Free Museum Days in Chicago


freemuseumMost of Chicago’s major museums offer at least a few free days every year. Some even offer free hours every week. Here’s a list of free days and times at some of Chicago’s best museums. (For a list of museums that are always free, click here.)

The Art Institute
The Art Institute is free from 5pm to 8pm every Thursday night.

The Museum of Science and Industry
The Museum of Science and Industry is free on the following days:

  • January 3-7, 10-14, 17-21, 24-28, 31
  • February 1, 8, 14, 15, 22
  • June 1-2, 6-9
  • September 6-9, 12-16, 19-23, 26-30
  • October 31

The Chicago Children’s Museum
The Chicago Children’s Museum at Navy Pier is free the first Sunday of every month.

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
The  Notebaert Museum is free to the public every Thursday.

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DuSable Museum of African American History
DuSable Museum of African American History offers free admission on Sundays from noon to 5pm.

Chicago History Museum
The Chicago History Museum is free on the following days:

  • Tuesday, August 23–Wednesday, August 24
  • Monday, September 12–Friday, September 16
  • Monday, September 19–Friday, September 23
  • Monday, September 26–Friday, September 30
  • Monday, October 3–Friday, October 7
  • Monday, October 10–Thursday, October 13

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
MOCA is free all day on Tuesdays and offers free tours on Tuesdays at 1pm, 2pm and 6pm.

International Museum of Surgical Science
The IMSS waives its admission fee every Tuesday.

Free days and dates are subject to change, please call each museum to confirm.

Photo by kern.justin