There aren’t many museums in the city where things feel larger than life. If you have children who love being hands on, then you need to take them to the largest science center in the Western Hemisphere. Long gone are the days of boring science exhibits, the Science Museum has done a great job of overhauling many of their old exhibits to be state of the art. Take a tour and see how a coalmine works, watch baby chicks hatch, see how old your organs are or watch a 40-foot tornado. If you’re tired of walking around, take a break and watch an Omnimax film on a five-story, wrap-around movie screen.
57th Street and Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60637
Daily: 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
The museum is open every day of the year except December 25. Occasionally the museum is open until 5:30 p.m. Please visit the website to see the select dates.
Senior (65+): $14
Child (3-11): $10
Senior (65+): $12
Child (3-11): $9
Add-ons to the General Admission price can include the Omnimax, Smart Home: Green + Wind, U505 Submarine: Optional On-board Tour, and certain temporary exhibits. Please see the ticket website to view the prices for the add-ons and the museum’s schedule of free days.
Nearby Hotels with Package Stays
Hyatt Regency Chicago
151 East Wacker Drive
Chicago, IL 60601
Visit a great Chicago hotel that sits along the Chicago River and take advantage of the museum package that includes an overnight stay and tickets to the museum.
Chicago’s Essex Inn
800 South Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60605
Phone: 312-939-2800 or 800-621-6909
Located right on Michigan Avenue across from Grant Park and Lake Michigan, this reasonable hotel offers a package that includes an overnight stay and two museum tickets.
Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile
540 North Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-836-0100 or 800-228-9290
Located right on the Magnificent Mile amongst Chicago’s best shopping, the Marriott offers overnight accommodations and two VIP tickets to the museum.
Where to Eat
The Brain Food Court
Monday-Saturday 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Can’t decide on what you want? Then head over to the food court where you can recharge on pizzas, deli sandwiches, grill food and salads.
Monday-Saturday 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Looking for a hot drink, a smoothie or a nice pastry, stop by Jazzman’s and pick up something to go.
Finnigan’s Ice Cream Parlor
Main Level near the Coal Mine
Friday – Sunday 11:30 a.m. until one hour before the museum closes
Maybe you’re not looking for a meal but a sweet treat instead. Visit an old-fashioned ice cream parlor based on a real Hyde Park place that opened in 1917.
How to Get to the Museum
It’s probably easiest to take a car and park at the underground parking garage for $16. Depending on what direction you’re coming from you can find detailed directions here.
There are also four different bus routes that stop near the museum. Bus route 10 makes stops along Michigan Avenue and near many hotels. Make sure to check the schedule though as the schedule changes throughout the year.
If it is warm outside, it might be a nice idea to ride your bike down the lakefront path. Just north of 57th Street, follow the ramp down into the underpass below Lake Shore Drive, then left into the underpass below 57th Street. Bike racks are available. This is the most green-friendly option and cheapest if you own your own bike.