2023 Apple Picking Near Chicago: Map, Prices, and Features

Outdoor Places to Go

As summer turns to fall, the apples are beginning to ripen in the orchards, and it’s time for apple picking to begin! This time-honored family tradition is a beautiful way to celebrate the changing seasons and let kids get hands-on with picking their own food. Some orchards are mostly focused on U-Pick, while others have bakeries with fall treats, and others offer outdoor play areas. Be sure to check ahead of time if you have your heart set on a certain variety of apple; some spots keep their social media updated, while others encourage calling ahead.

girl on picking apples at an apple orchard

Map: Apple Picking Near Me

The map below shows the locations of each orchard so you can easily find one near you.

Below the map, our list of orchards includes the date they start u-pick, location, phone number, hours, admission/parking fees, and description. Although all information should be current, please call before you go to check picking conditions and hours, as things tend to change!

Details for Apple Picking 2023: U-Pick Apple Orchards

A few of the orchards have early varieties that are available to pick right now. Early varieties taste great and are known for being great for apple sauce making, but do not store as well as the varieties that ripen starting after Labor Day. In any case, look at what varieties are available and choose the type of apples you are interested in taking home before you plan your trip.

One trick from our apple picking pro, Nicole: store the apples in a Ziploc bag with a damp paper towel inside. This helps preserve the apples for 60 to 90 days!

The Valley Orchard

811 E. State Street
Cherry Valley, IL 61016
(815) 332-9696

  • Apple picking starts on August 25, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Monday through Saturday 9am-6pm and Sunday 10am-6pm
  • Price: $15 for a half peck
  • They have an estimate of the ripening times for each variety available at the orchard, but recommend calling ahead if you are going for a specific variety

Apple Barn Orchard and Winery

W6384 Sugar Creek Road
Elkhorn, WI 53121
(262) 728-3266

  • Apple picking starts September 16, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Saturday 10am-5pm and Sunday 11am-5pm
  • Price: check back for updated apple pricing
  • Check their What’s Picking page for ripening dates and u-pick availability. It is also announced on their Facebook page

Terrapin Orchards

1063 US Route 20 E
Elizabeth, IL 61028
(815) 202-2180

  • Apple picking starts August 25, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Friday through Sunday 8:30am-5pm
  • Price: pick-your-own apple pricing varies based on varieties, Honeycrisp is $35 for a 1/2 bushel box while Gala and Zestar are $25 for a 1/2 bushel box
  • They have an apple ripening page with approximate times for each variety they grow, but check their Facebook page for specific updates
  • Small, family-owned orchard located en route to Galena
girl sampling an apple during apple picking with her family
Apple Orchard at Kuiper’s Family Farm.

Royal Oak Farm

15908 Hebron Rd.
Harvard, IL 60033
(815) 648-4141

  • Apple picking starts on August 19, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Monday through Thursday 10am-5pm, Friday through Sunday 10am-6pm. Please note that rides are only running on the weekends
  • Price: $12/person admission includes a 1/4 peck (3lb.) bag to fill in the orchard. Children 3 years old and under are free, but you can purchase a bag for them to pick apples.
  • The park area with playground and petting zoo are free to enter, along with any of the barns, restaurant, gift shop and bakery. However, the maze, orchard tour, train ride, carousel, and barrel train ride have individual pricing. Check their website for those details
  • Located en route to Lake Geneva

County Line Orchard

200 S County Line Rd
Hobart, IN 46342
(219) 947-4477

  • Apple picking starts August 31, 2023
  • U-pick hours: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm daily
  • General admission for the u-pick area is $3/person; pay-for-what-you-pick is $2/lb.
  • Kids area with live entertainment, corn maze, barrel car train ride, and a kids farm with animals, straw maze, and pedal tractors. Peter the Pumpkin Eating Dino operates on the weekends. Admission ranges from $3 to $14 depending on if you want to do a single activity or have an all access pass; see website for attraction pricing.

Heinz Orchard

1050 Crest Road
Libertyville, IL 60048
(847) 770-3449

  • Apple picking starts on September 15, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Friday, Sept. 15, 10am-4pm, Sunday, Sept. 17, 10am-4pm, Friday, Sept. 22, 10am-4pm, Sunday, Sept. 24, 10am-4pm. More dates might be added, so we recommend checking their website to verify
  • Price: $10 for a half-peck bag (holds 5-6 lbs or apples) or $20 for a full-peck bag (holds 10-12 lbs of apples)
  • A small, family-run orchard with apple trees for picking. Strollers and wagons are welcome in the orchard
  • No field trips or large groups; no bathrooms available
boy enjoying an apple cider donut while at an apple orchard after apple picking

Jonamac Orchard

19412 Shabbona Road
Malta, IL 60150
(815) 825-2158

  • Apple picking starts on September 2, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Monday through Sunday 9am-5:30pm beginning Labor Day weekend
  • Weekday Price: $16 for a 1/2 peck bag (about 5.5 lbs). Up to 4 people can pick apples for one bag. No general admission fee, however the petting zoo, jumping pillow, and corn crib become available at 2pm for $5 per person
  • Weekend Price: During Fall Festival (Saturdays, Sundays, and Monday holidays, general admission is $8 (plus fees) online or $10 at the gate in addition to $16 for a 1/2 peck bag (about 5.5 lbs) and also includes the play area, jumping pillow, petting zoo, corn maze, wagon rides, live music, and food trucks. Apple tokens are $2 each or 6 Tokens for $10 for pony rides, apple cannon, apple launcher, train ride, and feed for the animals
  • Head to their apple varieties page and filter by Now Picking! to see what will be available

Kuiper’s Family Farm

1n145 Watson Road
Maple Park, IL 60151
(815) 827-5200, ext 1

  • Apple picking starts on August 26, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 9am-6pm, Sunday and Monday 10am-6pm, Labor Day and Columbus Day 9am-6pm
  • Price: Weekends and holidays is $11.99 per person (plus fees) online and $13.99 at the gate. Weekdays are $11.99 per person, no advance purchase necessary. Admission includes 1/4 peck bag of apples and hayride to the grove; everyone entering must purchase admissions. Children 2 and under are free, but don’t receive a bag
  • Strollers, wagons, and backpacks are not permitted in the orchard
  • There are hayrides to the apple grove. They also have a shop and bakery with apple cider doughnuts, caramel apples, and fresh-pressed pasteurized apple cider
  • The Farmview Railway train ride is $5 per person and runs on weekends and holidays
  • Check their apple variety page for details on what is available for picking and if picking is available during the week (crop dependent)

Keller’s Farmstand

2500 Johnson Road
Oswego, IL 60543
(630) 219-8194

  • Apple picking starts on August 19, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Monday through Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday and Sunday 9am-5pm, and Monday, October 9 from 9am-6pm
  • Price: $10 per person for 1/4 peck bag (about 3 lbs), $20/person for 1/2 peck bag (about 5–6 lbs), and $40 per person for 1 peck bag (about 10–12 lbs)
  • Visit their apple picking page for current apple varieties ready to pick

Woody’s Orchard

3223 Creek Road
Plano, IL 60545
(630) 247-9300

  • Apple picking is August 17 – October 29, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Thursday through Sunday 10am-6pm
  • Price: $12 for a 1/4 peck bag; must purchase one bag for every two people in your group over 5 years old
  • September play yard admission is $10.95 online and $13.95 at the gate during the week and $13.95 online and $16.95 on the weekends and holidays. Ages 2 years old and under are free. The prices go up in October. The play yard includes a jump pad, hamster rollers, train ride, tractor slides, corn jump, sand boxes, hay maze, zip lines, obstacle course, tractor pull, tire pile, and various other play structures
dad hoisting his daughter up in the apple tree so she can reach some ripe apples to pick

Apple Holler

5006 South Sylvania Avenue
Sturtevant, WI 53177
(262) 884-7100

  • Apple picking starts mid-August, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Daily 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. Last arrival time is 2:00 pm.
  • Price: Minimum of $22 per person for a 1/4 peck bag (about 2.5 lb); everyone entering the orchard must buy a bag. They call this a picking package because it also includes the Kids Korral play area with a climbing web, corn box, straw barn, train, play structure, and straw mountain as well as the tractor-drawn ride to the apple trees, corn maze, goat bridge, observation bee hive
  • If you only want to do the activities and not pick apples, they offer separate admission into the Farm Park for $6 during the weekdays and $12 for the weekends
  • On-site restaurant, bakery with donuts and other treats, and concessions stands

Honey Hill Orchard

11747 Waterman Road
Waterman, IL 60556
(815) 264-3337

  • Apple picking starts September 9, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: daily from 9am-5:30pm, last admission at 4:30pm
  • Price: $10 per person for a 1/4 peck bag, $30 for a full peck (maximum of 2 people sharing peck bag). Everyone must have a bag to enter the orchard; 2 years old and under are free. Cash only

All Seasons Orchard

14510 Illinois Route 176
Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 338-5637

  • Apple picking is from August 26, 2023 – October 28, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: weekdays 10am-5pm and weekends and holidays 10am-6pm
  • Price: $17 per person for a 1/4 peck bag. Everyone above 2 years old must purchase a bag
  • Barnyard admission is $9 on weekdays and $17 on weekends. The barnyard has a 6-acre corn maze, ropes course, wall balls, pedal karts, Beelines, bubble barn, corn box, and petting zoo. On weekends, enjoy magic shows, pig races, apple & pumpkin train, apple cannon, gem mining and pony rides
  • Check their apple availability calendar for varieties ready to pick

Homestead Orchard

11802 Charles Road
Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 338-7443

  • Apple picking starts on July 21, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Monday through Saturday 10am-4pm, Sunday 12pm-4pm
  • Price: $14 for a peck bag and $7 for 1/2 peck bag
  • Free admission and free parking, cash or check only
  • Amish jams, jellies, and salsas for sale at the orchard
  • Listen to the voicemail at (815) 338-7443 for updated picking information and currently ripe varieties

Lang’s Orchard

17411 Secor Road
Woodstock, IL 60098
(815) 568-7547

  • Apple picking starts September 9, 2023
  • U-Pick Hours: Saturdays and Sundays from 11am-4pm; closed weekdays
  • Price: $20 per peck (1/4 bushel). No parking or admission fee
  • See website for varieties and schedule

Sun Berry Orchards

3712 Greenwood Road
Woodstock, IL 60098
(847) 404-7555

  • Apple picking starts Labor Day weekend
  • U-Pick Hours: Saturdays and Sundays from 9am-6pm; closed weekdays
  • Price: $40 for a half bushel, $25 for one peck, and $10 for a quarter peck
  • They offer both apple and raspberry picking

Annie’s Caramel Apple Recipe

Okay, you could melt Kraft caramels and dip apples in them, or buy caramel apples at your local school fundraiser. Both are great options! But how about making really homemade, from scratch caramel apples? Mmmmmm. There’s nothing like it. And your kids can get involved by rolling the apples in toppings before they set up!


My family has tried so many caramel apple recipes over the years, with many failures. Sometimes the caramel coating would turn rock hard and be impossible to cut, let alone bite… sometimes the caramel would slide right off the apple when dipping… sometimes they just plain tasted bad. But I have great news! We found the best caramel apple recipe ever; it’s super easy and absolutely delicious.

Here’s what you need to make the best homemade caramel apples:

  • Candy thermometer (don’t have one? you can pick one up at your local hardware store for a couple dollars)
  • Wooden sticks (I have found these at the grocery store, you don’t need anything fancy)
  • Tart apples (empire, jonathan, mcintosh, rome, etc)
  • Ingredients: butter, brown sugar, light corn syrup, sweetened condensed milk, vanilla

I don’t want to steal the thunder from the recipe’s author, so… Click here for the best caramel apple recipe of all time!

Here is what I have learned from experience with the recipe:

  • Use a 2-qt. saucepan. The caramel will come close to the top when it is cooking, but it doesn’t spill over and it’s much easier to dip the apples when the caramel is deeper in the pan.
  • Cook on medium heat and stir constantly.
  • Don’t get discouraged when the temperature stays around 233 degrees for a while. This is called the phase transition and while it looks like nothing is happening and you did something wrong, a lot is going on in the caramel mixture and it will make it to the target temperature after it passes this phase.
  • Take the caramel off the heat when it reaches 246 degrees. It will continue to rise in temperature when you take it off the burner so if you undershoot the temperature a bit the caramel won’t get too hard as it cools.
  • It says to butter the wax paper generously, but I just rub the stick of butter across the paper and it works great.

Our outdoor things to do with kids page has more ideas for enjoying the lovely autumn weather.

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