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Jackson Park

Jackson Park Chicago IL

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Open Year-Round

Jackson Park

Quick Facts

  • Jackson Park Chicago hosted the World's Fair in 1893 famous for its "White City" of plaster buildings.
  • The Jackson Park Golf Course opened in 1899 and was the first public golf course west of the Alleghenies.
  • The original Fine Arts Palace from the 1893 World's Fair now houses Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry.

6401 S. Stony Island Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
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The Famous Jackson Park Offers Great Family Friendly Activities

Located in

South Side


This activity is FREE!


Features: After the state legislature created the South Park Commission in 1869, the renowned designers of New York's Central Park were hired to lay out the 1055-acre park. Known originally as South Park, in 1881 it was renamed Jackson Park to honor Andrew Jackson (1767-1845), the seventh president of the United States. In 1890, Jackson Park was selected as the site for the World's Columbian Exposition. Today, two structures remain as impressive symbols of the World's Columbian Exposition. The "Golden Lady" sculpture and the original Fine Arts Palace, which now houses Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry.

Jackson Park has a variety of great Chicago family friendly recreational facilities, including tennis courts, baseball fields, 18-hole golf course and walking trails. Fishing is allowed in the park's lagoons, and Osaka Garden is a Japanese stroll garden located within Jackson Park.

Why We Go: Not only does the beautiful Jackson Park Chicago provide the perfect place for a casual stroll or bike ride, but it offers an immense selection of activities and facilities including an 18-hole golf course, tennis courts and playgrounds.  You can also peruse the Museum of Science and Industry, or go fishing at Chicago Jackson Park.

  • Chicago Biking: Jackson Park Chicago is part of the 18-mile Chicago Lakefront Trail (LFT), which is popular for jogging and bicycling.  You can enjoy Chicago bicycle rentals and take a scenic ride through Chicago Jackson Park and the surrounding parks.
  • Osaka Garden: During World War II vandals destroyed the Japanese Garden in Jackson Park; however, with the help of the city of Osaka, the Chicago Park District was able to revitalize the garden and restore it to its original grandeur.  It is a great place for a romantic date, or to take your family for a relaxing afternoon.
  • Golfing: The Jackson Park Golf Course is the only 18-hole golf course of the Chicago Park District golf facilities.  If you are an avid golfer, you must play this course, if not for its scenery, then for its history.  The Jackson Park Golf Course was the first public golf course west of the Alleghenies when it opened in 1899. 

Inside Knowledge: During the Cold War, part of Jackson Park Chicago contained a Nike Surface-to-Air Missile site and the nearby "Point" was used as its radar station.

Do's and Don'ts:

  • Do Check Out the Museum of Science and Industry: The museum in Jackson Park is the largest science museum in the western hemisphere, and it is a great place you bring your kids.  The museum houses a captured German submarine from World War II and the Apollo 8 spacecraft, which took the first humans to the moon.
  • Do Wear Comfortable Clothing: Walking shoes are a must when visiting Jackson Park, whether you are strolling through the Osaka Garden, or biking along the Chicago Lakefront Trail.  You and your family will be able to enjoy the park more if you wear comfortable clothes.
  • Don't Forget Your Kids: Jackson Park and its many facilities have family friendly activities your kids will never forget a day in the park.  They can run around the playground, ride a bike, or go fishing for the afternoon.
  • Don't Forget Your Fishing Pole: The many lagoons in Chicago Jackson Park allow fishing, and with the recent revitalization projects and the decision by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to stock them with fish, the lagoons have become a very popular local fishing spot.  They are a great place to take your family.