Illinois is a state in the US Midwest that covers 57,915 square miles. Chicago, which is the largest and most well-known city there, is situated on Lake Michigan’s southwest side. You may be curious about the states that border Illinois, though. At the moment, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, and Wisconsin border Illinois.To learn everything there is to know about them, continue reading!
Border distance: about 300 miles
The border between Illinois and Indiana is one of the state’s longest, spanning over 300 miles. The border starts in the Chicago region near Lake Michigan in the north and runs straight south. After that, it merges with the Wabash River, which it continues until it meets the Ohio River and the boundary with Kentucky.
With a land area of 36,421 square miles, Indiana is home to an estimated 6.85 million people. With a population of about 871,500, Indianapolis is both the largest city and the capital. Renowned for its automotive racing, Indiana is home to the annual Indy 500. Along with its mostly flat terrain, the state is well-known for its vast farmlands.
Length of border: about 200 miles
For the whole 200 miles that it stretches between the Illinois-Wisconsin border and the Illinois-Missouri border to the northwest of Illinois, the Illinois-Iowa border is traced along the Mississippi River. For the most part, the border runs through the middle of the river, however there are a few minor detours along the way.
Iowa, like Indiana, is well-known for its extensive agricultural sector and for being one of the top pork producers. With 3.2 million residents, Cedar Rapids, Davenport, and Des Moines, the state capital, are the three largest cities in Iowa.
Length of border: around 110 miles
The border between Kentucky and Illinois also follows a river, the Ohio River in this case. The majority of the boundary, which is roughly 110 miles long, is found on or near the Illinois side of the river.
Kentucky’s most well-known export is horse racing, particularly since the state is home to the annual Kentucky Derby. Nonetheless, the state is renowned for its bourbon and whisky, having multiple sizable distilleries. While Frankfort serves as the capital, Louisville is the largest and one of the most visited cities.
Length of border: around 55 miles
The border separating Illinois from Michigan, which stretches for around 55 miles, is the state’s most distinctive boundary. This border, which is a water border, is found inside Lake Michigan. With 63 miles of shoreline, 22 of which are in the Chicago region, Illinois controls 1,526 square miles of the lake. With a surface area of 22,404 square miles, Lake Michigan is the second largest of the Great Lakes. The states that surround the lake are not limited to Illinois and Michigan; Indiana and Wisconsin also share its borders.
Michigan boasts 3,288 miles of freshwater coastline in addition to thousands of other lakes. The Straits of Mackinac, which split it into two peninsulas, are another feature that makes it famous. Ten million people are thought to live in Michigan, with about 112,000 of them residing in Lansing, the state capital.
Length of border: around 360 miles
Missouri borders Illinois to the southwest and thus follows the Mississippi River’s path. Once more, the state boundary runs across the middle of the river for around 360 miles, with a few minor exceptions.
The Missouri River flows across the state, which is named after it. Missouri is 69,715 square miles in size. The state is part of the Great Plains, which are located in the northwest of the state, even if its large number of rivers also create floodplains and fertile alluvial areas. Although Kansas City, with a population of around 509,000, is the largest and most well-known, Jefferson City serves as Missouri’s capitol.
Border distance: around 183 miles
Wisconsin is located to the north of Illinois, and the two states share a border that is roughly 183 miles long. The Western Uplands and the Eastern Ridges and Lowlands are the two unique geographical regions of the state that border Illinois.
The majority of the Western Uplands are steep, rocky regions that are crisscrossed by multiple rivers and streams. On the other hand, the Eastern Ridges and Lowlands comprise a broad plain at a height of 700–900 feet, in addition to a slope that has two prominent ridges. The state boundary splits into two ends: the eastern end, which runs through several smaller lakes before ending in Lake Michigan, and the western end, which starts at the Mississippi River.
With a population of about 555,640, Milwaukee is the largest city in Wisconsin despite Madison being the state capital. Wisconsin is sometimes referred to as “America’s Dairyland” and is notably well-known for its dairy products, particularly cheese.