Parks in Chicago

Sightseeing Wildlife & Nature

Parks in Chicago | Chicago Parks | Parks of Chicago

Parks in Chicago are more than just places to ride your bike or have a stroll. They offer various recreational activities like summer concerts, beautiful flower gardens to explore, zoo facilities, su (Read More)mmer camps for kids and some parks in Chicago even host outdoor movie screenings. These parks make you forget that you are literally living in a concrete jungle with such exciting offerings. Read our ultimate guide on the best parks in Chicago to know more.

Here is the list of 15 Parks in Chicago

1. Lincoln Park

Lincoln Park
5.0 /5

Named after Illinois’s favourite son, Abraham Lincoln, the Lincoln Park is home to one of the best museums in Chicago and a zoo that you can visit without even having to spend a dime. Inside this sprawling park, which stretches seven miles along the shore, from Ohio Street Beach to Hollywood Beach, one can also find the Lincoln Park Conservatory, the Lincoln Park Cultural Centre and the Chicago History Museum, all of which are open for visitors for free. Other attractions include paths for walking, jogging or biking, playgrounds, golf courses, baseball fields and even a skate park. One also has an easy accessibility to the nearby Lakefront Trail from this park. This park is great for a cosy family picnic as well.

Timings : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 4:00pm
Nearest Subway : Armitage
Main attractions : Lincoln Park Zoo, Lincoln Park Conservatory, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, Alfred Caldwell Lily Pond
Wheelchair accessibility : All public buildings at the zoo have at least one wheelchair-accessibility entrance. All the animal encounter programs at Farm-in-the-Zoo are accessibility by wheelchair.
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : Pasta Palazzo, Café Ba-Ba-Reeba, Chicago Pizza and Over Grinder Co, Athenian Room

2. Millennium Park

Millennium Park
5.0 /5

Awarded the title of Top Attraction in the Midwest, the Millennium Park draws the attention of many who come to visit this 24.5-acre modern park, featuring performance facilities, public artwork, and majestic gardens. The Frank Gehry’s Pritzker Pavilion is quite popular among visitors who come to witness free concerts and movie screenings during summer.

Timings : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 4:00pm
Nearest Subway : Michigan and Rudolph
Main attractions : Frank Gehry’s Pritzker Pavilion, Cloud gate, Crown Fountain, Lurie Garden
Fauna : Varied variety of plants at Lurie Garden includes bear’s breeches,yarrow’Walther Funcke’, yellow giant hyssop and a lot more.
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes, on rental basis
Pet friendly : Pets are not allowed
Grab a bite at : Remington’s, Park Grill Chicago, The Gage, Mid-American club

3. Grant Park

Grant Park
4.5 /5

Grant Park is spread across a whopping 319-acre property, encompassing numerous smaller parks like the Millennium Park, the Maggie Daley Park and a lot more. This park is famous for hosting Barack Obama and his supporters during his 2008 victory night and also for hosting grand festivals like the Taste of Chicago and Lollapalooza. Grant Park has a skate park, numerous public art illustrations, marinas, themed gardens, baseball diamonds, tennis courts and breath-taking views of the gardens and is a favourite among history enthusiasts as it is home to three of the Chicago’s most famous museums – the Art Institute, Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium located on the Museum Campus.

Timings : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 4:00pm
Nearest subway : Chicago Union Station
Main attractions : Maggie Daley Park, Buckingham Fountain, Absolutely Chicago Segway Tours, Millennium Park
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes, on first come first serve basis
Pet Friendly : Yes, but must be leashed
Grab a bite at : The Spoke & the Bird,Tapas Valencia, Coast sushi

4. The 606

The 606
4.5 /5

Originally known as the Bloomingdale trail, this park got renamed as the 606, representing the first three digits of Chicago’s west side zip codes. This 2.7-mile elevated park and trail serves as a connecting way to several parks and public art installations. There are several scenic points along the path which runs through Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Wicker Park and Bucktown, making it a favourite among locals, bikers and children as there is ample area to play in. Other than these attractions, the park also has a chain of street-level parks, an observatory and several public art installations.

Timings : Sunday-Saturday-9:00am to 5:00pm
Nearest Subway : Conservatory Central Park Drive
Main attractions : Garfield Park Fieldhouse, the Art Institute of Chicago, Garfield Park Conservatory
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet Friendly : Yes
Grab a bite : Lola’s Coney Island, CJ’s eatery, Haywood Tavern

5. Garfield Park

Garfield Park
4.5 /5

Spread across a massive 173-acre land, Garfield Park is one of Chicago’s most well-known parks on the west side. This park offers numerous facilities like basketball, baseball, boxing, outdoor swimming, tennis, athletic running fields and a lot mote. Apart from these, Garfield Park has beautiful outdoor floral gardens and also a historic fieldhouse with an elegant ballroom alongside a conservatory. The Garfield Park Conservatory is one of the largest and most stunning conservatories in Chicago and is often referred to as "landscape art under glass,". Here you can find thousands of plant species on display, spread across eight magnificent rooms.

Timings : Sunday-Saturday-9:00am to 5:00pm
Nearest Subway : Conservatory Central Park Drive
Main attractions : Garfield Park Fieldhouse, the Art Institute of Chicago, Garfield Park Conservatory
Fauna : Persian lilies,Reciprocally prickly etc
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet Friendly : Yes
Grab a bite : Lola’s Coney Island, CJ’s eatery, Haywood Tavern

6. Jackson Park

Jackson Park
4.5 /5

Located in the Woodlawn community, the Jackson Park is one of the most prominent parks in Chicago. Jackson park owes its popularity to a unique Japanese garden- the Osaka Garden and its main attraction is the spring time,during late April to early May when one can witness the season of Cherry blossoms .Apart from this garden, the 600-acre park, offers numerous facilities like golf, baseball, basketball, a huge playground, a fitness centre and a tennis court.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 9:00pm
Nearest subway : Gary metro station
Main attractions : Osaka Garden, Museum of science and industry, Garden of the phoenix
Flora and fauna : flora includes Purple flowered raspberry, eastern shooting start,meadow anemone, butterfly milkweed and fauna includes great blue heron, pearl crescent, cabbage white, red breasted merganser etc
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : The Slab Bar-B-Que, Piccolo Mondo

7. Humboldt Park

Humboldt Park
4.5 /5

Humboldt Park is a massive 219 acres of nature that one gets to enjoy in Chicago. This park boasts of acres of prarie-style gardens, inland beaches, bike paths and a baseball field. Humboldt Park also hosts numerous outdoor and indoor events throughout the year, like the Puerto Rican Festival and the Latin Jazz Festival.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Main attractions : National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture, formal garden, Prairie architecture
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : La Palma Puerto Rican Restaurant, Papa’s Cache Sabroso

8. Maggie Daley Park

Maggie Daley Park
4.5 /5

Maggie Daley Park, a 20-acre park, is one of the newest parks in Chicago. With Millennium Park as its neighbour, Maggie Daley Park offers a playground for childrem of different age groups, a skating ribbon, a mini golf course, a climbing wall and a tennis court. The Skating Ribbon, however, is the most visited attraction in this park.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 9:00pm
Main Attractions : Skating ribbon, mini sculptures.
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : Park grill, brown bag seafood co., the gage

9. South Shore Cultural Centre Park

South Shore Cultural Centre Park
4.5 /5

This 20th century club was acquired by Chicago Park district back in 1975 and has now been tastefully restored and modified. The main building in this park is rich of culture, arts and different workshops like culinary workshops, and summer day camps for kids. In the other parts of the park, there is a nature sanctuary, a butterfly garden, massive open space for kids to run around and also a nine-hole golf course.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 9:00pm
Main Attractions : Solarium, Paul Robeson Theatre
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : No
Grab a bite at : South Shore Drive, Parrot Cage, Kennedy Fish & Chicken, Italian Fiesta

10. Winnemac Park

Winnemac Park
4.5 /5

Winnemac Park boasts of more than 22 acres of greenery since 1910 and is a great evening recreational spot for the local residents. The park hosts a variety of programs like the Winnemac youth program which includes basketball, baseball, soccer and summer day camp.and different sports leagues. Swimming lessons are also provided at this park. The massive green open spaces also call for some cosy afternoon picnics for families.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : Me Dee Cafe, Himmel's,San Soo Gab San, Artango Bar and steakhouse

11. Douglas Park

Douglas Park
4.0 /5

Douglas Park is one historical park, that has been serving as a recreational centre ever since it was built back in the 19th century.The massive acres of land in this park house a gymnasium, swimming pool, tennis courts, basketball courts, a soccer field and a mini golf course. There are separate tracks for walking and jogging as well as a separate path for bikers.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Nearest subway : Ogden & Sacramento
Main Attractions : Douglas Nature Park
Flora and Fauna : Monarch butterflies,black swallowtail,common whitetail dragonfly, squirrels, racoons etc.
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes(leashed)
Grab a bite at : Taqueria El Milagro, Doña Torta Mexican Restaurant,Mateo's Pot

12. Ping Tom Memorial Park

Ping Tom Memorial Park
4.5 /5

Ping Tom Memorial Park, is named after a Chinese resident who fought for creating a community space for its residents. This park is a very popular spot for Kayaking and has a pavilion which offers a splendid view of the Chicago river. Very recently, a state-of-the-art fieldhouse has been added, which includes a fitness centre, a swimming pool and a gymnasium. The famous Chicago water taxi services can be availed to reach the dock at this park.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Main attractions : kayaking
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : Sarpino's Pizzeria, Papa Romeo's Pizza, Potbelly sandwich shop

13. Oz Park

Oz Park
4.5 /5

The Oz Park, as the name suggests, is dedicated to the Wizard of Oz and is a great hit among the kids. Numerous sculptures of popular characters from the movie are scattered all across the park. The park has a big wooden castle-like structure for kids to enjoy along with bridges to run across and ropes to climb. There are swings and slides here as well. A separate area is dedicated to the smaller kids, who can barely walk. All in all, this park is best suited for kids.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Nearest subway : Armitage
Main Attractions : Dorothy playlot, Emerald garden
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : Sine, Chez Moi,Kizami Sushi

14. Marquette Park

Marquette Park
4.0 /5

Named after Father Marquette, the Marquette Park offers services like baseball fields, golf course, basketball courts, running and jogging tracks, spray pool and a tennis court as well. One major attraction of this park is its fishing spot, which houses a varied variety of exotic fishes. Marquette park has lush greenery and acres of open spaces which are open to hosting picnics and events. In other parts of the park, there are lagoons and rose gardens which were planted years ago, but are still a major source of attraction.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Nearest subway : Wrightwood
Main Attractions : Rose garden, fishing, lagoons
Pet friendly : Yes

Grab a bite at : Tacos villa, St.Bess Jerk, Sam’s Club, Copper Fox Midway

15. Indian Boundary Park

Indian Boundary Park
4.0 /5

Located in the neighbourhood of Rogers Park, the Indian Boundary Park offers a wide range of amenities like a duck filled lagoon, a spray park and four tennis courts. The spray park features dancing bears as well as spray misters which serves as an exciting attraction for both children and adults.There is a playground, which has a rather rustic feel to it with wooden swings, tunnels, slides and much more. The park offers music lessons for kids as well. The lush green fields are also open to throwing pities and hosting events.

Timing : Sunday-Saturday-6:00am to 11:00pm
Nearest subway : Loyola
Main Attractions : Spray park
Wheelchair accessibility : Yes
Pet friendly : Yes
Grab a bite at : Candlelite Chicago, Pride Sushi and Thai

These parks are the perfect escape when in need of some fresh air to get away from the hustle and bustle of busy Chicago city life. A cosy picnic, a casual stroll, a bike ride or tour of the gardens, these parks are surely worth your time to relax!

This post was published by Asmita Sarkar

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