Family Time: 7 Things to Do in Chicago With Teens

Family Time: 7 Things to Do in Chicago With Teens

Who wouldn’t be captivated by the allure of a city that welcomes over 58 million tourists annually? Your family is no exception as you prepare for your next Chicago vacation. More specifically, though, what are some engaging things to do in Chicago with teens?

This bustling city has an abundance of attractions, history, sports, shopping, and a rich food scene, ensuring every moment is filled with fascination. Let’s embark on a journey that will guarantee your teenager never grows bored in the Windy City.

1. Visit the Museum Campus

Nestled on the picturesque lakefront, the Museum Campus houses three of the city’s most famous institutions: the Adler Planetarium, the Field Museum, and the Shedd Aquarium.

The Adler Planetarium can rocket your teens’ interest into outer space. It’s a gateway to the cosmos, with interactive exhibits on astronomy and astrophysics that ignite curiosity.

The Field Museum is perfect for those with a keen interest in natural history. It showcases everything from dinosaur skeletons to ancient Egyptian artifacts. Teens will appreciate the chance to immerse themselves in different eras and cultures.

At the Shedd Aquarium, your family will plunge into an underwater spectacle. Marvel at the vibrant marine life, including dolphins, beluga whales, and sea otters. It’s a treasure trove of oceanic exploration that teens will find enchanting.

2. Explore Navy Pier

Navy Pier is another must-see location on your list of things to do in Chicago with teens. This iconic landmark extends out onto Lake Michigan, offering stunning views of the Chicago skyline.

The Centennial Wheel is a highlight that should not be missed. This giant Ferris wheel towers over the lake, providing a panoramic vista of the city. As the gondola rises, so does the excitement.

A stroll along the pier also reveals an array of restaurants, shops, and the Chicago Children’s Museum – an attraction that also caters to teens with its engaging exhibits. The Pier Park, with its classic carousel and mini-golf course, brings a dash of old-fashioned amusement park charm.

3. Experience Private Yacht Fun

One of the most unique and thrilling ways to view the city is from the water. This is where comes into play. A private yacht cruise on Lake Michigan offers an unmatched perspective of Chicago’s iconic skyline.

Whether it’s a daytime voyage or a sunset cruise, these tours create unforgettable memories. They offer the perfect blend of leisure, luxury, and awe-inspiring views. While on board, teens can snap Instagram-worthy photos and revel in the cool lake breeze.

4. Take a Food Tour in Chicago’s Neighborhoods

Chicago is as much a feast for the palate as it is for the eyes. Embarking on a food tour is not just about satiating your appetite, but it’s also a fantastic way to connect with the city’s rich cultural tapestry.

Chicago’s deep-dish pizza and distinctive hot dogs are known far and wide. But that’s just the tip of the culinary iceberg. The city’s neighborhoods, each boasting its unique flavor profile, invite you and your teens on an exciting taste journey.

Chinatown is your go-to spot for a diverse array of Asian cuisines. Here, you’ll find mouthwatering dim sum, steaming bowls of pho, and hand-pulled noodles. Every meal is a delightful dance of flavors that keeps you coming back for more.

Little Italy, with its tantalizing aromas wafting through the streets, is a paradise for pasta and pizza lovers. Must-try dishes include creamy fettuccine Alfredo, hearty lasagna, and, of course, cannoli for dessert. This neighborhood is a testament to Chicago’s love affair with Italian cuisine.

Lastly, Pilsen, the heart of Mexican food culture in Chicago, offers authentic tacos, tamales, and enchiladas that will transport your taste buds straight to Mexico. With vibrant murals adorning its streets, Pilsen is a feast for the senses.

5. Discover Lincoln Park

One of the best things to do in Chicago, especially in the summer, is to visit Lincoln Park. It’s a vast green space where your family can enjoy nature without leaving the city.

The Lincoln Park Zoo is a family favorite. It’s home to hundreds of animals and offers free admission. Just nearby, the Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool is a peaceful hideaway, perfect for quiet moments amidst nature.

Head over to the North Avenue Beach, where you can soak up the sun or participate in beach volleyball. With its numerous walking trails, picnic spots, and play areas, Lincoln Park is a slice of outdoor heaven in the heart of the city.

6. Shop at the Magnificent Mile

If your teens have a knack for shopping, they’ll love the Magnificent Mile. This stretch on Michigan Avenue is a shopper’s paradise with an array of stores to cater to every taste and budget.

High-end fashion brands like Gucci and Chanel have their homes here. But you’ll also find affordable options like H&M and Forever 21. Whether you’re hunting for the latest fashion trends, tech gadgets, or unique souvenirs, the Magnificent Mile has got you covered.

Apart from shopping, there are excellent dining spots where you can rest and refuel. And don’t forget to check out the historic Water Tower, one of the few structures that survived the Great Chicago Fire.

7. Feel the Thrill at Six Flags Great America

The ultimate thrill destination for teens is Six Flags Great America. Located just outside Chicago, this amusement park boasts a variety of roller coasters, water rides, and entertainment shows.

The Goliath, one of the fastest and tallest wooden roller coasters in the world, is a crowd-pleaser. The Hurricane Harbor water park is a perfect retreat during the hot summer days. With numerous thrill rides and attractions, this place guarantees an adrenaline-filled day that your teens will love.

Uncover More Things to Do in Chicago with Teens

Clearly, Chicago has no shortage of teen-friendly adventures waiting to be explored. This city effortlessly blends education, fun, and unforgettable experiences, making it the perfect setting for your next family vacation. Whether you’re relishing the skyline from a private yacht or finding your favorite new dish on a food tour, you’ve experienced just a slice of what this magnificent city has to offer.

Eager to uncover more fun family vacation ideas? Keep reading our blog and stay updated on the best spots and things to do in Chicago with teens.

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