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Buffalo Rock State Park, Ottawa

3.7
#3 of 9 in Things to do in Ottawa
Buffalo Rock State Park & Effigy Tumuli is an Illinois state park on in LaSalle County, Illinois, United States. The park is located in LaSalle County next to Starved Rock State Park, and was once used as a "blind canyon" for Indians to capture buffalo. Effigy Tumuli consists of five earth art animal sculptures native to the Illinois River was constructed as a tribute to Native American tradition. The park is located 5mi east of Utica, Illinois (Starved Rock State Park), and approximately 85mi southwest of Chicago, Illinois. Now, this sandstone bluff carved by the Illinois River during the Pleistocene epoch, serves as a State Park for local residents and tourists.HistoryThe area of Buffalo Rock was the home of the Illinois Indians when Louis Jolliet, the French explorer, and the Jesuit missionary priest Father Jacques Marquette made their trip up the Illinois River in 1673. Later, the Illinois Tribe was virtually annihilated in protracted warfare with the aggressive Iroquois.Buffalo Rock State Park served as an early military, trading, and missionary post for the French. During the winter of 1682-1683, LaSalle and Tonty built Fort St. Louis on Starved Rock, and gathered 4,000 Indian warriors at Buffalo Rock to form a confederation against the Iroquois. The Miami, one of the tribes in the confederation, built their own fort on Buffalo Rock.
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Buffalo Rock State Park Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3.5
92 reviews
Google
4.1
TripAdvisor
  • I love big rocks (and I cannot lie). My wife and son enjoy seeing large animals, so we had to stop at the lesser known Buffalo Rock State park on our way to the bigger and better known Starved Rock ac...  more »
  • Do not go on a holiday weekend. ..extremely crowed. If you are able to go during the week you will enjoy nice hiking trails and scenic views. Good restaurant, nice bathrooms and picnic area, but crowd...  more »
  • Buffalo Rock has always been a little gem right off the beaten path It is not as nearly big as Starved Rock or Mathieson park. It is a nice queit place to go and view the back water of the Illinois Ri...  more »
Google
  • Live buffalo. They stink when it's hot out. I live near so I enjoy going up to check on them. Great river views up there. Hopefully they open up some more of the trails soon. Lots closed recently but still plenty to see. Picnic tables and grills. Big open grassy area. Great for wandering around and sunsets.
  • Completely different than the other parks in the area. Not much hiking to do at all. A couple decent views. The main attraction is probably the real live buffalo which I didn’t expect.
  • Small but cute park, with scenic overlooks, a play area, and real Buffalo! Please note, the Buffalo could not seem to be less impressed about visitors ... but there’re cool!
  • The park needs some updating. Some of the walking paths need shoring up. It would be a giant shame if it's not fixed. They have live Buffalo in the park behind a fence which makes it great for all ages
  • The park is great but needs some work on the trails. The Buffalo the kids like. Yeah real Buffalo
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