of the coolest ways to see this part of Illinois, a Galena Trolley Tour is a must-do.

Address: 314 S Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

27. Grant Park

Grant Park

Nejdet Duzen / Shutterstock

If you’re wondering what to do in the way of outdoor fun when you’re in Illinois, be sure to visit Grant Park.

Grant Park is a city park with meticulously landscaped open spaces perfect for throwing a ball or setting up a picnic.

A great locale to get kids out and running around, the park is neatly maintained and has many wonderful features.

Of note, the park has a lovely gazebo and a pavilion perfect for gathering as well as historical cannons and monuments.

Moreover, the park has a full basketball court, a footbridge that crosses to the downtown area, and beyond.

The park also has an adorable playground for children as well as the convenience of restrooms, drinking fountains, and walking paths.

All of this is set amid a 3.5-acre park, the likes of which you wouldn’t expect to find in a city park.

Address: 625 Park Ave, Galena, IL 61036, United States

28. Main Street

Main Street

Nejdet Duzen / Shutterstock

One of the greatest tourist attractions in this small Illinois city, Main Street is a hub for arts, shopping, dining, and entertainment.

With more than 125 small shops lined up down this quaint city street, Main Street is where you want to go for an optimal shopping experience.

Loaded with high-quality shops that run the gamut from candy shops to gift shops and jewelry boutiques to ice cream shops, Main Street is a must-see.

Other businesses include a spa, a salon, ghost tours, and so much more.

In addition to the awesome shopping to be done on Main Street, you’ll also find tons of inviting eateries and taverns.

The variety among the Main Street eateries is simply astounding: from Japanese cuisine to a steakhouse and a seafood restaurant to cozy bistros, your options are limitless.

Fun breweries, sophisticated tasting rooms, and moody lounges are just a few of the ways you can belly up to a good time on Main Street.

With so much to do in one central location, it’s no wonder Main Street is so popular.

Address: Galena, IL 61036, United States

29. Shenandoah Riding Center

Shenandoah Riding Center

Shenandoah Riding Center

Another awesome way to experience Illinois is on horseback at the Shenandoah Riding Center.

This equine facility welcomes guests of all ages to enjoy riding lessons and tours.

The center is stocked with trained horses suitable for all ability levels, but what’s more, the setting is as picturesque as it comes.

Lessons and trail rides are set amid the breathtaking landscape of The Galena Territory; it’s rife with riding trails that will introduce you to hidden places and untrod territory that will simply amaze you.

The first-class trail rides are surrounded by unrivaled natural beauty and tranquil surroundings so you can easily escape from the hubbub of the city.

If you love horses and nature, this experience is unparalleled.

Besides the trail rides, the center offers riding lessons, lead lines, and wagon rides for the little ones.

A great way to experience the serene beauty of Galena, Shenandoah Riding Center will not disappoint.

Address: 200 N Brodrecht Rd, Galena, IL 61036, United States

30. Amelia’s Galena Ghost Tours

Amelia’s Galena Ghost Tours is one of the most fun things to do in Galena.

The ghost tours are hosted by local storytellers who have a knack for the spooky.

Tour guides will usher you along a walking tour of the city’s most haunted sites.

Each site is impeccably researched and delivered to you through the creation of an eerie yet fun experience.

In fact, each of the tours’ stories is steeped in historical records and news documents without embellishment.

Of note, Amelia’s Galena Ghost Tours offers shuttle tours, walking tours, and bar crawls all of the ghostly ilk.

Shuttle tours drive you past haunted and paranormal sites, while the walking tours provide a more up-close-and-personal feel, and the haunted pub crawls share ghost stories with pit stops at local watering holes.

A super fun and unique experience, any of the three ghost tours will surely be memorable.

Address: 129 S Main St, Galena, IL 61036, United States

Start Planning Your Trip To Galena

This small midwestern town comprises just 4.5 square miles but it’s certainly not short of incredible attractions to enjoy.

With so many awesome things to do in Galena in one small city, you’ll never run out of attractions to see and things to do.

Whether visiting for rest and relaxation or thrilling adventures, this small Illinois town doesn’t disappoint.

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