Mid-October is when fall colors peak for our region this year, per the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and you can have a front row seat to some of the best fall color shows.
Here is a listing of places to see the color changes throughout the state. Please view websites or call the places you plan to visit for their hours and regulations.
The Morton Arboretum features 1,700 acres, including 16 miles of hiking trails, that are home to more than 4,000 types of trees and offers a variety of exhibitions, events, activities and classes for all ages.
Chicago Botanic Garden features miles of trails that will take you through 27 gardens on 385 acres that is home to 2.5 million living plants.
Greene Valley Forest Preserve is home to more than 540 native plant species, 12 miles of marked trails and aged oak woodlands.
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve is named for several waterfalls on Sawmill Creek featuring over 2,500 acres of prairies, savannahs and oak-maple woodlands, including 11 miles of hiking trails, with more than 740 native plant species.
Pratt’s Wayne Woods Forest Preserve features over 12 miles of hiking trails through 3,400 acres of oak savannahs, wetlands and grasslands that are home to more than 1,000 native species of plants and animals.
Pere Marquette State Park was named by the Farmers Almanac as the 8th best place in the U.S. for viewing fall color and it’s no wonder with over 8,000 acres of lush forests, towering bluffs and 12 miles of hiking trails to see it all.
Shawnee National Forest boasts an astounding 265,000 acres of woodlands, hills and lakes with many beautiful fall features that can be accessed by foot, bike or car.
Matthiessen State Park is a lesser known state park located down the road from Starved Rock that features interesting rock formations with 5 miles of trails that take you through 1,700 acres of canyons, streams, prairies and forests.
Starved Rock State Park features 2,600 acres with 13 miles of wooded trails, steep sandstone canyons and stunning waterfalls.
For more places to view the beauty of the season and why leaves change color in the fall, visit Illinois Department of Natural Resources.