Trip Planner:   USA  /  Illinois  /  Ottawa  /  Buffalo Rock State Park

Buffalo Rock State Park, Ottawa

#4 of 10 in Things to do in Ottawa
State Park · Nature / Park
Buffalo Rock State Park & Effigy Tumuli is an Illinois state park on in LaSalle County, Illinois, United States. The park is located in LaSalle County next to Starved Rock State Park, and was once used as a "blind canyon" for Indians to capture buffalo. Effigy Tumuli consists of five earth art animal sculptures native to the Illinois River was constructed as a tribute to Native American tradition. The park is located 5mi east of Utica, Illinois (Starved Rock State Park), and approximately 85mi southwest of Chicago, Illinois. Now, this sandstone bluff carved by the Illinois River during the Pleistocene epoch, serves as a State Park for local residents and tourists.
The area of Buffalo Rock was the home of the Illinois Indians when Louis Jolliet, the French explorer, and the Jesuit missionary priest Father Jacques Marquette made their trip up the Illinois River in 1673. Later, the Illinois Tribe was virtually annihilated in protracted warfare with the aggressive Iroquois.
Buffalo Rock State Park served as an early military, trading, and missionary post for the French. During the winter of 1682-1683, LaSalle and Tonty built Fort St. Louis on Starved Rock, and gathered 4,000 Indian warriors at Buffalo Rock to form a confederation against the Iroquois. The Miami, one of the tribes in the confederation, built their own fort on Buffalo Rock.
Plan to visit Buffalo Rock State Park during your Ottawa vacation using our convenient Ottawa trip itinerary planner.
Create an itinerary including Buffalo Rock State Park
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors

Buffalo Rock State Park reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
108 reviews
  • We visited Buffalo Rock State Park for a hike with our dog. It was nice to get away from the crowds at Starved Rock. There are two bison and a calf in an enclosure. A hiking trail leads to some...  more »
  • Close to Starved Rock, but not as crowded. Benches along easy trails. Nice overlooks of the river. Picnic area with grills. Clean washrooms. 2 buffaloes in a pasture!
  • Great time with the family. Plenty of picnic tables, grills, pavilion with a fire place. Playground for kids. Very quiet. Was the perfect 4th of July Park to spend with my family. Glory be to God.😇

Plan your trip to Ottawa

  • Get a personalized trip
    A complete day by day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.