The Illinois DNR can trace its history back to the very origins of the state’s creation as the first game law was put in place in 1853. These fun facts show how far Illinois conservation has come over the last 200 years!
5. (Almost) No Fees!
Illinois is one of the only states that do not charge entry fees for their state parks! Other than some parking fees at state park beaches, every state park is free to enter and enjoy!
4. First Illinois State Park
Along the Ohio River, Massac State Park was first established in 1908 to preserve the history behind this French-Indian war encampment first built in the mid-1700s
3. Most Popular Illinois State Park
In 2020, the most popular state park in Illinois was Starved Rock State Park. A longtime Illinoisan favorite, over 2.3 million people visited in 2020.
2. Least Popular Illinois State Park
With less than 4,000 visitors in 2020, the Fall Creek Scenic Overlook was the least popular state park in Illinois. A small park with limited activities, this park sees about 300 people a month throughout the year for archery hunting.
1. Largest Illinois State Park
The largest State Park in Illinois is Pere Marquette with over 8,000 acres to explore at the confluence of the Illinois and Mississippi rivers.
Illinois State Park Statistics
|Number of Visitors (2020)||34.9 million|
|Number of State Parks*||117|
|Largest State Park||8,000 Acres|