Top 20 Trendy Instagram Locations in Lake County 2023

By: Jonathan Jones 05/03/2023

When it comes to Instagram, you can never have too many #hashtags. Well, you can, but we're not going to penalize you for it, that's for sure. There is an overabundance of scenic, historical and just plain #instagood snapshots of Lake County on the platform. But sometimes you miss out on the little elements that make life beautiful.





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Many of these places are best enjoyed during the summer in Lake County. By crunching a few numbers via CrowdRiff and utilizing the bureau's #LetsGoLakeCounty, we compiled a list of the top 20 trendy Instagram locations in Lake County. There's #nofilter in this post. #Followme and show #instalove for these top 20 hot spots.

Instagrammable Honorable Mentions in Lake County





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20. Halas Hall in Lake Forest

@visitlakecounty Welcome to Dr Pepper Zero Sugar Chicago Bears Training Camp in Lake County. #chicagobears #chicago #fyp ♬ original sound - visitlakecounty

"We'll never forget the way you thrilled the nation. With your T-Formation." Halas Hall is a staple of the land of lakes. Not only is the training camp hosted in the Lake Forest location, but it also is the Monster's of the Midway's practice facility. Since 2021, the Chicago Bears returned to Lake County, to host the public during its training camp after years of the NFL team calling signals in Bourbonnais, Illinois. Fans can visit for free (after obtaining a ticket online) during Chicago Bears Training Camp from late July-mid August. 

19. Fort Sheridan Forest Preserve in Highland Park





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Once a post of the U.S. Army Post named after Civil War Cavalry General Philip Sheridan, the defunct fort located in Highland Park, Highwood and Lake Forest has been closed since 1993. During the 2018 Illinois Bicentennial, Fort Sheridan was selected as one of the Illinois 200 Places by the American Institute of Architects. The army fort was maintained for over 100 years, as it opened in the late 1800s. The Fort Sheridan District is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and is a U.S. National Historic Landmark.

18. Bangs Lake in Wauconda





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The downtown Wauconda focal point is an exceptional Lake County destination. The Bang's Lake is a natural glacial body of water where visitors delight in paddle boarding, kayaking, canoeing and more. Phil's Beach, is a renowned location as it sits in the backyard of beloved Lindy's Landing. Myriad festivals and activities occur on the sandy shores like paddle board yoga, Wauconda Winterfest and more. Historical nugget - during the movie, "The Blues Brothers" when Jim Belushi and Dan Aykroyd are promoting their big upcoming Chicago show, they drive on the beaches of the Bangs Lake. 

17. Great Wolf Lodge Illinois





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Ahhhwooooo! The wolf has risen. Your little slip-and-sliders can have some year-round fun in the Northwoods-themed park and accommodation. Whatever the temperature may be outside, the Gurnee resort is always a comfortable 84 degrees. Your woodsy adventure starts and ends with the 80,000-square-foot facility with water slides, a river to be lazy on, a wave pool, a kiddie area and so much more. Great Wolf Lodge is also highlighted by mini-golf, an arcade, a bowling alley, fun and games with Wolf characters and so much more. Venture to the Gurnee facility for a fam glamping experience. Mosquitos aren't invited.

16. Diamond Lake Beach





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The panoramic views from this Mundelein Park District entity are mesmerizing. As the sun sinks, the reflection of the yellowish, orangy circle is so grammable. The magic continues as the sun hides behind the trees viewing eastbound from the Diamond Lake Beach Road vantage point. Diamond Lake Beach hosts aqua visitors whether you're into sunbathing, kayaking, SUP-ing, beach volleyball and more. The beach opens in early June and closes in early August.  Don't miss the park district's heralded event Beach Bash in mid-June.

15. Buffalo Creek Brewery in Long Grove






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A little sneak peek of the Red Headed Step Child, which is out tomorrow at noon. It’s a strawberry ?? blonde ale and let me tell you: it’s summer perfection. Come by this weekend and try it out!! * * #brewing #brewingbeer #chicagocraftbeer #craftbeer #buffalocreekbrewing #craftbeerjunkie #craftbeerpics #craftbeernerd #craftbeerporn #craftbeersnob #craftbeerlove #drinkillinois #enjoylonggrove #craftbeerculture #chicagoland #drinklocal #instachicago #brewery #craftbrewery #chicagosuburbs #chicagobeer #chicagocraftbeer #beer #craftbeerlife #blondeale #seasonalbeer #thisissummer #eaterchicago #timeoutchicago

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The two-year-old brewing company features a beautiful bar and tasting room area, a large outside deck and gazebo, event space and production areas for fermenting, bottling and cold storage. The Long Grove beer aficionados are also a stop on the Lake County Libation Trail


14. Ryerson Conservation Area in Riverwoods






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Nature is always a hot spot. As for this Lake County Forest Preserve entity, this pristine haven with all of the woodland fixin's is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The 552-acre preserve houses several Illinois threatened and endangered species, is home to a portion of the Des Plaines River and offers a ton of outdoor activities.

13. Tighthead Brewery in Mundelein






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Powerful Pils is back! That means it's time for radlers on the patio! So many to choose from... Lemon Lemon-Mint Clementine Orange-Pomegranate Blood Orange Prickly Pear Grapefruit . . . #tightheadbrewing #drinklocal #powerfulpils #pilsner #radler #patiopints #summertime

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This Mundelein brewery is dedicated to crafting quality beer for all seasons. In addition, the brewery features a taproom that is open to the public and offers tours and other social events. Since it opened its doors in 2011, Tighthead has poured their heart and soul into every glass. 

12. Wildberry Café in Libertyville






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Oh Taylor, you make my heart smile ? I think she enjoyed her vanilla almond blueberry parfait today and her water and apple juice! Lol! #taytay #taylortot #wildberrycafe #brunch #toddlerlife

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So what do you pick to eat in that awkward period between breakfast and lunch as your stomach stirs restlessly, awaiting your decision? Do you go the route where your plate is doused in maple syrup and other sweet glorious treats? Do you pack on the protein complemented with salty delights? Our advice is all of the above. The Libertyville cafe was ranked in the 2015 Thrillist Top 21 Pancakes in America, and have taken home countless Daily Herald Readers' Choice Awards for "Best Brunch." So as you can see, Wildberry is kind of a big deal. 

11. Des Plaines River Trail and Greenway





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No matter where you are in Lake County, you're probably not far from the Des Plaines River Trail. The pathway stretches the entirety of Lake County and dabbles at the border of Wisconsin as well as Cook County. The trail and greenway stretch over 31 miles and runs through 12 Lake County forest preserves like Independence Grove, Old School Forest Preserve, Ryerson Conservation Area and more. FYI, it also passes by six canoe launches From Wadsworth to River Grove. 

10. Lake County Fairgrounds & Event Center in Grayslake






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County fair time again. This is the same Ferris Wheel at different points during the ride at Lake County Fair in Grayslake, IL. . . #fair #countyfair #ferriswheel #night #nightlights #nightlight #travel #travels #travelling #chicagogrammers #enjoyillinois #pattern #visualart #art #artofvisuals #artofchi #color #colors #travelphotography #travelgram

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The main event is always the annual Lake County Fair (which is in the process of celebrating its 93rd born day). However, the Grayslake facility is open year-round for dog shows, pageants, Jurassic World, Farm Heritage & Harvest Festival, the Lake County Craft Beer Fest, the Northern Illinois Golf Expo, the Northern Illinois Boat & RV Show, Food Truck Frenzy, Zurko Antiques & Flea Markets and a slew of other events. 

9. Chain O' Lakes State Park in Antioch and surrounding areas


Doin’ the walkies and sitting pretty for pictures! #sharpeisofinstagram #sharpei #sharpeipuppy #puppy #puppysofinstagram #bluesharpei #maloothepromodpei #sharpeilove #sharpeilife #walkies #sharpeination

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An archery range, bike trails, boating, camping, cross-country skiing, equestrian trails, fishing, swimming hiking trails, hunting, metal detecting...need we say more? The Chain O' Lakes is Illinois' largest concentration of natural lakes and incredible outdoor recreation, housing a slew of...well lakes. Not to mention, Chain O'Lakes is one of Illinois's most celebrated state parks.

8. Volo Museum






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Volo Auto Museum is like no other place. The place houses over 300 classic, antique and muscle cars complemented by automobiles made famous on the big screen and the boob tube. For example, you can see authentic versions of the DeLorean owned by Doc Brown, the cop car (enormous speaker included) of Jake and Elwood's cop car, KIT from KnightRider, Batman's Batmobile and a collection of others. Your youngsters can delight in the museum's newest exhibit, Jurassic Gardens.

7. Independence Grove Forest Preserve in Libertyville


Which way is up?

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This scenic 1,135-acre preserve offers various of outdoor recreation and education opportunities centered around a 115-acre lake reclaimed from a gravel quarry. Visitors can enjoy swimming, fishing and boating, a Marina with boat and bike rentals, a native garden and nearly seven miles of trails. The spacious Visitors Center features exhibits and a café. The LCFPD venue can be rented for weddings and other private functions. 

6. Blarney Island in Antioch 





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Blarney Island is the premier summer party located a mile offshore on the Chain O’Lakes. The unique Antioch bar hosts events, fests, live entertainment, Thunder on the Chain and many others. Take the Blarney shuttle boat out from Port of Blarney, and in just a few minutes, you will be living on island time. Blarney Island is open from May-September. Blarney Island isn't just a weekend destination. Thursday's Thunder on the Chain is a must-see event! 

5. Lake Michigan






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sunrise swim :: lake michigan • • • • #lakemichigan #illinois #swimmer #sunrise #summertime #highlandpark #rosewoodbeach #lake #midwest #greatlakes #chicagosuburbs #beach #chicago #northshore #SPiCollective

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No surprise here. Anything surrounded by the five Great Lakes (and don't let anyone tell you otherwise, Lake Michigan is the best of the Great Lakes), will surely be a grammable moment. Some of the top Instagram locations around Lake Michigan include Waukegan's Lighthouse and Harbor, Lake Bluff Beach and more below.

4. Ravinia Festival in Highland Park






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Ravinia Chicago Symphony Orchestra Gustavo Dudamel Beethoven program .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. #ravinia #chicagosymphonyorchestra #concert

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Ravinia is a staple of Lake County. Since 1905, the Highland Park fest has featured the top musicians from myriad genres, making it the oldest outdoor festival in U.S. history. Like every year, Ravinia showcases a slew of star-studded acts like John Legend, Carrie Underwood, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Chicago, NE-YO, Charlie Puth, Santana, Buddy Guy, Brandi Carlile, Train the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and so many more.

3. Bristol Renaissance Faire Just North of Lake County





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Even if you don’t own a DeLorean, you can travel back to the past to experience the 16th-century English Elizabethan era just over the Wisconsin border. The renowned Bristol Renaissance Faire in Kenosha features sword fighters, maidens, minstrels and jesters. This creates many photo opportunities for having the chance to meet and greet with legendary celebrities such as Queen Elizabeth and Robin Hood. The Faire also offers games, rides, arts and crafts, eats, live music and one-of-a-kind encounters with a spectacular cast of characters. 

2. Chicago Botanic Garden Just South of Lake County





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The Glencoe sanctuary is one of the most instagrammable venues in the Land of Lincoln. The Chicago Botanic Garden showcases its beautiful vegetation, with thousands of floral species,and annual exhibits including the Orchid Show, Butterflies & Blooms, Night of 1,000 Jack-O-Lanterns, Lightscape and every so often that stinky plant. The garden also provides the visitors with knowledge for their own well-being like cooking classes, photography classes, potable planting sessions, spring break activities for the kids, nature walks and more.

1. Six Flags Great America and Hurricane Harbor Chicago





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The Gurnee amusement park features 17 roller coasters, amazing live shows, fireworks, delicious dining options, 11-themed areas with other fantastic rides and tons more excitement. lt has almost been a half-decade ago Goliath, this coaster came into the hearts of everyone. The Guinness Book of World Records officially named Goliath as the world’s steepest, fastest and tallest wooden roller coaster. Since then, it still stands as the steepest wooden coaster. Glide down the globe’s longest wooden coaster drop, Goliath, blast through the park with Maxx Force’s record-breaking launch, sprinting from 0-78 mph in under two seconds, take a spin on the world’s largest looping ride, Mardi Gras Hangover or ride the classic American Eagle. SFGAm also features live shows, delectable eats, a ton of games and kiddie activities. The park stays open on select days through Labor Day. There are oodles of instagrammable snaps in the land of lakes staple. Hurricane Harbor Chicago, the Looney Tunes sister park, is open select days from Memorial Day-Labor Day. 

For more instagrammable locations in land of lakes, click here. To find a new adventure, continue here.

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