National Great Rivers Museum
Visit the National Great Rivers Museum and make a connection with Mighty Mississippi River. From the early Native American tribes to the rise of the steamboat era, the Mississippi River has played an integral role in our ecosystem, our culture and our economy. Watch as the river changes course and character over time, growing into the mighty force it is today. Discover the diversity of the ecology found in the river, floodplain and bluffs. Learn about your own watershed and become aware of your personal water consumption. Test your skills in the pilothouse as you steer a barge through the locks and dam. The museum is located next to the Melvin Price Locks and Dam in Alton, IL.
Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge
The refuge was established in 1958 to protect and enhance habitat for migratory birds. Located between the Mississippi River and Illinois River, the refuge encompasses 9,360 acres of riverine and floodplain habitat scattered around the confluence of the rivers. The mosaic of wetlands, open water, bottomland forests and prairies provides habitat for numerous mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish and nearly three hundred bird species. The refuge is in Brussels, IL.
Pere Marquette State Park
A nature-lover's paradise, this 8,000-acre park in Jersey County is famous for the exceptional beauty of its fall colors and for its wintering bald eagle. In addition to enjoying the spectacular view of the Illinois River and its backwaters from several points atop the bluffs, visitors can take advantage of a variety of year-round recreational opportunities, including horseback riding, camping, hiking, fishing, hunting and boating. It is located near the city of Grafton, Illinois, at the confluence of the Mississippi River and the Illinois River.
TreeHouse Wildlife Center
TreeHouse Wildlife Center is a non-profit, established in 1979, dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of wildlife while promoting environmental awareness through education. TreeHouse provides a community service to people in southwestern Illinois who encounter injured or orphaned wildlife by providing a legal and professional means of assisting them and the wildlife involved. Visitors are welcome to come out for a self guided tour of the outdoor cages at the Dow facility. The center is open from 10am - 3pm daily. TreeHouse is located at 23956 Green Acres Rd. Dow, IL 62022, just north of Alton, IL.
The Nature Institute
The Nature Institute (TNI) is a non-profit land conservation and environmental education organization based in Godfrey, IL. TNI owns and manages over 450 acres of protected land, such as the Olin Nature Preserve, the Mississippi Sanctuary, the Kemp and Cora Hutchinson Bird Sanctuary, and the Heartland Prairie Project at Gordon Moore Park. These natural areas provide unique places for the public to experience the diversity of the Riverbend area with its hardwood forests, prairies and wetlands.