I'm not judging, but if the internet's claim that the best hidden gem in Illinois is a somewhat risqué mermaid, perhaps this wouldn't make the best family vacation destination.

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Stacker is the one to blame credit for this coolest hidden wonders in each state. Their choice for Illinois is a curious one. I had to look it up on Atlas Obscura to verify that it's even real. As a matter of fact, there are almost no videos on YouTube where anyone has dared to share their visit there. (I guess that's what makes this so hidden?)

What is the best hidden gem in Illinois anyway?

It's a stone sculpture near the beach along Lake Michigan. As you get closer, you can see it's...a lady.

David Erwin Vlogs via YouTube
David Erwin Vlogs via YouTube
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Let's get closer, but not too close.

David Erwin Vlogs via YouTube
David Erwin Vlogs via YouTube
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Atlas Obscura says this is the work of 4 different artists: Jose Moreno, Roman Villareal, Fred Arroyo and Edfu Kingigna. It's located at Oakwood Beach. The story goes that it was created in the early 2000's and stored away for a few years before locals convinced authorities to put it back. The locals in that south side of Chicago like to think this is their little secret allegedly.

The secret mermaid is still visible on Google Maps Satellite View, by the way.

Google Maps Satellite View
Google Maps Satellite View
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If you zoom in, you can see it sort of.

Google Maps Satellite View
Google Maps Satellite View
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