Wondering what to do in Chicago with kids? Whether you live in the city or are just visiting for the weekend, you should know that Chicago is chock-full of kid-friendly activities. You can opt for children’s museums, playground parks, eateries, kid-friendly tours, and other activities. Here’s a list of destinations that are suitable for the whole family.
1. Adler Planetarium
This was the first planetarium in the USA and was founded in 1930. It has grown to become a great resource for educating, motivating, and inspiring kids to develop an interest in space exploration. At the planetarium, you will find 3 theaters that feature remarkable sky shows. You can also check out the space science exhibition where you can explore the magnificent collection of antique print materials, scientific instruments, and the Doane Observatory. The Adler Planetarium offers a plethora of exhibitions, presentations and special lectures, educational programs, and special events all year round.
2. Lincoln Park Zoo
This is one of the oldest zoos in the United States. The park offers free admission to all visitors and is aimed at connecting, educating, and inspiring people through nature. It’s the perfect place for a day out with the kids. The zoo sits on more than 35 acres with habitats that cater to more than 200 animals. Here you’ll see the big cats, reptiles, primates, birds, and sea animals.
3. Chicago Children’s Museum
The Chicago Children’s Museum is located on Lake Michigan at the Navy Pier. It was founded in 1982 and is a great spot for people of all ages. This makes it an ideal destination to hang out with the kids on a weekend. Kids get to connect playing and learning through the variety of engaging exhibits at the museum. There are three floors of exhibits covering math, literature, science, and creative activities. This includes leaning the ways of the CTA, digging up dinosaur bones, and showcasing your creativity through art and craft.
4. Chicago Children’s Theatre
This is a West Loop theater that features a kid-focused lineup with positive messages and educational undertones that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Little wonder that it’s a firm favorite destination for family outings in Chicago. Founded in 2005, the theater is not only known for its fantastic shows but also the myriad of educational workshops, classes, community events, and programs. “A Year With Frog and Toad” is one of the award-winning shows produced at the theater.
5. LEGOLAND Discovery Center
Need a climate-controlled place to take the kids this weekend? You can’t go wrong with LEGOLAND Discovery Center. With 30000 square feet dedicated to the famous LEGO building toys, it’s easy to see why your children would absolutely love to spend some time here. There are a ton of fun things to do including a 4-D movie theater, laser ride, climbing structure, Technicycle bike, daily building workshops, and many more. You can spend an entire day there without getting bored.
6. Maggie Daley Park
This park is a tribute to the late first lady of Chicago city. It’s conveniently located at Chicago Park District and features 20 acres of recreational facilities for both kids and adults. Here, you’ll find a skating ribbon, a climbing wall sanding 40 feet tall, and a playground. It’s the perfect place for outdoor family fun in Chicago. During winter, the skating ribbon makes for the perfect ice-skating path since it gets coated with ice. During warmer weather, it’s the perfect place for a jog, walk, or rollerblading. The playground is divided into three theme-based areas – the Slide Crater, the Enchanted Forest, and the Watering Hole.
7. Chicago Beaches
If you’re visiting Chicago in the summer then you’ll want to spend as much time as possible out in the glorious sandy beaches. The sand covered attractions on the shores of Lake Michigan are free for the whole family. Sandy lakefront hangouts dote the city’s eastern border. Sadly, they’re only open for three months a year. Take advantage of every chance you get to hit the amazing beaches. They include Oak Street Beach, Rainbow Beach and Park, North Avenue Beach, Osterman Beach, 57th Street Beach, and many others. Make sure to carry sunscreen. This is one of the best things to do in Chicago with kids.
8. 360 Chicago
Looking for things to do in Chicago with kids? Then you might want to check out Lake Michigan, the Navy Pier, the city skyline, and the surrounding suburbs from atop the 94th floor of the John Hancock Tower. 360 Chicago also has a variety of engaging and interactive exhibits centered around the city’s history.
9. Bike and Roll Chicago
Looking for things to do in Chicago with kids that don’t stop? Burn off some excess energy and explore the city by bike. You can take a bike ride to Lincoln Park or the Museum Campus and Grant Park. It’s also a great way for the whole family to burn some calories and take in the beauty of the city.