Family Friendly trip to Chicago

Chicago is a fun, big city weekend getaway when you live in Michigan.  My husband has family in Chicago that we like to visit, and this past weekend, one of his cousins got married. It was a kid friendly reception so we were able to bring Max with us. There are so many fun things to do in Chicago – here are some of the must sees for kids…

Maggie Daley Park
This park is 10x what the Brighton Imagination Station is. I love our little downtown park, but this one is amazing. It’s across from Millennium Park in downtown Chicago. The park has several sections with different activities, including a rock climbing wall, tennis courts, picnic areas and our favorite, the Play Garden.

The Play Garden is pretty amazing. It has about 6 different sections that have fun themes clearly marked for specific age groups. We mostly hung out at The Harbor and The Watering Hole.

The Harbor has a large wooden structure with wooden boats suspended from chains that rock, rubber walkways that are fun to run on and a shaded gazebo-like structure for shade and snacks.

The Watering Hole was a splash pad with 3 different fountain areas. It was a perfect way to help cool Max down after playing in the hot sun.

Lincoln Park Zoo
First of all, it’s free! So if you go and only spend 30 minutes or an hour and have to leave for nap time, you don’t have to feel bad, because you didn’t pay for a ticket!

Shedd Aquarium
We didn’t make it to the Shedd Aquarium on this trip, but I’ve been before, and it’s worth the trip. Definitely on my to-do list next time we visit with Max.

Other kid friendly tips for Chicago:

  • Chicago is a walking town. We parked our car when we arrived and didn’t use it until we were ready to drive home. We only took a cab once.
  • We stayed at the Sheraton Grand Chicago right on the river, and walking distance to great shopping, restaurants and the above mentioned Maggie Daley Park. We had a suite with a connecting double bed room. It was the perfect set up for the 3 of us and our in laws. 
  • If it’s your child’s birthday or a special occasion, there are so many fun shops for them to pick out their own present. American Girl, Disney and Lego store, to name a few. Also the perfect city for a pizza party – you have to get Chicago deep dish! 
  • Other fun (and some touristy) things to do are a horse and carriage ride, architecture boat cruise, or a trip to the top of the Sky Deck (tallest building in western hemisphere). 
If you’ve ever been to Chicago, please share your favorite things to do in the city in the comments below!

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