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Peoria, IL to Starved Rock, IL (2-day, 1-night)

What do you get when you mix one part history and one part scenery with some great food, music, relaxation, and adventure? You get a wonderful overnight getaway on the Spirit of Peoria riverboat!

Step back in time aboard the Midwest’s most unique and historic riverboat as it travels the Illinois River valley between Peoria and Starved Rock State Park. The Spirit of Peoria is a full-blown replica of the nineteenth century riverboats that inhabited the nation’s waterways. Decorated in the “wedding cake” style, the Spirit mirrors a Mark Twain era riverboat, complete with an enormous 21-foot diameter paddle wheel, which believe it or not, is the only source of propulsion!

Starved Rock Lodge Excursions prove the saying that “Getting there is half the fun.” Embark on a journey north from Peoria to Starved Rock State Park in Utica, Illinois. This excursion features two days of cruising along with an overnight at the historic Starved Rock Lodge. Built by the Civilian Conservation Corps, the lodge offers rustic charm with modern conveniences.

As the Spirit of Peoria gets underway, at the leisurely pace of 7mph, the whistling notes of the calliope fill the air and drift through the valley. Using a delightful mix of riverlore and historical facts, the history of the river comes alive through stories and songs from the riverboat’s very own riverlorian.

After a scenic day on the Illinois River, arrive at Starved Rock Landing and explore some of the 18 canyons formed during the glacial drift. Later that evening, prepare yourself for a visit from Mark Twain himself as he entertains in the Great Hall of Starved Rock Lodge.

In these times of jet airplanes and super trains, the Spirit of Peoria offers a more classic and somewhat classier, alternative. If you’re ready to put relaxation back in your vacation, consider Starved Rock and a trip on an amazing riverboat. It may just be what you’re looking for!

Trip Includes

  • All-inclusive ticket pricing
  • Overnight lodging
  • Sumptuous Meals including prime rib dinner
  • Professional riverlore / storytelling
  • Tour of destination
  • Old-fashioned hospitality
  • Unlimited complimentary drinks
  • Historical information
  • Wildlife sightings
  • Indoor comfort
  • Outdoor relaxation
  • Live entertainment
  • Old-time banjo
  • Ragtime piano
  • Baggage handling
  • Round-trip transportation
  • Tax and gratuity
  • Guided hikes & tour of Starved Rock

This will be a special overnight themed cruise on Sep 8. Throughout the day, talented pianists Sue Keller, Adam Swanson, Faye Ballard, and Ted Lemen will be performing so there’ll never be a dull moment. Also check out the related Pianostravaganza cruise!

2015 Dates

2016 Dates

2015 Prices

  • Adult (single occ.): $410/person
  • Adult (double occ.): $360/person
  • Adult (triple occ.): $340/person
  • Adult (quad occ.): $320/person
  • Kids: $175/person (Ages 5–15)
  • Infants: FREE
  • Prices subject to change
  • Prices are all-inclusive

2016 Prices

  • Adult (single occ.): $430/person
  • Adult (double occ.): $380/person
  • Adult (triple occ.): $350/person
  • Adult (quad occ.): $320/person
  • Prices Subject to Change
  • Prices are all-inclusive


The boat boards at 8:30AM and cruises from 9:15AM to 5:00PM




Additional Options

Driving in from out of town? Try one of these hotels! Each is located within 5 blocks of the Spirit of Peoria and offers complimentary shuttle service for its guests

Cancellation Policy

If you cancel more than 45 days prior to the date of your trip you will receive a full refund. If you cancel between 22 to 44 days of your trip you will receive a 50% refund. If you cancel within 21 days of your trip you will receive no refund.

Please ask about trip insurance! Allows you to cancel up to the day prior to departure with no penalty.

Please read our Policies Page.
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