Showing 193-243 of 243 items found in Outdoors & Play
Rockford Park District
Explore endless recreational opportunities, including some of the finest, most affordable golf courses in the nation, ice skating, hiking/biking paths and much more.
Anderson Japanese Gardens
Rockford's 12-acre, "pond-strolling" Japanese garden is acclaimed as one of the top two authentic formal Japanese gardens outside of Japan. Winding paths, serene waterfalls, Sukiya-style buildings, and a gift shop selling authentic Japanese crafts make the gardens a must-see.
Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden
Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden is a 155-acre “living museum” filled with spectacular gardens and rare trees. A handicapped-accessible paved path winds through the arboretum, and kids will have fun navigating the maze in the Children’s Garden.
Downtown park on the banks of the Rock River. Site of several Native American "Effigy Mounds," which have been preserved, and home to Rockford Artists Fair.
Nygren Wetland Preserve
721-acre tract near the confluence of the Rock and Pecatonica Rivers, making it an important area for many species of birds, including sandhill cranes; owned by The Natural Land Institute, which began its restoration in 2000.
Restaurants and shopping line this downtwon area. Home to the Itasca Art and Wine Festival. Scenic Riverwalk takes you from the nature center to the waterpark.
Round Lake Area Park District
Round Lake Area Park District offers visitors a wide range of activities and facilities to enjoy. They include the Renwood Golf Course, the new sports center, the Prairie Grass Nature Museum, community theatre, outdoor pool/aquatic center, fitness center, child development center, teen center, senior center and acres of picturesque parklands. Private parties/outings at any of the facilities can be accommodated.
CITY: Round Lake
The Nest at Palisades Cabins
The Nest at Palisades Cabins offer secluded luxury cabins designed to provide charm, quiet luxury and romance. We’re located on a wooded acreage high above the Mississippi River minutes from Savanna, the Palisades State Park and an easy 20 minute drive to Galena.
Atcher Island Water Park
All new tropical-themed water park with water slides, wading pool, unique circular drop slide, children's spray ground, locker rooms, concession stands, and more!
Shabbona Lake State Park
Shabbona Lake State Park has 1,550 acres of rolling prairie and features a 318 acre man-made fishing lake. Shabbona Lake State Recreation Area provides a convenient, natural haven from the hustle and bustle of daily life. With facilities for picnicking, camping, hiking, fishing, hunting and winter sports, Shabbona Lake is a convenient and comfortable retreat where you can refresh and reinvigorate yourself in a rare, unspoiled environment.
Central Illinois lake with over 11,000 water acres and 172 miles of shoreline. Lake Shelbyville has 5 federal campgrounds, and 2 state campgrounds with over 1,000 campsites from tent camping up to full hookup. There are several recreational areas with picnic areas and pavilions and 2 wildlife management areas. Three public beaches are available for swimming on the lake. The lake also hosts many launching ramps that are available for boats, and 3 marinas on the lake. Many hiking trails also encompass the lake such as the General Dacey which also includes fitness stations, the Chief Illini trail and others.
Devonshire Aquatic Center
The Aquatic Center features a zero depth pool with play equipment, a water play structure, drop slide and diving board. You'll also find lockers/showers and a concession stand.
Sand Ridge Nature Center
Owned and operated by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Sand Ridge Nature Center emphasizes the natural history of the Calumet region.
CITY: South Holland
Horse Fair Park
Horse shows held at park several times a year.
CITY: Spring Grove
Richardson Adventure Farm & Corn Maze
Richardson Adventure Farm offers 5 mazes with 33 acres of maze fields. For example, there is the Finger Fortune Trail for a quick maze that only takes 10 minutes. On another adventure, the Quiz Maze, answer fun quiz questions to guide you through and if you have the wrong answers, you'll go the wrong way! Family fun at every turn in the World's Largest Corn Maze, pumpkin patch, & Christmas trees. Fans of the board game, Clue, will instantly recognize the similarity to our maze game, FSI Farm Scene Investigation. Also enjoy the 50' tall observation tower, a Zip Line that is 30' high and 700' long, the ZORB Ride, beautiful wooded picnic area, free campfires, 3 wooden bridges in the corn maze, pedal carts and trikes, feed the goats, corn cabin, concessions for sale and free wagon ride to the five acre maze (weekends).
CITY: Spring Grove
Illinois State Fairgrounds
The Illinois State Fairgrounds encompasses over 360 acres of land that is fully fenced for added security. The landscaping and scenery throughout the grounds provides one with a sense of hospitality and homeyness. Springfield and Illinois offer the finest in services and recreational opportunities available anywhere. With over 1,500,000 visitors each year, guests will surely have a pleasant experience while making their own history here at the fairgrounds.
Great Western Trail
This 17-mile trail replaces the abandoned main line of the Chicago Great Western Railroad. It is a flat easy ride connecting the communities of St. Charles and Sycamore.
CITY: St. Charles
Fox River Trail
32 miles of biking, hiking and cross-country skiing featuring some of the most scenic trails of the Fox River. Points of interest include Carpenters Dam, Fox River Shores, Tyler Creek, Voyageur Landing, Shoemaker Nature Center and Fabyan Forest Preserve.
CITY: St. Charles
Kane County Fairgrounds
Open area with both indoor buildings and outdoor displays. Special events are held here nearly every weekend, including the famous Kane County Flea Market.
CITY: St. Charles
This 1930s living history farm features a farmhouse, barns, livestock, farm discovery trails, fruit orchard, garden plots and a picnic pavilion.
CITY: St. Charles
Rock River Valley Self Help Enterprises Happy Trails
Five acres of walking paths, water gardens, a green house, five-hole miniture golf, swings, and gardens were all designed and maintained by the developmentally disabled clients of the Rock River Valley Self Help Enterprises.
Apple River Canyon State Park - Thompson/Salem Units
This 1,150 acre area allows hunting, fishing; no boating/biking. See postings/fact sheets at registration. Sign in/out at lots #1 or #2. The vegetative cover at the site is a mixture of steep timbered slopes and bluffs with grassland, row crops and hay fields predominate on ridge tops. The topography can be severe especially bordering the Apple River.
Melvin Price Memorial Park
The 24-acre park has a pavilion, walking trails, and many other amenities. It is also the site of the Veterans of All Wars Memorial and the September 11 Memorial.
Mississippi River Lodge
Our Mississippi River Lodge is located right on the banks on the Mighty Mississippi River between Savanna and Thomson Illinois and offers awe-inspiring views from every angle. We offer 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, living room with fireplace & big screen TV, deck with grill, a fully stocked kitchen and much more! If you are a river lover, this is the place for you. Fishing, water skiing, tubing, or cruising up the river, it's all here for your enjoyment. Since we are located on Big Slough, off of the main channel of the river, you can have fun without having to deal with a lot of river traffic. Access to the main channel is easy if you want to cruise the river. Only five miles up the river is Lower Sabula Lake which offers a great new sand beach. There is a public boat launch only a quarter mile from the house and a dock is provided to moor your boat at the house. If you do not have a boat, you can fish off the dock or the bank.
Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park
Sited outdoors over some 300 acres, the 21-piece collection contains monumental works by many of the 20th century's most important sculptors, including Puryear, Nauman, Disuvero and Hunt.
CITY: University Park
Urbana Indoor Aquatic Center
The Indoor Aquatic Center has a recreational and competition pool, a beach-like entry and a water playground.
Anita Purves Nature Center
Located at the north end of Crystal Lake Park, this environmental education facility is a natural resource to individuals, families and groups interested in learning more about the outdoors. The Nature Center features four multi-purpose rooms, an exhibit field station, an Observation Room, the Audubon Nature Shop and an Educator Resource Room. The adjacent Busey Woods is perfect for hiking and bird watching.
Wandell Sculpture Garden
The Wandell Sculpture Garden was established in honor of Willett and Celia Wandell in 1998. This unique, free outdoor sculpture garden sits among 22 acres of recreated Illinois tallgrass prairie in 130-acre Meadowbrook Park. While walking the looped paths, one can encounter bikers, joggers and other sculpture lovers as the park serves both recreational and educational purposes. Works from local artists with ties to the University of Illinois grace the garden, as well as pieces from artists who reside in New York, California and New Mexico. The garden has both permanent sculptures and some that are rotated every second or third year, keeping it fresh for visitors. Open daily from dawn to dusk.
University of Illinois Arboretum
The University of Illinois Arboretum is a living laboratory, including plant collections and facilities that support the teaching, research and public service programs of several units throughout campus. Central to the Arboretum was the development of the "All American Selection Trial Gardens" established by a bequest from Miles C. Hartley in the early 90s. Other highlights of the Arboretum include the Welcome Garden, Hosta Garden, Kari Walkway and native ponds plantings, the Idea Garden, sponsored by Champaign County Master Gardeners, and the Japanese Tea and Dry Gardens at the Japan House.
The University of Illinois Pollinitarium is the first free-standing science center in the nation devoted to flowering plants and their pollinators. Its location in the midst of the Arboretum brings together flowers and pollinators physically and conceptually. Changing exhibits relate to world events and ongoing research on pollinators. Guests can explore beekeeping equipment, see live demonstrations and play interactive games. Because so much depends on pollination, the UI Pollinatarium is dedicated to increasing awareness and appreciation of pollination as a remarkable ecological partnership and an essential ecosystem service.
Starved Rock State Park
Seasonal waterfalls, awe-inspiring bluffs and rugged canyons dominate the storied landscape at Starved Rock. Rich with history and beauty, Starved Rock’s hiking trails meander through towering trees and scenic overlooks along the Illinois River. Outdoor activities include hiking, canoeing, paddleboat cruises, cross-country skiing, trolley rides, fishing and picnicking. Visitors can stay at the historic Starved Rock Lodge or in one of its cozy cabins.
Matthiessen State Park - Cross Country Skiing
Five miles of scenic trails amidst a spectacular geological backdrop enable hikers, mountain bikers, horseback riders, runners and cross-country skiers to experience a peaceful jaunt through the park, while families congregate around fully-equipped, shaded picnic areas neighboring playgrounds, trailheads and 17th-Century restored French fort.
Starved Rock State Park East Hike
Starved Rock State Park has a beautiful East Hike that offers canyons galore, each with slightly different shapes, sizes and colorings. At 6.4 miles of dirt terrain, this hike is moderately difficult. Cool, shady and overgrown with ferns, the canyons offer a plethora of trees and flowering plants—a true delight to explore. You’ll also encounter scenic overlooks 100 feet above the Illinois River. The real crowd pleasers at Starved Rock are the numerous sandstone canyons that were carved deep into the bedrock as upland streams drained into the Illinois River. Some noted canyons of worth to explore are Kaskaskia Canyon, Ottawa Canyon and Hennepin Canyon Overlook.
Starved Rock State Park West Hike
Starved Rock State Park West Hike offers a decidedly different set of attractions than its eastern counterpart. On this hike you’ll encounter a series of overlooks from wooded bluffs and rocky cliffs high above the Illinois River. This 2.9-mile hike varies in difficulty due to the large amount of stairs that need climbing. The dominant feature of Starved Rock can be found on this hike, via a narrow bluff that runs 4-miles along the south branch of the Illinois River. The park’s namesake towers 125 feet above the river, offering commanding views of the nearby islands and river. Some notable excursions include, French Canyon, Wildcat Canyon and Pontiac Canyon with sweeping views of the Illinois River.
Located across from the Statehouse in Vandalia, the park features a life-size, bronze statue of Abraham Lincoln. This is a favorite spot for photos with the 16th president.
Vernon Hills Golf Course
This golf course has been ranked as one of the top ten 9 hole golf courses in Chicagoland. Situated in Vernon Hills, this challenging 9-hole municipal course boasts small greens, rolling terrain, tight fairways and seven holes featuring water. Golfers of all skill levels will appreciate both the playability and the eye-catching views. The full-service clubhouse features a varied lunch menu, which is served all day and a full-service bar. Banquet facilities available for up to 80 people.
CITY: Vernon Hills
Vernon Hills Park District Sullivan Community Center
Overlooking park land, the Community Room, equipped with a stage and kitchen, can serve 260 dinner guests or 400 people theater seating. Smaller meeting rooms with a capacity of 10-140 people including a gymnasium rental are also available.
CITY: Vernon Hills
Tunnel Hill State Trail
Rolling agricultural fields, reclaimed strip mines, ravines, rocky streams and wooded bluffs dominate the northern half of the Tunnel Hill State Trail. With 47.8 miles (one-way) of crushed gravel surface, extended inclines and dark tunnels, this trail is a difficult one, but one not to pass up, as long as you’re up for the challenge. The southern half of the trail explodes with scenery that includes bottomland woods, ponds, streams and marshes. The trail, which winds through seven towns, even touches upon a handful of ghost towns that faded into the landscape after the trains here stopped running.
Southern Illinois Wine Trail
Illinois' newest wine trail connects six wineries dotted throughout the southeast corner of the state. Visitors can enjoy both breathtaking vistas and friendly rural communities, all while sampling excellent red and white wines.
Lakewood Forest Preserve
The newly renovated Bowen park's theme for their new playground is "Forest Findings". The overall layout offers tiered play areas arranged on the northwest hillside of Bowen Park. Fun and learning will go hand-in-hand as children and their families enjoy modern playground amenities, combined with several environmental learning stations that represent a forest ecosystem. Parents and kids alike will also enjoy the six-station fitness/exercise trail located on the perimeter of the playground.
Bonnie Brook Golf Course & Banquet Facility
Bonnie Brook is one of the most popular public courses in Lake County, boasting a meticulously manicured 18-hole course with rolling, wooded terrain. Its natural, picturesque landscape offers golfers the ability to enjoy tree-lined fairways, spacious greens, small lakes and the beauty of the north branch of the Waukegan River, which flows gently throughout the course. With a course length of 6,701 yards, Bonnie Brook offers championship golfers a solid test while being friendly and forgiving to the high handicappers. The clubhouse features a Indoor Golf and Learning Center which houses a P3Proswing Simulator. The simulator and its software helps analyze a player's swing and provides guidance how to improve their game and is available on an appointment basis only.
Veterans Memorial Park
Veterans Memorial Park in Westmont
Consisting of the Robert McCormick Mansion Museum, the First Division Military Museum, ten acres of gardens and parks, 27-hole championship golf course and nine-hole Cantigny Youth Links.
Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park
3,300-acre peninsula in Rend Lake. Beautiful park offering boating, camping, and picnicking with shelters. Programs include pheasant hunting, field trials, and bass tournaments. Bicycle, horse trails, and stables.
Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center - Willow Springs
Forest preserve nature center designed to educate the public about the importance of wildlife and our environment.
CITY: Willow Springs
Columbia Woods Forest Preserve
A River Thru History
CITY: Willow Springs
Artesian Well at Paradise Cove
Nestled along Indian Creek is a natural artesian well where thousands of gallons of pure water flow each day - as it has since 1927. A ten foot water wheel is turned continually by the flowing water. The site, which is accessed by Stephenson County's only covered bridge, includes a waterfall, large flower beds and gazebo to enjoy while sipping the bubbling water. Open: 7 am - 8 pm.
Splash around at the Aquatic Center. Climb up four stories and launch down your choice of two waterslides with more than 320 feet of winding turns and diving wells, or take a dip in the pool.
CITY: Wood River
Woodridge Town Centre
A multipurpose open play area, Woodridge Town Center hosts a variety of festivals in Woodridge.
City of Zion - Shiloh Park
Whether it’s by offering wholesome programs, activities and special events, by providing enjoyable facilities or by preserving the aesthetic beauty of the community, the sole purpose of Zion Park District is the enrichment of lives.