The quaint village of West Dundee, Illinois is considered a western outlying suburb of Chicago. The roads of this small town are lined with a patchwork brick and stone buildings dating back to the village’s establishment. The village is outlined by the Fox River, an important asset to the village’s recreational life. With this guide, travellers can get a glimpse of what this tiny town has to offer in the way of activities for its guests.
1. Underground Retrocade
This blast from the past brings visitors back to the time of old-fashioned arcade games. Located on Main Street right in the heart of the old village of West Dundee, across South 2nd Avenue form the Village Hall, this community gem brings back the fun of the biggest classic game titles. This arcade is actually home to 10 world record scores on its consoles. The collection of games available at this establishment is truly a video game enthusiast joy. With 167 arcade games, including standup arcade consoles, pinball machines, and more, visitors will not run out of new games to try. Several machines are also multi-player, meaning visitors can play against their friends, family, or maybe a stranger who is up to the challenge. The arcade is open Mondays through Thursdays 5 pm to 11 pm, Fridays 5 pm to 1 am, Saturdays 11 am to 1am, and Sundays 11 am to 11 pm. Both adults and children must purchase general admission costing 15 USD; this grants visitors unlimited play of all games in the arcade and re-entry into the arcade. The arcade is a family-friendly establishment that does have multiple rules regarding visitors’ conduct at the arcade, so visiting their website and reading through those is recommended. Although the arcade is a place of entertainment, guests must understand that many of these games are antiques so children under the age of 14 must be supervised. The Retrocade has its high score winner listed on its website; maybe after a visit you’ll see your name there!
Address: 121 W Main St, West Dundee, IL 60118
Website: Underground Retrocade
2. Benedict's Eggs & More
Just over the Fox River in East Dundee is the lovely restaurant of Benedict’s Eggs & More. An adorable building built around a tree (no seriously a tree in growing through the middle of the restaurant), this neighborhood treat that aims to serve its community as best it can through good food. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, and lunch, Benedict’s serves a variety of treats including freshly squeezed juices, coffees, continental breakfast items, pancakes, waffles, crepes, soups, sandwiches, burgers, wraps, salads, and more. Benedict’s is open daily from 7 am to 2 pm. The restaurant also serves seasonal specials depending on what time of year you visit. If you’re interested in completing the “trinity of Benedict’s”, as I call it, you can visit their other two locations in Crystal Lake Illinois.
Benedict's Eggs & More
Address: 8 S River St, East Dundee, IL 60118
Website: Benedict’s Eggs & More
3. Santa’s Village Azoosment Park
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." — Anatole France #MondayMotivation Santa's...Posted by Santa’s Village Azoosment Park on Monday, 5 December 2016
Located across the Fox River, Santa’s Village Azoosment Park is an adorable theme park that mixes, a Christmas village, a petting zoo, and amusement rides all into one package. It is important to note that the park is open seasonally, meaning it opens in May, when the weather in the area is acceptable, and closes again in October. The park has 21 rides, and an all-new ride opening the summer of 2017. In addition, the park has over 200 animals, including mammals, birds, and fish. Visitors are able to hand feed parakeets and farm animals, and ride ponies. There are multiple variations of admission depending upon the visitors needs and ages, so it is recommended to reviews these at your leisure on their website, which is linked below. There are two educational programs available for children, so they can get a more hand-on experience.
Santa’s Village Azoosment Park
Address: 601 Dundee Ave, East Dundee, IL 60118
Website: Santa’s Village Azoosment Park
4. Grand Victoria Casino
Just a 15-minute drive south of West Dundee is the Grand Victoria Casino, a riverboat on the Fox River that has everything you could want from a traditional casino. With over 1,000 slot machines, a variety of table card games, extravagant giveaways, and four restaurants, the Grand Victoria is a great place to make a memorable evening at the most profitable casino in Illinois. The casino is open daily from 8:30 am until 6:30 am. Each restaurant on the boat offers a different dining option, including a burger house, steakhouse, micro-restaurants, and a deli. The casino is open to hosting private events, such as weddings and parties, upon contact with the Banquet Coordinator. The Grand Victoria is often host to live concert events from a variety of performers. Checking the calendar of events on the casino website is a good idea if you would like to know more.
Grand Victoria Casino
Address: 250 S Grove Ave, Elgin, IL 60120
Website: Grand Victoria Casino
5. Alexander’s Restaurant
Grilled Fish Tacos 🌮 #fishtacos #tacotuesday #butitsthursday #yum #avocado #tortilla #salsa #fruit #healthy #eattheburbs #chiburbs #elgin #cafe #local #diner #dinner #foodie #foodiesofinstagram #chicago #chicagoeats #chieats #312food #312 #chicagofoodauthority #suburbanfoodie #almostfriday #nyceats #eeeeeats #elgin #illinois
Just a 10-minute drive from West Dundee will get you another great community restaurant. This restaurant is named after Alexander the Great as homage to the owners’ heritage. With modern yet homey décor, Alexander’s hopes to serve all its customers in a chic setting while still maintaining the feel of the community. This restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a menu including: all classic breakfast foods, soups, ice cream, salads, sandwiches, pizza, pasta, fish, baby back ribs, steaks, and more.
Address: 1725 N State St, Elgin, IL 60123
Website: Alexander’s Restaurant
6. Shri Swaminarayan Mandir
Truly a sight to behold, the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir is a spectacular Hindu temple built in accordance with the classical Hindu texts. The temple was constructed with a combination of Italian marble and Turkish limestone and its grounds stretch over 27 acres (10.9 hectares) of land, making it the largest Hindu temple in Illinois. Entry to the temple is free, but donations of all amounts are appreciated. Visiting hours are from 9 am to 7:30 pm daily. There are a few stipulations for guests to gain entry to the temple that are best reviewed on the temple’s website, which is linked below. Visitors can request to schedule tours as small or larger groups through the temple’s website. In addition to the temple, there is also a gift/book shop, café, and snack shop on site, providing visitors with a well-rounded introduction to the basics of this cultural marvel.
Shri Swaminarayan Mandir
Address: 1851 Pramukh Swami Maharaj Rd, Bartlett, IL 60103
Website: Shri Swaminarayan Mandir
Simple town but great fun
The town of West Dundee is a true Illinois gem. Travellers can find everything a fun vacation needs: great food, entertaining activities, and diversity. There is a great mix of both educational and mature activities that visitors can choose from to fit their desires. It truly proves that fun doesn’t have to be something difficult to find, sometimes it’s in the simplest packages.
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