Curated places to see
Millennium Park & Cloud Gate (“The Bean”): A public park located in the center of the city hosting outdoor moving screenings and festivals in the summer, and ice skating in the winter Chicago Riverwalk: A walk way through the city for skyline and waterfront view. Chicago Architecture Tour: Awarded as one of the most popular tours in America, the tour is a must-do for those interested in the history of Chicago and how the city unfolded Skydeck Chicago on Willis Tower: photo opportunities of the skyline on a glass balcony extending four feet outside the 103rd floor Museums: The Art Institute of Chicago (a must), Museum Of Contemporary Art Chicago, The Field Museum, Museum of Science and Industry, Adler Planetarium. North Avenue “Beach”: stunning skyline views in front of the beach; in the summertime, watch fireworks on Wednesday at 9:30pm and Saturday at 10:15pm. The 606: A 2.7-mile elevated pedestrian path that connects Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Bucktown and Wicker Park: Great for an evening stroll, jog or bike ride
No FoMo by skipping these
Navy Pier: a pier front walk way with stores and restaurants (I’d recommend a quick stroll but it’s super touristy and the attractions aren’t worth your money).
Magnificent Mile: the largest shopping district with various mid-range and high-end shops lined on Michigan Avenue.
Lou Malnati’s Pizza ($$): Chicago’s famous deep dish pizza can be found in this local favorite; be wary of long lines and expect at least a 40 minute wait Au Cheval ($$): “the best burger in town” infamous for 2-5 hour waits; no reservations; Small Cheval ($) is a similar chain that offers the casual version of Au Cheval. Girl & The Goat ($$$): small plates with adventurous ingredients, family style, 2-3 months prior reservations recommended. Duck Duck Goat ($$-$$$): Chinese fusion small plates; same chef as above; truly 10/10 creative and delicious. Roister (brunch $$; dinner $$$$): amazing brunch alert; the BEST chicken and waffles I’ve ever had. Serai ($-$$): Authentic Malaysian/Singaporean restaurant. 90 Miles Cuban Cafe ($$): Great Cuban food with nice outdoor seatings. Chicken Farm and Shop ($$): just WOW, the chicken biscuit and potatoes are a must try. Qing Xiang Yuan Dumplings ($$): housemade dumplings with various choices for fillings. Ming Hin Chinatown location ($$): affordable and authentic dim sum experience.
Explore the neighborhoods:
River North - great for fine dining, mainstream clubs, bars & lounges West Loop - known for restaurants, brunch, bars, coffee shops, murals Wrigleyville - a neighborhood built around its baseball stadium featuring many sports bars Wicker Park & Logan Square - dubbed for it’s artistic influences and experimental restaurants, independent boutiques, coffee shops & bars Lincoln Park - a residential neighborhood featuring a free Zoo, the famous Lincoln Park and Chicago’s “beach” Hyde Park - the home of University of Chicago, Museum of Science and Industry, Obama’s house, Renaissance Society, Promontory Point Pilsen - a historically Mexican neighborhood with a variety of food options, murals, shops and museums