Are you looking for a fun, scenic motorcycle ride through Illinois? The South Illinois Circuit motorcycle ride offers an unforgettable experience for first-timers and seasoned bikers alike.
Along the way, you’ll have the opportunity to see some incredible landmarks, visit local attractions, and experience the natural beauty of Southern Illinois.
Details About the Circuit
The South Illinois Circuit starts in Marion, IL, where you can easily find accommodations and necessary supplies for your trip. Although only 160 miles (a little over three hours long), this is one of the best motorcycle rides in Illinois—you’ll want to plan for at least an entire afternoon.
Here’s an overview of the route:
- Get on State Route 13, heading east until you reach Harrisburg, IL
- Head south on State Route 34
- Turn left onto Karbers Ridge Road/State Route 4
- Take a right onto State Route 1 down to State Route 146 at Loves Corner, IL
- Follow Rt. 146, heading west
- After you pass through Vienna, IL, head north on old U.S. Route 51 near Anna, IL
- Rt. 51 will take you right back to Marion
Things To See Along the South Illinois Loop
You’ll never have to worry about boredom on your South Illinois Circuit motorcycle ride. The open road offers an enjoyable experience no matter where you are, taking you through some of the most scenic parts of the state. Old Route 51 can have some rough spots; otherwise, you can take in the surrounding vistas from well-maintained roadways.
It may be tempting to stay in the saddle and stick to the circuit. However, a quick detour can take you to some must-see sights. These are two of our favorites:
Garden of the Gods
Garden of the Gods is a recreation area in the Shawnee National Forest not far from Karbers Ridge Road. The park features hiking trails, camping spots, picnic areas, wildlife, and breathtaking views. It’s a great place to relax, stretch your legs, and get postcard-worthy pics.
Giant City State Park
While heading north along Rt. 51, be sure to ride over to Giant City State Park. This state park showcases awe-inspiring rock formations, sandstone cliffs dating back thousands of years, and beautiful nature trails to lead you by all the main sights.
South Illinois Circuit Roadside Attractions
Sure, you can breeze through your South Illinois Circuit motorcycle ride in a few hours. But to get the full experience, you must slow down and leave time for roadside attractions. You won’t enjoy the journey without taking advantage of the destinations along the way.
We recommend visiting the Williamson County Historical Museum and Library while in Marion. The building has exhibits and documents to educate the public and preserve the rich history of Williamson County, IL. If you want a more outdoorsy activity, consider these popular tourist attractions:
- Cherrybark Oak in Vienna
- Mandala Gardens in Marion
- Rim Rock Recreational Area in Finlay
- Heron Pond—Little Black Slough Nature Preserve in Johnson County
- Dixon Springs State Park in Golconda
If you get hungry or thirsty on the road, you’ll have no trouble finding great places to put down the kickstand. You’ll also have various options depending on what your craving, such as:
- All-you-can-eat fish at E’Town River Restaurant in Elizabethtown
- Mexican food in Cobden
- Refreshing drinks at Oak Creek Vineyard in Anna
- Local wine tasting at Blue Sky Winery in the Makanda area
At Law Tigers, We Offer the Legal Protection You Need for the Road
The South Illinois Circuit motorcycle ride is a fun trip, but riding always comes with certain risks. At Law Tigers, our motorcycle attorneys can provide the legal protection you need in case of an accident. Call us at 1-888-863-7216 to schedule a free consultation anywhere in the U.S.