Lives in Duluth, Minnesota
Since Feb 2008
50-64 year old female
Specialty Museums, Natural History Museums, Children's Museums
Art Galleries, Architectural Buildings
Historic Walking Areas, Parks, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Monuments & Statues, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Fountains, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Monuments & Statues
Architectural Buildings, Historic Sites, Points of Interest & Landmarks, Mass Transportation Systems
Piers & Boardwalks, Theme Parks
Neighborhoods, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Arenas & Stadiums
This is a wonderful place for families to visit, with a lot of children's activities and interactive exhibits. This is a great place to visit on both warm summer days and rainy or cold days. Outside is the Micole Birdwalk, a marsh area where you can look for birds with the binoculars, and the 1/3 mile nature trail around the grounds where you never know what will be going on. Inside, besides the interactive children's exhibits there is also the butterfly sanctuary with all it's brightly colored butterflies and birds. Be sure to bring a camera, there are so many photo opportunists here!
Free and open to the public this is a gem to visit on a cold Chicago day. Warm temperatures and bright colors in the conservatory make this a fun stop anytime of year. This stop is a must for the plant enthusiast (especially orchid lovers) and a great spot for photos.
Right next to the Lincoln Park Conservatory this is a fun stop that the whole family will enjoy. Like the Conservatory the price can't be beat, it's free and open 365 days a year. Be sure to check the website for special events and daily happenings, like feeding times and falcon flights.
Sometimes getting lunch in Chicago can be a bit pricey, but if you are looking for a unique fun experience why not try a picnic in one of the parks? Just stop in at Pastoral and pick out a couple cheeses, some crackers and a bottle of wine and head over to Millennium Park or Cloud Gate and enjoy an afternoon in the sun. there is a LOT of great food items here, so this is one of those stores that can be as inexpensive as you like or a total luxury splurge.
A free self guided tour through the building will keep you oohing and awing. The Tiffany glass alone is worth the visit but add to that the mosaics throughout the building and it is truly breathtaking. Not only can you walk through the building to see the architecture, but they also have rotating artists located through the building. Besides all the eye appeal the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) offers FREE music performances year-round. Be sure to look up their web page to see what is going on when you plan your visit. The building itself has a long historic history, some of it documented in the building, but for a history buff it's worth checking out the Wikipedia page.
Although only average rated on Trip Advisor, I added this to the list because it is not only inexpensive to grab a bite on the go here, but if you stick to what they are known for you won't go wrong. Don't stray and order fish or a burger, you won't be happy.
Everyone knows about "the Bean", and it is a fun stop, but the park is 25 acres, and includes the beautiful Lurie garden, a great oasis when the city gets too hectic. On a warm day you can sit and watch the kids play in Crown Fountain, or take your shoes off and be a kid at heart yourself. Check out the special exhibit artwork on the Pramanades or attend any number of the free events offered, like outdoor concerts, films screenings, yoga or dance lessons etc..
Also known as "The Bean". This is a stop for both the first time Chicago visitor and the seasoned traveler. It's always fun to see your reflection as well as the city in panorama. One of the most photographed landmarks, it was completed in 2005 and measures 33 by 66 by 42 feet.
Although beautiful during the day, the real thrill of Buckingham Fountain is the evening shows that happen after dark, when they are choreographed to lights and music. The last show is at 10:00 p.m..
Another highly photographed landmark, the Picasso sculpture sits in Daley Plaza. An added bonus, if you visit on a Thursday between 7AM and 3PM from May 15-October 30 you can grab something fresh from the beautiful farmers market. You can find everything from fresh flowers, cheese, Amish baked goods, veggies and fresh fruit for your hotel room.
This beautiful building has been featured in many movies, including The Untouchables and Man of Steel. Chicago Union Station is considered a “Great Public Space” by the American Planning Association, which acknowledges public spaces around America that exhibit “exemplary character, quality, and planning.
The Shedd is a great activity for kids and adults and is a nice way to spend a cold or rainy day. A general admission of $8 for adults and $6 for kids, is a great way to keep the cost down an children entertained and learning for the afternoon. If you want to make this a once in a lifetime adventure you can add on a special event, like shark feeding for $89.95 for adults.
Just strolling Navy Pier can be fun, but you can also enjoy a hidden gem within this gem. The Smith Museum of Stained Glass is free and open to the public year round. Just walk in and take a look around at the 150 beautiful and historic pieces of work. If you come in on a Thursday afternoon, the museum's curator gives guided tours that highlight the gems of the museum's collection, and gives a little insider information about each of the pieces. Also in Navy Pier you will find the iconic Ferris Wheel. The ride is kind of pricey, but if you are a photographer this is a great opportunity for some shots above the pier, over the city and out over the lake.
The DuSable Bridge comes out from downtown Chicago right onto Michigan Avenue and the start of the "Magnificent or Mag Mile". As a historic landmark it offers some great photo opportunities of both the cityscape and the river. What most people don't know is that the McCormick Bridgehouse & Chicago River Museum is located in the southwest bridgetender house. Although it's a small museum, it is well worth the $4 admission for the history and the really unique view of the inner workings of the bridge.
Also known as the Magnificent Mile you can find anything you need along this stretch of road. If you have children you can find something they will love at almost all price points, the American Doll at the top of the spectrum, Disney mid priced and the Hershey's store where you don't need to spend an ton to have a lot of fun. Towards the end of the Mile is the Watertower building, one of a few buildings that didn't burn in the 1871 fire. It is now a small museum and visitors center and worth ambling into for a look around if you are at that end of town.
Although the home of the Chicago Cubs the stadium is actually older than the team. It was built in 1914. During the baseball season you can take stadium tours on both game days and non game days. The difference being what you will be able to see if they players are practicing. Currently the 75-90 minute guided tour is $25, not exactly cheep, but an experience you will remember for a long time if you are a history and/or sports buff.
The Old Jerusalem offers authentic Middle Eastern food at a great price. The dinner falafel plate came with enough to share and the honey cake (Harisa) is a perfect way to end the day, super moist sweet cake that pairs great with a cup of coffee or tea. It is very possible to get filled up for under $15.00
World famous for their cinnamon rolls this place can get you ready for the day, but you better get their early, especially on the weekends. Known for all things Swedish you can get Swedish pancakes, waffles or meatballs, as well as more standard fare of eggs Benedict. The cinnamon rolls come as 2 large rolls per serving so plan to bring some home or sharing. This great start to the day can be had for under $15 per person.
Great neighborhood to spend some time in and easy to get to on public transit. The Nine Dragon Wall located across the street from the Wentworth entrance is a reproduction of the original wall in Beijing that was built in 1402. Take your time strolling the street and looking in the shop windows. Chinatown is where you can find many things that may be difficult to find elsewhere, like candies and assorted food items. You can find great prices on some fun souvenir items as well. Take some time to stroll through Chinatown Square, and take your picture with the sculptures of your animal from the Chinese Zodiac. If you are a foodie this is the opportunity to have great authentic dim sum as well.