Information on:

Makanda - Giant City State Park

235 Giant City Rd

With its breathtaking natural beauty and unlimited opportunities for outdoor recreation, a trip to Giant City State Park near Carbondale is sure to delight visitors of all ages. From camping and horseback riding to fishing and rappelling, it's an outdoor lover's paradise. Visitors will marvel at the many wilderness trails. Especially popular is a hike on Giant City Nature Trail, home of the "Giant City Streets" - huge bluffs of sandstone formed 12,000 years ago.

Nestled in the Shawnee National Forest, Giant City State Park was named for the unique impressions made by its massive sandstone structures and a landscape like none other, clothed in lush garments of fern, moss, large flowering mints, hundreds of species of wild flowers and more than 75 varieties of towering trees.

The Giant City Visitor Center provides interpretive displays on the geology, plants, animals and history of the park, and information about other southern Illinois attractions.


Linda Gregor

Sunday, Feb. 18, 2018
Great food! Good service. Lousy hospitality! My husband am I were looking forward to a nice dinner in a lovely, rustic lodge. Well, we almost made it. The food was outstanding. We arrived over an hour before closing. We ordered a nice bottle of wine and dinner. Everything came in a timely manner. We enjoyed our meal and the atmosphere, UNTIL, the staff decided it was closing time. They started vacuuming, stacking chairs, stripping tables, etc... This was 15 minutes before closing time! There was another table still sitting as well. I also had a lovely view of a manager sitting in his office counting money the entire time we were there. So much for enjoying the rest of our wine.

William Steele

Monday, April 2, 2018
Neat state park with several relatively short hiking trails. The stone formations are cool, but we did not feel they would be worth travelling more than an hour out of your way for. We did not stay in them - but the lodge and cabins looked very nice.

Shannon Chrostoski

Saturday, March 10, 2018
Beautiful and up on the history of the area before visiting. Indian Creek Trail and The Giant City Nature Trail have been two of my favorites so far. Take your time and enjoy the quiet. Park opens at 7:00. Best time to go in my opinion.


Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018
Beautiful state park, that includes a mini conservation center inside the visitor center. There's places for day visits, great for picnics or quick hikes. There's also camping if that's your thing. You can reserve a shelter for $25 a day for events or reunions. It's very well kept and clean. The tower was worth the climb. There is also a lodge, cabins, and a restaurant if you want the feel of the great outdoors without being too far from common comforts.

Kelly Paris

Sunday, Feb. 11, 2018
We came to eat at the restaurant on a snowy, cold afternoon. It was cozy, warm inside the restaurant. Food was more than delicious! Hone cooking fried chicken & all the fixin's too! Will be returning very soon.

Giant City State Park is not affiliated with AmericanTowns Media