Chicago: Tour Guide
Chicago will blow your mind simply with its inspiration. Huge Skyscrapers and fantastic food with its low key feel about it will make your jaw literally just drop. As soon as you first enter the heart of the city you won’t know what to gasp at first. You will be engulfed in outstanding architecture from the glass floor Willis Tower to the beautiful stained-glass Robbie house. You can be casually walking along the city streets and suddenly come across some famous statue that you can climb, paint, admire, anything you want. Take your pick out of the many art museums available with all different types of art and artists. Sport is also at the front of the local’s minds with football and baseball being there main too. Pop to a bar and watch whatever match is on or go to the stadium and watch it live. You can even have a go yourself by going to the many beaches and parks located in and around the city. Another big event is festivals. There are many between March and September and some are even free. They come in different sizes from barbecue street fest in neighbourhoods on weekends to big mega parties with major bands playing.
The Art Institute:
Being the second largest art museum in the country, as you might imagine this has a lot to see with all different types of art. Anyone interested in art should certainly visit here. You can find a large collection of impressionist art and many surrealist works which are fantastic to admire. You can even download a free app for audio tours of the museum ranging from quick hit tours to long in-depth tours about the architecture too. You can allow two hours to amble around here however, art fanatics should take much longer. The third floor has a great terrace with outstanding city views.
The Millennium Park offers a big architectural fantasy. You can find huge masterpieces or little bits capturing the city’s history in the park. But it's not just brilliant sculptures and structures it shows off so much more than that. It was built in 1998 and overtook previous industrial space. You can instantly see that it has come a long way as soon as you start walking through it. It took lots of funding and donations to complete this six-year project. It spreads out across twenty-five acres and holds some of the greatest public outdoor art in the world.
Chicago has so many tall buildings it is bound to have a tallest. The Willis tower is it. It features a 103rd
floor Skydeck that really puts you high above the clouds. Take an elevator for 70 seconds up there and then taking the daring step onto a glass floor ledge into mid-air at which point you can look straight down. On days when you’re not in an eerily dreamy world above the clouds, you can see along four states. You can enter the building from Jackson Blvd. Make sure to go there on a quieter day, as queues can get quite long. In the next few years, there is supposedly going to be a Skydeck expansion where there will be a so-called ‘ledge walk’ meaning there will be a glass balcony.
Transport in Chicago:
Chicago is easy to navigate with most places within walking distance of each other. The high-speed Metra train quickly links the suburbs to the heart of the city. A ten-ride ticket will be your best option at $27.50. Taxis are also a good option, having a plentiful supply throughout each part of the city. As well as hauling a taxi down by hand, CHICABS is a quick option to order a taxi, working very similar to Uber. You would normally tip the driver 15-20% of the fare charged. It is usually $0.20 for every 36 seconds spent in the taxi. Water taxis are a fun and affordable option to take you to the main tourist destinations and a perfect way to see the city from a new perspective. A single ride is usually between $3.00-8.00. Bikes can be hired from various places and bike lanes are common throughout the city. If you want to hire a car there are many different places to park in and around the city, although this is a slightly more expensive option.
Nightlife in Chicago:
The nightlife in Chicago is one not to forget. Throughout summer you will see many different festivals, almost every weekend with some of the best music playing there. It is a thriving music culture with so much action and things happening even through into the winter. There are dance parties and bars that stay open all night so night owls, this is the place for you. Here are a few suggestions:
- Studio Paris (Nightclub, flash crowd, fast service)
- ROOF (Sky bar, great views, upmarket, cocktails)
- Underground (Dancing, late night, good cocktails)
- Winter’s Jazz club (relaxed, cosy, happy hour)