Naperville Travel Guide

  • Looking Toward Downtown Naperville
    Looking Toward Downtown Naperville
    by riorich55
  • The Dandelion Fountain
    The Dandelion Fountain
    by riorich55
  • Riverwalk Sculpture
    Riverwalk Sculpture
    by riorich55

Naperville Things to Do

  • Visit Naper Settlement

    Naper Settlement is a recreation of Naperville and how it looked in the 1800's. Located just outside the downtown area of Naperville they have events going on there all year long. This past year I became a member for $50 and have enjoyed many of the events they put on for free.To visit the grounds there is a small fee (unless you are a member), but...

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  • Ring in the New Year with the Millennium...

    For the first time in years, Sue and I stayed up past midnight and celebrated the New Year at midnight. We went out for some Chicago pizza a little earlier in the evening and then headed into downtown Naperville which is about 5 miles from where we live. At Naperville's Millennium Carillon they have 2 celebrations to ring in the New Year. The first...

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  • Things May Come and Things May Go

    I'm posting this tip just to promote a website about Downtown Naperville. As I write this on New Years Eve 2012 my wife and I have just decided to see if we can actually stay up to midnight tonight listening to our downtown carillon ring in the New Year as she is off work tomorrow (Nurses get some holidays off) and we can both sleep in.So if you...

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  • The Riverwalk

    Shortly after we moved to town back in 1979, Naperville was already getting ready for their 150th birthday party in 1981. Joe Naper and his family had moved from Chicago and settled here in 1831 along with banks of the Du Page River. For the town's 100th birthday they converted an old stone quarry into a beach (another tip) and for the 150th...

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  • Where Naperville Started

    Over the past couple of years some archeology digs have been going on around Naperville to find out where Joe Naper and his family first set down roots in the town now bearing his name. This section of land at the corner of Jefferson and Mill St on a slight hill above the DuPage River was where they finally came up with some of the original...

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  • Naperville Municipal Band

    Way back when in 1979 when Sue and I first moved to Naperville we were introduced to the Naperville Municipal Band by our new next door neighbor, Dick, who played clarinet in the band. Over the years we went to the band concerts occasionally on Thursday nights first just the 2 of us, and then the 3 of us, 4 of us and finally the 5 and 6 of us. It...

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  • Public Art I: "River of Life"

    This is a four part ceramic mural done by local students in collaboration with teachers and artists-in-residence. .The artwork is part of the Naperville Century Walk.

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  • Centennial Beach

    I don't remember coming here when I was a kid, but my parents said they took my sister and I hear sometime in the early 1960's. Little did I realize then that I would be moving to this town in 1979 and making it my home.Centennial Beach like the names says was actually created in 1931 on the 100th birthday of the founding of the City of Naperville...

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  • Ribfest

    A 4 Day Food and Entertainment Fest in Knoch Park features usually 15 to 20 different rib vendors from around the country vying for the best of the fest. This year's Ribfest 2011 takes place every day from Noon until 10:00 P.M. July 1st to July 4th.Top 2011 entertainment are former local groups who made it big in the 70's and 80's, Styx and REO...

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Naperville Hotels

  • Hotel Arista

    2139 CityGate Lane, Naperville, Illinois, 60563, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

    Hotel Class 4 out of 5 stars

  • Red Roof Inn

    1698 West Diehl Road, Naperville, Illinois, 60563, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Solo

  • Country Inn Suites Naperville

    1837 Centre Point Circle, Naperville, Illinois, 60563, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

Naperville Restaurants

  • Power Lunch, Naperville Style

    A pretty, dark wood space with plenty of natural light during lunch. The lunch menu is fresh and updated takes on traditional dishes. It's not the 4 Seasons in NYC, but it will do for Naperville power lunchers.My companion had a gorgeous burger, while I had the pictured Lobster Bisque and SPINACH & GOAT CHEESE | shaved pear, toasted pecans, & fresh...

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  • Quite a "catch"

    The Naperville Catch 35 is a branch of the Chicago restaurant. It is basically a new American cuisine meets pan-Asian surf and turf. We have eaten here a number of times over the years and have found that both the food and the service can range from superb to careless. -------On my birthday we returned. This time I had an Ahi Tuna appetizer that...

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  • A New BBQ in Naperville

    It has been interesting to see the changes that have gone on in Naperville since I started living here in 1979. Restaurants have come and gone. Some have been good and others so-so.On a recent rainy Saturday afternoon as I was walking around town taking pictures I saw Q-BBQ on the corner and since I had not yet eaten lunch I thought I would stop in...

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  • A great place to break your day!

    NOW CLOSED, but replaced by a Red Mango, for frozen yogurt and smoothies.A very family-friendly coffee house. You can get coffee, fruit smoothies, decadent shakes and small things to eat. On occasion there is music and it is also a WiFi internet hotspot. The college students love it as well as mothers shopping with their children.

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  • Delicious Italian **NEW LOCATION**

    Reopened at new location after a devastating fire at the pictured location.Rosebud on Rush has landed in Naperville with a terrace that overlooks the river. The menu includes signature Rosebud dishes that include Chicken Vesuvio, and handmade cavatelli. Also look for the "square noodles"!

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  • Great Place to Brighten Up a Rainy Day

    On a rainy April Saturday morning my wife and I ventured in downtown Naperville for a late morning breakfast. Apparantly many others had the same idea. But while we waited my wife checked out the store next door while I enjoyed a cup of free Intelligencia coffee and within 10 minutes we were seated. The breakfast/lunch menu is extensive with...

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Naperville Transportation

  • Burlington Northern Metra Line to...

    Naperville is a Chicago suburb about 28 miles southwest of downtown Chicago. If you work in downtown Chicago one alternative you have to get into the city is to take METRA's Burlington Northern Line. For the morning and afternoon work commuters there are a number of express trains that get you into Chicago (morning) and back to Naperville...

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  • Traffic is horrific- use your feet!

    So throughout downtown Naperville you will discover that parking is a crazy thing and there are a lot of cars in a relatively small space over the three or four blocks of downtown Naperville. During large events you might end up parking a mile away. On the brightside to help congestion during large festivals and activities there is normally shuttle...

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  • Amtrak through Naperville

    While we drove to Naperville to catch the train, Amtrak does stop twice a day in Naperville. The outbound train from Chicago (the east end of the Southwest Chief) arrives at about 3:50 p.m. daily. It follows the Metra commuter line. Actually, they both follow the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Freight line.While sitting in the station, you'll...

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Naperville Shopping

  • Naperville Shopping Guide

    NOTE: Stores do come and go! This was a place that came and went quickly. As I said I thought it was overpriced and really a bit off the main downtown area. As I was in downtown Naperville a few days after some heavy rainfall and some flooding took place in April 2013 (including my basement which took on about 6 inches) taking pictures I decided to...

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  • For All You Apple Needs

    This Apple retail store opened up in 2009 and at times it seems like a good portion of Naperville's almost 150,000 people are in it everyday. Take a look at the 2nd picture and you'll see what I mean. They are there either buying the latest Apple i gadget or attending a one on one training session or group session.My own experience with the store...

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  • Go Ahead Stop In

    For those of you who know me I'm not much of a shopper. A good shopping experience for me is usually to go into a store for what I'm looking for, find it and get out as fast as I can. This way I'm not tempted to buy something I probably don't need anyway and then I can save up more money for my next trip.However, there is always the exception to...

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Naperville Local Customs

  • Go to a Parade

    There are always lots of parades in downtown Naperville, New Years Eve, St Patricks Day, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day and I've probably forgotten a few others. Mainly locals marching and bands playing, but everyone seems to enjoy them and if you are lucky you might even walk away with some candy, beads or coupons.We hadn't attended a parade...

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  • Art along the riverwalk ...

    The nnnual Naperville Riverwalk Art Fair is one of the many ways that the community utilizes the Riverwalk. It is held in mid-September and draws artists locally and internationally.

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  • Rake Leaves in the Fall

    Here it is November again in Chicago and all those trees we planted when we build our home here in 1987 have now grown up and keep us physically active each fall when they start dropping their leaves after a full summer's worth of shading. 3 times during the season the City of Naperville comes by to sweep them up, so you try to get as many to the...

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Naperville Warnings and Dangers

  • Plenty of Traffic During Rush Hour

    Naperville is the 5th largest city in Illinois with 144,000 residents. With that many people and plenty of 2 and 3 car garages there is bound to be some traffic at various times of the day.But if you can avoid the rush hour times to drive or the periodic road construction sites you can get pretty much anywhere in town within a 15 to 20 minute...

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  • The reconstruction of the Main St Bridge

    The Main St. Bridge is one of the three downtown bridges that take traffic across the West Branch of the DuPage River. It is closed for a year now for a complete reconstruction, thus causing havoc and traffic jams in the downtown area.

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  • The Naperville Geese

    ... are everywhere. For various reasons [including retaining ponds and plentiful food] there are some geese who aren't with the program and spend the winter in Naperville. These geese are disporting themselves in the east branch of the DuPage river that runs through downtown Naperville. The main problem is the goose guano :(

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Naperville Off The Beaten Path

  • River Woods Park

    One of the projects I am starting in 2013 is to try to visit all of the 140 or so parks in my hometown. Some parks are very small with just a walking path and some playground equipment. Others include a number of different ball fields and yet others are somewhat large and include a number of different activities.River Woods Park is the one of the...

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  • The Quarry in Winter

    Two former stone quarries flank the west branch of the DuPage River as it runs through Naperville. One has been developed into Centennial Beach. The other forms a small lake, which in better weather is where you can rent paddleboats. In this winter-time photo you can see the empty docks.

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  • Historic Walking Tours

    I have taken several of the Self-Guided Historic Walking Tours that were put together by the Naperville Hertiage Society and Naper Settlement. The walking tours are interesting, have some great local sites and some really cool facts. This is a free activity and you can pick up a copy of one or three of the walking tour pamphlets from the Naper...

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Naperville Sports & Outdoors

  • Inaugural Naperville Marathon

    The inaugural Naperville Half and Full Marathon was run for the first time on November 10, 2013. Part of the course (mile 11 in particular) was on the street right behind our house. I was able to walk out of my backyard and start taking pictures.The racers were all past my area by 10:00 a.m. Shortly thereafter the water station, tent and...

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  • Ice Skating or Ice Hockey

    Just outside of downtown Naperville right off a portion of the Riverwalk is a place to try out your figure skating moves or maybe play a game of ice hockey.Recently on a photo shoot of my hometown I saw a couple of people practicing their shooting and puck handling on the ice.Every winter the Naperville Park District floods an area which includes a...

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  • Multi Use Park Close By My House

    I will use some quotes from the Whalon Lake website along with some of my personal impressions."Along the east branch of the DuPage River lies the 266-acre Whalon Lake, acquired between 1992 and 1994. The preserve features an oak-savanna grove and large wetland areas that have been restored and enhanced, in addition to a variety of recreation...

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Naperville Favorites

  • Typical Naperville Subdivision

    We have lived in Naperville since 1979. When my wife and I moved here from Peoria we had been married for 3 years and had no children. We bought a 3 bedroom home and both started new jobs. Sue is still at the same job, while I have had a number of different ones over the past 30 something years. Flash forward to 1987 and 4 children later we had...

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  • Naperville Loves to Have Parades

    There are always parades going on in downtown Naperville. The latest one was the St Patrick's Day Parade which is probably the largest one in the Western Suburbs. Here are some pictures from 2008's Parade. I've lived here almost 30 years and have seen the city grow from 40,000 people to 140,000. The downtown is incredibly vibrant with all the...

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  • It's all about animals ...

    The city has a penchant for decorating statues of animals. This year it is farm animals, appropriately, as Naperville was originally a small sleepy farming town on the east fork of the Dupage River!

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