Giant City State Park
With its breathtaking natural beauty and unlimited opportunities for outdoor recreation, a trip to Giant City State Park near Carbondale is sure to delight visitors of all ages. From camping and horseback riding to fishing and rappelling, it's an outdoor lover's paradise. Visitors will marvel at the many wilderness trails. Especially popular is a hike on Giant City Nature Trail, home of the "Giant City Streets" - huge bluffs of sandstone formed 12,000 years ago.
Nestled in the Shawnee National Forest, Giant City State Park was named for the unique impressions made by its massive sandstone structures and a landscape like none other, clothed in lush garments of fern, moss, large flowering mints, hundreds of species of wild flowers and more than 75 varieties of towering trees.
The Giant City Visitor Center provides interpretive displays on the geology, plants, animals and history of the park, and information about other southern Illinois attractions.
Beautiful state park, that includes a mini conservation center inside the visitor center. There's places for day visits, great for picnics or quick hikes. There's also camping if that's your thing. You can reserve a shelter for $25 a day for events or reunions. It's very well kept and clean. The tower was worth the climb. There is also a lodge, cabins, and a restaurant if you want the feel of the great outdoors without being too far from common comforts.
We came hear to eat at the lodge but the park is really a great park as well. The lodge was fantastic and so was the park, lots of trails and beautiful scenery even when the leaves are off the trees. We were able to climb the water tower and that gave us some fantastic views of the country side. You can get some great panorama shots from the tower.
I have heard Giant City mentioned very often for awhile now and decided to make a trip down. It was early November and the leaves were perfect. All of the trails were pretty simple and our dog had a blast. There are quite a few trials to choose from but the ones we did were all under 3 miles, and the smallest being 0.3miles. Go early and hike a couple good trails!
Giant City is an awesome state park. Great hiking trails and an abundance of wildlife. Check out the visitor's center for info and trail maps. After hiking, go to the Giant City Lodge. They have great food. The fried chicken dinner is the best. Will definitely be making this a go-to destination more often.
The park is beautiful. We hiked all the trails and enjoyed the unique experience each one provided. We stayed in the bluff cabin because it offered a fireplace. This was a huge waste of money the fireplace is only lightbulbs and NO heat at all. Disappointing but the room was spacious and clean. The lodge offered food food at affordable prices. We highly recommend this for hikers of any level.