Chicago Family Attractions

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum | Best Tips for Parking, Free Days, Butterflies

Spread the love

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum is a family favorite located in the heart of Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood. This Chicago attraction will transport you out of the city and into Nature exploring butterfly habitats, river locks, and wetlands. Follow along with me in this complete guide to visiting the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum to learn where to park (which can be tricky), which days are free, admission, membership, exhibits to visit, and more. All the details you need to know before you go!

Best Nature Museum in Chicago for Kids. Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum is filled with beautiful buterflies, nature trails, reptiles & play areas. Click through to get all the tips you need for your first visit including parking, where to eat and things to do. #notebaert, #chicago, #naturemuseum, #familytravel, #traveltips

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum | Best Tips for Parking, Free Days, Butterflies

Parking at Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum is located in the City of Chicago and this can make parking a little more of a challenge. The first and free option is finding street parking on Cannon or Stockton Drive. You can search the surrounding streets and even across Fullerton Parkway by the Lincoln Park Zoo. We often park by this free zoo and walk through it on our way in and out of the Nature Museum. It’s a great way to make it a full day of fun. Learn more about Lincoln Park Zoo with kids here.

Option two is to pay for parking. There is a small Chicago Park District lot located across the street from the Museum at 2431 North Cannon Drive. However, this lot fills up quickly, especially during the summer months. You can also find a few more paid lots if you are willing to walk a bit. Here is a link to a few parking lots in the area.

You could also park in the Lincoln Park Zoo lot which is located at Fullerton Parkway and Cannon Drive, 2400 North Cannon Drive, Chicago
Here is a link to that parking lot. This is an easy walk to the Museum.

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel

Free Days & Admission to Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Free Days

I love that Chicago Museums offer free days and I try to take advantage of as many of them as possible. Every Thursday, the Peggy Notebaert offers Illinois residents a suggested donation day. So, it is not totally free but you can throw in a couple bucks for your whole family vs. the higher daily rate. The nice part about it being offered every week is that it’s not as crowded as other Chicago Museums on free days.

Admissions

As of January 2019 here are the admission prices at Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum.


• $9 for adults
‌• $7 for students and seniors (60+)
‌• $6 for children ages 3 – 12
‌• Free for children under 3

Membership to Peggy Notebaert

If you plan to visit a couple times a year, you might consider buying a Membership. Some great perks are free admission everyday, free coat check, and free stroller check. I love the stroller check. It’s a great option when you have a long walk to the car but don’t want to be burdened with a stroller while visiting the museum. The other added bonus is reciprocal admission to 300 other museums around the world.

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel
Eat Your Lunch in the Nature’s Lunchbox Room

Where to Eat

The Nature Museum offers a small cafe at the entrance to the Museum. You will find some pastries, snacks. hearty salads and small dishes. However this is not open all day.

You can also bring your own food and eat at tables provided in the lobby and at Nature’s Lunchbox. The other option is finding a restaurant in the Lincoln Park area or eating at a restaurant in the Lincoln Park Zoo.

Family Travel Checklist. What to pack for your next family vacation! Free Printable
Click for Free Printable Travel Checklist from
Happy Mom Hacks

Butterfly Exhibit and More

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum has 10 different exhibits plus the outside nature trails. Let me highlight a few of my kids’ favorites that I think your kids will love too.

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel
Judy Istock Butterfly Haven

Judy Istock Butterfly Haven

Walkthrough the fantastic world of butterflies in this 2,700 square foot tropical greenhouse filled with more than 1,000 butterflies. Children will be immersed in colorful butterflies and exotic birds. Even more exciting is that children can watch museum staff release new butterflies into the exhibit every day. This was really fun to see!

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel
Riverworks Water Play

Riverworks

This cool water table exhibit is not your typical water play. Kids will get to build dams, learn about the Chicago locks, control water turbines, and change the flow of the river. I found this area great for all ages as younger kids can splash around while older ones enjoy building and learning Chicago’s water systems.

Tip: There are no water smocks so I would go to this exhibit at the end of your visit and bring a change of clothes.

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel
Turtle Habitat at Mysteries of the Marsh

Mysteries of the Marsh

In this exhibit, kids will get to visit their living collection of reptiles, amphibians, and various invertebrates. There are seven different types of wetlands represented here. What I liked about this exhibit is the reptiles are easy for all age kids to view up close.

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel
Feeding the Turtles at the Peggy Notebaert Museum

Tip: The kids can watch an animal feeding in this area every day. Check the daily schedule for times. The last time we were there, we got to watch the turtles being fed up close.

Best Tips Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. Chicago Musuem for kids with unforgettable Butterly exhibit, reptiles, playareas and more. Learn where to park, eat and things to do for a great Family day out. #notebaert, #chicago, #traveltips, #familytravel
Hands-On Habitat Play Area

Hands-On Habitat

When the kids just need to run around, this is where you go. Kids can explore a cave and swing like a squirrel, steer a ship, dress up as animals, explore a beaver lodge, and climb up and down a two-story tree with slide. It’s a great indoor play area.

Best Things to do-Chicago Field Museum of Natural History with kids. All the tips you need to know before you go with your family. #fieldmuseum, #chicagomuseum, #traveltips, #familyvacation
Wilderness Walk – Coyote Habitat

Wilderness Walk

Take a stroll through a re-created Illinois prairie, savanna, and dune ecosystem and see all the birds and animals who live here. Also in this exhibit is the Family Look in Lab where you can watch and question museum scientists who are preserving animals in their living collection. The staff here was great at interacting with the kids and teaching them about the different animals they preserve. My kids loved this area.

Final Nature Museum Tips

Coat Check – Coat Check costs 50 cents and is located at the entrance of the museum. If you plan to go in the winter, I think it’s worth the 50 cents to not have to lug around all your kids, coats.

Bathrooms – The bathrooms are pretty spread out so just keep this in mind if you have a newly potty trained child.

Crowds – It tends to be less crowded in the afternoon after groups leave and little kids nap.

Explore Lincoln Park– Take advantage of finding parking in Lincoln Park and take time to explore the outdoor Nature Trails and visit Lincoln Park Zoo. The museum only takes 2-3 hours so use the rest of the day to have a city adventure.

Age Range – Wondering what’s a good age to take kids here? I think a range of children can find things to do here due to the different levels of learning. However, I do think it is more for younger kids. I would suggest age 12 and younger.

I hope you are now prepared for a great day out at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. You will not regret exploring this amazing nature museum and Chicago attraction with your kids. It’s sure to be a fun-filled family day out.

Do you have any questions or great tips? Please leave them in the comments I love to hear from my readers. Want to get more great family travel ideas, easy meals, household hacks and more? Join the Happy Mom Hacks Community and receive our weekly newsletter to keep you up to date. Bonus – you’ll get a free printable Family Travel Checklist.

Subscribe to Happy Mom Hacks Newsletter and have access to the Ultimate Family Travel Checklist. Plus great Mom tips and tricks and family travel ideas.

Looking for a laugh every day? Join my Happy Mom Hacks Facebook Page, Twitter & Instagram for Family inspiration and daily parenting jokes to bring a smile on your face.

Don’t forget to Pin this for Later

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum Chicago. Visit beautiful butterflies, reptiles, nature trails your kids will love. Be prepared for your visiting to this amazing nature museum in chicago with these tips. #notebaert, #nature, #familytravel, #chicago


Need More fun ideas for Kids in the Chicagoland Area? Check out more Happy Mom Hacks suggestions below and follow me on twitter for more Family adventures.

Best Things to do at the Chicago Field Museum of Natural History with kids. All the tips you need to know before you go with your family to this Illinois museum. #fieldmuseum, #chicagomuseum, #traveltips, #familyvacation
Best Tips Chicago Shedd Aquarium with Kids. Things to do, where to eat, park, and free days. Families will love visiting Dolphins, Beluga Whales, Penguins and fish. #sheddaquarium, #chicagoattractions, #traveltips,
Best Tips Chicago Museum of Science and Industry with kids, Find out what to see, things to do, where to eat, where to park, free days and more. Use these tips to have a fun family day. #familyvacation, #chicago, #scienceandindustry, #chicagomuseum, #traveltip
Kohl Children's Museum Ideas and tips to plan your visit. Need Things to do in Chicago? This great children's Museum has amazing hands on exhibits and fun kids activites all will love. Use this guide to prepare for a wonderful visit! #childrensmuseum, #playkcm, #thingstodochicago, #kohlmuseum
7 Fun things to do in Chicago with kids you won't want to miss. Explore an amazing playground and zoo in the summer. Ice skate in Millennium Park in the winter. Don't forget the great Museums and aquariums too. So many awesome Chicago Attractions your family will love for a weekend getaway or stay-cation!! #chicagoattractions, #familyvacation, #traveltip
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Spread the love

6 thoughts on “Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum | Best Tips for Parking, Free Days, Butterflies

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *