Whether you're heading to Chicago for the first time or you're a local, there are a few things that you shouldn't miss. Chicago is known for its bold architecture, museums and its skyline. You can see all of these things in one day if you choose the right activities. But there are other things you can do besides those.
Maggie Daley Park
Located in downtown Chicago, Maggie Daley Park is a fun and interactive park for kids. The park offers an outdoor ice skating ribbon, a three-acre play garden, a climbing wall, a mini golf course, and a tennis court. It also provides visitors with great views of the lake and the city skyline.
Maggie Daley Park is operated by the Chicago Park District. The park was designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh, and has a rolling landscape with low hills. Visitors can find picnic groves, a bungee, and giant pirate ships. The park is also home to a lighthouse and a public garden.
Visitors can also find the Rink Cafe, which serves simple items such as sandwiches, snacks, and beverages. It also has branded gear for sale, and lockers for rent for $2.
The play garden features areas for different age groups. The three-acre area is anchored by a towering Slide Crater, which features bridges and slides. There are also wood-tabled picnic areas.
The park is located on the campus of Grant Park. It is connected to Millennium Park by a BP Pedestrian Bridge. The BP Pedestrian Bridge acts as a sound barrier, and the bridge is located on Columbus Drive.
Maggie Daley Park is also home to the American Writers Museum, which is a celebration of literature. Visitors can read books from local authors on touchscreen tables or comfortable reading areas. This museum also has a Word Waterfall.
Visitors can also find the Oriental Institute Museum, which is a museum dedicated to Near East artifacts. Exhibits include objects from more than 100,000 years ago. The museum also includes art, relics, and Egyptian items.
If you are interested in a more formal experience, you can visit the Chicago Cultural Center. The center takes up an entire city block and is home to one of the largest Tiffany stained glass domes in the world. It also hosts concerts and exhibits. The center also features marble floors and gold mosaics.
Art Institute of Chicago
Located in downtown Chicago, the Art Institute of Chicago has over 1 million square feet of gallery space. It is the second largest art museum in the United States and one of the world's best. With more than 300,000 artworks, the Art Institute of Chicago is a place you'll want to visit.
The Art Institute of Chicago features art from around the world. You'll see Chinese bronzes, Himalayan art, and contemporary design exhibits. You can also see ancient art from Egypt, Rome, and Byzantine. The museum also has an extensive collection of American and Post-Impressionist art.
The Art Institute is also home to the largest Impressionist collection in the world outside of Paris. This collection includes works by renowned artists such as Monet, Van Gogh, and Renoir. The museum's modern and contemporary art wing is the largest expansion in more than 130 years. This wing features art from every continent and includes works by Jackson Pollock, Cindy Sherman, and Henri Matisse.
The Art Institute also features a number of special exhibitions. Visitors can check the calendar to see when the museum will be holding a special event. It also offers special pricing for Illinois residents and Chicago educators. There is also a free mobile app for visitors to use. It features audio tours and a location-aware interactive map.
The Art Institute of Chicago has an enormous gift shop that sells art and books. There is also a cafe that serves light fare. If you're looking for something more substantial, there is a Terzo Piano restaurant that offers sit-down meals.
The Art Institute of Chicago is located one block east of the Loop. There is accessible parking on site and many bus lines stop nearby.
Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, the Adler Planetarium offers a unique opportunity to explore the universe in a unique way. The facility is located at the Museum Campus, a 57-acre park featuring many of Chicago's top attractions. There are also jogging paths, landscaped greenery, and an aquarium.
Adler Planetarium features exhibits designed to educate visitors of all ages. This includes interactive displays, shows, and a history of the universe exhibit. The museum is open daily from 9 am to 4 pm. The facility offers a variety of classes and special events, including lectures, viewing parties, and immersive theater programs.
The Adler Planetarium has two domed theaters, each one offering state-of-the-art presentations. The theaters are equipped with LED lights that can shine in sixteen million colors. Visitors can experience a trip through the Milky Way, the search for a new ninth planet, and more.
The Adler Planetarium also has two unique sky shows. Visitors can take a quick tour of the solar system, and watch a movie of the night sky above Chicago.
The Planet Explorers exhibit is a favorite for kids. This is a permanent exhibit that is designed to encourage children to explore the world. Visitors can build a rocket, drive a rover over the moon, and even touch meteorites.
Adler After Dark is a special evening program. This includes close-ups of the moon and other planets, as well as music and cocktails. It takes about two hours to see all the shows.
The Adler Planetarium offers free admission days to Illinois residents. Visit the website to see when these days are. If you don't live in Illinois, you can still visit for a discounted All-Access Pass.
Field Museum of Natural History
Located in Chicago, Illinois, the Field Museum is one of the world's top natural history museums. It boasts more than 20 million objects and specimens from around the world. Its exhibits explore cultures, natural wonders and ancient civilizations. The museum also houses the Shedd Aquarium.
In addition to its extensive collection, the Field Museum is a leading conservation organization. Its scientists prepare ancient specimens for study, helping to advance research. It also offers a variety of tours. The tours last 45 to 60 minutes. They depart from the main information booth and are conducted in English.
The Field Museum also features an interactive area called PlayLab, which is designed to engage children in learning. Children can enjoy a three-story reconstruction of Pharaoh's tomb, as well as a replica of an ancient market. The bottom level also features twisting caverns.
The museum also features a special exhibit that is open only during the summer. This exhibit features a three-dimensional movie. Visitors can also enter the Abbot Hall of Conservation, where scientists study biodiversity. They can also explore the Pawnee Earth Lodge, which resembles the dwelling of a Great Plains tribe.
Another popular exhibit is Evolving Planet. This exhibit features fossils, landscapes and animated videos. It highlights four billion years of life on Earth.
The museum also features the world's largest Tyrannosaurus Rex fossil, Sue. The skeleton measures 42 feet long and stands 13 feet tall. It is also the most complete T. rex fossil ever discovered.
Visitors can also view the Grainger Hall of Gems, which features 3,400-year-old Egyptian garnet necklaces. There are also displays of minerals and meteorites. The museum also offers free tours of its collections.
Located on Lake Michigan in Chicago, Illinois, the Shedd Aquarium is a fascinating aquarium filled with hidden gems and fun experiences. A visit to the aquarium is a great family activity. In addition to seeing animals, visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, including behind-the-scenes tours, animal encounters, and more. It's also a great place to relax.
The aquarium is open daily from 9 am to 6 pm. Admission includes access to all the permanent exhibits. Guests can also enjoy live animal presentations, meet penguins, and train beluga whales. There's also a Polar Play Zone with faux ice floes and submarines for younger kids.
The most popular exhibits include the Waters of the World, a 90,000-gallon tank that provides a 360-degree view of the Caribbean Reef, a large aquatic ecosystem. Visitors can see a variety of fishes, starfish, and seahorses. There's also an exhibit dedicated to the Indo-Pacific coral reefs, where rare jellyfish can be found.
The museum is also home to alligators, cownose rays, rockfish, bluegills, and sea lions. There's also a lakeside terrace with picnic tables. The aquarium also has a gift shop. Visitors can purchase educational toys, as well as non-profit items.
The Shedd Aquarium is open year-round, and visitors can enjoy select free days throughout the year. Admission includes access to all the permanent exhibits, as well as special exhibits.
The Shedd Aquarium offers a variety of special experiences, including an animal encounter and behind-the-scenes tours. Visitors can also enjoy food at kiosks throughout the aquarium. There's also a food court in the Soundings Cafe. The Shedd Aquarium is easily accessible by public transportation. Guests can also purchase reusable merchandise.