The following content is created in consultation with the Downtown St. Charles Partnership. It does not reflect the work or opinions of NBC Chicago's editorial staff. To learn more about Downtown St. Charles click here.

With the Holiday season rapidly approaching, it’s the perfect time to start planning your holiday shopping and all the wonderful holiday-themed sights. While places like Chicago have their big attractions, don’t skip out on all the wonderful, magical sights that St. Charles, Illinois has to offer.

Nestled some 40 miles due west of Chicago, St. Charles boasts the boutique shops, fine dining, and lively theatre scene that lets you experience the holidays in an inviting, intimate environment.

For an easy start to your day, grab coffee and a delicious breakfast delicacy at one of our many welcoming and friendly cafés and coffee shops. Once you’ve had your fill, start shopping—you’ll find trendy women’s clothing, accessories, vintage and consignment items, and plenty of options for gift cards (if you’re still looking for that special gift).

If you want to shop less and relax more, treat yourself to something nice in the afternoon: Schedule an appointment with one of the many salons and day spas.

Looking for a fun family activity? Take the whole group to one of the many artistic workshops, where you can create something special . . . and take it home with you!

After a busy day and plenty of walking, you might start feeling a bit hungry. Luckily, St. Charles has an ample selection of excellent cuisine. From Mediterranean and Modern Mexican to Italian and classic American dishes, there’s something for everyone. Not only is the food delectable and diverse, the restaurants are vibrant and energetic with tons of live music options. Another option: Make sure to visit one or more of the breweries in town (there are four!) to try something local and unique.

Looking to leave the city scene behind for the whole weekend? With 12 full-service hotels offering unparalleled service, exceptional accommodations, and affordable prices, plan your stay in St. Charles.

Click here to energize your city side in downtown St. Charles.

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