Chicago Children's Museum (and Navy Pier)


The Chicago Children's Museum on Navy Pier is the best children's museum in the Chicago area, and one of the best in the country—as long as you don't mind the crowd. Preschool is the most perfect age for kids to visit, but you can have lots of fun with babies, well up into elementary school. And don't forget about the rest of Navy Pier for more fun.

Top Tips

  • Bring a change of clothes. Water Ways is a very fun room but kids often get soaked.
  • Check out the age-based categories since the best rooms can vary by age. In general, though, my favorites are Kids Town, Treehouse Trails, and Water Ways. The temporary exhibit is usually excellent as well. Dinosaur Expedition and Play It Safe (the firetruck) are also great.
  • Take your time. Do your best to follow the children's pace, even if you don't see all the rooms.
  • Restaurants on Navy Pier aren't great in general. See the food page for details and recommendations.


Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 10am-6pm.
Also open on Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, and December 26-January 2.
Closed all other days.


Children and adults: $19
Children under 1 are free