Located on the Illinois River between LaSalle-Peru and Ottawa, Starved Rock State Park is one of the state's most visited sites. The 2,700-acre park has 18 canyons and more than 13 miles of hiking trails. The historic stone-and-log Lodge features 69 guest rooms. Hotel rooms feature full baths, coffee makers, hair dryers, TV/DVD (except the Pioneer Cabins), heat and air conditioning. The architecture of the historic Lodge, built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930's, rivals that of national park lodges. Just outside the Lodge, there are an additional 21 cabin rooms (some with wood-burning fireplaces) which are surrounded by towering pines and century-old oak trees. Lodge guests enjoy an indoor pool complex with two saunas, a hot tub, a children's pool (gated) and an outdoor sunning patio. Within the Lodge, guests enjoy the gift shop, cafe, lounge, outdoor dining and entertainment on the veranda.
The family-style restaurant at the Lodge serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Specialties include a spectacular Sunday brunch, kids' menus, fried chicken, steaks, seafood and pasta. The Starved Rock Cafe provides lighter fare. Six conference rooms are available. The largest meeting room can accommodate 200 people. The Lodge is a popular location for weddings (both indoor and outdoor), banquets and business retreats.
Hiking is the most popular activity at Starved Rock State Park. The Lodge offers guided hikes every weekend to explore the scenic canyons made of St. Peter sandstone, seasonal waterfalls and amazing bluff views of the panoramic Illinois River Valley. Waterfalls make a big splash in the spring in many of the park's 18 magnificent, glacier-carved canyons, while winter transforms these same falls into stunning ice sculptures. The Lodge's walkers club hikes every Thursday (departing from the Lodge at 9 am).
The Lodge has a wide variety of activities throughout the year including musical tribute shows (with lunch or dinner), educational programming and special events such as art/photography shows, paint & wine classes and drum circles. Trolley tours include frequent departures to learn about the rich history of the Starved Rock area. Winter tours are dedicated to eagle watching. Waterfall & canyon tours are offered in April and May. Fall Colors Tours are the most popular in October.
Popular park activities include boating, fishing and water cruises on the paddle-wheeler called The Belle of the Rock (packages with lunch or dinner and a water tour are available through the Lodge). The Starved Rock campground is located just southeast of the main park. Reservations may be made online by going to www.ReserveAmerica.com.
Starved Rock Lodge www.StarvedRockLodge.com is located within Starved Rock State Park, 10 miles west of Ottawa and Interstate 80 and four miles south on Illinois 178. The Lodge, conference center and restaurant are open year-round. Reserve online, or call 815-667-4211 or 800-868-7625.