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Visit Elgin, Illinois

Discover things to do on an Elgin, Illinois, getaway

Experience Explore Elgin Area’s Lights

Experience Explore Elgin Area’s Lights

Explore Elgin Area is determined to end 2020 on a good note. And what better way to brighten up the end of the year other than actually brightening up our communities! Explore Elgin Area’s Lights is a holiday lights contest and we need to hear from you. What displays do you like best? Hop in the car and take a drive to all of the best displays in the Elgin area, then vote for your favorites. Here you’ll find some of the best stops for holiday treats in the communities featuring Explore Elgin Area’s Lights displays!

Start the Drive!


Tune in to our Experience Guide next week to see our Explore Elgin Area Lights Scavenger Hunt! Go on a hunt for different elements found in holidays displays while on your drive and enter to win prizes.


If you feel like enhancing your experience even more, scroll down to see some of our recommendations for places to stop and pick up holiday snacks and hot chocolate for your drive. 


Holiday Snacking

Pastries, cookies and chocolate – oh my! Swing by and pick up a sweet snack from one of these locally owned businesses located in the communities you’ll be driving through.

Herb’s Bakery (Elgin)

Grab some of the best baked goods in the area before venturing out to see the lights. Muffins, cookies, pastries, donuts, rolls, and more! And warm up with a warm regular, decaf or hazelnut coffee!
 Visit Herb’s Bakery

Around the Corner Candy (West Dundee)

Taste the holidays and satisfy your sweet tooth with holiday inspired candies. Stop by to try holiday mint melt-a-ways, eggnog truffles, candy cane truffles, and more!
 Visit Around the Corner Candy



















Van’s Frozen Custard and Burgers (East Dundee)

It may be cold outside but that won’t stop ice cream from being delicious! The frozen custard from Van’s is a wonderful treat! With flavors perfect for the holiday season like peppermint chocolate chunk. Be sure to visit them on Facebook or online to see what the flavor of the day is!
 Visit Van’s

Mama Lee’s Gourmet Popcorn (Elgin)

An easy snacking experience. Grab a bag and go out to see all the lights near downtown Elgin! Enjoy the classic Elgin mix or try something new like the caramel apple! You can also spice it up with a cheesy jalapeño or chili lime popcorn! Plus online ordering and pick up is available for added convenience.
 Visit Mama Lee’s




















Hot Chocolate

Warm up and enjoy the holiday lights by stopping at one of these locally owned and operated businesses for a hand crafted hot chocolate!

Blue Box Café (Elgin)

Looking for a warm beverage and a meal? Then you’ll want to stop by the Blue Box Café for your choice of warm or cold sandwiches, and hot soup. Hot chocolate is available as well as a wide variety of coffee beverages!
 Visit Blue Box Café

Arabica Café (Elgin)

This coffee shop and bakery is a decadent stop. Serving hot chocolate along with other non-coffee warm beverages like steamers and holiday flavors for coffee beverages. Plus home-baked goods like coffee cakes that go perfect with a sandwich for breakfast or lunch!
 Visit Arabica Café















Country Donuts (Elgin)

On the go? Enjoy the convenience of Country Donut’s drive-thru window. Discover delicious treats like cookies and donuts that pair perfectly with a hot chocolate or holiday inspired beverage without even leaving the car!
 Visit Country Donuts

The Eastside Café (East Dundee)

Love hot chocolate? Then you have to try Eastside Café, formerly known as the Uncommon Palate. Here you can try a regular cocoa, but you can also try a dark cocoa or a white chocolate cocoa! Add a lovely homemade goodie and you’ll be set!
 Visit The Eastside Café


















Looking to stop for a meal before heading out to enjoy the holiday lights? Check out our Support Local Business -October Edition- blog to see what restaurants are open and what services they now offer after the mitigation guidelines we put into place in October.


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