Starved Rock State Park on the Illinois River bluff in La Salle County is one of Illinois’​ most beautiful destinations.  The park’s 18 canyons feature vertical walls of moss-covered stone formed by glacial meltwater that slice dramatically through tree-covered sandstone bluffs.  More than 13 miles of trails allow access to waterfalls, fed season runoff or natural springs, sandstone overhangs, and spectacular overlooks.  Lush vegetation supports abundant wildlife, while oak, cedar and pine grow on drier, sandy bluff tops.


Starved Rock State Park’s cultural history can be traced to 8000 B.C., with Native Americans tribes and European explorers documenting villages and encampments near the park along the banks of the Illinois River.  French explorers referred to it as Le Rocher (the Rock).

The Legend of Starved Rock

The current name of the park is derived from a Native American legend of a band of Illiniwek who died of starvation atop the 125-foot sandstone butte.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

The 1769 Massacre

Father Marquette and the Grand Village of the Kaskaskia

Learn more

To learn more about the nature and history of the park,

Starved Rock Lodge

The Visitors Center and parks are run by state employees and a massive team of volunteers.  The Starved Rock Lodge is a private concession that offers magnificent lodging, dining, and additional activities.  Learn more about Starved Rock Lodge