Griswold Lake, Illinois, USA

Also known as:  Griswald Lake, Fox Chain O'Lakes

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Griswold Lake — things to do, where to stay, fun facts, history, stats and more. Let’s dive in!

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Looking for Griswold Lake cabins or other accommodations? Save time and use this interactive map to find, compare and book at the best rates. Or explore our comprehensive list of favorite travel partners.

All About Griswold Lake

Griswold Lake is located in the Chicagoland Region of Illinois near Holiday Hills. The northern shore of Griswold Lake was first developed in the 1930s and featured rustic cabins that residents of Chicago used for their summer vacations. Then in the 1940s, the hustle and bustle of Chicago led people to desire a full time retreat. As more and more people decided to make Griswold Lake home, the community was incorporated, and now many residents live in the serene environment surrounding Griswold Lake year round.

The 141 acres of Griswold Lake are home to bluegill, largemouth bass, yellow perch, yellow bass and white crappie. Anglers will find lake waters calm due to the fact that all watercraft must have less than a 10 horsepower motor.

A short channel connects Griswold Lake to the Fox River and the Fox River Chain of Lakes, nicknamed the “Key West of the Midwest”. However, a small spillway dam at the Griswold Lake outlet prevents boaters from accessing the Fox River directly from the channel. Boat launch ramps to the Fox Waterway are located nearby at Burton’s Bridge marinas. The Fox River Chain of Lakes includes 15 lakes, 7,100 acres of water, 45 miles of river, and two state parks (Moraine Hills State Park and Chain of Lakes State Park). Visitors enjoy every type of water sport on the Fox Waterway – boating, tubing, waterskiing, fishing, and swimming.

For those who like a retreat from city life will find real estate and vacation rentals around Griswold Lake. When visitors are in the mood for some sight seeing, Chicago is less than an hour’s drive from the lake. Chicago offers stunning architecture, a zoo, fascinating museums, and an abundance of fine restaurants offering a wide variety of cuisine.

Outdoor enthusiasts will find Moraine Hills State Park a required stop on their itinerary. Located north of Griswold Lake, Moraine Hills State Park offers a profusion of open-air fun. Fishing and boating are permitted on Lake Defiance and Fox River which are located in the park. Hunting is allowed with a permit. Nature observers may spot red fox, white-tailed deer, mink and coyote, while bird watchers may catch a glimpse of great blue herons, green herons, mallards, and Canada geese. With 10 miles of trails, Moraine Hill’s visitors will experience nature at its best.

To the south of Griswold Lake is Cotton Creek Marsh Nature Preserve. Although access to the preserve is by permission only, naturalists will enjoy the beautiful marshes unspoiled by development. Cattails, bulrushes, and water knotweed will greet visitors who acquire permission to visit the Preserve.

After a day filled with water sports, fishing, or sightseeing, Griswold Lake residents and visitors can unwind while sitting on their decks watching the sun set over the lake. The carefree life away from the business the city can be a reality at Griswold Lake.

Things to Do at Griswold Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Water Skiing
  • Tubing
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • State Park
  • Museum

Fish Species Found at Griswold Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Bluegill
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Perch
  • Sunfish
  • White Crappie
  • Yellow Bass
  • Yellow Perch

Find Places to Stay at Griswold Lake

If you’re considering a Griswold Lake lake house rental or hotel, we’ve made it super easy to find the best rates and compare vacation accommodations at a glance. Save time using this interactive map below.

Recommended Sites to Book a Griswold Lake Vacation

If you want to take a deeper dive to find waterfront lake cabins, cottages, condos, hotels or resorts, check out our favorite Griswold Lake lodging partners.

  • VRBO – Use VRBO to find the perfect lake rental home, condo, cabin, cottage or other vacation property.
  • – One of the world’s leading digital travel companies, connects travelers to everything from cozy B&Bs to luxury resorts.
  • Expedia – Expedia is a popular online travel agency with more than 140,000 lodging properties worldwide.
  • – With more than 325,000 hotels in 19,000-plus locations, is an industry leader in online accommodations.
  • TripAdvisor – Read traveler reviews and compare prices on hotels, vacation rentals and more at TripAdvisor.
  • Trivago – Trivago helps travelers compare deals for hotels and other accommodations from a variety of booking sites.
  • KAYAK – KAYAK scours hundreds of other travel websites at once to find the best deals on hotels and other travel-related services.
  • RVshare –RVshare connects travelers interested in renting a motorhome with owners who have RVs to rent.
  • CampSpot – Campspot offers premier RV resorts, family campgrounds, cabins and glamping options across North America.

Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.

Griswold Lake Statistics & Helpful Links


Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed

Water Level Control: Illinois Dept. of Transportation-Division of Water Resources

Surface Area: 141 acres

Shoreline Length: 2 miles

Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 733 feet

Maximum Depth: 12 feet

Drainage Area: 8 sq. miles

We strive to keep the information on LakeLubbers as accurate as possible. However, if you’ve found something in this article that needs updating, we’d certainly love to hear from you! Please fill out our Content Correction form.

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On Lake Time Custom Coffee Mug – 11oz or 15oz


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