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The best places for berry picking near Chicago

Take a short drive for a day spent berry picking on farms near Chicago, where you'll find strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and more

Written by
Laura Rote
&
Morgan Olsen
Contributor
Lindsay Eanet
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Few things can compete with the joy of picking your own produce—from the adventure of the outing, to the communal vibe, to the bountiful (and delicious!) end result. This summer, take a day trip from Chicago to find a farm where you can pick your own strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and more. While these farms are a bit further out than the suburbs, the drive will be worth it for you and the whole family, thanks to the fun, kid-friendly attractions like petting zoos, wagon rides and live music that many farms offer. Bring your berry haul home and make pies, frozen cocktails and preserves to last through winter. Keep in mind that you should check ahead with any of these spots to make sure your fruits of choice are currently in season. But otherwise? Just get picking at these farms near Chicago!

RECOMMENDED: The best family weekend getaways from Chicago 

The best places for berry picking

  • Things to do
  • Suburbs

This McHenry County mecca offers more than your average farm. In addition to summer berry picking, Stade's has a full market, farm tours, sunset hayrides and a petting zoo at certain times of the year. Check out the stash of strawberries in June, or head there in July for perfect raspberries, green beans and sugar snap peas.

Just over an hour northwest of downtown Chicago, you'll find Heider's Berry Farm in Woodstock, where five generations of the Heider family have been giving Chicagoland families a magical farm experience. Visit in mid-June to pick delicious strawberries, or grab an assortment of red, black and purple raspberries beginning in July. Visit their Facebook page for updates on hours and availability. 

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Fill a bucket with strawberries in June and head back for some red raspberries in September at this Wisconsin farm located 60 miles north of downtown Chicago. Beginning in July, you can also catch the fleeting, brilliant majesty of their sunflowers in bloom. In addition to the main farm, you'll also find a dedicated strawberry picking patch at 6125 156th Ave in Bristol, WI. 

  • Kids

When fall rolls around, it's all about the apples at Valley Orchard. But come summer, this Cherry Valley farm is crawling with raspberries, strawberries, rhubarb, tart cherries, blueberries and currants. Before loading your haul into the car, be sure to stop by the on-site bakery for apple cider doughnuts, house-made apple pie and cinnamon bread. Make it a day trip when you visit nearby Magic Waters Waterpark, which is located about three miles away from the farm.

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Olive Berry Acres
  • Kids

Located 80 miles southwest of downtown Chicago, Olive Berry Acres is known for its ruby-red raspberries and juicy strawberries, as well as asparagus and rhubarb. When the berry-picking season wraps, the farm continues to offer eggs, whole chickens and tomatoes. Be sure to check their Facebook page for updates on closures and availability. 

 

  • Things to do

Situated just 60 miles south of downtown Chicago, this sweet blueberry farm offers 10 acres of fruit-packed bushes plus pies, honey, preserves and more. More impressive yet, there are seven varieties of blueberries growing here, offering pickers a new taste on the classic fruit. Head out to the farm to pick your own or grab a container to go. Check their Facebook page for updates on seasonal openings and hours.

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Hop on a horse-drawn wagon for this berry-picking adventure. Depending on the month, you might find cherries, strawberries, raspberries or blueberries, among other fine produce. Just be sure to call ahead to find out what's available at this Indiana spot. Come September, check the calendar for live music on the weekends.

In addition to this beloved, 60-plus-year-old Huntley institution's brief but joyful u-pick strawberry season (including mouthwatering strawberry donuts), there's a whole lot more to explore. You'll find 80,000 square feet of greenhouses, a whimsical gift shop, bakery and cafe, as well as fun events throughout the summer, from gardening workshops to a sunflower maze.

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