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15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois [With Suggested 3 Day Itinerary]


Galena is a small town in northwestern Illinois. Because of the well-preserved 19th century buildings, many visitors like to go here. By going here, you can get a lot of information about the history of Ulysses S. Grant. So if you are not familiar with this little hidden gem in Illinois. This is your chance to explore it!

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Best things to do in Galena, Illinois

1. Blaum Bros. distillation company

This family-owned Galena distillery offers daily tours and tastings. Their cocktails are drinks you shouldn’t miss. The distillery has a great atmosphere inside, so the tour will not be boring at all. They also have shops where you can buy gifts. When you are in Galina, don’t forget to go here.

2. Ulysses S. Home Grant

Photo by Jim Power CC BY-ND 2.0

This house is the former home of Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th President of the United States. it’s for An Italianate brick house that still looks today as it did in 1865. All furnishings were original to the house. By visiting it, you will feel like you have gone back from the past.

3. PT Murphy’s Magic Theater

This theater is a must visit! Murphy is known for his mischievous sense of humor that makes the show even more entertaining! You will witness awesome magic and tricks from great performer and artist. Please remember that this theater has a capacity of 24 seats only so advance reservations are recommended.

4. Galena County Historical Society and Museum / Joe Davis

This Italianate palace was built in 1858 and is shown in Ulysses S. Grant and the Civil War Souvenirs and items honoring Ulysses S. Grant, as well as other historical articles from Galena and County Joe Davis. It really is a fun place to go.

5. Grant Park

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Photo via moistpics3 CC BY 2.0

This large urban park is located indoors The city’s central business district. The place is really beautiful that every corner is so beautiful. Because it is so well maintained, the area feels relaxed and the views are great. So if you want to spend your day in peace, just head to this park for a great experience.

6. The old blacksmith’s shop

The historic blacksmith shop/museum in Galena, Illinois will show you the science behind the craftsmanship. It is truly an educational journey for people of all ages.

7. River Bend Gallery

A paradise for photographers, aspiring photographers, or people who just love photography. This show Home to landscape photography by Jeffrey McCall. All the photos will really catch your eyes and the stories behind the photos will definitely be inspiring. You should not miss this opportunity.

8. Casper Bluffland and Water Reserve

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Photo by Curtis Abert CC BY 2.0

Nice place to stop. It is recommended to go here in the afternoon to watch the sunset. The beautiful views in this park are really amazing, and it’s worth going here.

9. Horseshoe Hill

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Photo by Ron Cogswell CC BY 2.0

The perfect location for a perfect view of Galina. You can go up the hill with a vehicle or you can go hiking and try the path. Whichever you choose, you will absolutely love and enjoy the views at the top.

Suggested tour: horseback riding

10. Galina Cellars Vineyard

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Photo by Richie Desterhaft CC B 2.0

If you love wine and want to taste all kinds of wine, head to Galena Cellars Vineyard. Whether you like dry or sweet wine you will find something. The place is also wonderful and quiet.

11. Galina Welcome Center

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Photo by jelm6 CC BY 2.0

An informative place to visit first before you start your trip in Galina. The staff can help you with the information you need about the city and the best attractions to go to.

Suggested tour: Galena Gourmet Food Tour

12. West Street Sculpture Park

If you are interested in welded metal sculptures then you should add this to your list. West Street Sculpture Park is well worth the walk from visitors. You will see very unique sculptures and they are all very beautiful.

13. Old Market House State Historic Site

A museum full of the history of the United States, General Grant and his family. You will see an impressive collection of US Grant Program artifacts. This place is definitely informative. So, if you are a history buff, you might want to consider going here.

14. Mängelsen – Nature Gallery

Visit this gallery to see great photographs. Inside, you’ll see nature’s finest offerings. The photos are really amazing so if you are a fan of photography then you should add it to your list.

15. Washburn House State Historic Site

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Photo by Teemu008 CC BY-SA 2.0

This house is well preserved. If you are interested in the history of the Washburn family, you will be able to learn more about them here!

Things to do for 3 days in Galena, Illinois

Image via SD Dirk CC BY 2.0

First day in Galena, Illinois

Galina Welcome Center Before you begin your journey, you should head to the Galena Welcome Center first. It will give you a lot of information and ideas about what to do in the city. By going here you can fix your itinerary and make it well organized.

Blaum Bros. distillation company Start your journey with a wine tasting tour! Blaum Bros. Distilling Co is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Galena.

Day Two in Galena, Illinois

PT Murphy Magic Theater Enjoy an entertainment show on your second day. This is definitely a great start to your day.

Ulysses S. Grant Home No trip to Galena would be complete if you didn’t go here. Learn more about Ulysses S. Grant, the 18th President of the United States.

Day 3 in Galena, Illinois

Grant Park End your trip in comfort at Grant Park. The place is so cool! Perfect for a quiet and peaceful experience.

Frequently asked questions about Galena, Illinois

15 Best Things to Do in Galena, Illinois
Image via CX CC BY 2.0

1. Is it safe to travel to Galena, Illinois?

The crime rate in Galina is not very high, and for this reason, traveling here is not really dangerous and visitors can be sure that everything will be fine.

2. What is the best time to visit Galina, Illinois?

If you want to fully enjoy the Galina trek, the best time to visit here is between May and November. This is because almost all attractions are open during this time which gives tourists more opportunities to explore Galena to the fullest.

3. How to reach Galina, Illinois?

Flights from Chicago are the only direct flight to Galina. Other flights from different states need a connecting flight to go to Dubuque Regional Airport (the nearest airport is in Galena and is located 37 miles from central Galena, Illinois.

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About the author

Fatima Turla2

Hello! I Fatema. My first major trip was in 2016 in the beautiful city of Cebu. After that, I got interested in traveling. I now enjoy learning the languages ​​and cultures of other countries. My goal is to visit at least one country each year and share my experiences with other people through writing or blogging. Watch my journey by following me on Instagram.





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