Batavia's Natural Areas

Batavia Creek
One of our most prominent “nameless” streams lies on the southeast side of town. Although initial thoughts were to find a name that tied into local history, it seemed pretty obvious after a time to christen the stream “Batavia Creek.” Fore more information, please visit our Batavia Creek page.

Batavia Park District
For additional natural areas and parks close to home, please visit the Batavia Park District website.

Braeburn Marsh
This highly visible and busy urbanizing location is part of an extensive wetland and drainage system on the western side of Batavia and Geneva. For more information, please visit the Kane County Forest Preserve Website.

Downtown Riverwalk
This area is one of the jewels of the Batavia Park District. The Riverwalk was created as a cooperative effort by the Park District, the City of Batavia, and a dedicated group of community members. Using primarily volunteer labor, donated material and services, the walk was created over a 6 year period.

Fabyan Forest Preserve
The Fabyan Villa Museum was the home of George and Nelle Fabyan from 1905 to 1939. It was initially their summer home, while they lived in Chicago. In 1907, they hired Frank Lloyd Wright to enlarge and remodel their house on the Fox River. For more information, please visit the Preservation Partners of the Fox Valley website.

FermiLab Prairie
The mission of Fermilab Natural Areas is to restore, manage, conserve Fermilab's natural areas in support of our science mission, and to encourage Fermilab's neighbors to experience and enjoy Fermilab's natural beauty. For more information, please visit the FermiLab Natural Areas website.

Fox River
The City of Batavia, in conjunction with environmental groups and other governing bodies from the area, has combined to form the Fox River Study Group. The purpose of the group is to identify existing and potential problems in the northern Illinois region of the Fox River based on good science and real models. To learn more about the Fox River, please view the History of the Fox River.

Fox River Bicycle Trail
The trail is used for hiking, biking, cross-country skiing and jogging and stretches from Algonquin to Aurora. For more information, please visit the Kane County Forest Preserve Website.

Kane County Forest Preserve
The mission of the Forest Preserve District of Kane County is to acquire, hold and maintain lands within Kane County that contribute to the preservation of natural and historic resources, habitats, flora, and fauna; and to restore, restock, protect and preserve such lands for the education, recreation, and pleasure of all its citizens. For more information, please visit the Kane County Forest Preserve Website.
Les Arends Forest Preserve
This small preserve in Batavia has a special focus on the river and the Fox River Trail. It is located on the river just below what was an old broken dam. The dam was removed in 2005 as it was in disrepair. Dam removal allows for greater safety, fish passage and water quality. For more information, please visit the Kane County Forest Preserve Website.

McKee Tributary
As part of the wetland permit with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the City of Batavia agreed to restore 1.2 acres of wetlands at a site located west of Randall Road between McKee Street and Fabyan Parkway.

Nelson Lake Marsh/Dick Young Forest Preserve
Nelson Lake Marsh is, without question, one of the largest and finest natural areas in Kane County. This marsh is a product of a late melting ice mass from the last retreating glaciers some 10,000 years ago. For more information, please visit the Kane County Forest Preserve Website.

Red Oak Nature Center
Nestled on the east bank of the Fox River, Red Oak Nature Center is a museum surrounded by 40 acres of woods called Red Oak Nature Center. There are several hiking trails, one of which leads to “Devil’s Cave,” an observation deck overlooking the Fox River, and a museum building with exhibits on natural history designed to spark your imagination and curiosity. The museum displays invite hands-on participation for a better understanding of the natural world. The Nature Center is situated along the Fox River Bike Trail and allows you to bike from Batavia to the Center quickly. For more information, please visit the Fox Valley Park District website.

Tekawitha Nature Center in St. Charles
A network of foot trails extends through the oak-hickory woodland, forested ravines, and fields of Tekawitha (Tek'-uh'with'-uh) Woods Forest Preserve. In spring, the forest floor is carpeted with many species of wildflowers and the trees are filled with birds. In summer, the wooded trails provide cool shade and enjoyable wildlife viewing. The autumn foliage is spectacular, with hues of yellow, red, and orange in the trees with a golden display of color in the prairie. Winter brings a stark beauty of its own and snowfalls often provide excellent wildlife tracking. The Nature Center offers interpretive displays and exhibits, a bird feeding station and nature library. Children are drawn to the discovery corner filled with nature-oriented activities. Handicap-accessible restrooms are also available. The Fox River Bike Trail runs directly along the eastern boundary of the forest preserve and you may leave the bike trail and enter the preserve.