The Windy City: A Must-See Guide to Chicago

April 16, 2016 | Jennifer Goodwyn

Chicago is a sprawling metropolitan center where you can roam between skyscrapers and have some of the best pizza in the country. It has been a major business center that has continued to flourish throughout the years, and the Windy City holds a promising future as a professional epicenter. Its population spans across generations and cultures, creating a melting pot of creativity. If you're taking a trip to Chicago, you should travel like locals do. Here are some of our favorite Chicago spots, taken straight from a list of local favorites.

Navy Pier

600 E. Grand Avenue

Chicago, IL  60611


Find your inner child at Navy Pier. You can explore the attractions at Pier Park or grab a funnel cake over the lake. If you have kids with you, the pier also has a children's museum and IMAX theatre to hold their attention. A day under the sun at Navy Pier can be spent playing arcade games while enjoying a carefree day near the water.


The Windy City: A Must-See Guide to Chicago 

via Angela N., CC


Art Institute of Chicago

111 S. Michigan Ave.

Chicago, IL  60603

(312) 443-3600

Often hailed as one of the country's best museums, the Art Institute of Chicago has more than 300,000 pieces split up over ten different departments. It is the second largest art museum in the country and holds art from classical pieces, to Asian art, to contemporary and modern pieces. Spending a day here is a cultural foray into the world of art, and should not be missed on any trip to Chicago.

Lincoln Park Conservatory

2391 N. Stockton Dr.

Chicago, IL  60614

(312) 742-7736

One of the best ways to escape the metallic buildings of the city is Lincoln Park Conservatory. This botanical garden is an architectural feat in itself. It holds a myriad of different plant species, including rare and tropical ones. You can immerse yourself in the beauty of nature here while still in the city.


The Windy City: A Must-See Guide to Chicago

via David Ohmer, CC

Grant Park

337 E. Randolph St.

Chicago, IL  60601

(312) 742-3918

Grant Park is one of the most recognizable and outstanding features of Chicago. This lakefront park has the famous Buckingham fountain and Millennium Park as parts of its loop. The Art Institute of Chicago and Museum Campus are also part of the loop. A beautiful time of year in the park is fall, before winter has its bite, and just as the Midwestern leaves are changing. You can walk along the golden paths and see the beauty of Chicago while enjoying a hot cup of coffee and the lake views.


The Windy City: A Must-See Guide to Chicago

via chris, CC

Giordano's Pizza

223 W. Jackson Blvd.

Chicago, IL  60606

(312) 583-9400

When you say Chicago, I say pizza. Known for their famous deep dish, Giordano's pizza has been hailed as one of the best pizza spots in the city. You can't leave Chicago without grabbing a slice, and the tourist spots are never the best in the city, Giordano's is a local's secret, and now it's yours (but don't tell anybody).

Cloud Gate

Also known as the Bean, this sculpture has come to represent Chicago in so many ways. The mirrored surfaces make for the absolute best and funniest pictures. Food booths surrounding the sculpture serve up famous Chicago style hotdogs. People from all over the world come to Chicago to experience this piece of art, and being among so many cultures and languages is an unforgettable experience in itself.


The Windy City: A Must-See Guide to Chicago

via Hernan Seoane, CC

The Allis at SOHO House

113-125 N. Green St.

Chicago, IL  60661

(312) 521-8000

During the day, the Allis is a juice, tea, and coffee bar, set in an open industrial space with fresh baked pastries. Once the sun goes down, the bar opens up and Allis turns into the spot to be. With a younger crowd, there's a mixing of professionals, artists, and people from every other walk of life. Coming to Allis at any time of the day, or even multiple times during the day is one of the best ways to appreciate the city.

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