• Washington Square Park, Ottawa

Experience the Ottawa Gateway Along the Illinois River Road

Welcome to Ottawa! From the historic buildings to the specialty shops, Ottawa is as charming as they come! Ottawa overlooks the spot where the Fox River meets the Illinois, and we have a pleasant river walk that brings you right to the river’s edge!

Or relax on a shady bench in Washington Park, a pleasant town square featuring historic monuments, towering trees, a beautiful fountain dedicated to two famous visitors to town, Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas – even a fresh-popcorn stand!

Ottawa offers a pleasing mix of restaurants featuring everything from ethnic menus to seafood and steaks, from family dining to gourmet cuisine. Whether you grab a quick bite for lunch or linger over a romantic table-for-two, we’ve got something to suit every taste!

There are many outdoor things to do and see in Ottawa. Often referred to as the “Scenic Route to Starved Rock State Park,” Ottawa is just minutes from the legendary wooded cliffs, soaring river bluffs and impressive waterfalls that attract more than two million visitors a year. Whether hiking along the I&M Canal or fishing in the Illinois River, Ottawa is a “natural” delight.

Begin your journey with a stop at the Illinois River Road informational kiosk, located at the corner of LaSalle and Lafayette Streets near the Ottawa Visitors Center.

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