This bronze lion guards the entrance to the Art Institute of Chicago.

Family Vacations: The Art Institute of Chicago

Some of the world's most famous paintings are housed in The Art Institute of Chicago. The collection includes the works of Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, as well as other notable works such as Grant Wood's American Gothic and Edward Hopper's Nighthawks.

Children can traipse through the many galleries of paintings, prints, sculptures, and photographs. The collection of arms and armor, which contains shiny suits of armor, wicked swords and daggers, and ancient firearms, is a particular favorite among children.

The 68 dollhouse-size rooms in the Thorne Miniature Room exhibit are filled with exquisite tiny furniture, household objects, and works of art. Painstakingly constructed and handcrafted, many of the rooms are duplicates of those found in European palaces and homes throughout the United States.

Family programs are highly emphasized at the museum. Many activities are located at the Kraft Education Center, which offers exhibits, games, puzzles, interactive computer games, and a children's library. Families can explore world cultures in an exhibition called Faces, Places, & Inner Spaces. The Art Institute offers a variety of workshops, and an artist's studio is open most weekends so kids can create their own masterpieces.

The Art Institute of Chicago

Address: 111 S. Michigan Ave

Chicago, IL

Phone: 312/443-3600

Hours of Operation:

  • Mon - Fri: 10:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Thurs: Open until 8 p.m.
  • Sat - Sun: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Admission: $12 adults; $7 kids

Continue to the next page for information about the picturesque grounds and impressive art on display at Chicago's Millennium Park.

To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:

  • Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
  • Chicago City Guide: Find out where to stay, what to do, and where to eat when you visit the Windy City.
  • Illinois State Guide: Learn about Mobil Travel Guide-rated hotels and restaurants in Illinois, as well as other recreational activities.
  • Scenic Drives: For those who think that getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the country.