Along Illinois Route 53, a a outdoor retreat puts more than 1,700 acres of nature on display. The Morton Arboretum displays all four seasons along biking paths, hiking trails and lush gardens. Every year, this nature center helps thousands of visitors rediscover the beauty in the land and the importance of preserving it.
The mission of the Arboretum is simple: to plant and protect the trees. However, the inventiveness with which the Arboretum pursues this mission is a far cry from simple. Hands-on educational programs, a number of activities and the perfect indoor and outdoor venues encourage visitors to engage with each other and their surroundings. The Arboretum has expansive pavilions, an impressive visitor center, the Thornhill Education Center, a library, restaurant, cafe and – of course – the most beautiful venue of all: the great outdoors. These various spaces are used for educational programs, performances, meetings and weddings year round.
A full day at the Morton Arboretum might begin with a cup o’ Joe from the Ginkgo cafe, a crisp hike through the 16 miles of trails, a short bird-watching session, an informative tour on the Acorn Express (the Arboretum’s open-air tram), a fresh and organic lunch-with-a-view at the Ginkgo Room and a final trip through the grounds’ bike paths. With this schedule in mind, the Morton Arboretum must not be missed during what might be said is this expansive attraction’s time to shine: fall. The Arboretum takes advantage of the stunning color pallet and optimal temperatures of autumn to put on exciting events and activities. The Fall Color Festival runs through October and includes a 5k Run and Walk, weekend theater hikes, games, crafts, a glass pumpkin patch and mouth-watering fall fare like brats and taffy apples.
The Morton Arboretum comes alive as nature slowly slips into winter.The Morton Arboretum is open daily and does require admission; however, Arboretum-goers can rest assured that their money is well spent on the organization’s mission. Come experience a unique destination in an otherwise bustling region, learn about our home, and enjoy a full day of activity at the Morton Arboretum.