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Deriving the name Nauvoo from a Hebrew word meaning, “beautiful place,” this little West Central Illinois gem truly lives up to its name. The park is located in Nauvoo, one of Illinois’ largest cities. Nearby cities include the deeply historic Carthage and rural Hamilton. Have fun exploring nearby museums, historical sites, and more, without having to drive very far, as each town is under a half-hour drive from the park.
Nauvoo campers can benefit from boating, hiking, fishing, and family picnicking all within the lovely park perimeters. With the park featuring the sparkling 13-acre Horton Lake, it's only fitting that the lake brims with a variety of aquatic vertebrates such as rainbow trout, channel catfish, and largemouth bass. Pull up a fishing rod on the banks of the waters and relax to the warm scent of pine forest around you and colorful songbirds' melodic chirping flying high above you. Immersed in nature, surrounded by rich history, and filled with exciting wildlife, this is one vacation getaway you simply won’t want to miss.
Graduation parties, family reunions, anniversaries, fun getaways: whatever event you're planning, Nauvoo State Park has got you covered, offering two picnic and playground areas near a ball diamond. There’s something for everyone in a well-kept environment. If you’re looking to picnic for a while, then cozy up to the idea of stoves, electricity, tables, and modern toilet facilities all at hand for the perfect family get-together. With any inconvenience now out of the way, forget about trekking your little one to a faraway bathroom or eating cold hot dogs and focus on making some family memories.
From the half-mile-long interactive Trail of Hope to the one-and-a-half-mile, lushly forested Locust Lane Nature Trail, you can have fun hiking or trail running in authentic Illinois style. Along the Trail of Hope, you can bring your furry friends on a leash and dive into the history behind the Nauvoo State Park with interactive plaques from the early 1800s. While strolling along the looped Locust Lane Nature Trail, bring your camera for some breathtaking views of Horton Lake. Go even further adventuring with a short unnamed trail leading you to Gilligan’s Island on Horton Lake. Whatever you decide, you really can’t go wrong!
Why would Nauvoo State Park campers simply walk around the lake if there was a chance to go boating and relax on it? You can put this question to rest when launching off the park’s primitive boat launch for a full day out on the lake. Spanning 13 acres, the man-made lake is a relaxing setting to escape city life and reconnect with nature. So kick off your shoes for a while and join other lake loungers camping at Nauvoo State Park enjoying life in the great outdoors.
While camping with an RV at Nauvoo State Park, you can look forward to full electricity hookups and lake views at half of the park's 150 campsites. Sprinkled in a leaf-like pattern near Horton Lake, sites offer full privacy and shade from the sun. Consider yourself at home here, as the park allows pets, as long as they're leashed. Amenities nearby include picnicking facilities, hot showers, playgrounds, a dump station, a church, and even a boat ramp.
You’ll have plenty of space to spread out your yoga mat and rise with the morning sun, as the back-in and pull-through campsites extend up to 68 feet. Or, take the luxurious option to fall asleep in your RV rental with a cozy blanket covering your toes, a good book in your hand, and nothing but free time to de-stress and refocus.
Discover the Museum at Nauvoo State Park, located less than a mile away from your campsite. Featured inside a surprisingly versatile building that went from being built by Mormons seeking religious freedom in the 1840s and then becoming home to the Rheinberger family, the museum holds the only Nauvoo wine cellar open to the public. Or, come on over to the annual Nauvoo Grape Festival, a wonderful local tradition filled with town history, exhibits, booths, car shows, carnival food, and more, all held over Labor Day weekend.
If you find yourself low on gas, fear no more! Nauvoo is home to gas stations that double as grocery stores and your convenient pizza-to-go supplier. If you’re in the mood for something a little more hearty, then grab some baked seafood, bottomless buffet, café food, or delectable sweets at one of the many restaurants in town. Once satisfied, take a trek to Historic Nauvoo, an educational site showcasing Illinois life in the1840s for religious pioneers. Watch craftsmen perform their trade in front of your eyes, or take a horse-drawn wagon through the village of restored homes.
Then, with mind and belly filled with all these good things, head back to Nauvoo State Park to catch a glimpse of the sun setting on a glassy lake. Become a part of the history of this location and view the same sights that pioneers saw after a hard day of work, right from your camp chair. Book an RV in Hancock County to experience all that Nauvoo has to offer.