Located along the western edge of Illinois, where the waters of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers meet, is the town of Grafton. Founded in 1832 by James Mason, Grafton is the oldest city in Jersey County, IL.
At the center of the region’s Bald Eagle watching area, Grafton proudly calls itself “The Winter Home of The Bald Eagle.” Eagles begin arriving early December and can usually be spotted until March. The peak time to see eagles in Grafton is from mid-December to mid-February. By early March most have left for the north. The American White Pelican, one of the largest pelicans and the only white pelican in North America, arrive in the Grafton region beginning in March and depart in early April. The prime times to see huge flocks of these magnificent birds are from mid-March and mid-October on their return.
Main Street, lined with restaurants, wineries, antique and craft shops, makes Grafton a popular stopping place for bicyclists on the Sam Vadalabene Bike Trail. Pick your own apples, peaches or pumpkins July through October at Eckert’s Orchard just minutes from Grafton. Five miles west of Grafton is Pere Marquette State Park, which is Illinois’ largest and most popular state park.
Nearby attractions include a journey through history at Lewis & Clark State Heritage Site and Interpretive Center located in Hartford, IL or tour an operational lock & dam on the Mississippi River at National Great Rivers Museum at Melvin Price Lock and Dam near Alton, IL. Just minutes from Argosy Casino and Fast Eddies of Bon Aire.
Restaurants/ Wineries /Live Music
Shopping – Antiques/Gifts/Handmade Jewelry
Hiking Trails – Pere Marquette
Rock climbing and Repelling- Pere Marquette
Horseback Riding- Pere Marquette
Ice Skating – Loading Dock
Flea Markets – Loading Dock
Boat/Jet Ski Rentals – Grafton Harbor
River Boat Cruises – Grafton Harbor
Raging Rivers Water Park
Apple & Peach Picking-Eckerts Orchards
Haunted Tours – Alton