Fox River Valley

A Smooth Getaway

Carving its way across glaciated landscape, the Fox River weaves a path through some of the most exciting communities in Northern Illinois. From the naturally wide open spaces of McHenry County to the bustling communities in the Elgin and Aurora areas, the Fox Valley hosts a wide range of attractions and entertainment for all walks of life. See a show, kayak or canoe down the river, or sample world-class flavors — feel the flow of the Fox Valley.

A Work of Art

Home to a thriving arts scene with captivating events and outdoor amenities, Elgin and its surrounding communities offer up numerous opportunities to get out and explore. Captivating murals and sculptures ranging from bright and whimsical to monumental and reverent adorn city streets thanks to its New Works Program. Stroll through the bustling downtown taking in masterpieces along with fascinating historical museums, flavorful dining, and a magnificent riverside park. In West Dundee, tour the historic storefronts housing one-of-a-kind shopping and dining experiences along Main Street, then cruise down Route 31 to South Elgin, home to award-winning parks that offer recreation — and relaxation — for all ages. Visit the Fabulous Fox! Water Trail page to learn more about this National Water Trail that connects Wisconsin and Illinois together for people who love to spend time in nature along the water way.

Northern IL Lights

The second-largest city in Illinois is a first-rate destination for some of the most exciting, family-friendly attractions along the Fox River. Laid-back, riverside vibes define the community of Batavia, where you can explore the outdoor areas and indulge your sweet tooth in North Aurora. Party on in Aurora, home to a celebrated downtown rich with shopping, dining, and arts and culture. Catch a show under a vintage marquee, sample the local flavors, and track down one-of-a-kind treasures at local shops. Historic sites and delicious confectionaries draw visitors to Montgomery while local shops, restaurants, and outdoor venues provide a peaceful getaway in Oswego. Finally, make a splash at the largest waterpark in Illinois or soak in year-round fun in downtown dining and nightlife in Yorkville.

Into the Wide Open

Charming, picturesque communities full of uncommon discoveries — plus natural, wide-open spaces — offer diverse recreational opportunities, including festivals, live entertainment, and outdoor adventures. On the shores of Pistakee Lake, the marinas and boat launches of Johnsburg mark an ideal starting point for Fox River explorers. In McHenry, three distinct downtown districts each offer independent shops and restaurants along with a walkable, scenic Riverwalk. Historic, inviting storefronts line the streets in the village of Cary, home to mouthwatering meals and fun-filled festivals, while the endearing, revitalized downtown district of Algonquin offers incredible, varied flavors from Italian cuisine to wild game — plus, more than 70 rotating brews!

Happy River Trails

Twisting and winding along the banks of the Fox River through both natural vistas and urban areas, the nearly 45-mile Fox River Trail provides an excellent opportunity for both bikers and hikers to explore the communities of McHenry, Kane, and Kendall counties. Experience fabulous community parks, more than a dozen dams that double as spectacular fishing holes, and spot wildlife like bald eagles, herons, and whitetail deer.

The Fox River has been named the Fabulous Fox! Water Trail and has been designated as a National Water Trail through Kane County. Visit this website for more information and downloadable river map that ties in locations of 80 public access sites in Wisconsin and Illinois to make up this amazing water way.

Fox River Attractions


St. Charles


  • Batavia Depot Museum
  • Boardwalk Shops
  • Water Street Studios
  • Sturdy Shelter Brewing


  • Chicago Premium Outlets
  • Two Brothers Roundhouse
  • Blackberry Farm
  • Phillips Park Zoo & Sunken Gardens
  • Paramount Theatre
  • Hollywood Casino Aurora
  • RiverEdge Park


  • 113 Main
  • Fox Valley Winery
  • Hudson Design House
  • Oak + Bean Coffee / Wine
  • Oswego Brewing Co.

Fox River Grove




  • Foxes Den Meadery
  • Marge Cline Whitewater Course
  • Southbank Original Barbecue
  • Foxy’s Ice Cream
  • Raging Waves


  • Edith Farnsworth House

Explore Elgin Area

60 S. Grove Ave.
Elgin, IL 60120

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Naturally McHenry County

11879 E. Main St. | PO Box 1106
Huntley, IL 60142

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Aurora Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

43 W. Galena Blvd.
Aurora, IL 60506

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