Where is the Illinois River Road?
Traversing both east and west sides of the Illinois River from Ottawa, 150 miles south to Havana, the Illinois River Road has spurs to the communities of Princeton and Canton. The Illinois River Road corridor has over 100 natural and historic sites and numerous unique communities located throughout its 10-county region.

The Scenic Byway is conveniently located between Chicago and St. Louis, but just far enough to get away from it all. So get off the beaten path and see what the Illinois River Road has in store for you!


Illinois Scenic Byways

Illinois Scenic Byways

Illinois River Road Report

Illinois River Road Report

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Download Our Geocaching Guide!

Geocaching PhotosWhat is Geocaching?

Geocaching (geo-cashing) is a great outdoor recreational activity that's similar to a scavenger hunt. You search for a hidden object using clues and GPS (global positioning system) coordinates. It's incredibly fun, and becoming more and more popular every day.

Geocaching Along the Illinois River Road
There are 90 geocaches located within the six Gateway Communities along the Illinois River Road. While hunting for these geocaches, you will discover communities and natural Illinois like never before.

What You'll Need


  • A handheld GPS receiver - These can be purchased for as little as $100, and some cellphones have them built in. Low-end ones are monochrome with limited functionality; high-end ones are full-color with added features such as 3-D maps and the ability to store your entire trip.

  • A pen or pencil so you can sign the cache log.

  • A small trinket - There's a tradition among some geocachers to take a trinket out, and put a new one in. That way, the geocache has some "life" and changes continually over time. A trinket exchange is completely optional, but if you do decide to take something, be sure you have a small toy, coin, pin (or other family-friendly item) to replace it with!



Start Your Collection of Trackable Geocoins
from the Illinois River Road

Start Your Collection of Trackable Geocoins


1. DOWNLOAD THE GPS COORDINATES for the geocaches in the six Gateway Communities along the Illinois River Road.

2. FIND THE CACHES AND GET THE CODES: Each Gateway Community (Ottawa, Princeton, Peoria, Pekin, Canton and Havana) will have 15 cache locations. Once these cache boxes are opened, they will reveal a 4-digit code inside. Record these codes on the respective page in this pocket guide. Once you have 10 codes in one Gateway, you become eligible to purchase the Trackable Geocoin for that community.

3. LOG YOUR EXPERIENCE at www.geocaching.com. A basic membership to this geocaching community is free and requires only a valid email address and your name to create an account. Once you join you can see caches in your area, track when they were last found, and more!

4. COLLECT 10 CODES AND PURCHASE YOUR COIN(S) in person or by mail. One gateway coin per geocaching name. Coin redemption forms for each community are located below.



  • BY MAIL: Download a specific community redemption form (below). Include a check or money order ($8.50 per coin + $2.00 S/H per coin) made payable to Illinois River Road National Scenic Byway and mail to:

    Illinois River Road - Geocaching
    613 W. Marquette Street | Ottawa, IL 61350

  • Coin Redemption Forms