After hours of looking at animals from afar in the rest of Lincoln Park Zoo, kids can come here to get up close and personal. Unlike many other children’s zoos, there are no baby animals at the Pritzker Family Children’s Zoo; instead, the outdoor habitats feature wildlife of the North American woods, including wolves, beavers, and otters. Although there are a few interactive displays outside, most kids head inside to the Treetop Canopy Climbing Adventure, a 20-foot-high wood-and-fabric tree (encased in soft safety netting) where they can scramble up and down. There are also a few small padded play areas for little ones.
The Farm-in-the-Zoo is a working reproduction of a Midwestern farm, complete with a white-picket-fenced barnyard, chicken coops, and demonstrations of butter churning and weaving. You’ll also spot plenty of livestock, including cows, sheep, and pigs. Inside the Main Barn (filled with interactive exhibits), the main attraction is the huge John Deere tractor that kids can climb up into and pretend to drive (Can you say “photo opp”?). In the winter (late Nov–early Mar), Farm-in-the-Zoo is home to an ice skating rink, where you can rent skates or bring your own. Allow 1 hour.