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Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: The Perfect Midwestern Getaway

Growing up in the Chicagoland area you learn to love and demand certain novelties: Chicago-style hotdogs, stuffed pizza, local sports and weekend fun! Most Chicagoans and other Midwesterners work hard during the week and play even harder on the weekends. Weekend getaways have become increasingly popular to escape the rat race and rejuvenate the soul - even if it is just for a couple of days.

Many Illinois residents leave the state borders in search of that ideal weekend retreat. And many find that 48 hour euphoria in the quaint town of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Lake Geneva is the perfect escape being only a two hour drive from the heart of Chicago and even less of a trek for suburbanites.

Lake Geneva's popularity first grew as a mecca for rich Chicago businessmen also seeking a sublime weekend sanctuary many years ago. In fact, the shoreline is still dotted with a bounty of millionaire's mansions. But don't let that discourage you; there is plenty to do in Lake Geneva and its surrounding areas for all Midwesterners.

As you enter this lovely town, you can see the crystal blue lake just beyond the shop-lined streets. There are several boats you can embark upon that will cruise you around the lake while offering you a rich history lesson, an ice cream social or even demonstrate how mail is delivered on the shoreline. That's right; they actually deliver the mail to lakefront properties by boat. Postal employees jump off the front of the moving boat, place the mail in the boxes and then successfully jump back onto the back of the boat. You can also rent wave runners, power boats and fishing boats at the town's own marina.

Make sure you visit Lake Geneva's beach. It's small but very clean and you can enjoy it's clear waters and soft sand for a small fee. Or you can take a long walk around the entire lake if you please, because the town provides a walking path that weaves in and out of the palatial waterfront properties. It may take several hours to complete the tour, but the scenery will be well worth the soar feet.

The cozy downtown area of Lake Geneva boasts several restaurants, bars and boutiques. You can purchase souvenir hats and shirts, scented candles and crafts or designer clothing and footwear all within a two to three block range. The Global Gourmet features wine tasting and food sampling promoting their unique libations, dips and sauces. For breakfast, try Speedo's for the best skillet in town. Popeye's restaurant is great for family dining right along the charming lakefront. And Champ's bar presents great drinks, appetizers and a large beer garden. Down the road, try Mars on Lake Como for marvelous ribs and fish. For a fancier feast, visit Kirsch's at the French Country Inn and find delectable steaks and chops in a romantic atmosphere.

After dinner, you will find several places to cleanse you pallet with ice cream, coffee or chocolates from local shops. There is also a pie making company on the outskirts of town that advertises dozens of delicious fruitful flavors.

There are several places to stay in Lake Geneva featuring water views combined with a downtown "walk to everything" location. The best of both worlds. The Cove, for example, offers family fun with large suites, balconies and fireplaces, indoor and outdoor pools and spas and a full service restaurant. A few miles from town there is also a fairly new indoor waterpark for a splashin' good time.

And Lake Geneva isn't just for summer visitors. There's plenty to do all year long. An October Fest lines the streets with food and drink vendors and a winter festival displays incredible ice sculptures along the frosty shoreline.

So for a splendid getaway with lakefront fun and small town charm, Lake Geneva is the place for you!

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