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"The living art City" Chicago by morochaargentina

Chicago Travel Guide: 5,979 reviews and 12,666 photos

Why do I LOVE Chicago so much...

One of my friends was going to Chicago for the first, and knowing that it’s one of my favorite cities in the US, he asked for my advice. My first reaction was “gee! Go to my Virtual Tourist page for Chicago and there you go!” then I realized... I haven’t written a THING about Chicago! WOW! I was shocked at my self... How come, I have never written about Chicago?... I sent him an email (which I cannot copy and paste, since it’s in Spanish) and I decided “I HAVE TO build my page!” and here I am...

The first question is “WHY” do I love Chicago so much? This is what I feel about the city: it’s a walking art museum. From the amazing sculptures and art around the city, to the most amazing buildings; every time you walk through the city, you feel you are in an art museum.. one that is free and open 24 hours, 7 days a week... You can’t beat that!

And that is only on the surface... Chicago is extremely easy to explore by feet, walking is the best way, you can use the public transportation as well, another great way...My first two times here (I am in Chicago right now) were winter, and that was not an impediment to explore the city by feet. Don’t be afraid of the low temperatures, Chicago is prepared and ready for the snow.

This is my 1st time in Summer, and I will be writing some more, since we’ll be spending a full month here and I am sure I’ll have a lot more to talk about in the upcoming weeks!

I went for a run along the lake today, it was close to lunch time. The weather was perfect, sunny and with a nice breeze. I could hear and smell the “lake” (that looks more like the sea!) and then something magical happened: I hear the OPERA! Loud and clear, a magnificent female voice was singing opera, to the top of her lungs… I was next to the amphitheatre at the millennium park… so I ran there…Hundreds and hundreds of people were listening. I was teary up… I felt the passion of the city and their love for art in all forms, and it was a beautiful feeling, to be surrounded by art…
And THAT is WHY I love Chicago so much! Did I mentioned amazing food and to die for fashion?

By the way, my friend followed my advice to the T and he told me “now, you need to go to California so you can tell me what to do there next year” (and since I was there lately, that is my next chapter: “San Diego: Beyond the Zoo, Breweries and Beaches”)

The "list"

This is "the list" that I sent to my friend. My "must see" if you will... He was here for 3 days and he was able to see (almost) everything.

Start walking on “The Magnificent Mile”, it’s like the 5th Avenue in NY, super posh, with the most amazing stores you can think of…
Always look up when you are walking in Chicago. It’s well known for the architecture, you’ll see the most amazing buildings.

After you cross the bridge, you’ll see “The Tribune”, the local newspaper. They always have some fun sculptures at the entrance (I always saw different things, right now there is a gigagntic sculpture of Marilyn Monroe on her white dress passing over the wind)

If you want to go shopping, go to "State ST", that is where you’ll find great bargains, places like TJMAXX and The Nordstrom Rack.

You HAVE to go up to “The Sears Building” even if now it’s called "John Hancock", everybody still calls it “The Sears Building”, that would be like somebody trying to change the name of “The Empire State Building”, you just don’t do that… Anyway! From there, you’ll have an amazing view of the town ($15 to get in). You can also have a drink there, there is a nice bar there as well.

Do not miss the “Chicago Art Museum” ($18, close at 5pm) and walk around that area, it’s called “Millennium Park”: there are millions of sculptures and art everywhere. Even if you don’t have time for the museum, go there ANYWAY to see the Millennium Park… It’s one of those things that if you don’t see: you didn’t see Chicago! The main thing to see would be “The Bean”, a mirror sculpture where you can see the city (and yourself) reflected in funny shapes.

Right across the street you have the “Chicago Architectural Museum”, where you can see a mini Chicago City (and it’s free). It’s in the way and it’s free, so why not?

Then, take a stroll in the area called “The Loop”. Get on the subway that goes on top of the streets, you’ll have a great perspective of the city, and it’s a great way to travel, for only $2. Do NOT miss the huge sculptures in that area (the loop). You have Picasso and Miro, among many other amazing artists… That area is great if you like art!

Nearby you have the Library. I didn’t get in (yet) but from outside is a very pretty and unusual building..

Another “must do” is going to the “Navy Pier”. It appears in every movie, so you kind of “have to” see it! You don’t need to get there, just get close enough to take some pics! It’s great in summer, it’s an amusing park with food and other vendors, some attractions and mostly tourists.. buy HEY! That is what we are in a way :) (I like to consider myself more like a “traveler”; but hey, we don’t live there, so let’s explore!)

A great place for sports lovers: Soldier Field, where the Chicago Bears play the NFL. What I LOVE about the stadium is that it was an old stadium, but the city and the team owners decided to KEEP the old stadium, keep the structure and build a new stadium INSIDE. The result is beautiful! History outside, comfort and technology inside...

YOU HAVE TO run (or walk) by the lake. One of the most amazing places in the city!

Chicago at Night:

At night, go to the area called "RUSH St". That is a nice area, tons of bars and restaurants (I will write about each one of them)

Do not forget to go to a Jazz Bar or Piano Bar. "The Redhead Piano Bar" is very good, but if you dare to go outside the city, (about $20 by taxi) there is a place where Al Capone used to go: "The Green Mill"
You’ll see that it’s a very “walkable” city and that you don’t need a car, public transportation is great.

There are a few things that I haven’t done yet, but they are on my to-do-list.. So I will keep writing as soon as I’ve done them!

Enjoy The Windy City! By the way, did you know that the term has NOTHING to do with the fact that there is always windy in Chicago??

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:art everywhere, the lake, amazing architectural , amazing fashion and shopping, museums to die for, great food
  • Cons:winter is very cold here
  • In a nutshell:It's an art and architectural museum by the lake, open 24 hours
  • Last visit to Chicago: Sep 2011
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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