There are so many things to love about Chigago. Easy, cheap public transportation within the city and to/from the airport, a vibrant theater and restaurant scene and the fact that it is relatively close to home for me make Chicago a great place for a weekend escape!
While there are great neighborhoods with unique vibes to visit and things to see and do all over the city and suburbs, downtown is the place to start.
One thing that always strikes me about Chicago is how just plain nice everyone is there! Despite the fact that Chicago is a huge, busy city (or maybe because of it) complete strangers seemed to take an almost maternal interest in my well being.
I had a great afternoon in the Windy city and I can’t wait to come back. If this is your first visit to Chicago, here are some ideas to get you started:
- Start right in the middle, and take a walk down iconic Michigan Avenue to get your bearings. This is the “Champs Elysees” of Chicago, and it has opportunities for great shopping and will offer you a taste of what this fabulous city has to offer.
- Make a point of tasting some of the great local foods that are unique to Chicago. Chicago style hot dogs, Chicago style deep dish pizza and authentic Italian beef sandwiches are all worth a calorie splurge while you are here!
- Chicago has some great museums and cultural attractions. Have kids? Check out the Lincoln Zoo or the Shedd Aquarium! We had a great visit to the Field Museum in Chicago, which highlights natural history (and has the world’s most complete T Rex skeleton ever discovered!)
- Consider taking a boat cruise down the Chicago River to gain a different perspective of this iconic downtown skyline.
- Be sure to make s stop at the Chicago Office of Tourism at 78 East Washington Street. The building itself if worth a look, it has a beautiful interior and comfy chairs to rest your feet if you have been walking too long.
- If you are rested and up for a little more walking, the Chicago Greeter (a service of the Chicago Office of Tourism) offers free 2-4 hour long walking tours of the Chicago that are customized to your interests! They leave right form the tourism office at the address above.