SWANSEA — To encourage more travel and tourism in the area, ILLINOISouth Tourism has released a new-look 2021 Visitors Guide.

The publication features ideas from foodie fun to outdoor adventure in Madison County and 21 other Southern Illinois counties. more. The Illinois Office of Tourism this year is focused on promoting road trip itineraries, with four-day trip ideas featured in ILLINOISouth’s new guide.

“A lot of people are looking to travel now that restrictions are loosening and more folks are vaccinated,” says Andy Waterman, Communications Director for ILLINOISouth. “Bringing in visitors for a weekend or even for day trips will really start to help the recovery process for many of these communities and businesses.”

Tourism was one of the state’s leading industries before the pandemic, accounting for more than $41 billion in visitor spending. Waterman says ILLINOISouth is extremely focused on attracting visitors from a five-hour radius to experience unique road trip adventures.

“We love to promote the fun, quirky road trips that truthfully are not a far drive for many of these visitors,” said Waterman.

A new aspect to ILLINOISouth’s 2021 Visitors Guide is the ability to interact with the digital version online. Many listings allow readers to click on anything they are interested in and pull up a specific listing’s website or social media pages.

“While touching and feeling a hard copy is great, we realize that more and more people are viewing our materials online,” said Waterman. “We wanted to give those folks an added feature to make their reading experience as in-depth as they want it to be.”

Free copies of the ILLINOISouth 2021 Visitors Guide are available at many locations in Illinois and Missouri, including tourist information centers along several interstates. People also can request a copy at illinoisouth.org.