Introduction to Lake Forest, Illinois

Lake Forest, Illinois, in Lake county, is 7 miles S of Waukegan, Illinois (center to center) and 29 miles N of Chicago, Illinois. Part of the surrounding Chicago metro area, the city is not an isolated city. Lake Forest is home to some 20,059 residents.

Lake Forest History

The earliest white settlers arrived in this area around 1834. The main occupation of the residents was farming. Lake Forest was founded as a town in 1857. It served as a stop for travelers who were going south towards Chicago. It was incorporated in 1861. Since the town was beautifully planned and offered cultivated landscapes, it attracted the attention of wealthy Chicagoans who made it their home. Since then, Lake Forest has been a wealthy community.

Lake Forest and nearby Attractions

  • Raupp Memorial Museum
  • Cuneo Museum & Gardens
  • Highland Park Historical Society Museum
  • Deerpath Park Golf Course
  • Old School Forest preserve
  • MacArthur Woods Preserve

Things To Do In Lake Forest

Being an affluent and well planned city, Lake Forest is very beautiful. It has the benefit of natural beauty coupled with vast areas of open spaces. The residents have lovingly preserved the history of the city, as is evident by the magnificent historic structures. The Market Square has a quaint nostalgic atmosphere about it. The city is also host to a series of cultural and community events throughout the year.

Lake Forest Transportation

The Chicago O’Hare International Airport offers international and domestic flights.

Lake Forest Higher Education

The local educational institutions include Lake Forest College, Barat College, and Lake Forest Graduate School of Management.


Total Population 18,951
Male Share of the Population 48.8%
Female Share of the Population 51.2%
Senior Citizens 18.6%
Employed Population 16+ 7,740
Age of the Population 47


% of people married 62.7%
Average household size 3

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 75.9%
Median Earnings25+ $90,213
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $16,447
Median Earnings With High School Degree $42,375


Median Family Income $185,917
% Above Poverty Level 94.6%
% Below Poverty Level 5.4%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 30 minutes
% Working from Home 11.7%
% Walking and Biking to Work 5.1%
% Using Public Transportation 10.1%


People Living Alone 20.2%
Median Gross Rent $1,704
Median House Value $841,400


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 12.2%
US/American 1%
English 13.1%
Irish 19.3%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Lake Forest Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Medium City 7 miles S of Waukegan, Illinois (center to center)
Nearest Large City 29 miles N of Chicago, Illinois
County Lake
Standard Zip Codes 60045
Phone Area Codes 847
Time Zone Central (-6 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 42.258
Longitude -87.84

Lake Forest Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 6.7 miles
Jan Temp 12 to 29 F
Apr Temp 36 to 55 F
Jul Temp 61 to 82 F
Oct Temp 41 to 62 F
Annual Precip 34 inches
Distance 16.7 miles
Jan Temp 12 to 28 F
Apr Temp 36 to 56 F
Jul Temp 62 to 82 F
Oct Temp 42 to 60 F
Annual Precip 35.5 inches
Distance 20.4 miles
Jan Temp 11 to 28 F
Apr Temp 37 to 56 F
Jul Temp 62 to 82 F
Oct Temp 42 to 61 F
Annual Precip 36.5 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Lake Forest, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Lincolnshire Woods (60045)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Bannockburn 1,390 $150,208
Green Oaks 3,850 $170,357

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Lake Forest Public Libraries

Lake Forest Library
Lake Forest, Illinois
(847) 234-0636

library logo

More Information for Librarians

Lake Forest Hospitals

(Voluntary non-profit - Other)
(847) 234-5600
Emergency Service: Yes

These schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles). Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.
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Lake Forest High Schools

Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 1,735 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 14.3

Lake Forest Colleges

Click school name for a detailed profile.

Additional Details
Lake Forest Colleges
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Lake Forest Graduate Schools
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Career and College Resources

Real-World Career Reports
Career References and Original Articles
College Directories and Lists
Historic Lake Forest


Mr. Hugh R. McCullough residence (a corner in the shrubbery) between 1895 and 1915

Select a photo to view (Source):

Mr. Hugh R. McCullough residence (a corner in the shrubbery) between 1895 and 1915

Lake Forest residence of Hugh R. McCullough (interior) between 1900 and 1915

Lake Forest residence of Hugh R. McCullough (interior) between 1900 and 1915

Additional Resources
Info for Lake Forest Government Officials

Are you an official in the Lake Forest government or quasi-government agency such as the chamber of commerce, visitors bureau or economic development council? If so, visit our information page for government officials to see how CityTownInfo can support you.

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