IL Posted in Illinois April 01, 2016 by Laura 7 Wonders Of The World That Are Actually Right Here In Illinois Why travel around the world when some of the coolest wonders of the world are right here in Illinois? You need to check out these wonders of Illinois. 1. Garden of the Gods Michael/Flickr Justin Meissen/Flickr Few people from Illinois seem to get here, because it is way at the bottom of the state. But really, it is worth the drive. The views are breathtaking. The rock formations (300 million years old) are particularly stunning against the gorgeous trees. This might be the best place to catch a sunset in all of Illinois. 2. Cave in Rock State Park David Wilson/Flickr David Wilson/Flickr Down in southern Illinois, right off of the Ohio River, is this HUGE iconic cave. It is 55 feet wide, just to give you a sense of just how big it is. It was carved by water many thousands of years ago. Today, thousands of people visit annually to explore by the cave and on the many trails. 3. Cache River Natural Area Miguel Vieira/Flickr Miguel Vieira/Flickr Check out these cypress trees. They are roughly 1,000 years old. The base (called a buttress) is about 40 feet in circumference. This whole area was carved many, many years ago by glacial floodwater from the Ohio River. It's spectacular, and even though it truly is in the southernmost part of Illinois, you need to make the trip down. 4. Starved Rock State Park Tom/Flickr PunkToad/Flickr Everyone needs to go to Starved Rock at least once. It was routinely been voted the #1 attraction in the state by many outlets. This place has huge, beautiful trees, canyons, waterfalls, and wildlife. You can camp and spend a few days to take it all in. 5. Mississippi Palisades State Park Martin Konopacki/Flickr CinCool/Flickr Head to Savanna to take in the beautiful Mississippi Palisades State Park. It is located at the confluence of the Apple and Mississippi Rivers. The result: incredibly lush scenery set against huge rivers. There are 2,500 acres here for you to explore. And if you are into rock climbing, rock climbing is possible in some areas. Erosion has resulted in some really, really interesting rock formations - most famously, Indian Head and Twin Sisters. 6. Matthiessen State Park Tripp/Flickr Logan Ward/Flickr In North Utica, Matthiesen State Park is just around the corner from Starved Rock. You can find some gorgeous waterfalls and canyons here. In addition, there are gorgeous forest shots as well as prairies. Lake Falls (pictured here) is absolutely fantastic. 7. Illinois Beach State Park Peter Ciro/Flickr Peter Ciro/Flickr If you're looking for a beach in Illinois, you'll want to check out Illinois Beach State Park. There, you will find 6.5 miles of sandy shoreline against Lake Michigan. The views are beautiful, and it truly can look like the Caribbean sometimes. Have you been to any of these wonders?