Some call it the Windy City, others have dubbed it the Big Onion. However you refer to it, Chicago is one of America’s largest and most exhilarating cities. The home of the blues and the place where jazz grew up, the cosmopolitan capital of the Midwest boasts the richest of cultural scenes. With an epic, gleaming skyline made famous by countless movies, and situated on the sparkling waters of Lake Michigan, Chicago is a hub of world class theaters, museums, and galleries. It also boasts some of the best shopping in the Midwest, and dining to suit the fussiest of palates.
Things to see
For family-friendly fun, visit Chicago’s lakefront funfair, the Navy Pier. A colorfully illuminated display of rides, shops, and entertainment, the large carousel is a fun way to check out the city’s skyline. If money starts to burn a hole in your pocket, visit the famous Magnificent Mile, the main thoroughfare between The Loop and the Gold Coast. Here you’ll find the most prestigious of shopping, dining and clubbing experiences, all flanked by the skyscrapers that rival anything in New York. For a little down time interspersed with entertainment, visit Chicago’s front yard, Grant Park. The vast 319 acre urban oasis is a hub of city events and performance venues, with Millennium Park in the northwestern corner being a particular focal point. The futuristic grounds are a haven of art and landscape design. Fans of American sport will want to make a home run for Wrigley Field. The baseball stadium has been home to the legendary Chicago Cubs since 1916.
Hotels in Chicago
An ever popular destination, the city’s hotel industry has a lot to offer. Luxury hotels in Chicago do 5-star the American way. With some of the most prestigious hotel chains in the city, well-heeled visitors can enjoy a sumptuously appointed high-rise room-with-a-view. If your budget is more modest however, the cosmopolitan still has plenty of hotels on offer, all providing excellent amenities. While good budget hotels in Chicago are certainly available, they may take you a little out of the action, location wise. Chicago’s subway however, will reel you back in.
Where to stay
Downtown’s aptly named The Loop keeps many a visitor in the loop. Chicago’s high rise center of work and play, many of the city’s attractions are close to hand. Here you’ll find shopping, restaurants, parks, nightlife and museums, along with the city’s ritzy theater district. Home to the park of the same name, Lincoln Park’s leafy streets have a quintessentially Chicago feel about them. The trendy neighborhood has fantastic amenities and attractions, including Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago History Museum, and North Avenue Beach. Chicago’s shopping district, the Magnificent Mile, also makes a good base for city exploration and is home to some particularly glamorous hotels.
How to get to
O’Hare International Airport is the biggest in the area, serving international flights from all over the world. Located 17 miles northwest of downtown, getting to your hotel in Chicago is quick and easy. The CTA Blue Line runs directly from the airport to downtown every 15 minutes, with a journey time of up to 45 minutes. If you arrive at the smaller Midway Airport located southwest of downtown, the nearby CTA station will whisk you into the action via the Orange Line. Chicago is particularly convenient to travel to by train; Union Station is reachable to most U.S. cities via the Amtrak train service.