Get out and have fun this summer

The best parks in Illinois

Visiting a local park is a great way to enjoy the summer weather, without breaking the bank. Here are our top three picks for the best parks in Illinois.

Starved Rock State Park

This park is justifiably popular, with its incredible scenery of cut sandstone canyon walls, 70-foot waterfalls, bluffs that overlook the surrounding country, and a lodge that includes a restaurant and a swimming pool.

Kickapoo State Recreation Area

This park is a testimony to the ability to reclaim and restore unattractive areas. Once a hideous strip mine, Kickapoo State Recreation Area is now a lush, verdant park with a winding river that is popular with canoers, kayakers, and people who just want to go tubing down the river on a lazy summer day.

Giant City State Park

This park gets its name from the huge cubes of sandstone that slid downhill millions of years ago, and came to rest in a jumble that resembles the skyscrapers of an urban downtown area. Stroll the “streets of Giant City,” stay at the lodge, or visit the nearby wineries.

Image courtesy Flickr/Peter Gorman