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Discover the unique identity of Southern Illinois, a region renowned for its riverside communities, historic estates, rolling plains and rich pasturage. Nicknamed Shawnee Forest Country for the vast tracts of forest and parkland that stretch downstate, Southern Illinois is studded with oak-hickory woods and hardy palms. Explore the area along a network of trails that showcase its natural scenery, heritage grandeur and regional wineries.
Southern Illinois is strewn with historic townships nestled within the lush greenery. Visit Cairo to experience the romance of a preserved 19th-century river town and learn about the region’s Civil War history. Metropolis is an intriguing little town that is heralded as the home of Superman. Visit the Super Museum to learn about the world-famous DC Comics superhero. At the village of Cave-in-Rock, you can discover the area’s enduring connection with the Ohio River and visit a vast limestone cave once used as a hideout by river pirates.
Pretty Makanda is the gateway to Giant City State Park, a stunning preserve peppered with enormous sandstone bluffs known as the Giant City Streets. More breathtaking natural scenery can be found in the Shawnee National Forest within the Ozark and Shawnee hills. Go on a zip-lining tour, hike scenic trails and ride on a bike or on horseback through towering canyons and dense forests. The park’s waterways are also ideal for canoeing, boating and fishing. Learn about awe-inspiring geology on a walking trail through the Garden of the Gods. Discover a unique landscape of floodplain forests in the Cache River Wetlands, which is renowned for its cypress swamps and diverse birdlife.
Southern Illinois has an extensive network of scenic trails and byways. Explore the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail to reach 12 wineries offering sumptuous tastings or check out the heritage riverside towns on the Ohio River Scenic Byway. Leave the car at home and travel from Harrisburg to Karnak on a bicycle or cross-country skis along the former railroad bed of Tunnel Hill State Trail.
Reach Southern Illinois by plane to Lawrenceville-Vincennes International Airport or catch the Amtrak service to Carbondale or St. Louis in neighboring Missouri. Stay overnight in heritage homestead accommodation or pitch a tent in one of the region’s stunning state parks.
*Savings based on all vacation package bookings with Flight + Hotel on Expedia.com from January through December 2017, as compared to price of the same components booked separately. Savings will vary based on origin/destination, length of trip, stay dates and selected travel supplier(s). Savings not available on all packages. For Free Flight or 100% Off Flight deals, package savings is greater than or equal to the current cost of one component, when both are priced separately.