Whether it’s a delicious waffle cone or renting a pontoon boat, the staff at the Blue Heron General Store and Gift Shop will give you friendly service...
Relaxing Southern Illinois Vacations
Relaxing Southern Illinois Vacations
When you think about relaxing Southern Illinois vacations, one place comes to mind - Rend Lake. Drive down to this beautiful destination and you will find a natural wonder that is filled with fun and excitement. Bring the whole family for a wide range of activities that will fill your time. There is never a dull moment in this place. Whether you are a relaxed nature lover or an active wanderer, you can find many things to do in this area. Skiing, hunting, shopping, or just hanging out at the resort or at cozy cafes and restaurants are only some of the things to do here. The crisp air, clean waters, and wonderful surroundings are a fresh alternative that provides an escape from urban living, offering beauty and allure all year round.
Rend lake is the second-largest man-made lake in Illinois, covering almost 30 square miles of recreational waters. It is a reservoir built by the United States Army Corps of Engineers when it dammed the Big Muddy River that joins the Mississippi River south of Murphysboro. The dam and lake were authorized for construction in 1962, and the lake was filled completely in March 1973. Surrounded by 162 miles of shoreline, this lake offers no shortage of activities. From boating to fishing, swimming, and camping or simply relaxing, this place is the ideal setting for the perfect Southern Illinois holiday. Whether you want to bask in the sun by the shore or perform some watersports, you will surely enjoy the sights and features of this great Southern Illinois gem.
Things to Do in Rend Lake
The Rend Lake Complex is where Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park is found. The park is maintained by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, offering the perfect setting for activities such as camping, hiking, and picnicking. The west side of the peninsula has a horse stable, bridle trail, and sailboat basin. Furthermore, because of its quality dog field trial grounds, the park has been nationally recognized for regional and national championship trials.
Upon reaching Rend Lake, you should visit the Army Corps of Engineers Visitor Center for more information about the attractions found in the area and the various activities that can be done. Here, different resources are offered such as maps, presentations on the various areas of interest, and examples of wildlife and fish found in and around the lake. Admission to this center is free, as it serves as a starting point for all the other activities during your vacation.
If you have gone through the natural wonders of the surroundings and want to know more about the history of the place, there are different locations that you can visit. Museums such as the Historic Jail Museum, Sesser Opera House, and Franklin County Garage Museum are only some of the interesting places that you might visit.
The Historic Jail Museum also serves as the office of the Franklin County Tourism Bureau. It is where memorabilia of the gang era are found, housing historical items from the days of prohibition.
The Sesser Opera House is located on the west side of Rend Lake. Originally built in 1914, the building has been restored and is currently where community theater and musicals are held.
The Franklin County Garage Museum as built as a Ford franchise in 1910, housing antique cars such as a 1913 Model T "Huckster" owned by known gangster, Charlie Birger.
Where to Stay for your Southern Illinois Holiday
Rend Lake Resort is the best place to stay during your Southern Illinois Vacation. We are a top-rated resort offering the best amenities to complete your Rend Lake experience. Through our excellent facilities and helpful staff, you and your family can have the time of your lives as you enjoy the natural wonder that is Rend Lake. Get in touch with us today for quality accommodation and services.