We did our first (family of 5) camping trip at Thomas Woods. We were at site 4 which is electric hookup and it was a huge area! The kids had so much space to run around and explore. They loved the well pump. We explored the campground both tent and rv. Both areas were well spaced out with enough privacy. There was another 3 groups there but didn’t noticed everyone was quiet. We also went on walks within the conservation, the trails were very easy and was a nice walk. We will definitely be going back to Thomas Woods
This park has a fair amount of trees throughout which gives a greater sense of privacy than most state parks. As usual, the facilities were well maintained and the park was clean. The beach was great for morning walks but that draw makes it seem that this park is probably packed in the summer. Location of hiking trails from campsite isn't super clear but head south for the longest trails. If it's been raining a lot I'd be wary as many of the sites were completely underwater when we went. It's a great place to take your dog with you! (Beware if they have long hair though, the pine trees meant I had to cut sap out of my dog's hair in several places.)
This campground is in a populated area but the nature preserve is big. We rarely saw traffic once here. A train goes by a couple times but it was always during the day.
It’s pricey if you are from out of the county. We were hoping to camp at the primitive sites but they are walk-in only. Our teardrop wasn’t allowed. We settled at site 37 and enjoyed our stay. There are vault toilets but the large number of big RVs meant they were not used often leaving them almost like our private restrooms. Each site has water and electric. Trees are around the outside with few on the inside sites. All the sites have paved pads.
The highlight of our experience is the hiking. There are miles of trails. On one hike we were on paved, sifted gravel, grass and single trek trails. There are a lot of loops giving you options. When we left we still hadn’t hiked all of them.
If the price was more reasonable we would certainly be back. If you need the water/electric then this is a great choice.
As someone who normally camps in state parks with only electricity hookups, this site was a welcome treat.
Rig: 2020 Micro Minnie 1700BH + Ford F-250
Campers: 2 parents, 3 boys ranging from 7 years old to 2 years old
Campsite Pros: Water + 50amp hookups. Wide, open spaces for kids to ride bikes and explore wildflowers. Duck viewing. Quiet. Almost 100 improved sites. Full bars on Verizon. Amazing sunsets. Sites seem to be mostly level.
Cons: Walkup only - no reservations taken. $35 a night is a bit steep. AT&T signal is spotty at times. Water hookup is far behind camping pad - bring extensions!
The park is clean, lots of shade, host on site and very well maintained. The almost 100 sites are all gravel with electric and water for a great price. Reservations can be made thru Real Racine but half of the sites are available for walkins. There is a shooting range close and RR to the west and Mitchell Airport to the north but they aren't bad.
The sites are large and nice. There are some sites that aren't very level so you do need to check that out if you're in a larger rv. We had the beach mostly to ourselves. We camped from Monday to Thursday after school had started back. We will be returning to this campground. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay there. The only down side we found was the limited shower and toilet facilities for such a large campground. We didn't have any trouble because of the time we were camping but it would be a problem if the campground was pretty full.
Went on our maiden voyage with a new trailer and loved this place. Flat sites, some shade in the center sections. Outer sites backed to woods for most sites. The campground takes reservations 7 days out or drive up. We saw a lot of bigger rigs but so much space between sites it didn't feel like we were crowded. Even the Saturday night it was full still felt quiet and peaceful. Bathrooms were clean. About a mile hike to Lake Michigan but easy flat route-goes along community park thru a small neighborhood. Amazing view! Racine is only a 15 min drive away. No camp store or office. Camp Hosts helpful. Stores nearby. Great place to go for space, flat sites and trees.
I enjoy Illinois beach state park for a quick getaway. It’s a great spot to cook out and have a beer. However it is generally loud, with no vegetation between you and your neighbor. It’s not an ideal spot to connect with nature. The beach is pretty but it’s more interesting to look at the derelict old buildings and nearby out of use nuclear power plant.
This campground is very well maintained with all the amenities you could need: a small camping store, communal kitchen, firepits, and clean bathrooms. Check out the office for fun seasonal events like group hikes and geocaching contests.
Located in the Norwest suburb of Palatine, this campground is super accessible from Chicago and a fun getaway for suburban camping. Grocery stores and modern conveniences are minutes away. From the campground you have access to the entire Deer Park preserve and it's paved cycling and walking trails.
Cook County residents get a nice discount, as do veterans. Rates go up on the weekends. A one week limit for all stays unless you get approval from higher-ups.
RV spots are concrete, flat, and easy to get into.
Overall, a very clean and well-loved sem-urban camping experience.
We had a wooded site in the Sunset campground, mid-week.
The sites are rustic but nicely groomed with a tree line between most campsites, although almost none of the spots had occupants. The camp hosts were very nice and very communicative about all the happenings. Picnic table and fire pit included. Long enough drive in for RVs. But enough grass for tenting. Not many trees available for clothes lines.
Unfortunately, we might have had bad timing. The beach was closed due to high levels of bacteria. The pit toilets closest to us were also closed due to a bee hive being found so we ended up driving to the flush toilets if there was any urgency but could walk if you wanted. We also picked a spot by the water fountain. The water was yellow from iron. It had just stormed so the bugs were bad and everything was wet. So mostly a series of unfortunate events but we still enjoyed our time.
Because this is a prairie, there is so much to look at! The hiking trails are great through prairie and woods. The sunrise over the prairie and the sunset colors of the sky were great.
There are a ton of activities here to include two bouncy pillows, three play grounds, a pool, water slides, a kids water activity area, beach, water obstacle course, inflatable slide, RC car track, laser tag, mini golf, giant chess, and I'm sure I'm missing something. Great place for families. Don't allow Saturday checkout.
A good place to camp . Price is very reasonable and the people are great . Easy to get in and out . Lots are nice and well kept . Close to everything you need. Not a lot to do at this location
Camped here the past few years for my son’s birthday. Last year we heard out their fall package and got 3 weekends for a very much discounted price. Loved it so much we got it again this year! We will again spend most of September here! So many activities for the kids and adults! Yes it’s pricey, but you know that going into your reservation. It’s not like you have to pay extra for the wristbands at every other campground. They’re already included. The package we have includes 2 Halloween weekends. We have been to other campgrounds for Halloween, including 2 last year. We gave up standing reservations we’ve had for about 10 years now to spend Halloween at jellystone only.
This campground was easy peasy and had an incredible view of the lake. We were right there on the lake. We went in September so I'm not sure how it would be in the summer since there is little to no cover.
There was nice hiking and we were able to get out into the woods for a while. My friend and I were surprised that such a nice place is so close to Chicago. There is a dock and the campground had good access to water, sink, and a nice bathroom. Lots of families were there when we went. Overall would recommend.
I love everything about this park except the beach, so it didn’t get a 5 star. We stayed at site 98- just barely big enough to fit our travel trailer in and right next to the showers and bathrooms. Not a great location, but fine. Took a walk around and found plenty of other large, private shaded electric sites. If we came here again I would go for a site away from the bathroom. The tent sites looks fantastic- large and private. Plenty of hiking trails here, a decent playground, and tons of large fields to picnic in. Park has a Facebook page where they post activities. Friday night we saw a presentation on the cranes of Wisconsin, and Saturday morning we did a parkwide scavenger hunt. All fun for the family. We would definitely camp here again. The beach is across the very busy road, and has about 10 ft of sand before the road. Fine for a dip, but not relaxing. Very crowded. Other beaches are nearby but not free. Town of Lake Geneva is very cute in an upscale tourist way. Our kid found the museum a lot of fun.
The park itself is really nice with unique areas to explore. The sites are nice with good privacy and the bathrooms and showers are clean. What we did not like was the rangers who seemed to never leave us alone. We definitely felt targeted since we were a small group of 20 something's. We were very quiet, went to bed early and didnt cause any issues besides at one point having one too many vehicles on the site when we were unloading kayaks. We apologized to the ranger but told them we were already going to move to the over flow lot. From then on we were visited by the ranger every night coming into our site to see what we were doing. Very annoying but overall a nice place to camp.
Electric site 7/5-7/7. Campground gets quiet at night. So many campground hosts around I don’t think they would let it be loud past quiet hours. First night the concession closed early so weren’t able to get firewood and had to go to the closest gas station. We could not figure out the problem but I’ve never had such a hard time keeping a fire lit with the wood from the concessions and gas station. Did some fishing, just caught some bluegill. We walked around a lot and did some kayaking. Shower houses were pretty gross in tent loops. We still had a great weekend.
We go at least once a year to see the Christmas lights. A great little after work trip on a Friday to cure the kiddos cabin fever a bit.
The following review was done by my thirteen year old daughter. I agree with the shower problems and add that it was our final cold showers in disgusting conditions that lead us to write the review.
“If I could give negative stars❌ then trust me I would. Normally I consider myself a good sport and can sit through a lot of things✌🏼 but not the showers here😡, they look like they haven’t been cleaned or cared for in months🤮 and often have no toilet paper in the bathroom stalls. When I took a shower I found a small frog🐸 in it and I wish I was joking about that. There were dead mosquitoes on the walls💀, dead moths on the floors, piles of hair on the floors🤢, and dirt in every crack. But they have a nice Rockwall🧗🏽♂️.”
Other than the shower issues, the campsite🏕 was fine. It was easy to level, they give you free firewood with your stay, the staff is kind😇 at checkin and during rock wall activities. The location🗺 is the main draw, as we wanted to be close enough to visit Chicago and suburbs.🙂
I've camped here in the cabin option, which was fine and relatively quiet a few years ago, but wanted to find a place more secluded to do dispersed camping and saw this listed on thedyrt.com under dispersed camping. I called to verify and they do NOT allow any dispersed camping unless if you have a group of 40 or more people for boy scouts/girl scouts.
Small campgrounds in a small country park. There are a few camp sites most of which are very open and very little seclusion. A few nice shorter hiking loops that I believe can be used as horse trails as well. The trails are wood chipped covered and very easy. A few little ponds and a nice little surprise of old abandoned farm equipment. The best thing is probably the small man made pond. I believe it’s stocked with fish and offers a very family friendly swimming area. There’s a nice little concessions stand, a little sand area, and a small pier to jump off of. Also there are showers and toilets in the same building as the concessions stand. In short I wouldn’t go out of my way to come here, but if you were just looking to get away last minute or traveling through and need a place to stay it would definitely be an option. Especially if you had small children who could use a day swimming.