Arranged Alphabetically. Stared locations are great for photography!
Has many pavilions, lots of climbing, handicapped accessible areas, large restrooms, water fountains, tennis courts, a skate rink, a soccer field, a gaga ball area, three playgrounds, restrooms, and a real airplane displayed at the front of the park. One of the large playgrounds is for younger children and the second is for older.
- Don't Miss: The nature themed climbing area.
- Great For: Lots of playground for all ages.
- Drawbacks: Dogs are not allowed.
Walk around the restored wetlands where the Mississippi River once flowed. The path splits into different directions, but all the routes are short, flat, and looped. You can cross the wetlands on a floating boardwalk surrounded by water lilies and try and catch a glimpse of fish, turtles, or a frog. Be sure to read the informational placards posted along the boardwalk. Venture to the other end of the boardwalk to continue your hike through Arlington Wetland’s nature trail. Native prairie grasses, wildflowers, and trees enclose the natural-surface pathway.
- Don't Miss: the water lilies
- Great For: peace, quiet
- Drawbacks: Not a great deal of shade.
A 234-acre park with an 18-Hole Championship Golf Course, a lake for fishing, a clubhouse, picnic areas, a ball field, three playgrounds, restrooms, shelters, woodland, and open space.
- Trails: There is a one mile paved walkway around a lake that is stroller and pet friendly with benches to sit near the water.
- Don't Miss: the woods
- Great For: a hike with family and pets
- Drawbacks: not a great deal of wildlife
Can you make it up the 154 steps of Monks Mound? Monks Mound is the largest Earth Work in North America. Cahokia Mounds has a great deal to offer as the site of a pre-Columbian Native American city and a UNESCO site. The museum is open Thurs–Sun 9-5. Grounds are open dawn- dusk. Suggested donation for the interpretive center is $7 for adults, $5 for seniors, $2 for students, and $15 for families. Leashed dogs are welcome outdoors.
- Trails: wide paved paths with varying amounts of shade
- Don't Miss: The climb up Monks Mound
- Great For: An interesting walk on a cool day
- Drawbacks: Some hills and no shade on many paths.
A park with lots of shade trees, several pavilions, a boat ramp, a soccer field, barbecue grills, picnic tables, benches, a community garden, a workout area, playgrounds, drinking fountains, restrooms, and a seven-acre lake with fish, turtles, and ducks. Also has 2 playgrounds for younger and older kids. Pet friendly.
- trails: about three miles of paved trails connect to the regional trail system via the MCT Schoolhouse Trail.
- Great For: Watching animals
- Don't Miss: The seven acre lake
120-acres with playgrounds, 2 ponds with fish and frogs, concession stands, restrooms, rentable pavilions, a rentable gazebo, soccer fields and 3 miles of walking trails with shade trees. There are picnic tables under trees by a water fountain. Home to the Great Godfrey Corn Maze. Pet friendly. Little Free Library.
- Trails: wide paved paths with lots of shade
- Don't Miss: The relaxing views by the lake.
- Great For: A lot to see without having to drive.
- Drawbacks: Some litter.
704 acre park with tennis courts, a lake for fishing, ball diamonds, soccer fields, football fields, a 27 hole golf course, oriental garden, picnic area, nature trail, and rose garden. Also has restrooms, an interactive fountain, several playgrounds for all ages, a rose garden, bell tower, and oriental garden.
- Trails: paved trails with beautiful views
- Don't Miss: The oriental garden.
- Great For: Bringing a book or sketch pad and relaxing.
- Drawbacks: Difficult to meet a group. Be sure to give careful directions on which playground or field.
This park has three rentable shelters, a restroom facility, playground, and a demonstration garden provided by the University of Illinois Extension Master Gardeners program. I was impressed by the creative playscape that allowed my kids to climb and try however they were comfortable.
This site has a splash pad, workout area, large pavilions, bathrooms, barbecue grills, a concessions area, large playground, and younger children's playground. The splash pad has features for young and older kids, and shaded benches.
- Trails: There is a small paved path around the splash pad and playground with some workout gear.
- Don't Miss: The huge dumping bucket.
- Great For: Hot days with various ages.
- Drawbacks: Slides are VERY slippery when wet.
Trails open 8- 8pm, Tues.- Sun. Approximately 300 acres located along the bluffs of the Mississippi River with educational programming, a large playground, and ample parking. Rock Trail has a creek that is around 2-4 feet deep.
- Trails: 4 unpaved well marked trails. If using stroller, rubber tires necessary. Rock Trail has a steep hill.
- Don't Miss: Fantastic views of the Mississippi River and the sand box.
- Great For: Whatever you make it!
- Drawbacks: NOT pet friendly. Closed Mondays. Restroom are closed at 4pm on weekdays and on weekends.
Park runs along the shore of a lake. Has a frisbee golf course, (small) climbing wall, archery range, man made waterfall/creek area, restrooms, ponds, sand volleyball court, playground, picnic shelters, fishing, and a boat ramp. Leashed pets are welcome.
- Trails: A 4+ mile wooded trail that is not stroller friendly.
- Don't Miss: The autumn leaves.
- Great For: A quiet walk in the woods.
- Drawbacks: Fishing Lines are often discarded in water, local ordinance doesn't allow for swimming.
Open 10am-4pm, Fridays-Sundays. A place for sick, injured, or orphaned wildlife. Open to the public 365 days a year. Visitors view animals for FREE. Offers hands-on learning as well as an in-depth discussion to meet the needs of the group. Not Pet Friendly for the health and safety of on site wildlife.
A 30 acre farm with rest rooms, picnic shelters, a large garden, four hiking trails. Trails are not stroller friendly. There is an intricate play area with ride on toys, a wheel chair accessible swing, kids' wheelbarrows. Also has cows, goats, ponies, bunnies, chickens, tractors, and a farm house.