Allerton Park and Retreat Center

This month’s travel-themed prompt from my Travel Tuesday co-host Amy stated: Where have you been that was unexpected in some way? Perhaps you did not expect it to be amazing and it blew you away? 

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My unexpected destination is a small park on the outskirts of the small town my partner’s family resides in central Illinois.  Allerton Park and Retreat Center hosts a beautiful collection of themed gardens and sculptures which has been the backdrop to a few of my photo shoots as well as a wedding we attended while stateside.  It was unexpected to me in the way that it seems quite out of place in a flat farm land of cornfields in the middle of no where America. The design and themes found at Allerton Park and Retreat Center seem to come from many different locations, all far from that of its actual location.  I have think of being off in the English countryside outside a large manor house quoting lines from a Jane Austen novel and then pulled away by the Asian influences and a life further out East.

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These were taken on my phone with the Hipstamatic app. You can see what a great background Allerton Park has made for my photoshoots by checking out my Halloween Post from 2011.


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  • Yalanda_Meshell

    Gorgeous tulips!

  • Madaline

    This park looks like the perfect place to get lost in… beautiful.

  • Ellen

    Great photos! The Hipstamatic app looks pretty neat – will have to check it out.

  • Hsiao-Ting

    The garden looks so lovely!

  • Kerri

    Ahh, I finally got around to joining in the link and and got mixed up with the prompt, I thought it was the last Tuesday of the month, not the first.

  • AmyMacWorld

    Looks lovely! Great unexpected destination…right in the middle of Illinois! Who knew 😉