5 indoor nature centers to celebrate spring’s arrival


Spring is almost here in Chicagoland! The snow has melted, the days are longer and there’s an extra pep in your step. It’s not quite time to pack up our coats yet, but as we anxiously await the beautiful days to come, here are some indoor nature centers to visit with your family to help us celebrate the new season.


Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center


Head to the Western Suburbs for a dose of history at Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center. The one-room schoolhouse features native animals and interactive displays the entire family will enjoy. Later in the season, you can also enjoy the pear, apple and plum blossoms.


Wildlife Discovery Center


In the Northern Suburbs, you’ll find Lake Forest’s Wildlife Discovery Center where your kids can come face-to-face with nature. They’ll explore reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals while learning about wildlife conservation and environmental stewardship.


Garfield Park Conservatory


Featuring two acres of lush, indoor gardens under glass, Garfield Park Conservatory is the perfect place to spend a few hours of your week. The conservatory also hosts children’s’ concerts, weekend learning and other interactive activities for kids.


Judy Istock Butterfly Haven at Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum


Nothing else says spring quite like flowers and butterflies! Over 1,000 winged beauties will circulate as you soak in the 80-degree temperature and 80 percent humidity at the Butterfly Haven at Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. You will leave feeling ready for the season and inspired to explore your surroundings once the first warm day arrives.


Chicago Botanic Garden’s Orchid Show


Take a trip to the islands, beaches and rainforests of the South Pacific and the Amazon via Chicago Botanic Garden’s Orchid Show. It may still be chilly outside, but this may be the escape you and your loved ones need to get you through the last few weeks of the cold Chicago weather.



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