Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois
One of my favorite places to visit in Illinois is the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois. Lisle is a suburb West of Chicago.
Growing up I always enjoyed going here with my mom to get away from the suburban bustle. When you are at the arboretum you are surrounded by all sorts of different plant and tree species as well as lakes, prairies, and forest. I always felt like it was a private escape.
You can drive your car through or park in one of the main parking areas and hike around numerous trails. As the years went on I moved away from the area and had children of my own. I decided to take my son here and was so surprised and delighted to find out that this was a completely different arboretum then I had grown up with.
There was still the original charm of forests and nature but now there is an AMAZING Childrens area. There are different garden and forest themed area throughout the childrens garden.
To make learning about nature fun for the kids there are play areas, interactive displays, running creeks for the kids to stand in, and huge play areas. Often times when I have visited I see crafts or a special activity going on as well.
If you look on their website you will find a special section that highlights the activities going on in the children's garden. Often times they will have fun seasonal activities that tie in with Halloween or Christmas.
There is a restaurant and store on site, although the restaurant is not geared towards children. I would definitely recommend visiting before or after meal time or you could always pack a picnic lunch, sit back, and enjoy the view. For more information visit www.mortonarb.org