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Starved Rock Family Fun – All You Need to Know Before Visiting

It has lots of amazing natural waterfalls, lush forests, and quiet retreats for visitors. Read about “Starved Rock Family Fun” in details.


When considering a nice place to go to for a vacation with your family that will wow your kids and have utmost fun, starved rock family fun is the right place for a family adventure. Starved rock family fun is one of the most famous Illinois State Parks.

It has lots of amazing natural waterfalls, lush forests, and quiet retreats for visitors. Starved rock family fun is known for its natural magnificent rock formations of St. Peter sandstone. There are lots of hiking places for those who love to hike, horseback riding trails. You can as well do fishing and boating at the park.

This state park has loads of fun for all visitors. At Starved Rock State Park, there are 18 canyons and about 13 miles of hiking trails. You will get a breath taking view of the Illinois River and Plum Island at Starved Rock State Park. This is a fantastic place to visit with your children for your next vacation.

Directions to starved rock    

Getting to the starved rock, you can make use of four different means from Chicago. It’s either you use the train, taxi, bus, night bus or car. Whichever you choose to go by, it has its duration on the road from Chicago to the Starved Rock state park. If you train, a taxi will cost you around $107-$138, and the take-off point is Chicago union station. The train will convey you to Mendota Amtrak Station, and from there, a taxi picks you up to starved Rock State Park, spending about 1 hour 55mins.

If it is by bus, from Greyhound, Chicago, you will be conveyed to Oglesby from here; a taxi will pick you up to Starved Rock. The cost for this is around $47-$61 using 3hours 43mins on the journey.

Getting to Starved Rock by car, you will be taking a 1hour 42mins drive from Chicago to Starved Rock State Park, with fuel cost around $9 to $13.

Can you camp at starved rock

Yes, you can. Travellers from across the globe can visit the campground of this breath taking scenery. For as little as $25 per night, you can camp at the site. There are several amenities and rules with which you should familiarize yourself with to avoid breaking any rules. The site accommodates individuals with tents and those with RVs.

ESTA Application for Travelers 

If you plan to begin an adventure with your family members, you have nothing to worry about getting a visa to travel to Starved Rock for your family adventure. All you need is an esta form for america, which can be obtained online through the ESTA application portal. Esta (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) is for nationals under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Esta will grant you the privilege to travel to any part of the USA without a visa. 

If your application is vetted, you will be able to use it for two years. To get your Esta, fill the form online, submit all necessary documents to commence the process. The processing comes with a fee that must be paid along with the submission of your application. Mind you, all this must be done before taking off, at least within seventy-two hours. Through the esta website, you can check my esta is valid to know the status of your application if it has been approved for travel.

Best waterfalls at starved rock

Starved Rock has lots of waterfalls with natural crafting and aesthetics. With the 18 canyons formed by the streams, there are different waterfalls in each of these canyons. A nature lover will find them intriguing. Out of all the waterfalls, here are a few of them:

  1. Kaskaskia Falls: this is a peaceful waterfall; it furthers along the trail and passes through the Council Overhang. It has a height of about 20’. To have a view of the waterfall is free.
  2. LaSalle Canyon Falls: you can walk behind this fall. It is the most likely of the waterfalls to have water right into summer. It is at the end of LaSalle Canyon Trail, which is 2 miles away from the visitor centre. It has 25’ in height.
  3. St Louis Canyon Falls: this is one of the highest waterfalls in Starved Rock Park. It is about 80’ high and is located 1.5 miles from the visitor centre.
  4. French Canyon Falls: this is one of the closest waterfalls to the visitor centre; it’s just 0.4 miles away with 45’ height. 
  5. Wildcat Canyon Falls: this waterfall is naturally endearing, and it is in a dramatic canyon. It also has a height of 80’ and it is a mile away from the visitor centre.
  6. Ottawa Canyon Falls: it has a height of 45’ and 4 miles away from the visitor centre. During winter, it gets frozen. 
  7. Aurora Canyon Falls: due to its closeness to the visitor centre, 0.2 miles away, it is less visited. It has 10’ in height. 
  8. Tonty canyon falls: this is a dramatic canyon waterfall. It has two waterfalls and 1.9 miles away from the visitor centre. It has a height of 60’. 

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Red Note: 30 September 2022

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