12 days in Illinois Itinerary

12 days in Illinois Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Illinois trip builder
Make it your trip
— 2 nights
Rock Island
— 1 night
— 2 nights
— 1 night
— 5 nights


Springfield — 2 nights

Springfield is the capital of Illinois, but its real significance is as the hometown of Abraham Lincoln.
Get out of town with these interesting Springfield side-trips: Lincoln Heritage Museum (in Lincoln), Great Rivers Scenic Route (in Alton) and Children's Discovery Museum (in Normal). There's much more to do: get engrossed in the history at Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, steep yourself in history at Dana-Thomas House, and stroll through Lincoln Memorial Garden.

For maps, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Springfield day trip planning website.

Tampa to Springfield is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. You can also drive; or do a combination of bus and train. The time zone difference moving from Eastern Standard Time to Central Standard Time is minus 1 hour. In January, Springfield is colder than Tampa - with highs of 37°F and lows of 19°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Sun) early enough to drive to Rock Island.
Museums · Childrens Museums · Outdoors · Scenic Drive
Side Trips

Rock Island — 1 night

Rock Island is a city in and the county seat of Rock Island County, Illinois, United States. Kick off your visit on the 10th (Mon): look for gifts at John Deere Store, try to win big at Jumer's Casino Rock Island, and then steep yourself in history at Butterworth Center & Deere-Wiman House.

For photos, where to stay, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Rock Island online sightseeing planner.

You can drive from Springfield to Rock Island in 3 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or fly. Plan for a bit cooler temperatures traveling from Springfield in January, with highs in Rock Island at 32°F and lows at 14°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Galena.
Casinos · Fun & Games · Shopping · Historic Sites
Side Trip

Galena — 2 nights

Galena is the largest city in and the county seat of Jo Daviess County, Illinois, with a population of 3,429 at the 2010 census. On the 11th (Tue), indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, then sample the fine beverages at Blaum Bros. Distilling Co., and then get thoroughly spooked out with a ghost and vampire tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: make a trip to Galena Veterans Memorial Park, then stop by Great American Popcorn Company, and then awaken your taste buds at Massbach Ridge Tasting Room.

For maps, traveler tips, reviews, and tourist information, go to the Galena trip builder.

Traveling by car from Rock Island to Galena takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Expect little chillier weather when traveling from Rock Island in January: highs in Galena hover around 27°F, while lows dip to 10°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 12th (Wed) so you can travel to Ottawa.
Spas · Shopping · Breweries & Distilleries · Tours

Ottawa — 1 night

Ottawa is a city located at the confluence of the navigable Illinois River and Fox River in LaSalle County, Illinois, United States. On the 13th (Thu), indulge in some personalized pampering at SaltTreeYoga, then get engrossed in the history at Hegeler Carus Mansion, and then learn about winemaking at August Hill Winery & Illinois Sparkling Co. Tasting Room.

For other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Ottawa online trip itinerary planner.

Getting from Galena to Ottawa by car takes about 3 hours. In January, Ottawa is somewhat warmer than Galena - with highs of 34°F and lows of 17°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Thu) to allow time to drive to Chicago.
Museums · Spas · Wineries
Side Trips

Chicago — 5 nights

A huge and vibrant city, Chicago is home to top-notch theaters, shops, museums, galleries, and restaurants.
Chicago is known for sightseeing, museums, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: explore the world behind art at The Art Institute of Chicago, get to know the resident critters at Lincoln Park Zoo, shop like a local with The Magnificent Mile, and get up close and personal with brilliant marine life at Shedd Aquarium.

To see other places to visit, maps, photos, and more tourist information, use the Chicago online tour itinerary planner.

Drive from Ottawa to Chicago in 1.5 hours. January in Chicago sees daily highs of 32°F and lows of 18°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Tue) so you can catch the flight back home.
Museums · Childrens Museums · Parks · Zoos & Aquariums
Side Trip

Illinois travel guide

Observation Decks · Parks · Art Museums
The Prairie State
The most populous state in the country's Midwest region, Illinois features a diverse landscape that includes both the enormous urban sprawl of Chicago and flat central plains, devoted almost entirely to farmland. With a great selection of things to do, Chicago is the state's centerpiece, featuring world-famous architecture and renowned museums. Farther away from this giant urban center, you can explore historical landmarks dedicated to local heroes Abraham Lincoln and Ernest Hemingway. The state also includes a prehistoric Native American site, one of only 20 World Heritage Sites in the United States, a unique feature well-worth adding to your itinerary.