Cave-in-Rock Travel Guide

  • Cave-in-Rock
    by butterflykizzez04
  • Cave-in-Rock
    by butterflykizzez04
  • Cave-in-Rock
    by butterflykizzez04

Cave-in-Rock Things to Do

  • butterflykizzez04's Profile Photo

    by butterflykizzez04 Written May 28, 2014

    May 16th, Tony and I had a nice day trip.
    We drove up from Nashville, TN and took the Free Ferry across the Ohio River. It docks in a small riverside city called Cave-in-Rock, Illinois. As you unload from the ferry, you drive to the stop sign and make an immediate right. Go to the end of the street and make another right into the Park.

    Once in the park, there are a couple of large parking lots you can stop at and there is a really nice playground with a good old fashion Merry Go Round...when I saw this I had immediate memories of when I was a young girl with pig tails sitting on the merry go round wrapping my arms tight while the larger kids spun us around...if you let go, YES YOU WOULD FLY OFF..and that is what the larger kids was trying to make us do...lol !!!! and NO ONE STOPPED THEM...OMG..growing up in the late 60's...

    Then we drove around to the top of the knoll, made another right and it took us along a river road where we are driving on the bluffs. There are picnic tables and shelters with grills. Playgrounds and bathrooms with some great over looking areas..picnic tables with terrific views of the lazy Ohio River...

    Then we drove on down to another parking lot and parked our van near some stairs descending down to the waters edge. Here the stone steps lead between some bluffs and you are taken to a large opening or clearing near the waters front. If you go right you can walk along the coast line beside the large rock cliffs and enjoy..or if you go left you are led to a small wooden boardwalk, once off the boardwalk you are at the Large Cave opening.

    The cave itself is free, Well lit from the large opening of the front of the rocks and you can go inside. It is not that deep about 3000 feet in more or less..it is a huge open room in the back..some of the shadowed area are dark... a small flashlight would be helpful..if you look up..there is a natural skylight made by God...it is nice..
    Up top they have a small rock wall built around it and some metal grates over the opening..
    I really enjoyed the visit at this park. The actual walk is fairly easy with a few steps but mainly very easy access. The entire walk took us only about 30 to 35 minutes. I mean you can stay longer of course and enjoy a picnic or cookout..but we were there only for the walk and the cave. I would definitely go back again!!!
    I highly recommend this for anyone who enjoys these type of outings without a lot of hard hiking or walking..very easy and elderly and pet friendly..

    BEST of ALL....FREE and only about 2 hrs from Nashville, Easy day trip!!!

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Family Travel
    • National/State Park

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  • butterflykizzez04's Profile Photo

    by butterflykizzez04 Written May 25, 2014

    May 16, Tony and I went to Marion, Ky on Rt 90 to the Ohio River to catch a ride on the FREE Ferry boat ride across the Ohio River, YES, I said FREE....it holds about 12 vehicles and runs from 7am to 10pm daily.

    It goes from one side to the other, back and forth...FREE

    Tony and I got to FERRY boat about 830 am..we boarded the Ferry. The ride took 15 minutes to cross over. Once we got over there, we went to the Cave in the Rock State Park which is also FREE.

    If you want to have a nice little boat ride, this is the thing to do.
    We enjoyed it a lo

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Sailing and Boating
    • Family Travel

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  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Feb 26, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The major attraction at Cave-in-Rock State Park is a large natural cave, 55 feet wide, which has been carved by water into the limestone bluffs that border the Ohio River. Cave-in-Rock was known and used for thousands of years by American Indians. It was mapped in 1729 by the French explorer de Lery, who named it Caverne dans le Roc, which in English is Cave-in-Rock, the name that this natural landmark bears to this day.

    During the late 1700s and early 1800s, Cave-in-Rock gained notoriety. as a hideout for river pirates who preyed on Flatboats carrying farm produce from Kentucky, Ohio, and southern Indiana to New Orleans and other ports down river. Later in the 1800s, Cave-in-Rock was tamed by settlers who formed the river town of Cave-in-Rock, Illinois near the cave.

    The state of Illinois acquired the cave and surrounding property beginning in 1929 and formed the Cave-in-Rock State Park.

    At the time of our visit, the entrance to the cave was completely submerged in river water due to recent winter storms. We enjoyed this unusual opportunity to see the river at flood stage, although we could not enter the cave.

    Related to:
    • Adventure Travel
    • Hiking and Walking

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Cave-in-Rock Restaurants

  • by Ann50 Written Oct 11, 2004

    THIS RESTAURANT IS A GREAT IDEA OF 2 LOCAL SISTERS. THEY SERVE GREAT HOME COOKING WITH ""FREEBIES"" ADDED TO EVERY MEAL!!
    THIS IS A NICE CLEAN FAMILY TYPE RESTAURANT WITH THE GREATEST TASTING FOOD IN THE WHOLE AREA.
    A ""MUST"" IF YOU ARE IN THE AREA.

    Favorite Dish: FRIED CATFISH DINNERS!!

    THEY SERVE A VARIETY OF FOOD, WITH DAILY SPECIALS ADDED.
    AND ALWAYS FREEBIES THEY HAND SERVE YOU.

    GREAT HOME COOKED MEALS

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Cave-in-Rock Transportation

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo

    by Stephen-KarenConn Updated Feb 26, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cave-in-Rock Ferry is one of the few remaining ferries across the Ohio River. It has its northern terminus at Cave-in-Rock, Illinois, connecting it with Kentucky on the south side of the. The ferry links Illinois Route 1 and Kentucky Route 91. On the Kentucky side of the ferry can be found a settlement of old order Amish, who shun automobiles, electricity and other modern conveniences because of their religious convictions.

    The Cave-in-Rock Ferry closes temporarily once or twice a year because of high water. On our visit to Cave-in-Rock, the Ohio River was at flood stage so the ferry was closed. Not only was the water unusuallly rough and the current swift but the Kentucky ramp to the ferry was under water.

    The ferry is operated as a free service by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, by agreement with the Illinois Department of Transportation. It inormally operates seven days a week, from 6:00 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.

    Cave-in-Rock Ferry, Closed for High Water Cave-in-Rock Ferry, Closed for High Water
    Related to:
    • Road Trip

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