Chicago has more than 40 fascinating museums, multiple interactive children’s museums, vibrant ethnic communities, and countless other noteworthy places to explore, so finding something to do when you’re in town is easy. Does someone in your family like learning about the solar system or have an interest in finding out more about ancient and current cultures from around the world? Or, are you raising a future artist? Either way, the Windy City is an ideal backdrop for a family vacation. Read on to learn about some of the places our family has enjoyed visiting over the years.
Adler Planetarium (https://www.adlerplanetarium.org)–The Adler Planetarium is known for its interactive exhibits for adults and children, as well as its fascinating shows about the solar system (that are shown in two different domed theatres).
Field Museum (https://www.fieldmuseum.org)–Exhibits about different cultures (e.g. those in Africa and Asia), working science labs, geology halls and more await you and your family at the Field Museum.
Art Institute of Chicago (http://www.artic.edu)–It’s easy to see why the Art Institute was named Trip Advisor’s #1 thing to do out of 711. In addition to the top-notch collections and exhibits that would appeal to adults and older teens, it also has activities, workshops and performances for younger kids. In addition, it offers free admission for children 14 and under. (Teens under 18 who reside in the city can also get in free.)
In addition, within an hour’s drive from the city is Six Flags Great America theme park in Gurnee (https://www.sixflags.com/greatamerica); Brookfield Zoo in Brookfield (https://www.czs.org/Brookfield-ZOO/Home); Kohl Children’s Museum in Glenview (http://www.kohlchildrensmuseum.org) (which has both indoor and outdoor exhibit areas) and SciTech Hands On Museum (https://scitechmuseum.org) in Aurora.
For more ideas on what to see and visit when you’re in town (cultural institutions, ethnic museums, family-friendly restaurants, concert venues, art galleries, etc.), visit the below websites:
The City Pass link below is an affiliate link. If you click on the link and purchase the pass, I will receive a commission.
To save more than 50% on admissions to several of the Windy City’s most popular cultural institutions such as the Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum, and Art Institute–and avoid standing in line to buy tickets–click here to purchase a CityPASS for each person who’ll be traveling with you. When ordering online, you can choose to have the discounted tickets emailed to you or request to have actual ticket booklets shipped to your home.