With the Fourth of July just a few days away, it’s important to know the ins and outs of all things happening in Chicago and Chicagoland to make planning a little easier! Take advantage of the city’s various offerings, from the hottest rooftops with the best views and waterfront dining to weekend getaways and last-minute décor, we rounded out some of our favorites not to miss.

If you are looking for something to do with the family:

The Forge: Looking for something active that the whole family will enjoy? Look no further. The Forge offers a 300-acre outdoor adventure park that the whole family is guaranteed to love. The park is located 22 miles Southwest of downtown Chicago, so it’s perfect for a day trip!  Offering the longest and tallest ziplines in the tri-state area and the three tallest ropes towers in the world, this year-round outdoor adventure park has something for every level, age and ability. Admission to the park is free, with tickets available to book in advance for each desired activity.

Raging Waves: For the parents looking for a fun getaway with the kids, check out Raging Waves! From July 2- July 4, Raging Waves will be open from 10 A.M. to 6 P.M for family fun. As the weather is looking to be clear and mid-70s, it’s the perfect way to spend your time outside, action packed with fun for the kids. With tons to do, the main attractions that are a must-see include the Aussie dash which allows the family to race each other, along with the PJ’s Plummet, and the Kookaburra Kreek. There truly is something for the whole family.

Looking for a fun bar to celebrate this weekend? Check out these hotspots: 

Replay Lincoln Park: As a classic go-to bar for many Chicagoans, Replay has transformed their space into a Nickelodeon themed bar. Inspired by 90’s Nickelodeon favorites including Rugrats, Hey Arnold, Are You Afraid of the Dark, CatDog, Doug, Rocko’s Modern Life and much more, Replay is able to create some of the best 90’s nostalgia for those looking to take a trip down memory lane this Fourth of July weekend. Tickets are $20 and include a reservation and two cocktails. Reservations can be made by clicking here.

AIRE Rooftop: AIRE Rooftop is the perfect place to get drinks with friends this weekend. Serving craft cocktails, wine selections, and shareables, AIRE offers a fun atmosphere to socialize with friends, host a cocktail reception, or just enjoy a drink against the breathtaking backdrop of the city. When the sun goes down, the firepits turn on and create an amazing ambiance for your friends.

Kennedy Rooftop: A bar named after JFK, Kennedy Rooftop is the perfect place to spend this Independence Day. This buzzed about rooftop lounge, offers tasty shareables, burgers and salads, and an extensive wine, beer and cocktail list – not to mention Instagram opportunities galore. The perfect vantage point of the city skyline, Kennedy is home to unobstructed panoramic views and unmatched vibes to make for an unforgettable evening. The rooftop is first come, first served.

Raised: As an eclectic and industrial style rooftop, Raised rooftop is a perfect place to go out with your crew this holiday weekend. Shareables inspired by American bar food, Raised is the perfect place to grab apps and drinks for the weekend. With outdoor fire pits and a tasty wine, beer and sprites list, this is the perfect place to enjoy some time with colleagues, friends, and family.

OffshoreIf your group is interested in dining and having the best seats for the fireworks in all of Chicago, check out Offshore, located atop Navy Pier. Offshore is the world’s largest rooftop deck and one of Chicago’s most exciting hotspots. This beautiful restaurant offers a delicious seafood inspired menu that includes Red Grouper & Scallop ceviche, a Crab Meat Salad, Organic Salmon Poke Bowls, and more; along with an expansive wine, beer and cocktail list. If interested in making a reservation, check out their Tock here.

If a mouth-watering dinner is more your vibe, check these out:

KINTON RAMEN: Looking for a chill night with a hot and delicious bowl of ramen? Celebrate Independence Day with KINTON RAMEN’s Ramen & a Beer Special, available at both their West Loop and Wicker Park locations. For $15.99 get an order of signature ramen and a pint of Sapporo, Japan’s oldest beer brand! As if that doesn’t get any better, KINTON is offering $1 off any additional pints of Sapporo after ordering the special. To learn more about KINTON and their menu please visit their website: https://www.kintonramen.com/

Carnivale: Celebrate colorfully at Carnivale. Inspired cuisine rooted in Latin culture with a twist, some menu options to keep an eye out for include the cotton candy martini, housemade guacamole and delicious Paella De Mariscos. Boasting a fun, convivial atmosphere, Carnivale is the perfect atmosphere for a fun weekend out with the girls or even a nice dinner with the family.

Lirica: Latin and Iberian inspired cuisine with breathtaking views of Lake Michigan? Yes, please! The perfect spot on the pier for an elegant dining experience, Lirica boasts delicious, handcrafted cocktails, expertly prepared meats and fresh fish dishes to indulge in. For more information or reservation bookings, click here.

Fulton Market Kitchen: Add a bit of culture to your celebration this fourth at Fulton Market Kitchen. Offering seasonally inspired dishes, the restaurant features fresh, delicious offerings such as a bright Watermelon and Feta Salad, savory Char-Grilled Spanish Octopus, Oysters and Caviar and more. Fulton Market Kitchen offers specialty cocktails along with delicious wine selection. For reservations, please visit www.fultonmarketkitchen.com

Oaken Bistro:This is the best spot to celebrate on Chicago’s North Shore. Located within the stunning new Forester Hotel in Conway Business Park, the restaurant and lounge have both indoor and outdoor dining, open daily. Enjoy a delicious menu developed by Executive Chef Kristen Burman and a beverage program incorporating herbal infusion that delights and excites guests. To make a reservation at the new restaurant, please visit www.oakebistro.com

If you’re looking for a unique experience this weekend:

The Rose Hotel: With multiple baseball games planned for the upcoming weekend, the “Take Me Out To The Ballgame Package” at the Rose Hotel in Rosemont is the perfect option for the 4th of July weekend. This unique package includes a trip to Impact Field, home of the Chicago Dogs Baseball team, located less than five minutes away from the hotel. The package also features four general admission tickets to a Chicago Dogs game, complimentary overnight parking, a complimentary shuttle ride to and from Impact Field, and a “Play Ball” welcome amenity which includes popcorn, peanuts, and a bucket of ice-cold beers. Please click here to learn more.

City Cruises Chicago: A classic Chicago adventure that everyone loves is the City Cruise boat experience on the beautiful fresh bodies of water! City Cruises Chicago has announced both their Lake Michigan and Chicago River experiences to celebrate the upcoming summer holidays including their exclusive 4th of July brunch, lunch and dinner cruises that include a plated dinner, open bar, live music, and a dance floor while taking in unobstructed views of Chicago’s outstanding fireworks show and city skyline. Tickets for all cruises are available now and can be booked here.

Sistine Chapel: More into the art scene? Located in Oakbrook, Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel Exhibition offers renowned ceiling frescoes from the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel, reproduced photographically and artfully displayed in their original size. This beautiful and unique opportunity will be sure to impress friends and family, as everyone is given a chance to engage with the artwork in ways that were never possible, seeing every detail, every brushstroke, and every color of the artist’s 34 frescoes. Tickets are available now, and can be purchased by clicking here.

If you’re looking for a fun staycation:

Hyatt Lodge Oak Brook: Looking for a place to stay for the 4th of July weekend? The Hyatt Lodge Oak Brook is an amazing and cozy location. Included are astounding amenities for both you and the family such as the indoor pool with a beautiful skylight ceiling, a relaxing getaway spa, and feel free to bring your pet because it’s pet friendly! With two dining options and a private events room, along with trendy and comfy rooms, it’ll be the perfect location for the family. With tons of outdoor space, museums and cultural and historic sights, this will exceed your expectations. For more information, click here!

Sable at Navy Pier: Sable at Navy Pier is the first hotel to break ground and make waves on one of the city’s most iconic and historic landmarks, offering sweeping, unparalleled views of Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline, truly unlike any other. If you are looking to celebrate this weekend with a nice staycation, this hotel offers 223 suites overlooking Lake Michigan and the Navy Pier fireworks. To book an upcoming staycation, please click here.

For your last-minute festive necessities:  

Hatch: We understand the Fourth of July (and any other holiday) weekend can be overwhelming and exhausting, especially for people with underlying health conditions. Between trying to entertain and keep up with all the activities, it’s important to take time for yourself with your choice of cannabis. With both a medical menu and recreational menu, there is something for everyone at Hatch. Visit their website or a Hatch location to learn more about their July 4th Blowout Sale!

Roosevelt Collection: The South Loop’s hub for all things shopping, lifestyle and local art, is a great place to spend the Fourth with the family. From shopping at a locally owned business on site including Kido, Love Peridot, Divinity Seven and more to popping into the Magic Selfies pop up for a few fun photos, the lifestyle center offers a variety of shops, restaurants, spaces and entertainment for everyone to enjoy.

Luft Balloons: If you’re looking for some decorations for the Fourth of July that your friends and family will be impressed by, check out Luft Balloons. This unique instillation will truly blow away everyone from a simple barbeque to a firework viewing party. Options of both prepicked custom balloons, there is something for everyone to choose from to elevate your party. Located on 345 W Armitage Ave, you can pick up your balloon orders that you can order here.

Paper Source: Stop by your local paper source or place an order online to pick up some cute 4th of July invitations or party decor this year. Paper source is the ultimate go-to for fun crafts and adorable décor. Check out their full collection of Fourth of July decorations, invitations and supplies here!