The original village of Makanda, first named “North Pass”, began prospering in 1854 when Illinois Central Railroad built a station, two water tanks and a boarding house along Drury Creek, which still runs through the community.

Makanda is located in southern Illinois in Jackson County about 7 miles south of Carbondale, 3 miles east of Cedar Lake and 5 miles west of Little Grassy Lake. The town is situated within the Shawnee National Forest boundaries but is also within a short drive of Giant City State Park, Crab Orchard Lake & NWR, Lake of Egypt and Trail of Tears State Forest. The population estimate for July 1, 2010 is 600.

Makanda Boardwalk

This block of storefronts, dating from the 1890’s, has been saved and restored and currently provides shop space for local artists and craftspeople. Makanda also offers:  hand made candles, local art from over 100 different artists, locally made fine silver and gold items, hand dipped ice cream, coffee, and tea, locally produced garden fountains made of brass and copper. Downtown Makanda has 7 quaint shops to choose from.

Shopping In Makanda

Makanda Trading Company, owned and operated by Brian Beverly. Offers, Drums, flutes, silver jewelry, rocks-crystals-mineral specimens, tapestries, sarongs, incense, beads, Indian deity gods, Peruvian paintings, wooden and stone boxes, etc. We carry items from China, Mexico, Peru, India, Bali, Guatemala, Native American items and many others from over 70 countries.

Makanda Country Store, Coffee, sandwiches, candy, trail mixes, soda and hand dipped ice cream along with an extensive collection of hot sauces.  Remember were old school at the coffee shop, no credit cards accepted.  (618)-529-1783

Chair Caning, done by Bill Abney (618) – 529 -1864 by appointment only, located in Rainmakers at 530 Makanda Rd.  If you didn’t know, caning is a method of weaving chair seats and other furniture.

Rainmaker Art Studio, Dave Dardis,On the Boardwalk/Downtown Makanda, Bronze and Copper Sculptures, Jewelry, Fountains and Little People, A beautiful Rock and Water Garden in the back yard, New-Rainmaker’s Amazing Maze.

P B & J, is a resale shop, offering clothing, housewares and even antiques.  Some fun pop items are fashioned in house like magnets and light catchers.

Visions, Offers local art from over 100 artists.  Collection includes paintings, wood and ceramic vases, silver jewelry and much more in the way eclectic art pieces with that local flair.     530 Makanda 618-549-5523

Allen Stuck Studio, Offers the lavish and exquisite art of Allen Stuck, fine silver, gold and platinum accompany rare and beautiful stones.  Allen’s unique work is sold locally by the artists himself and is also offered in high end galleries in California such as Roseark, catering to the stars.  Make sure to see what he has to offer next time your in the area.

Kyle Kinser Wood Works,  Kyle’s furniture (art) shows master craftsmanship quality, each piece has their own personality and history, they are truly alive.  Fantastic artisanship that accounts for the fine nuances of the natural flow of  wood.  Simply view his page to find out for yourself.   Much of his work is displayed in Chicago at the Andrew Bae gallery, yet there is one piece displayed locally in the Makanda Inn, in the reception area.  Local sales are by appointment only, (618)-549-4540  Attention Kyle’s work now on display in Chicago at Intuit gallery July 7th – Aug 20th.   Also a short video on Kyle located at

Makanda Inn, A straw bail constructed building accompanied buy two living roof cabins, sets a beautiful tone to a relaxing stay in Makanda.  This gem is across the street from Giant City State Park and just down the street from the Makanda Boardwalk.

Around and About

Giant City State Park, Tucked into the Shawnee Hills in southern Illinois about 10 miles south-southeast of Carbondale in Jackson Count. 1500-acre Giant City State Park tells a geological tale 315 million years old. The rectangular joint pattern of the area’s Pennsylvanian bedrock is the basis for the park’s unusual rock formations including “Canyon Stairway” and “Devil’s Stand Table” which, to early settlers, reportedly looked like the streets of a “giant city”. In addition, “Old Stone Fort” was constructed by ancients up to 12,000 years ago.

Giant City Lodge, The lodge was built in the 1930s out of beautiful hand hewn logs and natural stone masonary work that gives off a warming historical feel.  This is the perfect location for The Bald Knob dining room, with seating for 200, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily, with an excellent reputation for food and hospitality. You’re sure to enjoy some of the best fried chicken ever if you choose the specialty of the Lodge, their all-you-can-eat Family Style Chicken Dinner.  Dining room hours monday – saturday 8:00 – 10:30 for breakfast, lunch hours 11:00 – 4:00, dinner 4:30 – 8:30.  Sundays and holidays Breakfast 8:00 – 10:00, lunch 11:30 – 4:00, dinner 4:30 – 8:00.  The Lodge’s season is the first Friday of February through mid-December

Call with questions or reservations: 1-618-457-4921

Little Grassy Lake, 1200-acre lake with over 30 miles of shoreline was created in 1940. Several boat launches provide boat access to the lake. Boat rental and supplies are sold at the boat dock. Fishing from small boats is the preferred way to fish this lake.

Stone Creek Golf Club is without a doubt the most scenic golf course in Southern Illinois. The Southern tip of Illinois is filled with natural beauty. The rolling hills and the many bluffs in the area are a sight to see any time of the year. Stone Creek is a great course for golfers of all skill levels.

Southern Illinois Wine Trail, is well worth paying a visit. After years of hard work, Alto Vineyards, Owl Creek Vineyards, Pomona Winery, Winghill Vineyard and Winery, Blue Sky vineyards, Honker Hill winery, Hedman vineyards, Hickory Ridge vineyards, Kite Hill vineyards, Orlandini vineyards, Rustle Hill winery, Star View vineyards and Von Jakob Vineyards, have joined forces to create the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail!

Shawnee Bluffs Canopy Tours, is a new attraction to the area.  MAKANDA — Illinois’ first entirely tree-based, eco-friendly zip line canopy tour, located on 83 wooded acres surrounded by the Shawnee National Forest.

Skyline View Cabins, Nestled on a wooded bluff, on 20 private acres on the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail, Skyline View Cabins are simply extraordinary. A welcoming destination for your vacation enjoyment. Spend a night, escape for a weekend, or stay for a week and enjoy the spectacular beauty, warm accommodations and generous comfort that Southern Illinois and Skyline View Cabins have to offer.