The best museums in Chicago in 2022

These are the top 50 best museums in Chicago, United States, ranked by their rating and popularity in 2022. Click a museum for more information about the museum, including visitor information, exhibitions and reviews.

For a complete overview of museums in Chicago, their exhibitions and discount cards & passes, see our overview page with all museums in Chicago.

These are the best museums in Chicago:

  1. The Art Institute of Chicago1

    The Art Institute of Chicago

    The Art Institute of Chicago in Chicago 's Grant Park , founded in 1879, is one of the oldest and largest art museums in the world. Recognized for its curatorial efforts and popularity among visitors, the museum hosts approximately 1.5 million people annually. Its collection, stewarded by 11 curator
  2. Shedd Aquarium2

    Shedd Aquarium

    Shedd Aquarium (formally the John G. Shedd Aquarium ) is an indoor public aquarium in Chicago , Illinois , in the United States . Opened on May 30, 1930, the 5 million US gal (19,000,000 l; 4,200,000 imp gal) aquarium was for some time the largest indoor facility in the world. Today it holds about
  3. Field Museum3

    Field Museum

    The Field Museum of Natural History ( FMNH ), also known as The Field Museum , is a natural history museum in Chicago , Illinois , and is one of the largest such museums in the world. The museum is a popular natural-history museum for the size and quality of its educational and scientific programs,
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  5. Museum of Contemporary Art4

    Museum of Contemporary Art

    The Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Chicago is a contemporary art museum near Water Tower Place in downtown Chicago in Cook County , Illinois , United States . The museum, which was established in 1967, is one of the world's largest contemporary art venues. The museum's collection is composed of
  6. Chicago Cultural Center5

    Chicago Cultural Center

    The Chicago Cultural Center, opened in 1897, is a Chicago Landmark building operated by Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events that houses the city's official reception venue where the Mayor of Chicago has welcomed Presidents and royalty, diplomats and community leaders. It is l
  7. Adler Planetarium6

    Adler Planetarium

    The Adler Planetarium is a public museum dedicated to the study of astronomy and astrophysics . It was founded in 1930 by Chicago business leader Max Adler . It is located on the northeast tip of Northerly Island at the shore of Lake Michigan in Chicago , Illinois . The Adler was the first planetar
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  9. International Museum of Surgical Science7

    International Museum of Surgical Science

    The International Museum of Surgical Science is a museum located in the Gold Coast neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois . It is operated by The International College of Surgeons and features exhibits dealing with various aspects of Eastern and Western medicine. It was founded by Dr. Max Thorek in 1954
  10. Museum of Science and Industry8

    Museum of Science and Industry

    The Museum of Science and Industry ( MSI ) is a science museum located in Chicago, Illinois , in Jackson Park , in the Hyde Park neighborhood between Lake Michigan and The University of Chicago . It is housed in the former Palace of Fine Arts from the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition . Initially en
  11. Lincoln Park Conservatory9

    Lincoln Park Conservatory

  12. Lincoln Park Zoo10

    Lincoln Park Zoo

    Lincoln Park Zoo is a 35-acre (14 ha) zoo in Lincoln Park , Chicago , Illinois . The zoo was founded in 1868, making it the fourth oldest zoo in North America. It is also one of a few free admission zoos in the United States. The zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (
  13. The Museum of Contemporary Photography11

    The Museum of Contemporary Photography

    The Museum of Contemporary Photography ( MoCP ) was founded in 1976 by Columbia College Chicago as the successor to the Chicago Center for Contemporary Photography. The museum houses a permanent collection as well as the Midwest Photographers Project (MPP), which contains portfolios of photographers
  14. Oriental Institute12

    Oriental Institute

    The Oriental Institute ( OI ), established in 1919, is the University of Chicago 's interdisciplinary research center for ancient Near Eastern (" Orient ") studies and archaeology museum . It was founded for the university by professor James Henry Breasted with funds donated by John D. Rockefeller,
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  16. Jane Addams Hull-house Museum13

    Jane Addams Hull-house Museum

    Hull House was a settlement house in Chicago, Illinois , United States that was co-founded in 1889 by Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr . Located on the Near West Side of the city, Hull House (named after the original house's first owner Charles Jerald Hull) opened to serve recently arrived European
  17. Chicago Fed's Money Museum14

    Chicago Fed's Money Museum

    The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago (informally the Chicago Fed ) is one of twelve regional Reserve Banks that, along with the Federal Reserve Board of Governors , make up the United States' central bank . The Chicago Reserve Bank serves the Seventh Federal Reserve District, which encompasses the no
  18. The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum15

    The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

    The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum is a natural history museum located in Chicago, Illinois , and operated by the Chicago Academy of Sciences . The museum traces its history to the founding of the Academy in 1857. After a century at a nearby location, the Academy opened its present museum named for
  19. Chicago History Museum16

    Chicago History Museum

    It is always great to learn more about the city you're staying in. This museum is a comprehensible showcase of Chicago with plenty of exhibitions to visit. Discover the history of this amazing city with History Highlights Gallery Tour and then wander through the exhibition space on your own pace. Yo
  20. Dusable Museum of African-american History17

    Dusable Museum of African-american History

    The DuSable Museum of African American History in Chicago is dedicated to the study and conservation of African-American history, culture, and art. It was founded in 1961 by Margaret Taylor-Burroughs , her husband Charles Burroughs, Gerard Lew, Eugene Feldman, Bernard Goss, Marian M. Hadley , and ot
  21. Chicago Children's Museum18

    Chicago Children's Museum

    Your kids will have a blast at this place. What can they do here? Well, almost everything from drawing and painting, sliding down the pole like a firefighter to pumping water from one pool to another or digging for bones in the excavation pit. This museum is both fun and educational!
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  23. Glessner House Museum19

    Glessner House Museum

    The John J. Glessner House , operated as the Glessner House , is an architecturally important 19th-century residence located at 1800 S. Prairie Avenue , Chicago, Illinois . It was designed in 1885–1886 by architect Henry Hobson Richardson and completed in late 1887. The property was designated a
  24. Mccormick Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum20

    Mccormick Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum

  25. Arts Club of Chicago21

    Arts Club of Chicago

    Arts Club of Chicago is a private club and public exhibition space located in the Near North Side community area of Chicago in Cook County, Illinois , United States, a block east of the Magnificent Mile , that exhibits international contemporary art . It was founded in 1916, inspired by the succes
  26. National Hellenic Museum22

    National Hellenic Museum

    The National Hellenic Museum is the second oldest American institution dedicated to displaying and celebrating the cultural contributions of Greeks and Greek-Americans. Formerly known as the Hellenic Museum and Cultural Center, the National Hellenic Museum is located in Chicago ’s Greektown , at th
  27. National Museum of Mexican Art23

    National Museum of Mexican Art

    The National Museum of Mexican Art (Formerly known as the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum ) is a museum which features Mexican , Latino , and Chicano art and culture. The museum was founded in 1982 by Carlos Tortolero and Helen Valdez. Located in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago , Illinois , the c
  28. Chinese American Museum of Chicago24

    Chinese American Museum of Chicago

    The Chinese American Museum of Chicago (CAMOC) seeks to advance the appreciation of Chinese American culture through exhibitions, education, and research and to preserve the past, present, and future of Chinese Americans primarily in the American Midwest . The museum opened in 2005 in Chicago's Chi
  29. Polish Museum of America25

    Polish Museum of America

    The Polish Museum of America is located in West Town , in what had been the historical Polish Downtown neighborhood of Chicago . It is home to numerous Polish artifacts, artwork, and embroidered folk costumes in its growing collection. Founded in 1935, it is one of the oldest ethnic museums in the U
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  31. Smart Museum of Art26

    Smart Museum of Art

    The David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art is an art museum located on the campus of the University of Chicago in Chicago , Illinois . The permanent collection has over 15,000 objects. Admission is free and open to the general public. The Smart Museum and the adjacent Cochrane-Woods Art Center were d
  32. Ukrainian National Museum27

    Ukrainian National Museum

    Ukrainian National Museum ( UNM ) is located in the historical Ukrainian Village neighborhood of Chicago , United States. It is home to a plethora of Ukrainian artifacts, artwork, musical instruments, and embroidered folk costumes among its growing collection.
  33. Museum of Broadcast Communications28

    Museum of Broadcast Communications

    The Museum of Broadcast Communications ( MBC ) is an American museum, the stated mission of which is "to collect, preserve, and present historic and contemporary radio and television content as well as educate, inform and entertain through our archives, public programs, screenings, exhibits, publica
  34. Pritzker Military Museum & Library29

    Pritzker Military Museum & Library

    The Pritzker Military Museum & Library (formerly Pritzker Military Library ) is a non-profit museum and a research library for the study of military history on Michigan Avenue in Chicago, Illinois . The institution was founded in 2003, and its specialist collections include material relating to Wins
  35. Norwood Park Historical Society Museum30

    Norwood Park Historical Society Museum

  36. Bronzeville Children's Museum31

    Bronzeville Children's Museum

    Bronzeville Children's Museum is a museum in the Calumet Heights community area of the South Side of Chicago. It is the first and only African American children's museum in the United States. Founded in 1998, the museum moved to its current location at 9301 South Stony Island Avenue in the Pill
  37. 32

    Busy Beaver Button Museum

    Busy Beaver Button Museum offers a different look at history via a collection of buttons collected over the last century. Historical moments, lives and experiences of the buttons' owners nicely illustrate a whole century since 1896 when the pinback buttons were patented.
  38. The Renaissance Society33

    The Renaissance Society

  39. Richard H. Driehaus Museum34

    Richard H. Driehaus Museum

  40. American Writers Museum35

    American Writers Museum

    The American Writers Museum is a museum of American Literature and writing that opened in Chicago in May 2017. The museum was designed by Amaze Design of Boston. The American museum was inspired by the Dublin Writers Museum .
  41. 36

    National Public Housing Museum

  42. National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture37

    National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture

    The National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture (formerly Institute of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture ) is a museum in Chicago dedicated to interpreting the arts and culture of the Puerto Rican people and of the Puerto Ricans in Chicago . Founded in 2001, it is housed in the historic landmark Hu
  43. 38

    Chicago Architecture Foundation

  44. Chicago Sports Museum39

    Chicago Sports Museum

  45. A. Philip Randolph Pullman Porter Museum40

    A. Philip Randolph Pullman Porter Museum

  46. Leather Archives and Museum41

    Leather Archives and Museum

  47. Clarke House Museum42

    Clarke House Museum

    The Henry B. Clarke House is a Greek Revival style house in Chicago , Illinois , United States. Henry Brown Clarke was a native of New York State who had come to Chicago in 1833 with his wife, Caroline Palmer Clarke, and his family. He entered into the hardware business with William Jones and Byram
  48. 43

    Loyola University Museum of Art

    The Loyola University Museum of Art ( LUMA ), which opened in the fall of 2005, is unique among Chicago's many museums for mounting exhibits that explore the spiritual in art from all cultures, faiths, and eras. LUMA is located on Loyola University Chicago 's Water Tower Campus in downtown Chicago,
  49. Pullman National Monument Visitors Center44

    Pullman National Monument Visitors Center

  50. 45

    Medieval Torture Museum

  51. Stony Island Arts Bank46

    Stony Island Arts Bank

  52. 47

    Willie Dixon's Blues Heaven Foundation - Historic Chess Records Building

    A must see for any die-hard fan of blues. Legendary Chess Studio where majority of big names recorded.
  53. 48

    National Veterans Art Museum

    The National Veterans Art Museum , formerly the National Vietnam Veterans Art Museum , located at 4041 N. Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago's six corners neighborhood, is dedicated to displaying and studying art produced by veterans from the Vietnam War and other wars and conflicts. Originally a traveling
  54. 49

    Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art

    The Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art (UIMA) ( Ukrainian : Український Інститут Модерного Мистецтва (Ukrayinskyi Instytut Modernoho Mystetstva) ) is a modern art museum serving the Chicago area with an ongoing program of cultural exhibitions, literary events, film screenings, and music recitals. UIM
  55. 50

    Intuit: the Center For Intuitive and Outsider Art


All museums in Chicago