When is the last time you took a good look at some of the beauty around the Prairie State? We tend to get used to places where we live and can forget how truly magnificent they are. So, let’s rediscover some of the most beautiful places on this scenic road trip in Illinois. It may make you fall in love with the state’s beauty all over again.

Ready to hit the road? Remember to pack some road trip snacks and gas up the car. Clocking in at just under eight hours and 376 miles, you may want to spend the night somewhere along the way. To visit these places, we created a handy interactive Google map for you to use. Feel free to add and delete stops to make it your own. Ready to go?

Are you ready to take a scenic road trip through Illinois? Have you already been to any of these places? If so, which ones? What other locations would you add to this route? We’d love to read about your experiences in the comments section below!

For more outdoor adventure ideas in Illinois, check out this video:


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Adventures in Illinois

Where can we find scenic drives in Illinois?

  • Spoon River Valley Scenic Drive – This day trip scenic drive option starts about 3 hours outside of Chicago, stretches 140 miles, and is highlighted by over 24 different attractions.
  • Garden of the Gods – Located in the Shawnee National Forest, the rock formations here are thought to be about 300 million years old.
  • Cave-In-Rock State Park – Located in southern Illinois, the highlight of the park is 55-foot wide cave that you have to see to believe.

Read on to learn more about the many amazing scenic drives in Illinois.


Where can we find more state parks in Illinois?

  • Matthiessen State Park – Located in North Utica, the park features stunning dells, canyons, waterfalls, and more.
  • Mississippi Palisades State Park – Located in Savanna, the park encompasses 2,500 acres and is known for having some of the best rock climbing in the state,
  • Giant City State Park – Located in Makanda, the park is very geologically diverse with huge sandstone bluffs, stunning trails, and lots of verdant tree and plant life.

Read on to learn more about the many state parks in Illinois.


Where can we go camping in Illinois?

  • Kayak Morris Campground – Located in Morris, you’ll find both sandy beach and wooded campsites adjacent to William G. Stratton State Park.
  • Camp McCormick – Located in the Stillman Valley, this spot features 400 acres of wilderness.
  • Adeline Jay Geo-Karis Illinois Beach – Located in Zion, this beach campground is perfect for Class A Rvers that need access to electricity, and there are showers.

Read on to learn more about more places to go camping in Illinois.