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!

  
  

Explore the Illinois River Road Nature Sites Select a Site below . . .

Come and experience all the nature, beauty and adventure the Illinois River Valley has to offer. Explore over 100 nature-related sites throughout the Illinois River Valley between Ottawa and Havana. Visit our gateway communities and points in-between, along the Byway and enjoy unique dining, comfortable lodging and eclectic shopping. Whether your destination lies along the Illinois River Road or the route is part of your journey, you'll love the trip!

Select a Community OR Interest below to view related points of interest along the Byway.



 


 

Bittersweet Road, East Peoria, IL 61603
Managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, visitors can use the trails to go hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. No motorized vehicles are allowed. Farmdale prov...View Details.
Phone: (309) 676-4601
Area: East Peoria
GPS: 40.675887, -89.501455 Map It!

16006 875 East Street, Sheffield, IL 61361
The Hennepin Canal was originally conceived in 1890 as part of an overall plan to connect the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico in order to facilitate barge shipping. The prob...View Details.
Phone: 815-454-2328
Area: Princeton
Site Access: free; fee
GPS: 41.37322, -89.68957 Map It!

Highway Route 351, LaSalle, IL 60441
French explorer/cartographer Louis Jolliet first suggested the construction of a canal connecting Lake Michigan with the Mississippi River (via the Illinois River) in 1673, bu...View Details.
Phone: (815) 223-1851
Area: Utica
Site Access: free; fee
GPS: 41.329131,-89.095001 Map It!

#1 Independence Park Road, Marquette Heights, IL 61554
Once used as a proving ground for Caterpillar Inc., this 340-acre site is a model for ecological restoration. Plantings of trees, prairie grasses and forbs are maturing beauti...View Details.
Phone: (309) 353-4319
Area: Pekin
Site Access: free; hrs: 6am-10pm
GPS: 40.61998, -89.60250 Map It!

13921 W. Route 150, Brimfield, IL 61517
Jubilee College State Park is a 3,200-acre facility situated in the Illinoisan drift-plan, replete with rolling topography and the meandering Jubilee Creek. Visitors may see d...View Details.
Phone: (309) 446-3758
Area: Peoria
Site Access: free; fee please call ahead before visiting
GPS: 40.81026, -89.81385 Map It!

Route 178, Utica, IL 61373
Donated to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources by the F.W. Matthiessen family in 1943, Matthiessen State Park is comprised of nearly 2,000 acres of prairies, bluff an...View Details.
Phone: 815-667-4868
Area: Utica
Site Access: free
GPS: 41.295027,-89.025307 Map It!

Mendenhall Road, Bartonville, IL 61607
A pleasant surprise located just off the byway, Mendenhall consists of a complex of wetland pools separated by groves of bottomland hardwood, such as willow, maple and elm tre...View Details.
Phone: (309) 633-2064
Area: Canton
GPS: 40.615353,-89.652514 Map It!

Water Street on the Peoria Riverfront, Peoria, IL 61602
Graced with attractions and venues for people of all ages and all walks of life, the Peoria RiverFront District has cultural, entertainment, dining, antiquing, residential, hi...View Details.
Phone: (309) 671-5555
Area: Peoria
GPS: 40.687526, -89.591571 Map It!

201 Veterans Drive, East Peoria, IL 61611
Planned to run from East Peoria to Morton, phase I of this 10-foot wide hard-surfaced hiking/biking trail was completed in 1991, running 4.8 miles north and east out of East P...View Details.
Phone: (309) 699-3923
Area: East Peoria
Site Access: free
GPS: 40.66422, -89.56439 Map It!

Alta Lane, Peoria, IL 60491
Soon to be linked into Downtown Peoria, this hiking/biking rails-to-trails park offers a leisurely day of birding through a surprising array of habitats, from mature forest to...View Details.
Phone: 309-695-2228
Area: Peoria
Site Access: free; fee for camping
GPS: 40.81296, -89.62976 Map It!

Route 71 & Route 178, Utica, IL 61373
Starved Rock is one of the premier natural areas in the Midwest. There are 18 canyons cut by melting glaciers at the end of the ice age. They sparkle seasonally with waterfall...View Details.
Phone: 815-667-4726
Area: Utica
Site Access: free; fee
GPS: 41.309139, -88.988893 Map It!

3826 N. Taylor Road, Hanna City, IL 61536
Step foot into the natural beauty that is native Illinois. Wildlife Prairie Park is a unique spot in central Illinois that is home to a variety of native Illinois plants and a...View Details.
Phone: (309) 676-0998
Area: Peoria
Site Access: fee
GPS: 40.73599, -89.74658 Map It!