This village is located in the west Chicago suburbs. It was established in the 1960s. It grew rapidly through the 70s, 80s, and beyond.
Woodridge is named after a wooded ridge that runs east of the DuPage River. It was adopted by an historic public golf course, which predates the village by many decades.
Woodridge is now home to nearly 35,000 people. It boasts a variety of amenities, including a Park District-run park district and plenty of open space maintained by DuPage County.
Minutes to the north is the famous Morton Arboretum. A massive ropes-and-zipline course was opened in Lemont’s former quarry in 2020.
1. The Morton Arboretum
Woodridge is just a stone’s Throw from the Chicagoland Visitor Attraction that does groundbreaking research on trees.
The Morton Arboretum has more than 4,100 species of plants in its living collections. It covers 1,700 acres. There is much to see and do.
The Schulenburg Prairie was established in 1962. It is one of the oldest prairie restoration efforts in the Midwest.
You can also explore a tapestry wetlands, lakes, and woodlands. There are indoor and outdoor exhibitions, as well as an impressive array of sub-gardens, including a Conifer Collection and Willow Collection, Ornamental Flowers Trees Collection, Maze Garden and Ground Cover Garden.
Families will love the interactive Children’s Garden, which covers four acres and features hidden streams, giant acorns, tree-root slides, and other dreamy elements.
2. Cypress Cove Family Aquatic Park
Woodridge is one of many communities in Chicago that boast excellent outdoor pools.
Cypress Cove is an amazing attraction that is open during school summer breaks. It also has a postseason that lasts until Labor Day weekend.
It has a bayou-themed theme and includes a large wading area with zero-depth entry, a six lane program pool, a lazy river that measures 600 feet in length, a spray playground and two long water slides: Tabasco Falls and Pelican’s Plunge.
For a delicious snack or hand-dipped icecream, there’s the Swamp Shack Cafe or Snapper’s Snack Shack.
3. Lost Mountain Adventure Golf
This 18-hole seasonal miniature golf course is located near Woodgrove Festival Shopping Center in Woodridge.
Lost Mountain is reminiscent of Indiana Jones with its artifacts as well as rope bridges, rope bridges, and jungle huts.
The course runs along slopes that lead to a waterfall of 22 feet. It has three levels and feeds a system with little springs, pools and streams.
The setting is fun, but the holes require you to navigate some difficult slopes rather than many outlandish obstacles. Even better, the course is lit at night and remains open until 10:30 on weekends.
4. Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve
Woodridge, located in the southeast corner of the village borders the 2,500 DuPage County Forest Preserve. It is a picturesque hilly landscape.
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve is a patchwork ecosystem that includes oak-maple woodland, prairie, and savanna. It also houses three quarters all of the native plant species to DuPage County.
The Bluff Savanna preserve contains black walnuts that date back to two centuries ago. They are among the oldest trees of their type in the county.
The preserve has 11 miles of trails for hikers and joggers as well as horseback riders, snowshoeing/skiing in the winter and horseback riders.
The Rocky Glen Waterfall, and the bluff overlook at Sawmill Creek are two that deserve special mention.
5. Greene Valley Forest Preserve
This DuPage County forest preserve is located on Woodridge’s west side and flows through the East Branch DuPage River.
This spot is home to more than 540 species of plants on 1,388 acres. It also features spectacular displays of native wildflowers during spring.
Greene Valley Forest Preserve also contains a stand of mature oak forest north of 79th Street. There are over 370 species of native animals in the preserve, including horned Owls, white-tailed Deer, and meadowlarks. Also, there are egrets as well as herons in the wetland areas that run alongside the river.
You can enjoy a beautiful view of Chicago from the tower at 190 feet on weekends between May and October.
6. The Forge Zipline Park and Adventures
The outdoor adventure park was built in the former quarry next to the Des Plaines River, Lemont in 2020.
The Forge covers 300 acres and offers many activities. But the highlight of the Forge is the Eight Towers Adventure. It combines almost 300 ropes courses with nearly two miles of ziplines. Much of the Forge is on the water.
From more than 100 feet up, you can enjoy stunning views of Chicago’s skyline.
The Two Towers Adventure was specifically designed for small climbers. There are many other adventure options, including paddlesports, rock climbing, biking and laser tag, as well as escape rooms.
7. Seven Bridges Ice Arena
The multi-purpose indoor sports center was opened in Woodridge in 1994. It has more than one million visitors annually, making it one the most popular centers in the Chicago area.
There are three rinks: an Olympic-size rink, one that is NHL-sized and an Olympic-sized rink. The turf area measures 13,760 square feet. It can be used for many sports.
The Seven Bridges Ice Arena offers a range of public programs including “Learn to Skate”, and “Learn to Play Hockey” sessions. There are also sessions for freestyle and stick-and-puck skating.
8. Lake Harriet Park
This park is located next to the Woodridge Park District Offices. It features a charming fishing pond with its wooded banks and is surrounded by an elegant residential area.
You can walk or bike along the shore or to the tranquil fishing area. You can use the water in a non-motorized craft. Lake Harriet Park covers just nine acres and includes a picnic area as well as a multi-purpose open playground.
The best thing about this area of Woodridge parks is the fact that they are all linked by multipurpose trails. This allows you to travel from Lake Harriet Park to Hawthorne Hill Woods to the tranquil Hawthorne Hill Woods, Hobson Corner Park’s splash pad, or Castaldo Park’s disc golf course without needing a car.
9. Hobson Corner Park
The Hobson Corner park is located at the Woodridge water tower. It packs many amenities into a very small area.
The large splash pad is open every day from May to October, making it the most popular summer attraction for families.
There are also tennis courts, picnic tables, and a shade pergola at the park. Hobson Corner Park can also be found on the Southern DuPage County Regional Trail. It runs 49 miles from Hinsdale to Aurora.
You can also use the local trail to cycle or walk to Triangle Park, Summer Hill Park, and 63rd Street Park.
10. Cinemark Seven Bridges & IMAX
The Cinemark Seven Bridges is regarded as the finest theater in the west suburbs. It has all the hallmarks of a modern, top-quality cinema.
The multiplex was opened in 2000. It is known for its cleanliness, comfort, friendly customer service, great popcorn (free refills), and top-class sound system. This multiplex has everything you need from a movie theatre.
For a memorable viewing experience, make sure you catch the next blockbuster at IMAX.
You can check the website to see specials. There are $5 movies every day on Tuesdays. If you have some time before your movie starts, there is a decent arcade.
11. ARC – Athletic Recreation Center
This public high-end facility was opened in 2017 across 83rd Street from Cypress Cove.
ARC features include a 60 x 40 yard indoor artificial turf field, a multicourt gymnasium, a running track and a remarkable indoor ropes course.
The ARC hosts a variety of leagues and events in all sports including softball, baseball, soccer, and lacrosse.
You can also rent various spaces out for parties and use the gymium for laser tag.
12. The Promenade Bolingbrook
Bolingbrook is partially overlapped by Woodridge’s wealth of shopping options that flank the I-355 to the south.
You’ll find Costco, Meijer and Ikea branches here. Also, the Promenade Bolingbrook is an open-air shopping mall that was opened in 2007.
There are over 100 stores located on pretty streets lined with flowers, trees, and shrubs. There is also an escape room, comedy club (CG) and an IPIC Theaters.
13. Seven Bridges Golf Club
Seven Bridges, a highly-rated public course for golf that opened in 1991 on both banks of East Branch DuPage River is located at Seven Bridges.
Dick Nugent, a noted architect, cleverly integrated a wetland site into the course. Water hazards are prominent.
There are many little lakes that run alongside the river. Water is available on 14 of the 18 holes. Even the most skilled players will have to think about their shot selection and club choice.
It has a good reputation for maintaining a high standard of cleanliness and was once home to the Michael Jordan Charity while he was at the Bulls.
14. Skeleton Key Brewery
This microbrewery, located a bit south of Kohl’s on Lemont Rd, has a large local following. They also have additional seating in 2021.
Unfortunately, Skeleton Key Brewery was severely damaged by the tornado that hit Woodridge and Naperville on Father’s Day 2021. This article was written while it was still in progress.
Keep checking the website for information about reopening, so that you can enjoy Skeleton Key’s acclaimed selection of beers including IPAs and Saisons as well as Oatmeal, Milk Stout and Oatmeal.
There is often live music and food trucks on weekends.
15. Greene Valley Dog Park
It can be difficult for dog owners to find off-leash parks for their four-legged friends. Woodridge has a wonderful one located on the Greene Valley Forest Preserve’s north side.
The grassy area off-leash is mostly grass and has two sections: one for large dogs and one to accommodate smaller dogs.
You can take your dog on a hike along the trails, but you will need to make sure that the dog has had their shots and tick and flea treatment.
DuPage County runs the Greene Valley Dog Park. It’s easy to obtain a day permit, or an annual pass through their website.