4100 Illinois Rte 53, Lisle, IL 60532 – Get Directions
Look, But DON'T Touch
Each year in January, we truly enjoy visiting the Enchanted Railroad just across from the visitor's center at the Arboretum. We're members, so it's free and my kids love seeing small moving things and all the details involved.
Of course they can't touch or it would ruin it for everyone, but the folks in there are VERY quick to jump at kids who are curious and excited. This is not behind glass, so it's really up close and personal and much cooler than most exhibits because of this cool factor.
In Numbers: Free for museum members! Cost varies per day otherwise.
For Kids: What kid of any gender doesn't love a little village to see in detail? It's like the world on a tiny scale at just their size.
For Adults: It's indoor (wooo! January activity!), you're out of the house and the kids get a little time to explore something other than your house that I'm sure they are terrorizing at this point in the winter.
Tip: allow the kids to keep those mittens on so they don't touch. I don't know. I'm still trying to figure out how to get them to look and not touch. But well worth the visit! And if you have some extra cash, hit up the little Arb cafe after for lunch.
Holiday Magic at the Enchanted Railroad
There is just something about trains and the holidays. I remember setting up trains with my father at Christmas. So much fun! This year, we headed to the Enchanted Railroad at the Morton Arboretum to catch some of the magic.
The Enchanted Railroad is located in a builing next to the Visitor Center. Santa is on his magical ride, flying above the scene. There is an amazing amount if detail in the display. I especially loved the town areas where you could spot a nutcracker, figure skaters, and people caroling. Besides trains, other vehicles made their way around the tracks. My daughter identified a monorail train, a truck, and a trolley amongst other vehicles.
Like many 7-year-olds, my daughter is obsessed with scavenger hunts. She was ecstatic when we were greeted with a scavenger hunt for the exhibit. It was a great way to further engage the children.
If you are lucky, you will visit the Enchanted Railroad on a mild day and will be able to explore the rest of the Arboretum. Also, a gander through the neat little gift shop is always worthwhile. Food is available at the Gingko Cafe and restrooms are easily accessible.
The exhibit will be open through 1/6/13, closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It is free with admission to the Arboretum: $12 Adults ages 18–64 ($8 Wednesdays*), $11 Seniors ages 65+ ($7 Wednesdays*), $9 Youth ages 2–17 ($6 Wednesdays*). Children under 2 are free!
You can also read about our visit here: http://twomomsalittletimeandakeyboard.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-enchanted-railroad-adding-magic-to.html#more