From taking the boat out at Heritage Harbor Marina to spotting bald eagles flying over the Illinois Waterway Visitor Center, there are plenty of places to explore and discover. Here are just a few:
Illinois Waterway Visitor Center – The Illinois River is central to life in Ottawa, and the nearby Starved Rock Lock and Dam provides a great opportunity to see how the river historically changed business and trade in the community. Tours are available, but you can also give yourself a self lesson reading the educational signs. In winter months, catch views of the American Eagle soaring overhead on air currents.
Reddick Mansion – 100 West Lafayette St. – Much of Ottawa’s history is centered in this home. Built by William Reddick, who served both as a sheriff and state senator, the building became Ottawa’s first public library upon his death. Tours are available, so be sure to schedule yours today.
Buffalo Range Shooting Park – Taking aim at a target, holding your breath and squeezing the trigger isn’t something you can practice every day. Schedule a visit to this female-owned outdoor shooting range to perfect your aim.
Skydive Chicago – If the shooting range didn’t do enough to get your adrenaline rushing, jumping out of a plane certainly will. From first-time jumpers to experienced sky divers, you’ll get your thrills here!
Fox Valley Off Road – Located just a few miles north of Heritage Harbor Ottawa, this ATV park has plenty of trails and beautiful countryside scenery you can enjoy all year long. No matter if you’re a first-time ATV rider or you have been riding the trails for years, you’ll find something at Fox Valley to pique your interest.
State parks – Starved Rock State Park is the largest and most well-known in the Ottawa area, but Buffalo Rock and Matthiessen parks are very close as well. All parks have hiking trails, beautiful natural landscapes and wonderful views of the rivers. You can spend a day in each park, and you’ll want to return frequently to witness the changing seasons.
Ottawa Historical and Scouting Heritage Museum – 1100 Canal Street – Ottawa is where the Boy Scouts of America started, and the city celebrates this history with an extensive collection of Boy Scouting displays. Some contain items more than 100 years old.
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