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Things to Do in Illinois

In contrast to it’s largest city, Chicago, find a long list of things to do at parks downstate. Many showcase natural and manmade attractions and outdoor activities – Fort Massac, Cave in Rock, Giant City, Cahokia Mounds, Carlyle Lake, Wildlife Prairie, Black Hawk, Apple River Canyon, Mississippi Palisades and Starved Rock, among others. While agriculture is a major industry, the state capital of Springfield highlights attractions tied to Abraham Lincoln. Chicago is home to major museums emphasizing art, science and industry, natural history and history, plus an aquarium and zoo. Take the interstate or back roads and discover restaurants featuring locally grown farm products. Lodging includes hotels, motels, inns and B&Bs.
Things To & DoVacation IdeasVideos

Washington Park Botanical Garden

1740 West Fayette Avenue
Springfield, Illinois
The botanical garden is one of the region's major horticultural attractions with 20 acres featuring more than 1,800 species of plants in 10 specific garden areas, plus a conservatory.

The garden highlights annual beds, a rockery, cactus garden, civic garden, monocot garden, perennial border, peony collection, rose garden, shade garden and a Roman cultural garden.

Hours & Admission
Monday to Friday 12:00 noon to 4:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 12:00 noon to 5:00 p.m. Free.

Lincoln Memorial Garden and Nature Center

2301 East Lake Drive
Springfield, Illinois
Designed by Jens Jensen, an internationally known landscape architect, this woodland garden is dedicated as a living memorial to Abraham Lincoln. It consists of 77 acres along the shores of Lake Springfield, devoted entirely to plants, trees and flowers native to Illinois. There are five miles of nature trails and a nature center offering educational exhibits.
Hours & Admission
Grounds: daily, dawn to dusk. Nature center: Tuesday to Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Sunday 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Free.
Information subject to change without notice.
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