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Shawnee National Forest
The Shawnee National Forest is famed for its awesome Garden of the Gods, and is home to the Rim Rock Recreational Trail (the forest has a system of 403 miles of equestrian/hiking trails). Hikers are greeted by magnificent jutting walls of rock covered with emerald-green moss, and paths that meander through canyons under the forest canopy. Nestled between the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, the stunning Shawnee National Forest landscape features rolling hills, lakes, creeks and rugged bluffs. If you’re into climbing than a must-see is Jackson Falls, located near the town of Ozark in the Hidden Springs Ranger District in Shawnee National Forest. The climb takes place on 60 feet of sandstone cliffs and boulders that include numerous freestanding towers.
KeyLime Cove Indoor Waterpark Resort
KeyLime Cove, the official resort of nearby Six Flags Great America, offers a year round tropical resort experience. The massive indoor water park features a wave pool, body and tube slides, a lazy river, waterfalls and whirlpools. Besides the splashy fun, KeyLime Cove offers a variety of restaurants and entertainment options geared to both kids and parents. Grab a little "me" time and indulge in the luxurious Paradise Mist Spa, or pamper your princess at The Enchanted Lagoon Kids Spa.
Grizzly Jack's Grand Bear Resort and Enchanted Forest
60 acres of Northwoods themed accommodations near Starved Rock. Lodge rooms, villas & cabin, indoor water and amusement parks, dining, banquet & conference center.
Scuba dive at this unique spring-fed stone quarry and marvel at underwater treasures such as a submerged airplane (actually used in the movie U.S. Marshals) and a cement petting zoo. Mermet Springs offers on-site instruction and equipment rental.
Chicago Public Beaches
Chicago’s 26 miles of lakefront and beaches are free and open to residents and visitors alike. In fact, they were foremost in Daniel Burham’s plan to make Chicago’s lakefront and beaches always open and unobstructed for the public to enjoy. And to this day, you can see that his vision is still alive and well, from the joggers and volleyball players to the swimmers and sail boaters who take to the lakefront every day. Of course, admission is free.
Raging Waves Waterpark
Illinois' largest Waterpark offers 45 acres of family fun! 17 water slides, wave pool, lazy river, huge kiddie play structures, sandy beach area and a 2000 foot long 4 course zip line.
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.
It's all about the water at Rend Lake, where you can swim, boat, water ski and fish. Relax at Rend Lake Resort, tee off at the 27-hole Rend Lake Golf Course or do some target practice at the Rend Lake Shooting Complex. Also located at Rend Lake is the Southern Illinois Art & Artisans Center, featuring more than 800 artists.
Splashdown at EastSide
The wettest and wildest family water park in Central Illinois. Play in Splashtower Island or ride the lazy river. There's even a splash and play area for the young ones in your family. www.fondulacpark.com
CITY: East Peoria
Fairview Water Park
Fairview has an activity pool featuring arched water jets, a polar bear slide and a water mushroom. The park also features six lap swim lanes, a deep pool with two thrilling drop slides, multiple diving boards and two sand volleyball courts.
Splash City Family Waterpark
Surfing in Illinois? Yes! The FlowRider creates a perfect wave for surfing and body boarding. Water slides, a lap pool, the lazy river, a sandy play area and "Monsoon Mountain" make for a family adventure.
Pelican Harbor Indoor/Outdoor Aquatic Park
Illinois' only indoor/outdoor aquatic park features seven water slides, a lazy river, two zero-depth entry pools, a spray play area, diving well, sand playground and two concession stands.
Lakeview Family Aquatic Center
This outdoor aquatic center has a swimming pool, a zero depth pool with play equipment, 2 giant water slides, 1 small slide, diving boards, a video arcard and wet sand play area.An arcade, lockers, showers, concessions and souvenirs are also available! Children seven years and under must be accompanied by an adult 17 years or older.
Paradise Bay Water Park
DuPage County, Chicago's Western Suburbs - Check out the Lombard Park District's award-winning aquatic facility! State-of-the-art amenities are endless and include a 140,000-gallon leisure pool, bowl slide, zero-depth pool, bubble bench, lap pool, drop slide and much, much more!
Poplar Camp Beach
Beautiful sandy waterfront on Cedar Lake. State certified Lifeguards on duty during beach hours, lap lane, restrooms, picnic tables and a concession area.
Splash Valley Aquatic Park
Kankakee's premiere water park offers splashtacular fun for the whole family. The outdoor water park encompasses a lazy river, three waterslides, lap pool, and two zero-depth entry pools. Group rates and party rentals are available.
Riverplex Recreation and Wellness Center
State-of-the-art fitness center, indoor family aquatic center, pro shop, smoothie bar, classrooms, gymnasium, multipurpose recreation area with sports, classes, programs and other activities. Daily user fees or memberships available. Don't forget to also check out our indoor two-story water-slide, lazy river, zero depth pool and splash equipment!
Rainbow Falls Water Park
A tropical paradise waterpark. Three giant water slides, tot pool, vortex pool, drop slide, three-story funhouse with plunge pool. concessions, picnic areas, locker rooms with family changing areas. Daily admission and season passes. Open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
CITY: Elk Grove Village
Splash Country Water Park
This deluxe water park features tube slides, a simulated river, zero-depth pools and sand activity areas.
Pyramid Acres Campground & Marina
Offers gas, bait, tackle, ice, beer, groceries, contour maps and camping with water and electricity. Open all year. Located at the northeastern edge of the lake.
Lena Lions Park
Lions Park, at over 20 acres, features Splash Land Family Aquatic Center with a 180' waterslide, zero depth entry, many shade shelters, wet sand play area, water features and drop slide. The Splash Land Mini-Golf offers one of the nicest 18 hole miniature golf courses in the Midwest. It has over 275 plant varieties, 4000+ square feet of water areas, three waterfalls and challenges that the entire family will enjoy. The course is ADA compliant. Quench your thirst and your appetite at the Splash Land Food Court. Full restaurant offering sandwiches to soft serve and smoothies to salads - a true family food court. The park also offers picnic and playground areas, flower gardens, shelter house, a concession stand, volleyball and basketball courts, lighted ball diamond, batting cages and restrooms. A 110x110' ice rink is available in season.
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!
Itasca Caribbean Theme Waterpark
Features a new zero-depth entry main pool with 6-lanes attached, new separate diving well with drop slide, and high and low diving boards, 185-foot waterslide, separate zero-depth interactive play pools, and more. Call today for birthday party package information.
Hall Quarry Beach
Hall Quarry features a zero-depth sand beach, two islands, a youth water slide, drop slide, and a diving tower with two- and four-meter platforms.
Vaughn Athletic Center Water Park
This year-round indoor water park has tube slides, zero-depth entry and interactive water play.
Family Aquatic Center
This aquatic center has a frog slide, water slide, wet playground area, a sand playground, concessions, a shaded picnic area and a bath house.
Urbana Indoor Aquatic Center
The Indoor Aquatic Center has a recreational and competition pool, a beach-like entry and a water playground.
A quiet cove at dawn, where the only sound is the whir of a casting reel and the gentle splash of the fly hitting the water’s surface...that’s Lake Sara. A sunny afternoon slalom skiing behind a powerboat or running along the beach...that’s Lake Sara. A family picnic in the grass at water’s edge or a family reunion, with fried chicken and the works, under one of the pavilions...that’s Lake Sara. Lake Sara is an 800-acre recreational lake nestled into a wooded shoreline, encircled by a winding road. Spend a day, a week, or a season on the shores of Lake Sara. Lake Sara has something for everyone, in every season of the year.
Splash Station Waterpark
Railroad-themed, outdoor water park featuring a 6 person racing slide, body slides, tube slides, lazy river and zero depth pool.
Rock Cut State Park
With over 3,000 acres of rolling plains and two lakes, Rock Cut State Park is a hiker's paradise. It's also home to some of the best mountain biking in northeastern Illinois, offering 10 miles of dirt and sand terrain, doubletrack and singletrack trails. One of the loops is 4.25-miles, the Main Trail, which runs around Pierce Lake. Another loop snakes around the northeast corner of the park and leads through dense trees and hills.
CITY: Loves Park
Hap Parker Family Aquatic Center
Fun for the whole family! Highlights include two amazing water slides that splash down into 350,000 gallons of crystal clear water. The zero-depth entry pool also features water toys for children, lanes for swimmers, and diving boards. The 14,000 square foot facility also has a full bath house with accessible restrooms and changing rooms, along with a full-service concession stand, shaded and open lounge areas, picnic tables and much more.
Come out to Camp Lakewood and enjoy the views of Lake Pauline plus all the creature comforts. Camp Lakewood is an RV campground. The sites include cable, WiFi, 30/50 AMP. They also offer a one and two bedroom cabin that is fully furnished and self contained. The newest cabin sleeps five and includes Cable TV. They do offer tent sites as well for those who want to be a little closer to nature.
Kids will love this railroad themed aquatic center featuring a spiral slide, tube slide, water geysers and playful water features. Open during the summer months 7 days a week, Whitewater Junction is located inside the lovely Longview Park in Rock Island, Illinois.
CITY: Rock Island
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.
Splashdown Water Park
Central Illinois' premier family water park is located at the Eastside Centre Sports Complex. Play in Splash Tower Island, ride the lazy river, or spend time in the splash and play area designed for little ones.
CITY: East Peoria
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
Coral Cove Water Park
Dive into this beach-themed water park with 2 tall tube slides, drop-slide, diving well, walk-in swimming pool, splash ‘n spray playground, sand play area and café. Locker rooms, showers & family restrooms. Available for group rentals for 50-1500 people.
CITY: Carol Stream
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.
Read Park offers many recreational opportunities and is highlighted by the Read Park Family Aquatic Center, which includes a zero depth pool, water slides and play area, and by a state of the art 11,000 square foot skate park, SK8 Park. This scenic park also features baseball and softball diamonds, tennis courts, sand volleyball courts, an outdoor lighted hockey and ice staking rink, concession stand, picnic areas, shelters, and playgrounds. The Morgan Memorial, a charming statue of two children surrounded by fountains, is a serene spot to enjoy. Park attractions are open seasonally; please call ahead to confirm availability of specific attractions and costs.
Rice Pool & Water Park
Rice Pool and Water Park facilities include a zero-depth pool, thrilling slides, sand play area for children, adult lounge deck and sand volleyball courts.
Visit this "Key West" of the Midwest located where the Illinois River and Mississippi River meet. In addition to harbor faciltiies, a floating swimming pool and the Big Kahuna Bar and Grill, Grafton Harbor features a gift shop where boaters and landlubbers alike can find unique trinkets and treasures. Snacks, beer and wine, boating accessories and parts, clothing for all ages, navigational maps and gifts for that special child are all available.
Oswegoland Civic Center Aquatic Park
This community water park features colorful slides, tubes, a zero-depth pool and concession booth.
Whitewater Junction - Aquatic Park
Whitewater Junction is a railroad-themed aquatic facility. Two water slides, spray toys, zero depth edge and shallow water play area.
CITY: Rock Island
Anthony Acres Resort
Anthony Acres Resort has picturesque views of Lake Sara. The resort is only five minutes from Effingham, so you can come into town and enjoy some food or shop.
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.
DuPage County, Chicago’s Western Suburbs - Jump in to summer fun at Centennial Beach! Featuring four acres of grass and trees, a sand beach, water play features, an NCAA/U.S.S.-approved diving complex, this historic beach is a place the whole family can enjoy! With water depths ranging from zero to 15 feet, the facility caters to swimmers of all skill levels. Combined with a playground, Frisbee® Area, shallow end slide, concessions stand and Beach store, Centennial Beach is the perfect way to beat the summer heat. Named "best public place to swim" in 2008 by Fox News Chicago viewers in an online poll!
Dixon Springs State Park
Dixon Springs State Park is one of several state parks in the Illinois Shawnee Hills. Park visitors may enjoy the varied wildlife, take a swim in the outdoor pool or simply soak up the relaxing atmosphere of the moss-covered boulders, craggy overhangs, and rushing brook.
Gillson Park offers 60 acres of beautiful lakefront property, including a harbor and beach. It is ideal for picnics, bicycling, volleyball, tennis and other outdoor sports.
Scuba dive the spring-fed quarry of 12 acres in a park-like setting. Call for reservations.
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
Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park at Pine Lakes
A beautiful 105-acre campground, with a 45-acre stocked lake. Enjoy free fishing, beach swimming, hiking, boat rentals, hayrides and more. Cottages and cabins are also available.
Fairview Family Aquatic Center
Fun for the whole family! Zero depth activity pool, six lap swim lanes, separate pool for drop slides and diving boards, as well as a sand/water play area for children and two competition sand volleyball courts.
Lake of Egypt
Lake of Egypt is a privately owned reservoir located six miles south of Marion, Illinois and covers 2,300 acres with 90 miles of shoreline. The lake has an average depth of 18 feet. The lake is owned by the Southern Illinois Power Cooperative (SIPC), who created the impoundment in 1962, by damming the South fork of the Saline River, to supply cooling water for a coal-burning electric power plant.
Independence Grove Forest Preserve
This scenic 1,114-acre preserve offers a wide range of outdoor recreation and education opportunities centered around a 115-acre lake reclaimed from a gravel quarry. Visitors can enjoy swimming, fishing and boating, a Marina with boat rentals, a native garden and nearly seven miles of trails. The 19,000-square-foot Visitor Center features exhibits and a cafe. It can be rented for weddings and other private functions.
Rustic Acres Campgrounds
155 sites available April 1 - October 31, recreation building, swimming pool, lake fishing, boat rentals, tent camping, handicap access.
CITY: New Douglas
Evanston's Dog Beach
Bring your dog to Evanston's Dog Beach! Admission restricted to dogs with a "dog beach season token".
Stephen A. Forbes State Park
Located among the rolling hills of Southwestern Illinois, this park has a beach and offers boating, camping, fishing, hiking, swimming, and other activities. 140 camp sites open year round for outdoor lovers
Includes picnic and playground areas, a shelter, tennis court and basketball court.
Middle Fork Forest Preserve
Middle Fork Forest Preserve, 1600 acres in northeast Champaign County, offers visitors a campground (53 of 65 campsites have electricty), brand new playground, swimming beach, fishing, hiking, boat rentals, cross-country skiing, picnicking, a Waterfowl Management Area, renovated meeting facility and programs. The campground now accepts online reservations.
Frankfort Community Aquatics & Activities Center
Located at the West Frankfort City Park, this newly built indoor 25-meter six lane pool is open to the public; classes and activities available, handicap accessible, lifeguard on site, open every day.
CITY: West Frankfort
Prophetstown Park District Pool & Recreational Center
Indoor/outdoor pool with aerobic classes and open swims. Rec Center has volleyball and basketball courts.
Chicago Lakefront Trail
Take in the lake as you soak in one of Chicago’s most beautiful treasures. The Lakefront Trail is a runner’s paradise, spanning an impressive 17-miles of natural beauty and man-made inspirations. It runs north from Navy Pier to Foster Avenue and south to 31st beach. The trail’s smooth terrain makes it easy to traverse, while its hidden secrets make it fun to explore. And when you’re done with your run, bike, hike or whatever, you can cool down with spectacular lake views or breathtaking cityscapes.
Offers picnic & playground areas, sand volleyball courts, soccer field, basketball court.
Lake Sara Pavilions
Two different locations on Lake Sara. The pavilions offer a chance to host a meeting on the lake. The two outdoor facilities are perfect for receptions and parties with plenty of outdoor space. It also features a large open room, kitchen area, boat dock and outdoor decks.
The Timber Campground, Inc.
Large mature trees covering 50 acres surrounds a 5 acre lake for you to unwind in nature's glory. Activities for all ages, swim, fish, play horseshoes, volleyball or swing at the playground. 30 and 50 amp sites all with water and electric hookup. Pull through and tent sites are available.
Joseph Westwood Memorial Park
Picnic and playground areas, shelters, tennis courts, ball diamonds, plus a recreation building.
CITY: Pearl City
Kankakee South KOA
A campground that has something for everyone with basketball, volleyball and other activities.
The Marina at Lake Sara
If you want to spend a day on Lake Sara but don't have a boat, don't worry The Marina at Lake Sara offers boat rentals, tackle, gas, food and drinks.
Bureau County Metro Center
The Bureau County Metro Center is a 50,000 square-foot recreation center with full size gymnasium; 25-yard indoor swimming pool with wading pool and observation balcony; racquetball courts; weight room; cardio-vascular room, elevated running/walking track above the gym; and locker rooms. A 40' x 80' multi-purpose room with adjacent kitchen provides the perfect setting for conventions, expositions, meetings, or wedding receptions.
North Entrance To Lake Shelby
This 15-mile-long lake has 250 miles of shoreline, offering camping, fishing, boating, marinas and more.
Ray Fosse Park
Ray Fosse Park is centrally located and offers playground equipment, four lighted picnic shelters, picnic tables, tennis courts, seven baseball fields, Goofy Golf, batting cages & three concession stands and the Park District’s Aquatic Center. The Aquatic Center traditionally opens the last weekend in May. The facility includes swimming pool, diving boards, water slide and separate baby pool with a mushroom sprinkler fountain. You can contact the Aquatic Center, during open season, at (618) 997-1115. Goofy Golf and Batting Cages open in April.
Otter Cove Aquatic Park
Splash park features interactive children's water play area with safety surface.Lazy River, tube and body slides, lap pool, zero-depth entry pool, toddler pool, diving boards, concessions, sand play area.
CITY: St. Charles
Wolf Creek State Park
Eight miles northwest of Windsor, Wolf Creek State Park encompass 11,100 acres of water, 250 miles of shoreline and large tracts of carefully maintained indigenous woodlands ideal for camping, horseback riding, snowmobiling, boat fishing, water skiing, pontoon boating, windsurfing or just plain bobbing and drifting on the glittering expanse of the lake itself. In addition to visiting the small, friendly wooded campgrounds or taking part in the action on the lake, swimming is available from the beach. You can also take a leisurely stroll through nearby forests. An abundance of deer, pheasant, rabbits, wild turkey and songbirds are almost always visible.