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9 Totally Fun Things To Do With Kids In Lincoln, Nebraska

Lincoln is a favorite quick getaway for my family, since it’s less than an hour drive from Omaha. We plan a day trip or overnight trip to the city at least once a year. After a few years of doing this, we have a good idea of some of the most fun things to do with kids in Lincoln, Ne.

UPDATE: This post was written in 2018 but has been updated in April 2024 to include new admission prices.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

I’ve compiled a list of the places my kids loved the most in Lincoln. Here they are, eight great things to do with kids in Lincoln:

Looking for a kid-friendly Midwest destination that's affordable and fun? Try Lincoln, Nebraska. From the children's zoo to fossils and ice cream and bounce gyms, Lincoln has a lot to do on a weekend getaway. Things to do in Lincoln Nebraska #Lincoln #LNK #Nebraska # family travel #familytime

Lincoln Children’s Museum

Where: 1420 P St., Lincoln, Neb.

Why: Hands down, this is the one place in Lincoln my kids request to visit every. single. time. If your kids are younger than 8, this place will be a hit with them. It’s three stories and full of play opportunities. My kids love the role play areas, like pretending to be Johnny Carson.

Bridge inside Lincoln Children's Museum in downtown Lincoln, Nebraska
Lincoln Children’s Museum

Cost: Children (18 months to 15 years old), $14.95; adults (ages 16+), $12.95; and children younger than 18 months, FREE. Reciprocal membership alert! Learn more about the Lincoln Children’s Museum.

Planning a trip to Lincoln? You may want to include one of these Lincoln pizza shops on your list.

Morrill Hall

Where: 635 N. 14th St., Lincoln Neb. (located on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus)

Why: In a word: Dinosaurs. This is a natural history museum has an appeal for all ages, but if you have younger kids, don’t skip the bottom level, where there’s a great kid’s space with tons of hands-on play like a fossil dig.

The hall of mammoths at Morrill Hall on the campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Hall of mammoths at Morrill Hall

Cost: Adults 19 and older, $10; children 5-18, $6; children 4 and younger, FREE ($4 to include planetarium, though children younger than 3 are not permitted in the planetarium); UNL students and faculty, FREE. See lots of pictures of the kid-friendly side of Morrill Hall here.

Tip: Morrill Hall recently reopened since major renovations in 2024!

Sunken Gardens

Where: South 27th Street and Capitol Parkway, Lincoln, Neb.

Why: The Sunken Gardens are meticulously cared for, so it’s a sight to behold. The best part is, it’s a public garden, so there is no cost to stroll the grounds. My kids were fans of the ponds. It’s very near the Lincoln Children’s Zoo, so it’s easy to visit both. I shared details on our visit to Sunken Gardens in this post about 24 Hours in Lincoln.

Things to do in Lincoln Ne with kids - Explore the Sunken Gardens, a free public garden. The Sunken Gardens has water features and trails.
Sunken Gardens

Cost: FREE

Where: 701 P St., Lincoln, Neb.

Why: By day, this alley in the historic Haymarket isn’t going to draw you in. At night, however, the strung lights are aglow and the murals and sculptures found along the alley walls take on a whole new and exciting life.

Things to do with kids in Lincoln - Take a short stroll along Gallery Alley in the Haymarket in at night.
Gallery Alley

The Haymarket is nice to stroll around with kids, too. I’ve seen it referred to as Art Alley, which I think is fitting. Read this post for a Haymarket hotel suggestion and restaurant tip.

Cost: FREE

UNL Dairy Store

Where: 114 Food Industry Complex, Lincoln, Neb.

Why: Ice cream! The dairy on the East University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus has been in the business of handmade food since 1917. If you plan ahead, you can sign up for a complimentary tour of the dairy facilities.

Looking for family fun in Lincoln Ne? Don't skip getting ice cream at UNL Dairy Store.
UNL Dairy Store

Cost: FREE (unless you want to buy ice cream, which obviously, we all do)

Lost In Fun!

Where: 8431 Cody Drive, Lincoln, Neb.

Why: Lost in Fun! is an excellent rainy day outing in Lincoln. Think bounce house, jump pillow, foam pit, jungle gyms and arcade games. The only downside is that it’s not near ANYTHING else on this list, and it’s not near the interstate. So, it’s not a convenient place, but it’s a ton of fun for kids.

Lost in Play in Lincoln had a bounce house, jumping pillow, foam pit, and climbing structures. It's a sure way to tire your kids.
Lost in Fun

Cost: Mega Fun Pass (ages 6-14), $14.50; Mini Fun Pass (ages 2-5), $11.50; and FREE for children younger than 12 months old and adults.

Lincoln Children’s Zoo

Where: 1222 S. 27th, Lincoln, Neb.

Why: This zoo may be on the small side, but it packs in a lot of animal engagement opportunities. Some are additional fees, like feeding the goats, while others are free, such as touching a lizard or bunny. Get the scoop on things to do at the Lincoln zoo here. There’s also a popular indoor playground at the zoo.

Kids play in the water feature at Lincoln Children's Zoo
Lincoln Children’s Zoo

Cost: Adults, 13-61, $15.95; children 2-12 and seniors, 62+, $13.95; children 1 and younger, FREE. Check if your zoo membership qualifies for a reciprocal discount.

Antelope Park

Where: 23rd and N Streets to 33rd Street and Sheridan Boulevard

Why: Few parks can compare to the massive Antelope Park. I counted 12 slides when we were there. This is a great, budget-friendly option to let the kids run wild.

Cost: FREE

Pioneer Park Nature Center

Where: 3201 S. Coddington Ave.

Why: Pioneer Park is a beautiful park spans 668 acres, featuring tallgrass prairie, woodlands, wetlands, and a stream. The hiking trails are pretty kid-friendly, but the real draw is the animals like the raptor exhibits, bison, elk, and white-tailed deer. Don’t skip the nature center and the children’s natural play area.

Cost: FREE (there is a suggested donation)

Planning a weekend in Lincoln, Nebraska? Here's a list of fun things to do with kids in Lincoln. This includes free places to visit, kid-friendly dining and, of course, a children's museum and zoo! #Nebraska #familytravel #Midwest

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Steve Allen

Monday 11th of February 2019

so many people who say these ideas are boring, yet the don't offer up any ideas of their own....... just want to say thank you for your suggestions....


Monday 11th of February 2019

Thanks! I figure, everyone has a different idea of what is fun and what is boring, so I'll juts offer suggestions and let them decide for themselves.

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