Little Tikes first
How about spending some time in the Legoland Discovery Center. Or, get the wallet out and have tea at the American Girl store. OK, not your style. Let’s have some fun at the Shedd Aquarium making faces at the penguins. Or, on a nice day check out the 216 acre Brookfield Zoo. Stand next to the world’s largest T-Rex dinosaur in the Field Museum then check out the interactive exhibits at the Chicago Children’s Museum. Take the kids through a World War II submarine or stroll through a 727 aircraft in the Museum of Science and Industry. Do you get the point? There are many family friendly museums in Chicago.
Your older kids might enjoy a stroll through the Millennium Park with its many bold and intriguing exhibits. Navy Pier has rides and attractions that would entertain them all. The Art Institute might be of interest to your teenagers, or rent bikes and ride around the very bike-friendly city taking in the attractions. The Adler Planetarium, the first of its kind in America, might be of interest to the kids that better understand outer space. A lake shore cruise is an awesome way to see the city or a river cruise up the Illinois River gives you some great history on the evolution of the city.
Chicago now has over 7,300 restaurants with 26 being Michelin rated this year. So you can’t deny the fact that you can treat your kids to a pizza, a gourmet hotdog, or introduce them to an ethnic experience. Chicago is home to 77 different ethnic neighborhoods dating back to the immigration surge in the early 1900s. With that comes all kinds of unusual ethnic dishes. Go out and explore! There are many festivals, markets and outdoor concerts available every weekend.
You can take a flyer and get tickets to one of several professional teams. In the summer experience Wrigley Field and the World Champion Chicago Cubs. Or you can head south and see the Chicago White Sox. You can also attend a Chicago Fire professional soccer match. In the winter months catch the high flying Chicago Bulls basketball team or the warriors on the ice, Chicago Blackhawks. The city gets behind them all and makes for an electric environment.
Our favorite is to recommend to any age group the Lakeshore Trail. The longest publicly owned trail in the world, you can stroll, hike, run, bike, roller blade, skateboard; have we missed anything. With the beautiful blue Lake Michigan on one shoulder and the towering building of the Chicago loop on the other, it is a perfect outing for a family to begin or end your day of activities in Chicago. Get out and enjoy!
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If you're located a little closer to River North, Here's some other ideas!