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The Hardin County area is unprecedented for
its natural beauty and its rich and colorful history. Check out
our attractions, outdoor activities and daytrips. The countryside
is spectacular and the history of the area interesting and
This is a land of natural beauty unequaled anywhere in the State.
Nestled in the Shawnee National Forest, Hardin County’s scenic
roads guide you along the Ohio River and through rolling hills
with mysterious hollows, rocky bluffs, curious rock formations and
hardwood forests. View the scenic byway map.
Within this fascinating setting, visitors have their choice of
numerous recreation sites including: Pounds Hollow, Rim Rock
Trail, The River to River Trail, Garden of the Gods, High Knob
Scenic View, Old Stone Face, Glen O. Jones Lake and Conservation
Area, Tower Rock, Cave-In-Rock State park, Camp Cadiz and Illinois
Iron Furnace. Camping, hiking, biking, fishing and hunting
opportunities abound in this four seasons vacationland.
Hike our many trails, go for a swim, ride a horse, go fishing,
have a picnic in our numerous parks, explore the shops, enjoy a
vista, ride a bike, or watch a barge work its way against the
current. You can also ride the only remaining ferry in Illinois
operating on the Ohio River or take a scenic ride on the new river
taxi, the “Shawnee Queen”.
The rolling countryside contains shelter bluffs, caves, panoramic
scenic vistas, volcanic upthrusts and lovely natural areas hidden
between the hills and hollows. The Wisconsin glaciation stopped
short of these hills preserving their unique geological character.
Famed Tecumseh and his brother, The Shawnee Prophet, trod the
trails of the Southern Illinois forest. It was from these Native
American that the hills in Southern Illinois got their name, a
name shared with the Shawnee National Forest.
Do you enjoy a bit of history? Hardin County has it! Retrace the
steps of Davy Crockett. Learn of pirates and counterfeiters…and
even murder. See an old Illinois Iron furnace. Collect a bit of
fluorspar, our state mineral. From historic caves to stately
mansions, the historic river towns are full of surprises. Slow
your pace and enjoy life in Hardin County, Illinois.
Find things to do & see, click one of the links below.