Best National Parks In Illinois To Visit In 2023!

These national parks Illinois will give you the ultimate experience of ‘Breathing within nature.’

Chicago, the windy city!

That is the first thought that comes to our mind when we think about the state Illinois located in the central estern region of the United States Of America.

Although Chicago is the perfect destination when it comes to relieving the American nostalgia with vintage buildings and dinners, all our nature’s enthusiasts will be leaning more towards the Mississippi river bay of Illinois.

One more thing that attracts travellers towards this town are the breathtaking national parks illinois. It is no short of windy roads and state parks giving you the serene experience that the city of Chicago can’t.

These national parks near Illinois will give you the ultimate experience of ‘Breathing within nature.’

Following the general US restrictions, travel to Illinois from other states and countries have been open.

National Parks In Illinois

National Parks In Illinois

Taking the famous route 66 which trails to the pacific west coast, then you will tumble across two of the most well known Illinois national parks which can be a jackpot for people who take a special interest in the history of the state.

It is known as the ‘Land of Lincoln’ afterall!

These national parks in Illinois also have excellent hiking trails.

Are There Any National Parks In Illinois?

Are There Any National Parks In Illinois

Yes, Illinois has two major national parks. These are

  • Pullman National Monument
  • Lincoln Home National Historic Site.

However, they are mostly national park services. Nevertheless, they don’t fall short of showing the mesmerizing beauty of nature. However, if hiking is more in your forte then here are the three more National historic trails of the national park Illinois which you can add to your itinerary.

Here Are The List Of National Park Illinois Trails

  • Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail
  • Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail
  • Trail Of Tears National Historic Trail

Are Illinois National Parks Open?

Following every Covid Guideline, National parks Illinois have been opened for travel.

Pullman National Monument

Pullman National Monument 

This Illinois national park is located in the northern side of the state. It will take you less than thirty minutes to reach the location from Chicago. It is a small national park which is evidently surrounded by districts which have found their place in American history.

This district is known to be the first planned one in the whole country. Other than the short walks you can take throughout the community and fill your day with other attractive sightseeing then go for the Pullman park which is a must.

If you are nature’s prodigy and love camping then you might find a place right in this national park Illinois. However, on travelling a little west you will find the beautiful MacMahon Woods to have a night or two in the wilderness.

Lincoln Home National Historic Site

Lincoln Home National Historic Site

This Illinois national park is located in the breathtaking state capital Springfield. It gets its name because of the fact that the former president resided here with his family before becoming the president of the United States.

The national park itself is not that big, but nevertheless sublime. Therefore, it won’t take you more than an hour or two to cover the entire ground. However, the main attraction here is not there woods, it is Lincoln house itself which has a visiting entry. There is also a show that airs regarding this subject.

Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail

Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail

National park Illinois trails are the perfect blend which will give you a look at the locals and the mesmerizing nature that surrounds it.

Although, make sure you know your route and sites since there are certain private properties that do not allow the entrance of outside public. Since it is in the south of the Mississippi River, you can find hiking trails, scenic beauties, and camping ground.

If you have plans to travel a little towards the west, Shimek state forest among the national parks in Illinois.

Trail Of Tears National Historic Trail

Trail Of Tears National Historic Trail

The next on the list of the best national parks in Illinois is the Trail of Tears, also known as the “Journey of Injustice.” Most urban places may be reached by car in just one hour from one of these routes, which are dispersed all throughout the nation.

We can better appreciate Native Americans’ history and struggles by studying the Trail of Tears, a national historic trail.

The Indian Removal Act was established by Congress in 1830, which is when the trail’s history began.

The law signed by President Andrew Jackson permitted “for an exchange of lands with the Indians residing in any of the states or territories, and for their removal west of the river Mississippi”.

What Is The Most Beautiful National Park In Illinois?

What Is The Most Beautiful National Park In Illinois

Shawnee National Forest which is located in Harrisburg is known to be the most beautiful national park trail in Illinois.

Lewis And Clark National Historic Trail

Lewis And Clark National Historic Trail

This historic trail doesn’t restrict national park Illinois. The headquarters of this park is situated in the state of Omaha however, it stretches up to Hartford Illinois.

It is situated in the west of the Mississippi River from St.Louis. Other than the breathtaking landscape which you can explore, you can also squeeze some time for the historical attractions with old buildings and exhibits that are flourishing around this area.

The closest camping site for this trail is Granite City, or if the riverside camping is what you desire then you can drive to Sioux Passage Park.

What Is The Biggest National Park In Illinois?

What Is The Biggest National Park In Illinois

Although, the measurement of national park Illinois cannot be given, in terms of state parks the biggest one which covers almost 8000 acres in Pere Marquette State Park.

These are some of the best national parks in Illinois. However, if Illinois is not your last stop and national parks aren’t the only trails you are looking for, then here is a list of other state parks or national parks in the driveaway neighbourhood that you can explore.

In just a three hour drive, you can reach Mark Twain National park in the neighbouring state of Missouri.

You can Visit Chicago and dive into the city life for a little while. 

Again in just a three hour ride, you can visit Indiana Dunes National Parks which has some of the most desirable camping grounds. A night of wild adventures and sweet smokey smores! 

Some Of The State Parks You Can Visit

Some Of The State Parks You Can Visit

If you have crossed all the national parks Illinois in the list then step towards some of the state parks. With gorgeous sites and fun activities like fishing, camping, and boating filled in these trips, you won’t be disappointed. 

  • Clinton Lake State Recreation Area 
  • Rock Cut State Park 
  • Fort Massac State Park 
  • Illinois Beach State Park 
  • Hennepin Canal State Trail 

The best part is, the government charges no extra penny for you to enter these paradises. 

Are Covid 19 Tests Required To Travel To National Park Illinois?

Travel To National Park Illinois

If you are an unvaccinated traveler then you have to get a Covid Test for travelling to Illinois. You don’t have to get quarantined though. 

Final Thoughts 

With big cities of the country getting all the limelight, we are forgetting the other smaller states where lies the sublime beauties of mother nature as well as the nostalgia of American history. 

So, this season let us rekindle the hidden beauties of national parks illinois that will tweek all your travel love metre again.

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Deepanwita has always considered writing as the ultimate weapon to share every thought an individual ambles through. For her writing is not just an activity it’s a motivation for the scarred mind. She loves writing in genres like fashion, lifestyle, literature etc.

2 responses to “Best National Parks In Illinois To Visit In 2023!”

  1. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you can do with a few pics to drive the message home a bit, but instead of that, this is excellent blog. A fantastic read. I will certainly be back.

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