Wake up here: Jail Hill Inn, Illinois

As the reality of social distancing truly takes hold, our thoughts inevitably turn to wanderlust and to times where we could choose splendid isolation over self-isolation. Jail Hill Inn is an absolute must for a rejuvenating trip with inspirational surroundings, and one of our top picks of where we’d most like to self-isolate in the USA.

Jail Hill wake up here

The quaint and cosy Jail Hill Inn is an old county jail transformed into an inn in the gorgeous Illinois town of Galena – located just three hours’ drive from Chicago. This multi-award-winning inn was voted the number one bed and breakfast in the United States in 2019 by Tripadvisor and second-best in the world. Delve into your favourite book or learn about the fascinating civil war history in the small-town whilst cosied up by the grand fireplace. Or, if you prefer, indulge in a luxury in-suite massage. 

The inn is tucked away from the Main Street to ensure ultimate relaxation for your stay, yet just near enough to walk there and enjoy Galena’s rich history and all-American historic charm. The four-story brick building is 135 years old and served as the county jail for nearly 100 years before innkeeper Matthew Carol lovingly transformed it into the premier bed and breakfast inn it is today.


Be sure to take in the impressive views across Galena before you head out to explore what it has to offer. Step into a bygone era along the banks of the Mississippi River. In this Midwestern town, trolley cars cruise down the six-block Main Street, along which 19th-century buildings house small galleries, antique stores and independent shops. Walk off lunch from local hotspot Fried Green Tomatoes along the Galena River Trail before moseying around historical sites such as the home of Civil War hero and former US President Ulysses S. Grant.

If you work up a thirst exploring these pretty streets and perusing local craft stores, Galena is also home to Blaum Bros Distilling Co. Formed by two brothers with a passion for high-quality spirits, this distillery has grown ever popular for its spirit tours. They source grains from local farmers to make small batches of rye, whiskey and vodka. Make sure to take one home with you, their branding is very pretty, and it makes for an excellent gift.

For more information, please visit: www.enjoyillinois.com

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Melanie Marti

A travel-oriented twenty-five-year-old, with all her life-goals paving the way to new adventures and destinations. With “home” for her being two places, London and Cyprus, she has been comfortable on planes since she was little. Finding inspiration in every journey she embarks on, she has an unhealthy number of journals which she has been writing and drawing in since she could hold a pen. Articles by Mel will often include a glimpse into local cultures, food hotspots and hidden gems.

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