31st Street Beach
63rd street beach
Sunset at Montrose Beach.
RECOMMENDED: Things to do in the summer in Chicago
The western suburb recycled a former quarry into this four-acre inland beach, with zero-depth-entry waters and plenty of sand for tots to build castles. Teens hang out at the deep end—which has a pier and a diving board—while families stretch out with a picnic or a game of Frisbee on the large, grassy field. $10 per person ($3 per person after 5pm).
This pristine beach is designed to make the most of your lakeside fun, rain or shine. Rent umbrellas ($4) when it’s hot out, or take shelter in a shaded, picnic-table-dotted trellis area (free before 4pm, first-come, first-served) during a downpour. Kids love the water-play area. Bring your tennis rackets and grab a game on the artificial grass courts at adjacent Lakefront Park. $10 ($5 from 6–8pm), kids 17 and under $7 ($4 from 6–8pm).
This North Side beach provides a picturesque view of the city along with a few other things that will keep your kiddos occupied. Walk toward the dog beach to check out the pups running around or peruse the dunes area, perfect for identifying birds. The beach walk allows easy access for strollers, and the Dock at Montrose Beach restaurant is equipped with a kids' menu for afternoon dining.
Show up early to nab parking and a patch of sand at this family-friendly stretch on the city’s South Side. The beach features spotless shores and surf and stroller beach mats so you can wheel wee ones right up to your umbrella. The beach area, which went through a major renovation in 2012, now features a playground, an eco-friendly harbor, and unique and colorful tree sculptures. Free.