5 fun Navy Pier winter activities

Taking a walk down Navy Pier on a sizzling day in July is a no-brainer. The lake is shimmering, the breeze is nice and there are more than enough boat rides, outdoor vendors, rides, games and photo ops to fill an afternoon in the sun.

If you go

Navy Pier

600 E Grand Ave

Chicago, IL 60601

navypier.com

But the pier is all but neglected after the seasonal cold sets in, as locals and tourists alike wait for the water to thaw. If you can brave the cold, the lack of bustling crowds and the number of indoor family fun attractions during the winter make it the perfect time for you to spend a weekend down by the lake.

Chicago Children’s Museum

The Chicago Children’s Museum provides indoor, interactive and colorful play time for kids year-round, but Move It!, the new temporary exhibit centered on getting kids physically and creatively active, will only be around until April 19. Kids can stretch their muscles as they run and jump all over a play place that they build themselves. Entrance to the exhibit is free with museum tickets. While you’re there, be sure to also check out museum favorites such as the Tinkering Lab, where kids can use real tools safely to create works of their own design and Kids Town, where little ones will be surrounded by a world just their size.

The Chicago Flower& Garden Show

For your little flower-lovers and gardening-helpers, there is no better showcase of the beauty and variety of nature than the Chicago Flower& Garden Show. Apart from the 24 gorgeous display gardens, the show (March 12-20) will feature a Kids’ Activity Garden.

Faces in Focus Caricatures

Get a little silly and have a family caricature made by the artists at Faces in Focus. The talented illustrators can do normal caricatures as well as take special requests. It’s sure to give the whole family a laugh, and you’ll go home with a one-of-a-kind keepsake.

Navy Pier IMAX Theatre

You could just catch a movie at the nearest theater. Or, you could immerse yourself in the experience of the Navy Pier IMAX Theatre. Upcoming shows include the very hyped Jupiter Ascending and the National Geographic exhibition of Pandas: The Journey Home.

Neighborhoods of the World

Every Sunday afternoon between Feb. 21 and April 17, Navy Pier celebrates the many cultures that make up Chicago with their Neighborhoods of the World festivities. Experience a new culture every week, including Italian, Indian, African and Greek, through traditional music, dance, cuisine and crafts.

Taking a walk down Navy Pier on a sizzling day in July is a no-brainer. The lake is shimmering, the breeze is nice and there are more than enough boat rides, outdoor vendors, rides, games and photo ops to fill an afternoon in the sun.

But the pier is all but neglected after the seasonal cold sets in, as locals and tourists alike wait for the water to thaw. If you can brave the cold, the lack of bustling crowds and the number of indoor family fun attractions during the winter make it the perfect time for you to spend a weekend down by the lake.

Chicago Children’s Museum

The Chicago Children’s Museum provides indoor, interactive and colorful play time for kids year-round, but Move It!, the new temporary exhibit centered on getting kids physically and creatively active, will only be around until April 19. Kids can stretch their muscles as they run and jump all over a play place that they build themselves. Entrance to the exhibit is free with museum tickets. While you’re there, be sure to also check out museum favorites such as the Tinkering Lab, where kids can use real tools safely to create works of their own design and Kids Town, where little ones will be surrounded by a world just their size.

The Chicago Flower& Garden Show

For your little flower-lovers and gardening-helpers, there is no better showcase of the beauty and variety of nature than the Chicago Flower& Garden Show. Apart from the 24 gorgeous display gardens, the show (March 14-22) will feature a Kids’ Activity Garden.

Faces in Focus Caricatures

Get a little silly and have a family caricature made by the artists at Faces in Focus. The talented illustrators can do normal caricatures as well as take special requests. It’s sure to give the whole family a laugh, and you’ll go home with a one-of-a-kind keepsake.

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