Last week I was in Chicago. It was my first time and I must say that I completely fell in love with the city. Generally speaking, most of the American cities I like a lot, but Chicago has it all. The feeling of being in a cosmopolitan place, while outdoor options on your doorstep and the best part is, you are just fine without a car. Well at least when you are visiting. Walking around is super easy and if you are tired, you can just hop on one of those bicycles you find all over the city or get an Uber. I love city breaks and my husband and I always have a guide in the new city, at least for few hours. This time, we had our friends to show us around and we managed to see the most important bits. I know how frustrating it is, when you go to a new place and you just get overwhelmed with all the information about what to see, where to go, what is a must and what is not. Therefore here you will find only 3 must see things in Chicago to help you navigate through your stay.
Must see things in Chicago number one: Willis Tower (originally Sears Tower)
Skydeck on the 103 rd floor of the Willis Tower (the whole tower has 110 floors) is one of the highest observation decks in USA. The name was changed in 2009 when Willis Group (insurance) bought the building. However for most locals it is still Sear Tower. It is quite an experience, as apart of an incredible view, there are glass boxes with glass floor, on which you can step on and take a picture (with a little queue). You are literally standing on nothing else than 3 inch thick glass on the 103rd floor! I have terrible vertigo, so imagine how I felt waiting in the queue!
I managed to step into the box, maybe also because I felt the pressure from the rest of the people in the queue. Everyone is looking at you while waiting for their turn. So I just closed my eyes and made the step. Terrifying, but exciting at the same time. What I would definitely recommend though is to buy fast track pass. The queue to get into the Skydeck can be excruciating, so with a fast track pass you go basically straight to the lift and withing less then 1 min in a lift you are on the top of the world. It comes of course with a higher price tag ($49 pp) and you can book it here.
Must see things in Chicago number two: Millennium park:
What is so special about this park? It is its combination of landscape design with cultural life. Millennium park host an incredible number of events, from pop and rock concerts, to regular yoga sessions and public dance classes or exhibitions. Everyone finds their own highlight. There are parts of the park, each with its own vibe and it feels like if you live in Chicago, this is where you would go during your weekends. The park has almost life of its own, and because of this fact it is constantly packed with people. There is also one of Chicago’s most famous outdoor sculpture “Cloud Door”, commonly known as the “Bean”. It mirrors both the skyline of Chicago and the sky. It is one of the most photographed places in Chicago so naturally, the amount of tourist is unprecedented. But if you get up early enough, you might be lucky.
Must see things in Chicago number three: Architectural river cruise
Frankly, I was most sceptical about this one. I did few river tours in some cities, and they were just very disappointing. But everyone was telling us, we have to try this one, as it is amazing. I couldn’t quite understand why. We booked then the Architectural river tour and I ma glad we gave it a chance. The guide was extremely knowledgeable and we could appreciate the architectural beauty of the skyscrapers along the river. Until then skyscrapers were for me just beautiful building designed by extremely talented architects but our guide gave an interesting insight into why these buildings looks like that and what is the story behind each of them. One of the best offices for these tours is this one (take the 75 min one).
Chicago is also a home to best steaks in USA. One of the best restaurants is definitely Chicago Cut steakhouse, with wonderful terrace and and river view. The food is over all divine and atmosphere fun. Make sure you order Lobsterscargot, Maine Lobster tail pieces in garlic butter with havarti and crostini, followed a steak cooked black and blue, as it is out of this world delicious. But whenever I am in a city with Capital Grille, I can’t not go there as well. So you will read about this fab restaurant here very soon.
Have you been to Chicago? If not, I hope my 3 must things to see in Chicago help you on your travels. And don’t be shy to leave a comment about what you like the most about Chicago.
Have a chic day
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