Babies might not old enough to monkey around — but that doesn’t mean they can’t get near the monkey bars. Parks across Chicago are meant for all ages to enjoy, and some are particularly equipped for infants. If you’re itching to enjoy fresh air and nature with your little bundle, flip through our photo album to discover the best baby-friendly parks in the city and beyond. Each offers something different, from shaded areas to stimulating colors to grassy slopes perfect for tummy time.

For day trips: Starved Rock State Park

Located about an hour-and-a-half southwest of Chicago, Starved Rock is a destination for campers, hikers and nature enthusiasts. It's also great for adventurous parents who don't mind strapping on the baby carrier and hoofing it. The lush trees, greenery and waterfalls are sensory stimulation at its best. There are many rugged forested paths, but the paved pathway is perfect for stroller pushers. The onsite visitors center is equipped with a clean bathroom and concession stand. 178 Rte. 71, Utica (815-667-4726 online at

What is your favorite park to take your baby to? Let us know in the Comments section below.

— Tabitha Green

Photos: Courtesy of Walter P on Yelp; Evanston Park District, Chicago Park District, Lawrence Y on Yelp, Illinois Office Tourism