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The Morton Arboretum was founded in 1922 by Joy Morton, that is the same Morton as in Morton Salt. Think of it like a tree museum; and it is really a large one. Every fall they have a very lovely fall festival with some amazing caramel apples you get to pick your own toppings and design it and all. There are 16 miles of trails to explore. The Arboretum is open year round. Over the last five years they have created a wonderful hedge maze. I am 5’7’ and the hedge now is past my head. There are resting benches, an observation tour, and “interest” points. There is also a toddler maze, which does not go above my knees. They have also created a spectacular children’s garden. We took our special person there this past fall, and even though the garden had “gone to sleep” for the winter; they still had us going on gnome hunts to learn about the trees and shrubs still present. In the spring and summer there are plenty of child friendly water features for kids to splash, push, and explore in. There is a wide variety of tactical play activities that explain parts of the environment. There are also some wicked tree houses to explore that even when our 6 year old trip, couldn’t fall through with his tiny legs. There was a smaller net underneath the bigger one so his shoes didnt even go through.
Updated Nov 26, 2010
Address: 4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL 60532
The Arboretum is a wonderful place, and I've only been there in early spring. Only a few of the spring wildflowers were making a show, trees were still bear. But a walk in the woods, a stroll around the lake, all were wonderful. The variety of life (plant life) is great. See my Woods - east side and Labrynth - west side
$9 Adults (18–64) ($6 Wednesdays)
$8 Seniors (65+) ($5 Wednesdays)
$6 Youth (3–17) ($4 Wednesdays)
Free under age 3
Members always enter for free!
The Arboretum is a five-minute car ride from the Metra train station in Lisle. Some local taxi services are:
American Taxi: 630-920-9480
A M Regional Taxi: 630-971-8888
Naperville DuPage Taxi: 630-305-8365
Updated Aug 20, 2007
The Morton Arboretum is only a few minutes from my house. You have to pay to get in. It is a large collection of woody plants (trees and bushes). Kind of like a big Forest Preserve with some lakes and a river. Has paved road that winds through it along with many hiking trails. Very nice and quiet and peaceful which is hard to find in the hustle and bustle of the suburbs.
Waterfall Glen in Darien is another nice Forest preserve only 10 minutes away. They have a 10 mile loop bike trail that goes through the forest. Gets a little crowded on the weekend though. It's free.
The Fox river is another good outdoor place to explore in Batavia, Geneva, and St Charles. It is maybe 15 or 20 minutes west of Lisle down I88. There are many Forest preserves along the river and nice little towns in betweem. A good paved bike trail runs for quite a ways along it.
Starved Rock State Park is 60 miles (1 hour and ten minutes) from Lisle. Nice canyons and waterfalls (when there has been rain) in the spring. Does not look like the rest of "flat" Illinois does. Lots of trails to hike. No biking though. Illinois river runs along it. Good fishing there sometimes for Sauger, White Bass, and Catfish.
Written Jun 7, 2004