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Allerton Park & Retreat Center, Monticello

Categories: Art Galleries, Historic Sites, Museums, Nature & Parks, Tourist Spots, Outdoor Activities
Inspirock Rating:
4.6/5 based on 90+ reviews on the web
Named one of the 7 Wonders of Illinois by the Illinois Bureau of Tourism, Allerton offers 1,500 acres of beautiful, outdoor surroundings. This picturesque setting includes:

Extensive formal gardens

More than 100 outdoor sculptures and garden ornaments

Natural areas including the Sangamon River, floodplains, lowland and upland forests, a meadow and a 30-acre demonstration prairie

14 miles of interpretive hiking trails

A century-old, Georgian-style mansion with reflecting pond
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  • If you are not from around the area, coming across this park in the middle of farm country is quite a treat! I have attended 2 family wedding here so far, beautiful gardens, art is truly ma...  read more »
  • My family has been coming here for years! During most of my sons young life his summers were spent here. Great for biking and nature walks! Great for just spending the day on a picnic blanket in any s...  read more »
  • Lush and beautiful park that was donated to the University of Illinois by the affluent Allerton family. A real treat to visit near Monticello. Don't miss visiting the mansion or the foo dog garden. Am...  read more »
  • I LOVE old mansions and I especially loved this one. Even though visitors are not allowed inside unless you have a special occasion, it was still cool to see the outside of it. The amount of acreage around it is totally awesome too! They keep that place upright and clean for visitors to come and hike around to look at all the flowers and statues. Very good!
  • Who would have thought there would be a giant estate in the middle of the ocean of corn and soy. This place is an amazing retreat from the common scenery that is inevitable in this fertile land. Want to see Turkeys 40 feet in the tree above you? You may have that chance, just as I did. I didn't know those things roosted in the trees at night, and boy do they create a lot of noise when crashing around up there. Oh yea, the sculptures and stuff are pretty nice as well.
  • Great public park, fantastic place to visit or stay the night any season of the year. They usually have all sorts of events at great prices. Highly recommended.
  • This will be the first review that I have written, but if I did not mention the awesome experience my children and I had today with a volunteer named Nancy I would regret it. We were at the park for about 45 minutes and had just left the 'sunken garden', which I loved as a child as did my children, when we left towards the mansion. When we approached the water, Nancy approached us, introduced herself, and began to show my children and I the fish in the water, spotted turtles, bullfrogs and more. She also taught the kids the importance, in a warm way, of respecting the life in the water and told them that, because no one had scared the fish, they came closer to shore for us to see. She then invited us on a hike through the park for probably an hour-and-a-half, filling the ENTIRE trip with great facts about the park itself: Showing the kids tracks, budding flowers and plants, marks on trees and what they signify, describing why the grass looks as if it had been "combed down" (the flooding) and so much more. It was truly an incredible experience, very educational, and we are very grateful for her time that she sacrificed to spend with us. My daughter wanted me to say: "You were great!" Thank you for the experience, we will certainly be back, Nancy.
  • The gardens are beautiful and slightly kooky. The place is full of history. I'm excited to go back for one of their concerts.
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