The red LL Bell building of the Famous Makanda Boardwalk

The Perfect Romantic Vacation in Southern Illinois

When you think of a vacation getaway, it’s not surprising that Southern Illinois probably doesn’t ring a bell. In fact, unless you’ve ever traveled here before, you likely haven’t even heard of Makanda.

Truth is though, this part of Southern Illinois is quickly becoming more popular among vacationers, especially during the warmer months of the year. Nevertheless, regardless of the length of time, you are vacationing, you can rest assured Makanda, Illinois offers plenty of attractions to enjoy all year long. Gold and Yellow fall colors of Makanda

Cabins and Cottages Galore

Staying in a hotel most definitely comes with its perks, but nothing beats vacationing in a cabin or cottage. When you choose a vacation stay at Makanda Inn & Cottages, you will enjoy an eco-friendly, natural retreat that optimizes tranquility to the fullest.the green forest surrounds the Makanda Inn & Cottages

If you want to steer clear of a cottage or cabin, that’s perfectly fine because you can book a B & B Suite at the Makanda Inn. This lovely bed and breakfast has an assortment of suites to choose from, all of which come with high-quality bed linens, fluffy towels, and a unique experience.

What is so unique about the Makanda Inn & Cottages? All the buildings use strawbale construction. Yes, you read that right. The buildings are built out of bales of straw!

straw inside the wall a cutout in the blue plaster with a frame
Window of Truth show the straw inside the wall the framed glass can be removed so you can actually put your hand on the straw.

If you are not familiar with strawbale construction, you will be amazed at how energy efficient it is, which also translates into superior soundproofing. Not only does it provide excellent insulation it is also exceptionally fire retardant and contrary to what you might think it does not house pests. Some of our guests have stayed the night and not even realized the walls in their suite we made out of straw. You can read more about this on our about the Inn page under the heading what makes us Eco-Friendly. 

Staying in a cabin or cottage in Makanda is simple when you book your stay at Makanda Inn & Cottages. With three different cabins to choose from, you are sure to find one that meets all of your romantic vacationing needs.

From beautiful wooded settings to king-size beds in all of the cabins, each provides a unique atmosphere of coziness and charm. Guests can enjoy a leisurely morning, sipping the complimentary coffee while cooking breakfast in their kitchen/kitchenettes. A breakfast meal may also be available at the B & B Inn on a limited basis; we recommend you call ahead. You’ll be located right in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest and across the road from the Giant City State Park. You are also centrally located on the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail from this property.

What is there to do in Makanda?

One of the best reasons to come to Makanda is because it provides an environment that is perfect for relaxing and enjoying the beautiful scenery. And while taking time to relax is highly encouraged when staying at Makanda Inn & Cottages, you’ll also want to get out and about and enjoy all that the area has to offer.

You can start your day off with a tasty breakfast served at the Inn, followed then by heading out to the famous Makanda Boardwalk. This part of Makanda used to be a thriving produce junction, however, over the years, it has turned into a unique street full of boutique shops and an eatery. It is also known as the most hippie town in Illinois. For those who are wanting to shop for local souvenirs, the Makanda Boardwalk is a must-visit hot spot. 

The red LL Bell building of the Famous Makanda Boardwalk

Another great spot to go shopping that is nearby is Carbondale. It is here that you will find various grocery stores as well as a mall. If you come to Makanda during the latter part of the year — late November through Early December — you’ll be able to enjoy the area all decked out for the holiday season, while gift shopping. 

There are several lakes located near Makanda Inn & Cottages, including Little Grassy Lake as well as Cedar Lake.

When you visit  Little Grassy Lake, which is only a 15-minute drive from the Makanda Inn & Cottages, you’ll enjoy access to paddle board, pontoon boat and canoe rentals.

What about restaurants in Makanda?

Grabbing a tasty bite to eat is simple when you stay at Makanda Inn & Cottages. Cottage guests not having breakfast at the Inn do have options if they want to skip cooking their breakfast.

Two of the best places to grab a hearty breakfast is the Giant City Lodge a two-mile drive, closest to Makanda Inn & Cottages. The second Harbaugh’s Cafe is in nearby Carbondale. As far as lunch and dinner, you’ll have plenty of places to choose. 

For starters, you can head back over to the Lodge at Giant City State Park for lunch or dinner; they have southern home-cooked meals. For a more romantic and upscale eatery, you will want to reserve a table at the Peach Barn Cafe at Hedman’s Vineyards. 

Visit Makanda Today

Makanda is one of those vacation hot spots that you will never truly appreciate for all that it is until you experience it for yourself. Contact Makanda Inn & Cottages today to learn more about their various romantic vacation getaway offerings.