Best Outdoor Trails in Chicago Suburbs

Wide-open spaces and fresh air are two very big perks to staying in the suburbs. Take advantage of the outdoors by biking, hiking, fishing, or picnicking during your stay, and get in tune with nature in the Chicagoland area.


Danada Forest Preserve

Danada Forest Preserve

While the main attraction for visitors may be the three miles of trails that weave throughout the forest preserve for runners, walkers and bikers, there is so much more available to those who visit Danada Forest Preserve. Anglers can fish at Rice Lake, there are picnic tables for an easygoing afternoon, and even an equestrian center for those looking to saddle up for a trail ride. Featuring 825 acres of wetlands, woodlands and prairies, reconnecting with nature and yourself is easy to do.

Ned Brown Preserve (Busse Woods)

Ned Brown Preserve (Busse Woods)

If you are looking for a fun day at the lake, Busse Lake at Ned Brown Preserve is your ultimate destination. The lake is open year-round, however during the summer; visitors can rent canoes and rowboats to take out on the water at Busse Lake Boating Center. You’re also welcome to fish year-round from the over 20 miles of shoreline, picnic, and take advantage of the eight-mile trail for biking, running, hiking, and more.

Des Plaines River Trail

Des Plaines River Trail

The recently updated Des Plaines River Trail features 31.4 miles spanning the entire length of the county, from just south of the Wisconsin border to Lake Cook Road. There are plenty of outdoor recreational activities to enjoy here, including biking, hiking, and during the winter, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.

Ryerson Woods

Ryerson Woods Trail

Accessible year-round and fit for a full range of athletic ability, Ryerson Woods Trail features 3 miles of trail for your outdoor enjoyment. For those looking to get in touch with nature in a more educational way, there is an art gallery with rotating exhibitions, events such as the annual Film Festival in the Woods, and more, at Brushwood Center at Ryerson Woods. 

salt creek

Salt Creek Greenway Trail

This trail extends from the Busse Forest in Elk Grove Village to the Brookfield Zoo in Brookfield. Stretching nearly 25 miles long, the Salt Creek Greenway Trail weaves through 12 suburban communities, giving you a glimpse into many local neighborhoods. Enjoy the fresh air and greenery when you take advantage of this walking, running and biking path.

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