Highland Park is a suburban city located about 25 miles north of downtown Chicago in Lake County, Illinois. The city is a home to a number of beaches that welcome off-leash dogs, as well as a vibrant commercial sector and downtown area that's literally drowning in green recreation areas. You won't have any problems dining or hiking with your pup here. Six veterinary clinics serve the city, so your pooch will be in good paws.
Let your mutt run into the welcoming waves at Moraine Dog Beach, adjacent to Moraine Dog Park. Dogs love digging in the soft sand and chasing some new furry friends at this clean, well-maintained beach. Make sure that you've registered your dog at Heller Nature Center before visiting.
If you're looking for an activity with no strings attached, you'll find a couple of furrific hiking trails to explore with your buddy here! Robert McCorley Bike Path is 25 miles of adventure. Or, check out Green Bay Trail, which is about 9 miles long, starts in Highland Park, and ends in Wilmette, IL.
You don't have to travel far away from the city center to find a decent dog park. Highland Park Gold Dog Park is a nice, fenced facility for hounds located not far from Skokie Valley Road’s commercial attractions. There's plenty of room to run and romp here, but you'll need to bring your own supplies.
Highland Park has everything you and your pooch need to make some un-fur-gettable memories!
Deerfield is just a skip and a hop west of Highland Park -- only an 8-minute drive out of town. You and Fido will want to head toward the western part of town, where you'll find a pawesome place to get some exercise: Jaycee Memorial Park. This is a public recreation area with a fenced, pet-friendly extension covered in gravel and grass. Let your buddy join the sporty mutts on the obstacle course, or watch while they chase some new furry friends or fetch that toy you just threw. You'll also find seating and drinking water fountains in shaded areas of the park.
If you're traveling via Waukegan Road on the way to Chicago or Northbrook, you might need a place to stop and stretch your legs before continuing on your journey. Take a pit stop in Lake Forest, IL, home to Prairie Wolf Slough County Forest Preserve and the adjacent Prairie Wolf Dog Park. Both recreation areas are shaded, and the preserve is great for walking along the trails and exploring nature. The dog park is the pawfect place to play off-leash with both local and visiting pups, with 44 acres of fenced space complete with a pond where your buddy can splash.
Tucked in the western part of Lake Forest, Skokie River Nature Preserve is one of the largest and oldest nature preserves in the state. It's home to a mix of sedge meadows which are native to the Skokie River Valley, as well as savanna, woodlands, and prairies. Feel free to enjoy a calm mindful walk along the walking trails. Challenge your buddy on the Skokie Valley Trail, stretching for about 10 miles throughout Lake County from Highland Park to Lake Bluff. Like most walking trails, the rules of this one are simple: keep your buddy on their leash, and bring your own drinking water and waste baggies to keep the trail clean.
The state of Illinois is full of endless hiking opportunities for you and your buddy! You'll be spoiled for choice when it comes to trails, so you can choose the right one for an un-fur-gettable adventure. Captain Daniel Wright Woods Forest Preserve is a good place to start. This nice, well-shaded place is located in the southwestern borough of Lake Forest. Bordered by Des Plaines River to the west, the preserve features a wooded area occupying more than 750 acres and a fishing lake. Your buddy will be happy to join you for a leashed walk along Des Plaines River Trail, a long and difficult 57-mile hiking path with lush surroundings and a variety of trail surfaces.
Set north of Highland Park, Skokie is a great place to take your buddy to enjoy a day at the park with a cultural and artistic twist. Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park, on the eastern bank of North Shore Channel, is a cool place to enjoy a leashed walk near the water. Feel free to sniff out a few of the sculptures, which make for the pawfect photo op with Fido! Prefer hiking instead? North Shore Channel Trail is also located here, and welcomes your leashed pooch to explore. Finish your day with a visit to Dengeos Restaurant, a home-style place with a pet-friendly environment, outdoor tables, and unforgettable Grecian Chicken!