- Places to Explore
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
Fodor's Chicago 2014
Field Museum Review
More than 400,000 square feet of exhibit space fill this gigantic museum, which explores cultures and environments from around the world. Interactive exhibits examine such topics as the secrets of Egyptian mummies, the art and innovations of people living in the Ancient Americas, and the evolution of life on Earth. Originally funded by Chicago retailer Marshall Field, the museum was founded in 1893 to hold material gathered for the World's Columbian Exposition; its current neoclassical home opened in 1921.
Explore one of the world's best dinosaur collections in the "Evolving Planet," an awe-inspiring journey through 4 billion years of life. And you can't miss the 65-million-year-old "Sue," the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus rex fossil ever found. At the McDonald's Fossil Preparation Laboratory, you can watch paleontologists cleaning bones.
Shrink to the size of a bug to burrow beneath the soil in the "Underground Adventure" (additional fee). You'll come face-to-face with a giant, animatronic wolf spider and listen to the sounds of gnawing insects.
Travel to ancient Eypgt via a working canal, a living marsh where papyrus is grown, a shrine to the cat goddess Bastet, burial-ceremony artifacts, and 23 mummies. Or spend a couple of hours taking in contemporary and ancient Africa. Dioramas reproduce the homes and lives of Africans from Senegal, Cameroon, and the Sahara.
See nature at its most sparkly in the Grainger Hall of Gems, with magnificent jewels and jewelry.
Learn how museum scientists are preserving biodiversity at "Restoring Earth," in the Abbott Hall of Conservation.
Check out the 3-D theater, screening movies on dinosaurs, mummies, and Ice Age animals.
Don't hesitate to take toddlers to the Field. In the Crown Family PlayLab, kids two to six years old can play house in a re-created pueblo and compare their footprints with a dinosaur's.
It's impossible to see the entire museum in one visit. Try to get tickets to the special exhibit of the season and then choose a couple of subjects you'd like to explore, like North American birds or Chinese jade.
The Sue Store sells a mind-boggling assortment of dinosaur-related merchandise.
Tucked in the back, the dining room comes with wonderful views of the lake and the Museum Campus.
- 80 Degrees: Fodor's Helps You Find Your Best Beach Vacation Spots
- Fodor's Go List 2014: Where we are going in 2014
- World Cup Fever: Start planning your trip to Brazil!
- Fodor's 100 Hotel Awards: Check out the winners of 2013
- Weekend Getaways: Fodor's Recommends the Best Weekend Escapes in the US
- Great American Vacation: Find Your Next U.S. Trip with Fodor's
Where: Chicago with a friend and her pre-teen daughters
When: Two days in February 2014
Why: After being housebound by what seemed to be a never-ending winter (enough already!), it was time to bundle Read more
In December 2013/January 2014 my wife and I did a three week trip to the USA, with the aim of experiencing a proper North American winter. Read more
I've been to Chicago many times, but have never ventured out of town on the Ell. Read more
· News & Features
Locally sourced food has never been more local, as chefs have begun growing their own fresh fruits and ... Read more
With more and more bars opening up around the city, Chicago is proving it knows its way around a cocktail... Read more
The Windy City is home to a slew of new restaurants, boutique hotels, and museum exhibits worth checking... Read more