It’s always wonderful to host out of town guests in Chicago. I’ve compiled my full list of activities and recommendations for you to make the most of your trip.
- Chicago is a foodie’s dream. Make reservations for the best restaurants weeks or months in advance for the best times, but if you don’t have reservations, arriving around 5 pm usually means you’ll get a seat.
- The best place to take photos of the skyline (aside from being on a boat in Lake Michigan) is on the Adler Planetarium’s peninsula. It’s easy to get to using the lake shore path.
- Many of the boat cruises and kayak tours have sunset or firework options. You may want to consider doing that–booking in advance is recommended.
- During the summer, the Shedd Aquarium has Jazzin’ at the Shedd Nights. There’s live music, cocktails and a great view of the fireworks.
- A hidden gem is the Chicago Cultural Center. Upstairs is the largest Tiffany stained glass dome in the world. The center is free to explore (it used to be a public library) and is right across the street from Millennium Park.
- Go to the Signature Room for a cocktail and an amazing view of Chicago.
- Garrett’s Popcorn is a wonderful souvenir.
- Eat Deep Dish Pizza (I recommend Lou Malnati’s, but Pizzeria Uno claims to have invented the style of pizza)
- Eat at Portillo’s
- Eat a nice steakhouse
- Visit one of the many amazing museums
- Take a river cruise
- Enjoy the view from the Signature Lounge at the John Hancock building
- See a show at Second City’s mainstage
- Do a shot of Malort!
Download the activities here.
- The Devil and the White City
- The Third Coast: When Chicago Built the American Dream
- Sin in the Second City: Madams, Ministers, Playboys and the Battle for America’s Soul
- The Warmth of Other Suns
Fellow Chicagoans, did I miss anything? Please comment below: