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-   -   What to do in Illinois? (https://www.fodors.com/community/united-states/what-to-do-in-illinois-716946/)

millsy5 Jun 29th, 2007 04:00 AM

What to do in Illinois?
 
We live in St. Louis and with gas prices no family vaca this year..... anyone have suggestions in nearby Illinois of unique things to do. No Chicago. Been there and done that.
We like scenic beauty. Unique things and lodging that is very special. HELP and thank you.

dfr4848 Jun 29th, 2007 04:23 AM

Check out Starved Rock State Park.

mdwest Jun 29th, 2007 06:08 AM

Galena is a very quaint, historic town with lots of great little shops, nice restaurants and tons of B&B's. They have trolley buses that do tours of the area and we thought it was a fun way to learn a little about the history of the area. You can also tour Grant's home. The area is very scenic. The Mississippi River Museum is across the river in nearby in Dubuque and it is well worth a visit with or without kids.

LG2 Jun 29th, 2007 06:25 AM

Something closer to home - see:
http://www.experiencemississippiriver.com/
http://www.thetourismbureau.org/attractions.cfm
http://www.visithannibal.com/

zabes Jun 29th, 2007 07:10 AM

The Lincoln Library, museum and home in Springfield, Illinois.

Retired_teacher Jun 29th, 2007 07:16 AM

From one of your earlier posts, I learned that you have 3 kids, ages 14,16,& 20..... Wow, that's a tough age group to please! Here's a link to the DNR website that may get your started: http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/parks/
I'm located in the NW boonies about an hour out of Chicago via Metra and it can still be hot and miserable this far north in July/Aug. Don't count on escaping the heat unless you follow your original plan of heading farther north or going east to the Smokies. Both Illinois and neighboring Indiana DO Have a great resource in their state park lodges, however, which I would recommend exploring: http://www.stateparks.com/

The YMCA has a vast resource of facilities, some of which offer economical accommodations for families. YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, Colorado would be a good choice for teens. Although it's probably too late to obtain anything for this season, here's the link for future reference: http://www.stwmd.com/y-camps.php

missypie Jun 29th, 2007 07:25 AM

I seond Springfield. Besides the Lincoln home and museum, there is the old state capitol, the cemetary and New Salem. An added bonus is a FANTASTIC fully furnished Frank Lloyd Wright house just blocks from the Lincoln house.

Or maybe you could drive across the state and spend a few days in New Harmony, Indiana.

My parents are fond of Perre Marquette state park. Don't know if the lodge would have openings or not, but it has a nice restaurant, too. There is a place nearby on the river to get great fish sandwiches. And there's good antiquing around there...I guess it would be Alton.

CAPH52 Jun 29th, 2007 07:31 AM

Another vote for Springfield. And for Starved Rock, which has a very nice lodge with a great restaurant. Also, very close to home for you, Pere Marquette State Park. The lodge is very nice (also with a very good restaurant) but books quite far ahead of time, especially on the weekends. As does Starved Rock.

Have you ever been to Cahokia Mounds? Also quite close to you. It'd make a nice day trip.

Farther south, Giant City State Park and Cave-In-Rock State Park both have lodging in the park. We stayed in one of the cabins in Giant City a couple of years ago. The lodge has a good restaurant.

We drove down to Cave-In-Rock and had lunch. Not so impressed with the restaurant there. But the cabins had a beautiful view.

While I've never stayed there (or actually even been in the park), I've heard good things about Rend Lake State Park. There's lodging there as well.


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