I&M Canal Visitor Center, Lock 16 Gift Shop and Café

Located at 754 First Street, the heart of Downtown LaSalle’s shopping district, the I&M Canal Visitor’s Center offers three experiences all in one beautifully restored space…

Explore Our Visitor Center

The I&M Canal Visitor Center is the perfect place to start your I&M Canal National Heritage Area Adventure (especially if you’re entering the Heritage Area / Starved Rock Country from the west).

At our Center you can:

  • Discover the I&M Canal’s role in regional and American History through stunning exhibits, like the map from New York to New Orleans that shows how the I&M Canal was the final link to an interior water route connecting the two
  • Plan your explorations with our Canal Map Table, laying out the sites within the National Heritage Area, brochure wall and knowledgeable staff
  • Browse our rack of books and DVDs for topics of interest to you, including stories of the French, Starved Rock and the industrial history of LaSalle County
  • Stamp your National Park Passport (you can purchase a passport in our shop if you don’t have one)

You can also buy your I&M Canal Boat Tour Tickets here and get more information on how to rent bikes from our Bike Share Program.

Visitor Center Hours: 
Open Daily: 10 am – 4 pm

Browse Our Gift Shop

More than just a souvenir shop (though we do have an array of a Illinois, Lincoln and Canal-centric shirts, books, postcards and mementos), the Lock 16 Gift Shop offers a host of colorful floral decor, whimsical household treasures, artisan foodstuffs, cards, books and clever gifts for children.

Make sure to stop in during the winter holidays to peruse our selection of ornaments, decorations and toys direct from “Santa’s Workshop.”

Gift Shop Hours: 
Open Daily: 10 am – 4 pm

Many of our offerings are also available online to be shipped direct to you.

Enjoy a Bite or Drink From Lock 16 Café

Offering a quaint, vintage setting for a brief respite after exploring the Canal Trails, riding the Canal Boat or shopping in Downtown LaSalle, the Lock 16 Café serves delicious, handcrafted foods and beverages.

Sunday 9am-12:30pm
Monday 9am-3pm
Tuesday Closed
Wednesday-Saturday 9am-3pm

Phone: (815) 223-1851

Host Your Special Occasion Here

The I&M Canal Boat is available for private parties. Celebrate special occasions, such as weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, retirements, get togethers, fundraisers and more, on our boat as well as host social club events. Add on food and drinks and bring in music to increase the fun. Get more details by calling (815) 220-1848 ext. 1848 or clicking the link below.