Destination Guide

Destination: Champaign-Urbana

Champaign-Urbana or Urbana-Champaign? Locals just call it Chambana. Whatever you call it, east-central Illinois's "Twin Cities" is a quintessential Big 10 town.

The University of Illinois is the area's cultural center, and at the heart of the campus are the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, the Krannert Art Museum, and Assembly Hall. From Broadway touring shows, to rock concerts, to Chinese acrobats, you can find the quality -- if not the quantity -- of entertainment you'd expect in larger metropolitan areas. The local music scene is also acclaimed, where national stars such as Alison Krauss and REO Speedwagon got their start.

And don't forget the Fighting Illini football, basketball, baseball and other teams.

Throughout the year numerous festivals, from Taste of Champaign to the Urbana Sweetcorn Festival, bring in entertainment, artists, and food vendors for the city-wide celebrations. One of the highlights is Ebertfest -- film critic Roger Ebert's own annual film festival -- which brings Hollywood directors and actors to town.

Food and drink are plentiful in this college home of some 40,000 students. Escobar's, Ko-Fusion, and Bacaro are the best bets for formal dining in Champaign, while Urbana claims Silver Creek and the new Black Dog Smoke and Ale House for outstanding BBQ. Korean (B-Won), Thai (Nitaya Thai) and Indian (Bombay Grill) and more are also excellent choices. The Blind Pig and Blind Pig Brewpub are two of the best places in the state to grab a cold beer, and a literally dizzying array of gourmet martinis can be found at Boltini Lounge.

For golfers, bargain-priced yet quality golf courses abound. The University of Illinois Orange and Blue courses are home of the perennial Big 10 powerhouse men's team. Stone Creek G.C. in Urbana is the most expensive in the area, but also the best groomed. Area courses include tracks in Rantoul (Brookhill, Willow Pond), Mahomet (Lake of the Woods), Gibson City (RailSide), and Tuscola (Ironhorse).

The golf season in "C-U" can run from early April into early December – some locals talk of occasional New Year's Day rounds. The area is generally flat, and the wind usually blows, so knowing how to play the wind is crucial.

See also


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Courses

Course City Rates from
Course City Rates from
Legends of Champaign
Tee Times
Champaign $8
Harrison Park Golf Course
Tee Times
Danville $12
Turtle Run Golf Club
Tee Times
Danville $10
Lake of the Woods Golf Course
Tee Times
Mahomet $17
Railside Golf Club
Tee Times
Gibson City $10
Ironhorse Golf Course
Tee Times
Tuscola $23
Stone Creek Golf Club
Tee Times
Urbana $29
Willow Pond Golf Course
Tee Times
Rantoul $10
Tri-City Country Club Villa Grove $25
Danville Country Club Danville $64
Blue at University of Illinois Golf Course Savoy $31
Brookhill Golf Course Rantoul $18 - $20
Wolf Creek Golf Club Danville $15
Blue Needle Golf Course Fairmount $30
Lake of the Woods Par-3 Golf Course Mahomet $8
Lincolnshire Fields Country Club Champaign $50
Champaign Country Club Champaign $80
Indian Springs Golf Course Saybrook $28
Monticello Golf Club Monticello $15
Le Roy Country Club Le Roy $13 - $25
Orange at University of Illinois Golf Course Savoy $33
Hubbard Trail Country Club Hoopeston $12
Lakeview Country Club Loda $30
Urbana Golf & Country Club Urbana $68
Woodlawn Country Club Farmer City $10 - $20
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