Cave-in-Rock State Park
Lee D.The Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Jan. 28, 2021

Nice option in southern Illinois

General: I was a bit apprehensive about this state park because it did not take reservations, so we made sure to arrive by 11 am but we had no reason to worry – compared to other Illinois campgrounds we visited on this trip, this one was almost empty on a Wednesday in mid-October. Steve, the host, was very friendly and checked us in. The rate of $20 for an electric site was reasonable; we put a tag on our site and set off to explore nearby Garden of the Gods for the rest of the day, secure that we had a place to rest our heads for the night! 

Sites/Facilities: The sites are set a decent amount of space apart and have an additional parking space for a second vehicle. A large picnic table and fire ring (although the windy conditions were not favorable for a fire) completed the site. Some are not completely level, so it was good to be able to select the best site. 

Bathhouse: The bath/shower house was clean, and the shower had nice hot water and good water pressure. The drainage wasn’t optimal, however, and much of the water ended up in the rest of the bathroom. The only other thing to note is that the generator for the bathhouse is VERY loud so if you are in a site close by (we were across the street and one up), you WILL hear it but thankfully, when not in use, it was quiet through most of the night. 

Activities/Amenities: There is a playground and picnic shelter, and the (not very deep) cave is cool to explore (a short walk from the campground). There are a dump station and dumpster. I had good cell service (Verizon/three bars) in this campground. 

Conclusion: Although this state park is right on the Ohio River, the campground is set apart from the river so you will not see the river from the campground but it is close enough to walk to the banks of the river when exploring the cave. Nice place to spend a night.

  • View of the Ohio River from the mouth of the cave
  • View from inside the cave
  • Site 24
  • Nice playground
  • Too bad this sign needs to be posted!
  • Picnic shelter would be nice for groups post-Covid!
  • A bit of a drainage problem in the women's bathroom
  • Showers were decent with good water pressure and lots of hot water
  • Another view of Site 24
  • Further inside the cave looking out toward the river
Month of VisitNovember