The Kankakee River is a tributary of the Illinois River, approximately 133 miles (214 km) long, in northwestern Indiana and northeastern Illinois in the United States
. At one time the river drained one of the largest wetlands in North America
and furnished a significant portage between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River.
The Kankakee rises in northwestern Indiana, approximately 5 miles (8 km) southwest of South Bend. It flows in a straight channelized course generally southwestward through rural northwestern Indiana, collecting the Yellow River from the south in Starke County and passing the communities of South Center and English Lake.