Looking for fun activities in Chicago with kids? Consider visiting Maggie Daley Park, the Shedd Aquarium, or American Girl Place. You’ll also find information about the COVID-19 restrictions, which make some attractions not appropriate for children. With so many options, you’ll be sure to find an activity that your family and children will love. And if you’re unsure where to start, you can always refer to our Chicago travel guide.
American Girl Place
There are plenty of reasons to visit the American Girl Place in Chicago with kids. This flagship store for the popular doll brand is located in a historic downtown Chicago building and has more than 4,800 square meters of retail space. It features a full-service restaurant, beauty salon, photo studio, and a private dining room for 20 guests. You can also make dining reservations online and attend special events. Here are a few of those reasons to visit the American Girl Place in Chicago with kids.
A trip to the American Girl Place in Chicago with kids can be filled with fun and learning. Kids will love the unique toys, books, and activities available. Parents will find the cafe serves brunch, lunch, and dinner. You can also stop by the hotel’s restaurant, located in Water Tower Place, on The Magnificent Mile. The hotel also has a heated indoor pool and a seasonal sundeck, and offers a spectacular view of Grant Park.
The Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois, is an indoor public aquarium. The aquarium opened on May 30, 1930. For a while, the aquarium was the largest in the world. There are approximately 32,000 animals in the aquarium. You will find everything from snakes and sharks to stingrays and penguins. Even kids will enjoy a visit to the Shedd. There is even a penguin nursery, where you can meet some of the local animals.
If you want to take your children to the Shedd Aquarium, consider getting a membership. Membership does not cost much, but it can save you money on tickets and access to 4D movies. The membership also comes with discounts on retail and restaurant locations. You can also look for groupon deals with discounted tickets to the aquarium. If you are traveling with your kids, consider purchasing a membership, and don’t forget to bring a camera.
The Shedd Aquarium offers two different gift shops, one near the entrance and one near the Underwater Beauty exhibit. Both shops offer fun gifts for under $10. You may even want to buy a stuffed animal or two, depending on the size of your child. Afterward, take a break to visit the aquarium’s gift shop and check out the different exhibits. You’ll have a great time.
A trip to the Willis Tower in Chicago with kids is sure to be a memorable experience. The skyscraper is the third tallest in the world and is home to the famous Skydeck Ledge, which is 103 floors and 1,353 feet high. Visitors are assured of safety as Skydeck Ledge boxes are made of three layers of half-inch glass laminated into one unit. They are also rated to hold up to 10,000 pounds. Ticket prices for adults are $17; children three to eleven years of age are $11; under threes are free.
While the Willis Tower is a popular Chicago tourist attraction, you’ll need to make sure to plan enough time to visit the tower and its many exhibits. It’s highly recommended to visit during the day, as crowds are higher on weekends. Besides the Skydeck Chicago, you can also visit the Art Institute of Chicago and Millennium Park. These are also great family-friendly attractions that are accessible from the Willis Tower.
Maggie Daley Park
If you have little ones, you may find it difficult to find enough activities in Maggie Daley Park. This three-acre playground is divided into different themed areas. The Play Garden features a towering Slide Crater with slides and bridges. Other areas include an Enchanted Forest with upside-down trees and vegetation, and a Watering Hole with water spouts. If you’re traveling with a big group of kids, consider a picnic on a bench at Maggie Daley Park.
Another fun way to spend the day with your children is to check out the various museums and art galleries in the city. The Museum of Science and Industry has been inspiring creativity since 1933. It has over 400,000 square feet of hands-on activities for kids. Activities range from playing in an actual submarine to creating their own chicks. This place will keep the kids entertained for hours. It is also home to a chick hatchery.
Art Institute of Chicago
When visiting the Art Institute of Chicago with kids, you can opt for a self-guided tour or take your child to one of the museum’s facilitated art programs. Both of these programs offer elements designed to inspire self-expression and offer opportunities to experience a variety of art styles and forms. The museum’s Ryan Learning Center is a particularly kid-friendly space, with interactive games, toys, and art projects for kids of all ages.
To save money on admission, you can take advantage of the Chicago Public Library’s Kids Museum Passport Program. Children under 14 are admitted free. Admission is $20 for adults and $22 for Illinois residents. Children under the age of fourteen can visit the museum for free, but are required to show a valid Illinois or Chicago Public Library card. The museum is closed on Christmas, New Year’s Day, and Thanksgiving. For those who want to visit the museum with their families on any day, you can take advantage of discounted admission or a membership to the Art Institute of Chicago.
Families can also enjoy a special adventure game. The newly renovated Ryan Learning Center offers an online version of JourneyMaker. Kids can choose from eight storylines to complete, ranging from superheroes to strange creatures to a museum sleepover. Early learners can even enjoy an interactive game designed especially for this age group. It also offers several other fun and educational activities. If you’re looking for an interactive game to keep your kids entertained while you browse through the museum, JourneyMaker is a great option.
Big Bus Tours
If you’re traveling with kids, consider taking a Big Bus tour in the Windy City. The non-stop tours will take you through the city’s famous sites, including the infamous Big Ben, the swank Riverside, and the Cultural Mile. Each tour lasts two hours, and you can hop on and off as many times as you like! Tickets are good for six months from the date you purchased them.
The classic tour is the Big Bus Chicago’s signature offering and includes 14 stops. Tickets are good for one day, and typically cost $40-$45 per person. Children between five and 15 years of age are free, though there are some restrictions. For parents, Big Bus Chicago is a great option for a family on a budget. Depending on the age of your children, you can opt for a tour that includes a pre-recorded Spanish audio tour, which is an excellent option for families with children.
You can also opt for a hop-on-hop-off bus tour, which will take you to some of the city’s top landmarks. You can also opt for a night tour, which is free with your hop-on-hop-off ticket. The cost of this optional experience is $30 to $50 for adults, with children’s tickets costing between $15 and $25. The tour is rated high by tourists and parents, and the price range is $30-$50. You can also opt for a two-hour experience, which includes three photo stops.
When visiting Chicago, don’t forget to include the Children’s Museum, located in Navy Pier. This museum offers a wide variety of exhibits for toddlers to fifth graders, including hands-on exhibits in the Tinkering Lab, Pritzker Playspace, and open playgroup for babies. While your little ones are busy exploring the exhibits, check out the Saharan expedition, where you can simulate an actual Saharan trip. Another must-visit exhibit is the Cloud Buster, a giant slide made of structural steel, fiberglass, and artificial turf.
Another must-see museum for the young ones is the Art Institute of Chicago, which is located downtown. Families can take advantage of free admission on Sundays. The National Museum of Mexican Art is also a great place to take kids, and it is especially popular during Day of the Dead celebrations. The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, located near Lincoln Park Zoo, is also a great option. There are also exhibitions showcasing the wonders of nature and LEGO bricks.
If you’re traveling to Chicago with your family, you’re bound to find a ton of fun things to do in the city’s parks. If you have small children, consider taking them to the Adler Planetarium, where there are special lectures and exhibits. Other Chicago attractions are the Lincoln Park Zoo, which is the nation’s oldest zoo and a leader in animal conservation. Both free and family-friendly, the zoo is an excellent way to connect with nature.
Senn Park is a favorite among Chicago kids. Recently renovated, this park offers separate sections for younger and older kids. Children can enjoy swings, a quad seesaw, a seated merry-go-round, a rope climbing zone, and a free splash pad. With over 24 free public beaches, Chicago has plenty of options for families to spend time together. And as the summer months approach, there are plenty of events going on that are fun for the whole family.