13 Best Things To Do In Berwyn, Illinois - Updated 2024

things to do in berwyn illinois
| 4 min read

Home to a thriving arts and food scene, Berwyn is a great destination on the outskirts of Chicago. For many, Berwyn might be overlooked as an unassuming suburb on the way in and out of Chicago’s major attractions. Yet for those who choose to stop and linger, Berwyn has a lot of great places that offer insight into the local culture of Chicago. For starters, visitors can hang out at the numerous art galleries. And in nearby Brookfield, guests can spend the day in one of the country’s premier zoos, Brookfield Zoo. Close by in the suburb of Oak Park, visitors can tour museums that celebrate world-renowned artists such as Ernest Hemingway and Frank Lloyd Wright.

For stays, there are a lot of Airbnb vacation rentals in Berwyn that will provide you with a place of good rest when you’re done with painting the town red. For those who love food as much as the arts, staying in Cicero, a suburb only 10 minutes from Berwyn, would be just perfect. The beautiful selection of Airbnb vacation rentals in Cicero will make getting a restful sleep after commuting between the two destinations extremely easy.

In addition to all this, nearby Chicago offers numerous day tours that can provide a bird’s eye view of the city and its surroundings. With all this and more, there’s no denying that Berwyn is a great destination with easy proximity to Chicago’s big-city flair. Read on to learn about the best things to do in Berwyn, Illinois.

1. Ride through the city on an Amazing Lakefront Segway tour (from USD 64.0)

Segway Tour
Source: Photo by user Markus Tacker used under CC BY-ND 2.0

Enjoy a beautiful day riding through Chicago on a Segway with a tour that will be a guaranteed unique experience. With paths along the lakefront that showcase the incredible skyline, this tour will make your trip a memorable one. So if you’re on the hunt for worthwhile things to do with your family in Berwyn, Illinois, look no further than this tour!

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Chicago: Lakefront Highlights Small-Group Segway Tour

Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

129 reviews

2. Relax and be amazed on a Chicago Architectural River Cruise

Architecture River Cruise
Source: Photo by user piet theisohn used under CC BY 2.0

This cruise will take you through the city, along the Chicago River. From this vantage point, you’ll learn all about the landmarks that provide Chicago with its renowned reputation for architecture. This cruise is definitely a favorite for tourists and locals alike, thanks to the incredible history of so many of the city’s buildings.

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Chicago Architectural River Cruise

Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes

717 reviews

3. Take in the big city at your own pace on a hop on, hop off tour (from USD 29.0)

Source: Photo by user Pedro Szekely used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Chicago may a quick trip from Berwyn, but it can also be a daunting task when it comes to sightseeing. Take advantage of a hop on, hop off tour so that you can explore the city on your own time and still make it to the next amazing attraction!

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Chicago City Hop-on Hop-off Tour

951 reviews

4. Cermak Plaza Shopping Center

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Cermak Plaza Shopping Center is not solely a retail destination but also a backdrop for many Hollywood flicks. With an illustrious past since its opening in 1956, this shopping hub features a colorful history. One of the movies filmed on its grounds is the 2008 action-thriller, ‘Wanted’, with stars such as Angelina Jolie and Morgan Freeman.

From printing supplies at Office Depot to stylish footwear at Shoe Carnival, fresh produce at Tony’s Fresh Market, and great steak dinner at Longhorn Steakhouse, the plaza provides visitors with a diverse shopping and dining experience.

Cermak Plaza Shopping Center

Address: 7043 Cermak Rd, Berwyn, IL 60402

Website: Cermak Plaza Shopping Center

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 8am - 11pm; Sun - 10am - 11pm

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5. Friendly Music Community

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

More than just a pub, Friendly Tap is a lively hub where folks gather around the universal language of music. The place itself fosters a vibrant music culture of live concerts to exhibit some of the amazing talents in the region.

While here, enjoy bonding with your loved ones by singing nostalgic songs or participating in community events. Furthermore, the bar has open mic nights, which allows upcoming artist, performer, and extroverted audience members to showcase their talent in front of the lively hosts.

Friendly Music Community

Address: 6731 Roosevelt, Berwyn, IL, United States, Illinois

Website: Friendly Music Community

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6. Enjoy the music at Fitzgerald's Nightclub

Bobby Keys
Source: Photo by user seanbirm used under CC BY-SA 2.0

This classic music venue has been a go-to spot for many hot bands. If you feel like hearing music in a setting where everyone is welcome, then this is your place. The fact that Fitzgerald’s is close to some amazing restaurants also makes for an easy night out filled with lots of good times.

Fitzgerald's Nightclub

Address: 6615 W Roosevelt Rd, Berwyn, IL 60402

Website: Fitzgerald’s Nightclub

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7. Hang out at Friendly Music Community

Source: Photo by user Malta Girl used under CC BY 2.0

Berwyn is home to a really innovative arts scene and the Friendly Music Community is a staple for a good percentage of those artists. During the day you can have some coffee or learn some music, but by night you’ll want to grab a drink and catch a band!

Friendly Music Community

Address: 6731 W Roosevelt Rd, Berwyn, IL 60402

Website: Friendly Music Community

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8. Go shopping like never before at Reel Art

Vintage Movie Poster:  A Clockwork Orange
Source: Photo by user Joe Wolf used under CC BY-ND 2.0

For those out there who are looking for rare pop art collectibles, Reel Art in Berwyn is going to be your special place. This one of a kind store has a large collection of movie posters that you won’t be able to find anywhere else, as well as rare and beloved toys from past generations.

Reel Art

Address: 6727 Stanley Ave, Berwyn, IL 60402

Website: Reel Art

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9. Catch a play at 16th Street Theater

Source: Photo by user Julio González used under CC0

Berwyn has one of Chicago’s best theaters for independent productions, allowing for the perfect venue to showcase local talent. The 16th Street Theater has unique shows that provide audiences with the sort of perspective that can only be found at a small, intimate venue. This is definitely a worthwhile stop during your trip to Berwyn.

16th Street Theater

Address: 6420 16th St, Berwyn, IL 60402

Website: 16th Street Theater

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10. Be in the arts crowd at The Outtaspace

Pottery making
Source: Pxfuel

This arts hub in Berwyn has opportunities for either watching a show or being part of one. Enjoy the on site bar after taking a class or just take in the surrounding vibrant art!

The Outtaspace

Address: 6840 32nd St, Berwyn, IL 60402

Website: The Outtaspace

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11. Take a wild walk through Brookfield Zoo

Brookfield Zoo
Source: Photo by user swimfinfan used under CC BY-SA 2.0

For those eyeing outdoor activities near Berwyn, Illinois, visiting Brookfield Zoo is perfect and can easily make for a well-spent day. This vast zoo has animal exhibits, houses, and learning centers spread across a beautifully landscaped environment. Watch out for the wandering peacocks!

Brookfield Zoo

Address: 8400 W 31st St, Brookfield, IL 60513

Website: Brookfield Zoo

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12. Discover what inspired Hemingway at The Hemingway Museum

Ernest Hemingway Birthplace (7416212780)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Teemu008 used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Nearby Oak Park is the birthplace of Ernest Hemingway and if you have any literature buffs traveling with you, then count this as a definite must-see. The museum showcases where Hemingway was born and houses artifacts as well as curated displays on the legendary author’s life.

The Hemingway Museum

Address: 200 N Oak Park Ave, Oak Park, IL 60302

Website: The Hemingway Museum

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13. Tour the famous home of Frank Lloyd Wright

Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio
Source: Photo by user Bernt Rostad used under CC BY 2.0

Famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright lived in his Oak Park home for the first twenty years of his career. It was here where he developed and designed some of his most famous works. Take this tour of his home and see where the ingenuity took place. If you still have time after exploring this tourist attraction in Berwyn, Illinois, look for his other treasured properties around the Chicagoland area.

Frank Lloyd Wright Home

Address: 951 Chicago Ave, Oak Park, IL 60302

Website: Frank Lloyd Wright Home

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Berwyn has many local favorites, with quick access to tourist hot spots

What is Berwyn, Illinois, famous for, you ask? It’s hard to take a pick from the options on this list of activities. If you’re looking for a unique trip that includes art galleries, cozy concert venues, and an overall flair for the arts, Berwyn has got you well covered. Take your time and enjoy Berwyn’s small city charm, while still being close to the big city highlights of Chicago.

Frequently asked questions about the best things to do in Berwyn, Illinois

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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