Maggie Daley Park#13 in Best Things To Do in Chicago
Maggie Daley Park is an expansive property located just east of Millennium Park in downtown Chicago. The massive green space offers numerous activities for both kids and adults on-site, including a climbing wall, a mini-golf course, a playground, a public garden, an ice skating rink (during the winter) and a tennis facility. Whatever you choose to do, you'll get to enjoy fantastic views of the Chicago skyline. Recent guests loved that the park is free to access, and they noted that the attraction is excellent for family fun.
Though many attractions within the park are free, there are costs associated with the climbing wall, mini-golf course, skating rink and snack kiosk, and some things to do are only seasonal. The park is open 365 days a year from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., but most people enjoy the green space more during the warmer weather. The park is within walking distance of many downtown attractions and hotels, and a few bus routes stop right next to the attraction. The nearest L station is Washington/Wabash. There are parking lots within walking distance of Maggie Daley Park as well, but they can be expensive and crowded. For more information, visit the park's website.
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#1 Grant Park and Buckingham Fountain
Often referred to as "Chicago's front yard," Grant Park is a 319-acre swath of green space that starts at the eastern edge of the Loop and stretches down to the northern fringes of the Near South Side. First-time visitors should plan on spending a fair amount of time in Grant Park: This is where you'll find several of Chicago's most popular things to do, including The Field Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago and Shedd Aquarium. (Millennium Park also rubs elbows with the northwest corner of Grant Park.) Baseball diamonds, flower gardens, walking paths and wide-open grassy terrain are available as well.
At the heart of Grant Park is Buckingham Fountain. One of the largest fountains in the world, this tiered water feature boasts 133 jets that shoot water as high as 150 feet into the air during 20-minute choreographed displays (which take place every hour on the hour between 9 a.m. and 10:35 p.m. from April to October). At night, the fountain's performance is accompanied by lights and music.
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