Indiana Dunes State Park Travel Guide
Things to Do
Things to Do
Wetlands and Blowouts
The lake is visible even before you...
Sand trails abound through out
Trail #10 - The Nature Preserve
Trail #10 Traverse the park from end to end on the 5.5 mile (rt) walk. Head out on the beach and come back through the upland forest, or reverse the walk
Trail #9 - Walk the dunes
Trail #9 Walk up into the dunes and see forest covered sand, trees eaten by sand and blowouts where nature has removed large sections of dunes to start over again. This is a moderate 3.75 mile (rt) trail. Remember that walking on sand can be tiring.
Trail #8 - Top of the Dunes (all 3)
Trail #8 This 1.5 mile trail is the most rugged in the park. You'll climb all three of the tall dunes before you are done and have walked nearly 4 miles with all the back sliding that will occur as you go up each dune. You'll need to get back to your car or campsite...
Trail #7 - Nature Ctr to the beach
Trail #7 This is a connecting trail from the beach to the Nature Center. It takes you past and around the tall dunes, but not up. It's 1.1 mile length does not include a return to where you started.
Trail #2 - easiet, wetlands and woods at the dunes
Trail #2 This is the easist trail in the park. The 3 easy miles passes through a wetland forest (wetter in the spring, dry in the summer & fall) and brings you to trail #10 on the north side of the marsh. You'll have 1 to 2 miles of trail #10 to get back to the nature...
Trail #3 - Stroll in the woods.
Trail #3 is a pleasant stroll through the wooded dunes on the park's west side. It runs 3/4rd of a mile from the alternate beach parking lot to the entrance. In the spring this can be a very wet area in some spots. Much of it is across dunes and dry.
The park has several trails of interest: Trail #2 This is the easist trail in the park. Trail #3 Trail 3 is a pleasant stroll through the wooded dunes on the park's west side. Trail #4 This is a connecting trail from the beach to the Campground. Trail #7 This is a...
Visit Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
Indiana Dunes State Park and Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore are often confused. In the listings here in VT, 7 out of 20 tips (including this one) are things in the National Lakeshore. The State Park includes 3000 acres of nearly pristine dunes, dune ridges and open...
Climb a beach dune
If you've never climbed a sand pile before, take the time and give it a try. The best part is that you'll have to come down when you're done. S o o o o o ---- when you become tired, just turn around and let gravity help.Better yet, when you're part way up, stop, sit down and...
Beachouse cafeteria: Beachhouse cafeteria
During the summer months a cafeteria in the beachhouse sells hot dogs and other snacks. For more substancial fare, there are a few restaurants and diners along US 12. The town of Chesterton (a few miles south on Highway 49) features numerous restaurants.
Written Sep 15, 2002
Outdoor groups have been a tradition around here since the 1920's. One of the earliest was the Prairie Club of Chicago. Starting as a hiking group that would take the South Shore (railroad) out from Chicago to the Tremont Station, they would spend the day hiking the dunes. Soon they had cottages along the front of the dunes so they could spend the weekend. Then a club house. Their efforts to preserve the dunes paid off with the creation of Indiana Dunes State Park. Their clubhouse and cottages used to dot the beach were crowds now swim near the bathhouse.
Their efforts are remembered in a memorial fountain located in front of the Nature Center. It has a spicket shaped like a snake.
Written Dec 8, 2006
- Related to:
- Historical Travel
- Jungle and Rain Forest
When we were there we were...
When we were there we were attacked by black flies all the time... I had never had contact with those enoying bugs before, so I don´t know why they are exactly here and at what time of year. Maybe it was just because there was a thunderstorm coming up?!
Written Aug 25, 2002
Chelberg Farm and Beilly homestead
IN the far corner of the National Lakeshore, away from beaches and dunes, sits an exhibit which preserves the old buildings which once housed the immigrant Chelberg family. The Swedish immigrants arrived in the late 1800s and set up a farming community on this midwest soil....
See a 'Blowout' in the Dunes
Take the long hike on trail #10. It follows the beach front from one end of the park to the other. Along the way, you'll have a chance to see a 'blowout'. This is a natural phenomenon, where the wind gets under the roots of the dune grass and/or trees and begins to cut into...
Lake Michigan offers an easy way to get around the midwest, until the wind picks up and the storms blow in. Literally, the storms blow in with high winds and pounding waves. Standing on the shore, watching the waves crash can be an exilerating experience. Too many times,...
The historic bathhouse
While the bathhouse tends to be right there, 'in your face', it is often overlooked, because it's right there. Built in the 1930's, it retains some of the aura of when evening dinner and dances were the why to 'woo' your girl. The upstairs once housed a wonderful restaurant...
Ly-co-ki-we Trail is the only horse trail. The trail is open from mid- March to mid- December. There is no horse rental concession.
Myriad of Activities
Camping, biking, hiking, beach, birding, swimming, pinicking, sunset watching, beachcombing, Nature Center programs and activities, and other activities offer something for all ages and abilities. And on a clear day, you can see the Chicago skyline from the lakeshore.
Most days, you can see across the lake and find the Chicago skyline. Well, maybe 60% of the time. Which means, that you might not be there on a day when it's visible. Chicago is 25-30 miles across the lake, but it is very visible when conditions are right. It's much easier...
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
This area of about 15,000 acres includes about 25 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline. Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is separate from the small state park, but, like the park, the dunes are the main attraction. The beaches are also popular, mostly with Indiana residents. The...
Explore Deeper into Indiana Dunes State Park