This blog post was updated on September 5, 2018.
The windy city has plenty to offer tourists, especially the young ones. Here are my top picks for kid-friendly destinations in the Chicago area.
Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum
1300 S. Lake Shore Dr. Chicago
(312) 922- STAR
The nationally acclaimed Adler Planetarium is a great place to take kids for a bit of star-gazing. Young kids (well, kids of all ages, really) will be dazzled by the planetarium shows, and older kids will enjoy the excellent exhibits at the Astronomy Museum.
6445 West North Avenue, Oak Park
Phone: (708) 383-4815
Located in Oak Park, Wonder Works is an experiential learning center that focuses on creative play. Wonder Works features five “experience zones” with different themes (art, farming, film, design, puppetry, treehouse, etc.) that offer something for infants through eight year olds.
Chicago Children’s Museum at Navy Pier
Navy Pier – 700 E. Grand Ave., Chicago
(312) 527- 1000
The expansive Chicago Children’s Museum offers lots of hands-on learning activities for toddlers through grade school-aged children, including a craft studio, a “tinkering lab,” a safety zone, and a dinosaur expedition. Plan on spending the entire day!
Lincoln Park Zoo
2200 N. Cannon Dr., Chicago
Each year, millions of families flock to the Lincoln Park Zoo, and for good reason. This natural oasis located just north of downtown Chicago features crowd-pleasing animals such as lions, gorillas, and panda bears, all roaming in spaces that mimic their natural habitats— from tropical rainforests to dry-thorn forests to spacious savannas.
Mayan Adventure Indoor Waterpark
624 N. York Rd.
The Waverton Hotel Chicago-Elmhurst
Looking for a year-round waterpark experience for their kids? The 24,000 square foot indoor waterpark at the Waverton is sure to fit the bill. With wet attractions such as the Grand Mayan Falls Tube Slidem the Howling Monkey Body Slide, the Oogaboo Lazy River, or the Twisted Lizard Family Activity Pool, you really can’t go wrong.
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