Welcome to Chicago, the Windy City, where the cool lake breeze makes it a perfect summer escape. This Midwest gem, with its rich history, incredible architecture, and vast park system, offers a delightful experience for all. Here are 12 things you must do when visiting Chicago, from iconic landmarks to hidden gems.
Where To Visit In Chicago
1. John Hancock Observatory (360 Chicago):
Soar to a thousand feet above the ground at the John Hancock Observatory, providing breathtaking views of Chicago. Try the TILT experience for an adventurous tilt from the 94th floor, or enjoy a cup of coffee with a panoramic city backdrop. Don’t forget to explore the souvenir shop for memorable keepsakes.
2. Art Institute of Chicago:
Marvel at over 300,000 works of art from around the globe at the Art Institute of Chicago. Admire impressive collections of impressionist masterpieces by Monet, Van Gogh, and Renoir, making it a haven for art enthusiasts.
3. Millennium Park:
Experience Chicago’s most recognizable park on 24.5 acres, starting with a selfie at the Cloud Gate, affectionately known as the Bean. Explore Lurie Gardens, attend free concerts at Jay Pritzker Pavilion in summer, or showcase your ice skating skills at McCormick Tribune Ice Rink in winter.
4. The Magnificent Mile:
Indulge in a shopping spree in the commercial district known as The Magnificent Mile, home to famous name brands. Fashionistas will love the vibrant atmosphere, especially during the Magnificent Mile Shopping Festival and the Lights Festival.
5. Wrigley Field:
Sports fans, don’t miss a visit to Wrigley Field, one of America’s oldest ballparks and home to the Chicago Cubs since 1914. Even outside baseball season, enjoy the stadium’s ambiance and savor rotating dishes from top chefs, including the famous hot dog from Hot Doug’s.
6. Grant Park and Buckingham Fountain:
Escape to Chicago’s ‘front yard,’ Grant Park, spanning over 100 acres of lush greens. Spend a day exploring iconic spots like the Art Institute of Chicago, The Field Museum, and the Shedd Aquarium. Marvel at the grandeur of Buckingham Fountain, boasting choreographed water displays.
Where to Eat in Chicago:
7. Pizzeria Uno:
Satisfy your deep-dish pizza cravings at Pizzeria Uno, the birthplace of loaded deep-dish pizzas with peppers, onions, sausage, chunky tomato sauce, mushrooms, and various cheeses.
Join the locals at Pequod’s for their renowned deep-dish pizzas with a caramelized crust. Be prepared for a wait, as the deliciousness is worth every minute.
Delve into Chicago’s thriving barbecue scene at Smoque, known for its full slab of St. Louis-style ribs. The dry-rubbed, apple-and oak-smoked ribs are a must-try for barbecue enthusiasts.
10. Jibarito Stop:
Experience a unique twist on sandwiches at Jibarito Stop, where fried plantains replace traditional bread. Indulge in the steak jibarito, featuring lettuce, tomatoes, buttery garlic, and Chihuahua cheese.
11. Firecakes Donuts:
End your Chicago culinary journey on a sweet note at Firecakes Donuts. Indulge in a variety of delectable donuts that will satisfy your sweet tooth.
Chicago’s vibrant culture, iconic landmarks, and diverse culinary scene make it a must-visit destination. Whether you’re exploring towering observatories, world-class museums, or savoring deep-dish pizzas and barbecue delights, the Windy City promises a memorable experience for every traveler.