Visiting the Windy City of Chicago and getting around
Nationally recognized as the fourth biggest city in the U.S., Chicago is incredibly massive and complex, especially to those visiting the windy city for the first time. Although there is an intricate subway that runs through the subterranean layer of downtown, there are plenty of other ways to get around on the surface. Whether you’re looking for a lift from the airport or want to explore every interesting facet of the sprawling city, you’re more than likely to find a suitable vehicle that will whisk you through the downtown’s iconic streets.
Since much of Chicago looks out on Lake Michigan, the city is constantly influenced by bay sides, and with the backdrop of world-famous architectural masterpieces, the city’s skyline looking out on the water is made even more beautiful. You can witness some of the most amazing feats of man today by booking one of the many rides below, all of which are great ways to get around town and find your footing in an artistic and welcoming town.
Local attractions and getting around downtown Chicago
Finding things to do during your visit in Chicago can be quite easy. A big city city bring lots of business and attractions and Chicago is no exception. Chicago’s downtown is filled with a variety of different tourist sites, from exhilarating theme parks to risk-taking restaurants, making choosing where to go one of the harder decisions. Although the city can be complex and somewhat hectic, finding your way can be as rewarding as it is unforgettable. Be sure to figure out your transportation ahead of time, making sure you know all the nearby subway stops from your hotel, or even easier to remember – where you left the keys to your private vehicle. With that said and done, you’ll be ready to see these amazing hotspots in no time:
|Centennial Wheel at Navy Pier|
For six enduring months, the Navy Pier corporation has been looking for the perfect Ferris wheel to place at the heart of Chicago’s iconic pier, and in 2016, the company finally selected a Netherlands-based company to make the beautiful and modern Centennial Wheel. The structure will be the first of its kind to be designed in the United States, making it both fun to ride in and incredibly historic. As a brand new staple of Chicago, the wheel is sure to roll the city into the next century.
|Ice skating at Millennium Park|
Millennium Park is a massive public space located in Chicago’s world-famous Loop community. The park was designed before the year 2000 to ring in the new millennium and has been a staple of the city ever since. One of the greatest attractions in the park is the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink, which is a seasonal rink that is typically opened from November to March, depending on the weather.
|Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium|
Known as one of the largest indoor aquariums, Shedd Aquarium is a fantastic facility that’s as educational as it is fun. With over 32,000 different species stored inside, it’s hard to spot the same fish twice, especially if you’ve got an all-day pass. Whether it be the exotic coral at the Caribbean Reef or the largest indoor mammal facility in the world at Oceanarium, be sure to bring out the family for one of the most impressive fish tanks known to man.
|Chicago beaches of Lake Michigan|
Because Illinois is located on the massive and beautiful Lake Michigan, Chicago is home to a variety of different beaches, including North Avenue Beach, Montrose Beach, and Ohio Street Beach. One of the coolest and trendiest areas to visit are the Southside beaches, especially 12th Street Beach, which is an amazingly intimate and always-available beachside that looks out on downtown. If you’d rather have a large crowd to enjoy the sun with, visit Montrose Beach, which is typically the most populated in the city.
|Commuter rail terminal at Millennium Station|
The city of Chicago is home to a lot of old and a lot of new, but nothing handles the best of both worlds quite like Commuter Rail Terminal. Often referred to as the Grand Central Station of Illinois, Millennium Station is a beloved train stop in the heart of Chicago that offers rides in just about every direction of not only the city, but the entire country. With a modern design intertwined with a classical twist, the landmark prides itself in being a historic tenement of Chicago as well as a contemporary mode of transportation that’s always on time.
|Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza|
Chicago is known for a lot of things; The Chicago Bulls, Oprah Winfrey, and Wrigley Field, but few things compare to the lifelong tradition of Chicago-style deep dish pizza. One of the most highly acclaimed pizza pies in the city comes from Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria, a special formula that comes with buttered crusts and a signature dough that no one can replicate. If you’d like thin-crust on top of deep-dish, you can enjoy a nice afternoon at Gino’s East, an amazing Italian comfort hotspot.
|The Magnificent Mile|
Typically known as ‘The Mag Mile’, this long stretch of shops and restaurants is famously visited by tourists from all around the world. Running from the iconic Chicago river to Oak Street, The Magnificent Mile is home to some of the biggest upscale districts in the nation. Whether you’d like to waltz in and out of the many retail shops or have lunch at a variety of different hotel restaurants, you’ll feel like you’re a mere breath away from 5th Avenue.
|Buckingham fountain in Chicago|
Designed and constructed in 1927, Buckingham Fountain is located in the center of the massive Grant Park. The iconic landmark is one of the largest fountains in the world, creating a mass waterfall that cascades over the image of downtown. The fountain is an astounding piece of art to admire, but it’s also a great place to sit, whether it be for people-watching or simply waiting for one of the many events in Grant Park to begin. The city is in constant plan-mode for a variety of different activities within the park, from live shows to outdoor movies, making the area perfect for families.
|Lincoln Park Zoo|
Not many zoos in the world are free, but luckily the 35-acre Lincoln Park Zoo makes sure that every guest gets in without charge. Located in the heart of Lincoln Park, the facility has been around since 1868, making it one of the oldest zoos in the country as well as one of the most exotic. With over 1,200 different animals, from families of chimpanzees rescued within the national chimpanzee sanctuary to the courageous lions in the Kovler Lion House, the zoo is an exhilarating adventure for both parents and children.
Keeping up with the tradition of free public space, the Adler Planetarium is a public museum that is completely dedicated to the study of astronomy as well as astrophysics, exploring aspects of the universe that are only rarely thought about by the general public. Spend the night at the museum every Thursday for Adler After Dark, a 21+ only event that is host to special guest lecturers, live entertainment, and amazing views of Chicago’s skyline, all while having full access to every exhibit.