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51 Best & Fun Things To Do In Chicago (Illinois)

What comes to mind when you think about Chicago?

Is it the gleaming skyscrapers and metallic bridges and buildings?

Is it the museums, theaters, galleries and other places of high art?

Is it the deep-dish pizza with its sticky cheeses stretching between your fingers?

Chicago is all of these things and more.

It welcomes 57 million visitors per year, and they’re all looking for the best places to see within the city.

They don’t leave disappointed.

Here are just a few things to do in Chicago, Illinois.

They range from the fun to the fanciful, and they’re sure to give you great memories of the Windy City!

1. Millennium Park

Millennium Park

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You can’t visit Chicago without visiting Millennium Park.

Not only is it one of the most famous places in the city, but its events, activities and festivities put it among the most-visited tourist attractions in America.

It’s anchored by “Cloud Gate,” the bean-shaped metal sculpture that has come to define Chicago.

Beyond the bean, you might recognize its ice rink from countless wintertime Christmas movies, or you might be familiar with its gigantic, video-playing water fountain that’s always a hot spot for selfies.

Other features of the park include a theater, botanical garden, art gallery and bike station.

An outdoor pavilion hosts concerts and carnivals.

A winding pedestrian bridge connects everything together.

If you’re looking for the best things to do in Chicago, it doesn’t get more iconic than Millennium Park.

It’s the Chicago equivalent of Times Square.

You’ll want to visit it at least once just to say that you’ve been there.

Address: 201 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60602, United States

2. Riverwalk


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The Riverwalk is exactly what it sounds like: a pedestrian trail that stretches alongside the Chicago River.

It’s 1.25 miles, so it doesn’t require a punishing amount of exercise, but it’s long enough to offer a wide range of events and activities for visitors of all types.

Are you feeling peckish?

Grab a bite to eat at one of the many cafes, bistros, bakeries and restaurants that line the water.

Do you want to shop ’til you drop?

Stock up on souvenirs everywhere from luxury boutiques to kitschy street stalls.

Culture lovers will enjoy the museums and theaters.

Outdoor enthusiasts can rent a bike, hop aboard a kayak or take a self-pedaling boat tour.

Couples can stroll under the stars; families can picnic in grassy fields or on top of stone steps that overlook the water.

The Riverwalk is a must see destination in Chicago.

There’s so much potential for fun that it’s almost like a mini-city in its own right.

You could spend your entire vacation exploring this 1.25 mile, and you still wouldn’t hit everything!

Address: Chicago Riverwalk, Chicago, IL 60601, United States

3. Willis Tower

Willis Tower

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Formerly known as the Sears Tower, the Willis Tower is a staggering 1,729 feet at its tallest spire.

This used to be enough to claim the title of “tallest building in the world,” but the completion of other skyscrapers in Dubai and Tokyo has knocked it down the list.

Still, the Willis Tower is one of the crowning jewels of Chicago.

In addition to being a busy commercial space for television and radio, it also has several observation decks for tourists.

You’ll enjoy breathtaking aerial views of streets, sidewalks, lakes, bridges and clouds as you marvel at a horizon that stretches for miles.

The most well-known observation point is the Skydeck, a high-rising platform that has walls and floors made entirely of glass.

There’s also the Skydeck Ledge, a series of transparent boxes jutting out from the side of the building that will allow you to walk on air from dizzying heights.

It might not be the tallest skyscraper in the world anymore, but the Willis Tower is definitely the tallest in Chicago, and it might even be the tallest in Illinois.

It’s guaranteed to give you a swooping sensation in your stomach as you look out at the world from 110 stories high!

Address: 233 S Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606, United States

4. North Avenue Beach

North Avenue Beach

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You might think of Chicago as a cold, windy place, and it’s true that it gets a lot of the snow that brews over Illinois every winter.

However, it isn’t winter all of the time.

A summer in Chicago can be one of the best that you ever have, especially when you hit the beaches!

North Avenue Beach isn’t the only place to get some sand and surf in Chicago, but it’s one of the best.

You can go swimming or boating; you can rent a bike, kayak, paddle board, jet ski or water tube; you can take a yoga class as the sun rises or play a volleyball game as the sun sets.

Indoor activities are also available at a massive beach house that’s designed like a blue-and-white ocean liner.

It covers more than 22,000 square feet, and when you’re not engaging in its many entertainments, it offers breathtaking views of the water.

Buy a hotdog on a stick and take a stroll down North Avenue Beach.

As one of Chicago’s best shorelines, it’ll always live up to the hype.

Address: 1600 N Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60613, United States

5. Taste of Chicago

Taste of Chicago

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With more than three million visitors per year, the Taste of Chicago is the largest food festival in the world.

It’s an absolute smorgasbord of everything from sloppy street food to elegant, restaurant-quality dishes.

If you like getting your grub on, it should be at the top of your bucket list!

Admission is free, and the food is sold through a ticket system that allows for both sample- and full-sized purchases.

You can stuff your face with an entire pizza; you can explore different flavors of noodles, burgers, tacos, tamales, soups, pastries and ice cream bars.

One of the selling points of the Taste of Chicago is that it welcomes vendors from all around the globe, so you can enjoy everything from authentic egg rolls to crazy gelato cups on the same street.

There are other forms of entertainment, too.

While you’re munching your way through the stalls and trucks, you can also enjoy games, dances, outdoor concerts, live cooking demonstrations and bohemian art galleries.

One year even featured a silent disco!

Forget about the boundaries of Illinois or the United States.

The Taste of Chicago is a fun, multicultural food festival that will let your palate travel the world without actually leaving the city.

It’s a must do if you’ll be in Chicago over the summer.

Looking for more things to do in Illinois? Why not check out some of the fun things to do in Springfield, IL?

6. Lincoln Park Zoo

Lincoln Park Zoo

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The Lincoln Park Zoo is such a staple of Chicago that it’s sometimes called the “Chicago Zoo.”

The city doesn’t have its own, however, and it’s probably because the Lincoln Park Zoo is already doing such a great job.

For starters, it’s one of the oldest zoos on the continent.

It was built in 1868, and some of its original structures are still in use today.

There’s even an oak tree that predates the founding of Chicago itself!

It’s also home to one of the best animal menageries in the state.

You can watch lions prowling in the grass, rhinos snuffling in the mud, penguins waddling on the ice and monkeys lounging around hot springs.

If you’re adventurous enough, you can get close to the critters with special feeding and petting events overseen by the staff.

People from all over Illinois come to see the animals of Lincoln Park Zoo.

It’s a top 10 destination for the city of Chicago, so whether you’re interested in birds, bugs or bonobos, it should absolutely make your “must see” list.

Address: 2001 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614, United States

7. Art Institute of Chicago

Art Institute of Chicago

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With a pair of heavy bronze lions flanking the front door, the Art Institute of Chicago is one of the most recognizable and culturally significant places to visit within the city.

It’s home to more than 300,000 paintings, portraits, sculptures, ceramics, fabrics, photos and textiles, and its artwork transverses the globe from Sao Paulo to Shanghai.

You’ll probably recognize a lot of the art hanging on the walls.

From Grant Wood’s American Gothic to Pablo Picasso’s The Old Guitarist, the museum has scored countless coups over the years.

They have works by Monet, Renoir, Pollock, Warhol, Matisse, van Gogh and many other classic names.

They also have exhibits and artifacts from cultures all over the world.

You can look at traditional, hand-stitched Japanese kimono from behind painted screens; you can marvel at the heavy metal weapons of European crusaders in 1000 AD.

You don’t have to be an art expert to enjoy the Art Institute of Chicago.

It offers so many things to see and do that you’re sure to find something that piques your interest within its fun-filled corridors.

Give it a visit if you’re looking for amazing vacation ideas in Chicago!

Address: 111 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603, United States

8. Chicago History Museum

Chicago History Museum

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If you’re interested in the trials and tribulations that forged Chicago, the Chicago History Museum is where you can learn everything that you need to know about the city.

Topics range from the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 to the building of Chicago’s first railroads in 1836.

Abraham Lincoln plays a prominent role in the political exhibits since he considered Chicago his headquarters for most of his life.

There are also displays dedicated to Prohibition, the Civil War, the Women’s Suffrage Movement and other major movements that touched Chicago.

The best thing about the museum is that it doesn’t just list names and dates on plaques.

It brings history to life with things like interactive videos, moving trains, simulated fires and children’s climbing structures that look like gigantic Chicago style hotdogs.

It’s fun, and that’s why it imparts its lessons so well.

The Chicago History Museum is a must visit while you’re in the city.

It’ll give you context for a lot of the museums and landmarks that you’ll see, and it’ll enrich your experience as you explore one of the most important destinations in Illinois.

Address: 1601 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614, United States

9. Bobby’s Bike Hike

Bobby's Bike Hike

Bobby’s Bike Hike

It’s hard to say whether Chicago is more famous for its pizzas or its hotdogs.

Fortunately, with Bobby’s Bike Hike, you don’t have to choose between them!

Bobby’s Bike Hike is a touring company that specializes in food-based travel.

Offering multiple routes throughout the city, they’ll allow you to sample some of the best eats that Chicago has to offer, and you can customize the way that you experience them.

Do you live for dessert?

The “Sweets and Spirits Dessert Walking Tour” is filled with truffles, cupcakes and candy-infused cocktails.

Do you want to burn some calories while you eat?

The “Bikes, Bites and Brews Tour” will put you on a nine-speed as you work your way through craft beers, sausage rolls, deep-dish pizzas and hotdogs with all of the fixings.

If you’re looking for touristy things to do in Chicago, a food tour is a great place to start.

Pick a route with Bobby’s Bike Hike and get to eating!

Address: 540 N Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

10. Wabash Arts Corridor

Created by students from Columbia College Chicago, the Wabash Arts Corridor was designed to take creativity out of the classroom and into the real world.

They had the freedom to create whatever they wanted, wherever they wanted, and the end result was an explosion of self-expression that transformed the neighborhood.

Art is everywhere in the Wabash Arts Corridor.

It’s painted on doors, walls, windows and archways; it’s built on brick and stone and marble; it climbs up staircases and sweeps down into the cracks and crevices of back alleys.

You can’t turn a corner without seeing a new mural or an old piece of graffiti.

It’s unlike anything else that you’ll witness in Chicago.

Another fun feature of the neighborhood is that its artwork is constantly changing.

People paint and re-paint all of the time.

Some of it’s deliberate sabotage from street taggers, but more often than not, it’s just artists finding new ways to express themselves on outdoor canvases.

The Wabash Arts Corridor is one of the most unique things to do in Chicago.

If you want to get off the beaten path and explore the hidden gems of the city, let your feet take you to this beautiful, transformative artwork that refuses to be covered for long.

Address: 635 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL 60605, United States

Exploring other areas of Illinois? Why not check out some of the things to do in Galena, IL?

11. Wrigley Field

Wrigley Field

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You can’t talk about Chicago attractions without talking about Wrigley Field.

It’s one of the oldest stadiums in Illinois, and it’s remained largely unchanged from its early days, so it still has things like old-fashioned floodlights and hand-turned scoreboards with peeling paint.

It’s also known for its ivy-covered outfield wall that has consumed many fly balls in its time!

Another cool feature of the field is that it’s located in the middle of a residential neighborhood.

Locals often sit on their roofs to watch games.

They also allow visitors to park in their driveways since there’s no parking lot connected to the stadium.

As for its events, Wrigley Field has hosted baseball, football, soccer and hockey games, and it’s also offered a number of concerts.

You should check the schedule to see what’s in store during your trip.

If you’re wondering where to visit in Chicago to really live and breathe its traditions, you’ll want to make time for Wrigley Field.

From the battered red marquee on the front entrance to the peanuts and hotdogs sold in the concession stands, it offers a classic baseball experience that’s hard to find anywhere else in the modern world.

Address: 1060 W Addison St, Chicago, IL 60613, United States

12. Shedd Aquarium

Shedd Aquarium

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With more than 35,000 creatures, the Shedd Aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in Illinois.

Not only does it house all of the sharks and stingrays that you’d expect, but it also showcases birds, bugs, snakes, amphibians and other creatures related to the sea.

The exhibitions are mostly divided by theme.

For example, the “Wild Reef” recreates the colorful coral settings of the ocean, and “Amazon Rising” is a purposefully flooded walkthrough jungle that’s meant to evoke the topics.

Other notable features of the aquarium include a movie theater and an underwater virtual reality experience.

You can also register for tours, presentations, feeding events and animal encounters.

The coolest ones are always quick to sell out, so if you’re looking for fun things to do this weekend, make sure to book early!

Shedd Aquarium is easily one of the top sites in Chicago.

Even if you don’t consider yourself an animal person, it’ll make a convert out of you.

Address: 1200 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60605, United States

13. Chicago Lakefront Trail

Chicago Lakefront Trail

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Winding through the city for 18.5 miles, the Chicago Lakefront Trail is one of the best ways to check out the sights and sounds of a natural Illinois landscape.

You’ll pass through well-tended parks and overgrown marshes; you’ll see beaches, hills, groves, sidewalks and pedestrian bridges.

Your eyes will always have new scenery to roam.

Potential activities include everything from jogging to unicycling.

If you like being on wheels, there are several skate parks where you can practice your ollies and kickflips.

There are also ample places to stop and smell the roses if you enjoy picnicking.

As for places of interest, you can veer off the trail at any number of stops.

It’s located near piers, museums, clock towers, athletic stadiums and more.

Plan your trip around the Chicago Lakefront Trail.

Not only can it provide plenty of fun on its own, but since there are countless tourist attractions located on and near the paths, you can use it as a sort of natural compass for your trip.

You’ll never get lost when the trail is right there!

Address: 540 N Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

14. Centennial Wheel

Centennial Wheel

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The year was 1893.

The man was George Ferris Jr.

He wanted to build a gigantic metal wheel for the World’s Fair in Chicago, and despite skeptical reactions from everyone around him, he rolled up his sleeves and went to work.

Today, the Centennial Wheel is one of the most iconic tourist attractions in Chicago, and Ferris wheels are a standard feature everywhere from boardwalks to amusement parks.

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this little piece of Chicago forever changed the world.

You can still ride the Centennial Wheel.

It’s been renovated with modern safety features and all of the fun, high-class amenities that you could want, including a VIP gondola with plush seats and a glass-bottomed floor.

It’ll make for a great date night or family outing.

Ultimately, however, you don’t have to climb aboard the Centennial Wheel to appreciate the role that it plays in history or the importance that it has to Chicago, Illinois.

It’s a remarkable piece of architecture no matter what.

Address: 600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

15. Untouchable Tour

Untouchable Tours - Chicago's Original Gangster Tour

Untouchable Tours – Chicago’s Original Gangster Tour

Illinois might not seem like a hotbed of mob activity, but Chicago is the exception.

It was famous during the Prohibition era as the central headquarters for Al Capone, Bugs Moran, Baby Face Nelson and many other mafia legends who made names for themselves with everything from bootlegging to gunrunning.

Not surprisingly, you’ll find lots of “mob tours” in the city that are designed to satisfy curiosity about these famous figures.

However, the Untouchable Tour is the original tour, and it’s also one of the best.

Its tour guides will actually dress up in suits and take on the personas of 1920s and 1930s gangsters as they show you around.

You’ll visit the places where dirty business took place, and you’ll get to see the murder sites for mobsters who killed each other or were gunned down by the FBI.

You’ll even get to see the site of the bloody St. Valentine’s Day Massacre of 1929.

The blood has been cleaned up, of course, but the legacy remains.

The Untouchable Tour is a must do for your vacation.

Not only does it offer a fascinating look into the dark history of the city, but it’ll also familiarize you with the streets and sidewalks of downtown Chicago, and that’ll come in handy for the rest of your trip!

Address: 600 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654, United States

16. Museum of Science and Industry

Museum of Science and Industry

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Covering more than 400,000 square feet, the Museum of Science and Industry is the largest science center in the entire Western hemisphere.

It offers a staggering amount of things to see and do, so whether you’re into astronomy or zoology, its A-to-Z activity roster is sure to keep you entertained in Chicago.

Are you fascinated by natural phenomenon?

Stand inside of a simulated tornado or learn about the Earth’s forces with Wimshurst machines and Foucault pendulums.

Are you a geek for transportation?

Marvel at the airplanes dangling from the ceiling, and be sure to take a tour of the real-life trains, rockets and WWII submarines on display.

Other exhibits include everything from mirror mazes filled with optical illusions to 3D walkthrough models of the human heart.

If it’s a topic related to science, it’s probably featured here.

Between its events, activities and collections, the Museum of Science and Industry is a coveted jewel for Illinois.

It puts the state on the map in terms of scientific scholarship.

Even more importantly, it’s a lot of fun!

Swing by for a visit if you’re looking for the best and most educational places to go in Chicago.

Address: 5700 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60637, United States

17. Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities

Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities

Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities

The tables are covered in skulls.

The shelves are stacked with things like human dentures and lamps made out of alligator heads.

The bottles and jars are filled with eggs, skins, animal fetuses and other grotesque knickknacks.

Welcome to Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities!

Created by a couple who wanted to “make (themselves) more comfortable with dying,” this bizarre shop has become one of the top stops in Chicago for the morbid.

It’s focused on death, but in a weird way, it’s also a celebration of life.

What can make you feel more alive than looking at a stuffed and mounted squirrel?

Drop by Woolly Mammoth Antiques and Oddities if you’re looking for unique tourist places in Chicago.

It isn’t something that you’ll find in a travel guide, but its utterly bizarre collection will definitely give you a story or two for when you return home.

Address: 1513 W Foster Ave, Chicago, IL 60640, United States

18. Chicago Theatre

Chicago Theatre

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You already know what the Chicago Theatre looks like.

Even if you’ve never stepped foot in the city, you’ve seen its vintage-style “CHICAGO” marquee in all kinds of films, shows and postcards.

It’s so widely recognized that it’s considered the unofficial emblem of Chicago.

There’s more to this theater than its signage, however.

Built in 1921, it’s a historical landmark that boasts amazing architecture and lavish, old-fashioned furnishings.

Walking into its front hall is like walking backwards through history to a time of high art and culture.

The balconies are plush.

The ceilings have chandeliers and gilded murals.

There’s even an authentic Wurlitzer pipe organ; it’s one of the last of its kind in the country.

The theater is operational, too.

It still hosts plays, musicals, orchestras, magic shows and more.

Its stage has welcomed everyone from comedians to motivational speakers.

If you’re looking for the best attractions in downtown Chicago, the Chicago Theatre is a must visit.

The marquee alone is worth a pilgrimage, but even beyond that, it’s a grand venue that’s designed to entertain and impress.

Address: 175 N State St, Chicago, IL 60601, United States

19. Navy Pier

Navy Pier

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If you’ve been making a to do list for Chicago, you’ve probably listed a few of Navy Pier‘s attractions already.

It extends into Lake Michigan like a sort of overgrown boardwalk, and it’s absolutely packed with shops, restaurants, galleries, museums, movie theaters and other popular places for locals and tourists alike.

There are rides, too.

Navy Pier has a very festive atmosphere where you can always hear the jingling of carousel music and the whir of tower drops and wave swingers.

It’s also the home of the Centennial Wheel, the world’s first Ferris wheel.

Other attractions range from crazy funhouse mazes to elegant botanical gardens.

There are always things to see, and you don’t even have to visit the main attractions; you could have a fun, fulfilling afternoon just by wandering around, eating street food, listening to buskers and watching people cavort on the water.

For sheer entertainment value, Navy Pier is one of the top things to do in Chicago.

You’ll probably wind up visiting it even if you don’t plan on it.

It’s that ubiquitous to the social scene of Chicago.

Address: 600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

20. Adler Planetarium

Adler Planetarium

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Made with a dark, heavy granite, the Adler Planetarium is visually striking both indoors and outdoors.

The first thing that you’ll notice is the dome.

It measures a whopping 69 feet across, and it’s an architectural wonder.

When you sit down for a film or projection, the experience is so larger-than-life that you’ll feel like you’re careening through the stars on a real space shuttle!

Speaking of space shuttles, the planetarium has those, too.

Their exhibits include everything from meteorite chunks to old-fashioned metal space capsules from forgotten NASA projects.

If you’re a geek for astronomy, you might also like their special events for stargazing and celestial viewing.

Feel free to ask about their ongoing projects as well.

They’re an active research and observation station, and they host all kinds of educational programs for kids, couples, families, tourists and general visitors.

Are you looking for the best things to do in Chicago, Illinois?

Make time for the Adler Planetarium.

If you’ll forgive the pun, it’s out of this world.

Address: 1300 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60605, United States

21. Morton Arboretum

Morton Arboretum

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There’s so much rugged natural beauty in Illinois that it’s almost a shame to stay in Chicago where the greenery has been replaced by skyscrapers and shopping malls.

Fortunately, there are still a few places in the city where you can get some fresh air, including the Morton Arboretum.

Like its name suggests, the arboretum is devoted to trees.

You’ll find many beautiful species here, including ones that are native to Illinois.

However, there are other things and places to see, so don’t limit yourself to a walk around the oak groves and conifer exhibits.

If you like flowers, you can check out the gardens and floral specimen collections.

If you’re traveling with kids, you can let them burn off some energy with a “troll hunt.”

There are also countless tours, trails and trams to let you explore every bit of the beautiful scenery that the landscape has to offer.

The Morton Arboretum is one of the most exquisite places to visit in Chicago, so if you’re keen to get away from the noise and traffic for awhile, treat it like a hideaway spot from the rest of the world.

The trees are just the beginning!

Address: 4100 IL-53, Lisle, IL 60532, United States

22. Superdawg Drive-In

Superdawg Drive-In

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The lights are yellow and turquoise.

The hotdogs are served with fries, malts and milkshakes.

The carhops come right up to your vehicle after you’ve placed your order in the intercom.

Welcome to the Superdawg Drive-In, one of the last retro dining establishments in Chicago!

Founded in 1948, the Superdawg Drive-In hasn’t changed a thing about its operation since it first opened its doors during the days of poodle skirts and bouncy ponytails.

It’s still run by the same family, and they still serve the same salty, gooey and finger-licking goodness in paper hotdog trays.

Its authenticity is one of the reasons why it’s such a fun destination.

It isn’t pretending to be vintage; it really is!

If you’re looking for unusual things to do in Chicago, consider going back in time with the Superdawg Drive-In.

It’ll serve quick and delicious eats while hitting you with a blast of nostalgia that’s just as strong as the chill from your chocolate sundae.

Address: 6363 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60646, United States

23. Garden of the Phoenix

Garden of the Phoenix

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Illinois might not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of cherry blossoms, but at the Garden of the Phoenix, they’re an annual event.

This beautiful, peaceful garden has been transported right out of a Japanese painting and into the heart of Chicago.

Curved bridges will lead you across ponds and streams.

Bonsai trees will provide shade from the sun.

Flower fields will offer amazingly fragrant mixes of camillas, chrysanthemums and morning glories, and birds will sing sweet songs over the sounds of babbling brooks and rustling tree leaves.

You’re probably impatient to hear about the cherry blossoms.

It’s okay.

Thousands of visitors flock to Chicago from all over Illinois just to see them every spring.

Their lives are brief, so make sure to time your trip when they’re actually in season, but seeing them in person is just as amazing as you think.

If you’re looking for attractions that you can’t find anywhere else in the state of Illinois, consider the Garden of the Phoenix.

Its cherry blossoms are a rare and exotic treat, but its real appeal lies in its beauty, serenity and tranquility.

Once you’re here, you’ll never want to leave.

Address: 6300 S Cornell Ave, Chicago, IL 60637, United States

24. Shoreline Sightseeing

Shoreline Sightseeing

Shoreline Sightseeing

Shoreline Sightseeing is a tour guide company that will put you on a boat and glide you through all of Chicago’s top attractions.

Rather than wandering around with your nose pressed into a map, you can grab a beer, kick your feet up and enjoy the sights from the sea.

There are several different tours to choose from, including an architecture tour that will showcase the city’s most famous landmarks and a lake tour that will give you incredible photo ops from the water.

In the summer, there’s also a fireworks tour to take advantage of Chicago’s weekly psychokinetic displays.

Amenities include drinks, snacks and restrooms.

Some tours come with free tickets for water taxi rides.

You can choose specific departure windows if you’d like to see a sunrise or sunset over the water.

If you’re pondering where to go during your Chicago vacation, consider a tour with Shoreline Sightseeing.

It will ensure that you don’t miss any of the major points of interest of the city, and since there are always tour times available, you could be sailing with them as early as this weekend!

Address: 600 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

25. Chicago Children’s Museum

Chicago Children's Museum

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There are three stories to the Chicago Children’s Museum, and each one offers fun, dynamic experiences for families who want to combine learning and playing.

The Tinkering Lab has tools for builders and engineers.

The Dinosaur Expedition has hidden fossils that need to be dug up by pint-sized paleontologists.

The Cloud Buster has climbing structures for children who are more monkey than human, and Play It Safe has simulated emergencies in a firehouse to teach important lessons to tiny, helmet-wearing heroes.

As you can see, there’s a lot of stuff to do for kids.

But don’t worry if you’re a little tall for some of the rides!

Adults can find plenty of ways to entertain themselves as well, especially with after-hours events and programs.

Are you looking for Chicago attractions without age requirements?

Do you want something that offers more substance for your kids than shopping malls and amusement parks?

Spend an afternoon at the Chicago Children’s Museum.

The little ones will have fun, and if you’re lucky, they might just learn something as well.

Address: 700 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

26. Lincoln Park

Lincoln Park

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It’s an understatement to say that Lincoln Park is popular.

Not only is it the most-visited park in the state of Illinois, but it’s one of the most-visited in the entire United States.

It comes second only to New York‘s Central Park in terms of annual visitors.

What draws people to the park?

For starters, it’s jam-packed with attractions.

There are zoos, gardens, conservatories, museums, movie theaters, cultural centers and more.

You can partake in the usual touristy things like dining and shopping, or you can try something new by visiting an archery range or going horseback riding in the hills.

Lincoln Park is also one of the most beautiful places in the city.

If you need a break from the skyscrapers for awhile, this is where you’ll find willow trees, lily ponds and tulip gardens.

Long story short, Lincoln Park offers the best of both worlds.

If you want excitement, visit the zoo or the beach; if you want peace and quiet, take a leisurely stroll on a nature trail.

Its versatility is probably one of the reasons why it’s such a crazy popular place in Chicago!

Address: 2045 N Lincoln Park W, Chicago, IL 60614, United States

27. Chicago Cultural Center

Chicago Cultural Center

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With elaborate stained glass windows set in high-arching domes, the Chicago Cultural Center stands out even in a city already filled with amazing architecture.

It’s so impressive that it’s the meeting place of choice for presidents, princes, diplomats and other forms of royalty and celebrity.

They just can’t resist the grand staircases and mother-of-pearl mosaics!

If the architecture isn’t enough to tempt you into a visit, consider its activities.

You can find all sorts of interesting things to do here.

On any given day, for example, you might find lectures, concerts, film screenings, dance lessons, art lessons or theater performances.

Did we mention that it’s free?

Your wallet can stay in your pocket the entire time.

As a public outreach center, they won’t charge you for any tours or shows.

If you’re thinking about what to do in Chicago on a budget, consider the Chicago Cultural Center.

It’ll transport you into a high-class world filled with tea ceremonies and calligraphy classes, but amazingly, the trip won’t cost you a dime.

It’ll be an absolute steal for folks traveling through Illinois!

Address: 78 E Washington St, Chicago, IL 60602, United States

28. Petrillo Music Shell

Petrillo Music Shell

Petrillo Music Shell

With a capacity of 35,000 people, the Petrillo Music Shell is one of the largest amphitheaters in both the city of Chicago and the state of Illinois as a whole.

As you might expect, it hosts a lot of concerts.

Its stages have welcomed everyone from indie folk bands to massive pop stars.

However, it’s also a venue that’s been used for rallies, sports events, food festivals and other forms of entertainment.

Here’s a small sample of the events that are held at the Petrillo Music Shell every year:

– Lollapalooza
– Taste of Chicago
– Chicago Blues Festival
– Chicago Gospel Music Festival

It’s also hosted actors, athletes, comedians, popes, orchestras and even the Dalai Lama!

Long story short, the Petrillo Music Shell is more than just an amphitheater.

It’s a gathering place for the community.

If you’re keen on visiting the major points of interest in Chicago, you won’t want to miss this one.

Address: 235 S Columbus Dr, Chicago, IL 60601, United States

29. Merchandise Mart

Merchandise Mart

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Designed to look like a warehouse, department store and skyscraper all rolled into one, Merchandise Mart boasts more than four million square feet of floor space.

It’s so large that it used to have its own zip code even though it was right in the middle of downtown Chicago!

It was mostly used for offices and businesses.

Today, Merchandise Mart is still a hub of commerce, but it’s also open to the public with shops, show rooms and services.

You can mail a letter; you can buy a bottle of wine; you can get your clothes dry cleaned.

This is a shopping center with all of the goodies that you could ever need, and a food court is available when you get hungry.

There’s a reason why the building is often called “a city within a city.”

Special events at the mart include art shows, trade fairs, book signings, fitness classes and more.

It’s another one of those tourist attractions where you’ll want to keep an eye on the itinerary since there’s always something new going on.

Merchandise Mart used to be the largest building in the world.

It’s lost that title in recent years, but it still dwarfs everything else in Chicago, Illinois.

It’s a site worth seeing!

Address: 222 W Merchandise Mart Plaza, Chicago, IL 60654, United States

30. Maggie Daley Park

Maggie Daley Park

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Maggie Daley Park is one of the most fun things to do in Chicago.

It’s basically a gigantic, all-ages recreation area that resulted from the crazy visions of an architect who never said no to any idea.

As a result, the park offers a million different amenities in delightfully clashing ways.

There are lawns, gardens, harbors, playgrounds and picnic areas as far as the eye can see.

A winding “ribbon” is an ice skating path in the winter and a jogging and biking path in the summer.

There’s a place for rock climbing and a place for rollerblading.

You can play tennis on the tennis courts or golf on the golf courses.

Kids will love the sprawling playgrounds that include everything from multi-level towers and slides to jungle gyms with suspension bridges and tunnels.

Adults will enjoy the fun, unique attractions like the mirror maze or the upside-down forest.

Maggie Daley Park is one of the top destinations of Chicago, and since it’s open 365 days per year, there’s no reason not to check it out while you’re in town.

Just drop by whenever you’re ready.

Whether it’s next weekend or next year, the park will always be insane!

Address: 337 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601, United States

31. Violet Hour

The Violet Hour

The Violet Hour

Open every night from 6 PM to 2 AM, the Violet Hour is one of the best destinations for barhoppers in Chicago.

It has a sleek, sophisticated air that makes it much nicer than some of the other dives of downtown, and with strict house rules that include proper attire and no cellphone use while on the premises, it will give you the thrill of exclusivity if you manage to make it inside.

The decor includes dim lights, heavy black curtains and smoothly-polished wood grain tables.

It’s vaguely inspired by the speakeasies of Prohibition-era Chicago, but don’t worry; there are no mobsters here.

The cocktails are both delicious and fanciful.

They have names like “Moonchild” and “Giving Life to Memory,” so they’re something to remember.

You can also order bite-sized plates from an award-winning chef.

Do you have plans tonight?

Do you want plans tonight?

Pencil in a trip to the Violet Hour.

It more than lives up to its name by providing after-hours fun for adults.

Address: 1520 N Damen Ave., Chicago, IL 60622, United States

32. Montrose Beach

Montrose Beach

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Montrose Beach is one of the hidden gems of Chicago.

It’s much less crowded than other, more centrally-located beaches, but if you’re willing to take a bit of a drive into northern Illinois, you’ll reap the rewards of a gorgeous landscape without a lot of tourists.

The water glitters in the sun. Sand dunes shift with the wind.

Several piers jut out over the lake if you want to soak your feet; otherwise, there are wading and swimming areas, or you can ride a bilk along the asphalt trail that follows the water.

There aren’t a lot of amenities, but that’s part of its charm.

It’s a quiet, serene destination where you can do your own thing without kids crying everywhere and vendors hawking sunglasses at you.

If you’re looking for undiscovered tourist spots in Chicago, you’ll definitely want to check out Montrose Beach.

It’s a chance to get away from the grind of the city and enjoy a sunrise over the water without worries, crowds or distractions.

Address: 4400 N. Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60613, United States

33. Four Lakes

Four Lakes Snowsports

Four Lakes Snowsports

Four Lakes is one of the most beautiful places in the US.

It’s a little outside of Chicago, but if you’re willing to take a short drive to Lisle, Illinois, you can enjoy the breathtaking sight of miles and miles of snow.

Popular activities include skiing, tubing and snowboarding.

It’s okay if you’re a complete beginner; they have staff members who will rent you the gear, teach you the basics and take you down the slopes.

If you’re confident enough to venture out on your own, you’re free to do your own thing.

The terrain ranges from gentle bunny hills to elaborate boxes and rails for jumps, flips and grinds, so you’ll have your pick of settings for wintertime fun.

Four Lakes is one of the best skiing destinations near Chicago.

The powder is always fresh; the air is always crisp and clean.

What are you waiting for?

Book some time on the slopes for this week!

Address: 5750 Lakeside Dr, Lisle, IL 60532, United States

34. Myopic Books

Myopic Books

rafallg / flickr

Hailed as one of Chicago’s top destinations for bookworms and bibliophiles, Myopic Books isn’t like your usual Barnes and Noble.

For starters, it only sells used books.

Many of them are rare or obscure titles that you won’t find on mainstream shelves, and they range from vintage sci-fi and busty romance novels to historical textbooks and true crime thrillers.

It’s also quite cluttered.

The building has three stories, but since there are more than 80,000 books on site, it’s a place of crowded tables, crammed shelves and books spilling over from floor stacks.

Of course, this might sound like heaven to a book lover.

There’s something magical about getting lost in the cozy confines of a thrift shop bookstore.

The smell of old books alone can be enough to make you sigh dreamily!

Despite its shabby appearance, Myopic Books is a treasure trove for collectors and antiquarians.

It can also provide a fun way to kill some time if you’re just wandering around Chicago and wondering what to do with your afternoon.

Let yourself be transported into a Ghibli film by entering this picturesque little shop with its weird, wonderful books!

Address: 1564 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60622, United States

35. 900 North Michigan

900 North Michigan

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Shopping at 900 North Michigan is one of the coolest things to do in downtown Chicago.

Not only does it offer amazing views from its pillar-like towers, but since it’s all indoors, it’s perfect for a cold or rainy day.

Hundreds of retailers call it home.

Many of them are luxury shops or specialty boutiques that give the mall a classy, upscale vibe, but you can find plenty of discount stores as well.

A spa is located on one of the top floors.

Several restaurants take the place of traditional food courts.

There are also cafes, bookstores, fitness clubs and other recreational areas that can be a lot of fun.

Many people wonder what to do when it rains on their vacation.

Fortunately, there are places to go in Chicago where the weather isn’t an issue, and 900 North Michigan is one of them.

You’ll spend so much time exploring its shops, stalls and boutiques that the rain might even finish while you’re inside!

Address: 900 Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

36. Soldier Field

Soldier Field

Max Herman / Shutterstock

There’s nothing like the pounding of 66,000 feet to make the earth move during a football game or rock ‘n’ roll concert.

At Soldier Field, you can enjoy this energy to its fullest extent!

As Chicago’s biggest stadium, Soldier Field plays host to all of the city’s top events.

You can watch football, soccer, hockey or rugby; you can attend political rallies or monster truck shows; you can jam out to everyone from Bon Jovi to BTS.

There’s always something new on the schedule, and it’s always crazy.

If you like behind-the-scenes action, you can also arrange a tour of the stadium that includes a peek inside of the locker room, an envious trip around the VIP suite and an exploration of the main field and courtyard.

At Soldier Field, every football game is the Super Bowl.

Every concert is Woodstock.

You won’t find a better stadium experience anywhere, so if you’re looking for ear-ringing fun in Chicago, this is one of the best sites for it.

Address: 1410 Museum Campus Dr, Chicago, IL 60605, United States

37. Crystal Gardens

Crystal Gardens

elesi / Shutterstock

Growing beneath a glass atrium, the lush trees and flowers of the Crystal Gardens are like something out of a storybook.

They have deep, wild roots, but they’re neatly contained in symmetrical structures with natural light shining down on open, airy spaces.

The decor is mostly white, but the colors of the plants are vibrant pops in the palette.

They’re also dotted with sculptures, fairy lights, water fountains and other beautifully aesthetic decors.

It should come as no surprise to learn that many weddings are held at the Crystal Gardens.

It’s a popular rental space for fancy functions in Chicago.

You don’t have to get hitched to see the flowers, however.

The gardens are open to the public, and they’re conveniently located on Navy Pier if you’re visiting other tourist attractions in the area.

As a bonus, admission is free.

Visit the Crystal Gardens for a beautiful and breathtaking nature tour that just so happens to be indoors.

Rain or shine, you can enjoy their elegant floral displays.

You might even find yourself planning your future vows among the flowers!

Address: 700 E Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

38. Baha’i House of Worship

Baha'i House of Worship

BorisVetshev / Shutterstock

You can be forgiven if you’ve never heard of Baha’i, an obscure but fascinating religion that came from the Middle East.

Despite its millions of practitioners, it only has a handful of temples and prayer houses around the globe.

The amazing thing is that Illinois has one.

In fact, Illinois has the oldest and largest one, and it’s the only of its kind in North America.

The architecture is magnificent.

A lace-patterned dome sits on top of nine pillars that come together to form its center.

Inside, there are painted murals and stained glass windows.

Outside, there are pools, gardens, fountains and other gentle and tranquil spaces.

The Baha’i House of Worship is one of the most unique Chicago attractions that you can put on your itinerary.

You don’t have to be religious to appreciate its beauty, history and serenity.

It’ll fill you with wonder whether you believe like the Baha’i or not, so it’s absolutely a place to visit while you’re in Illinois.

Address: 100 Linden Ave, Wilmette, IL 60091, United States

39. The Weiners Circle

The Weiners Circle

ChicagoPhotographer / Shutterstock

Its location might be small, but this bright yellow hotdog stand packs a major punch.

There’s a reason why it’s one of the best places to visit in Chicago!

The main draw of Wieners Circle is its funky late-night atmosphere.

It stays open until 5 AM on the weekends, so it’s a popular destination for bar hoppers and club goers who want to satisfy a drunken craving for cheese fries.

It also draws a lot of insomniacs who don’t care about traditional mealtimes and love digging into hearty, Chicago style hotdogs at any time of day.

Another fun thing about Wieners Circle is that its staff and customers are encouraged to yell at each other.

Mutual insults are an everyday thing.

It’s all part of the experience.

You won’t want to take your kids to Weiners Circle, but if you’re wondering what to visit in Chicago after the lights go off, this is a place where the fun never stops.

Even more importantly, it’s a place where you can get d*mn good hotdogs!

Address: 2622 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614, United States

40. Sky Rink

Sky Rink

Sky Rink

As you might expect from a place nicknamed “The Windy City,” Chicago’s weather can be pretty cold.

It helps if you lean into the chill rather than away from it, and to do that, you’ll need to visit a place like the Sky Rink.

Located at the top of Peninsula Chicago, a luxury hotel, the Sky Rink is a small and intimate ice skating destination where you can twirl under fairy lights while surrounded by bright, twinkling Christmas trees.

You’ll feel like the main character of a holiday movie as you enjoy the picturesque setting.

It’s quite romantic, especially if you’re traveling or honeymooning with a special someone.

When you’re done on the ice, a chalet service will be waiting to take your order.

You can warm up with everything from mulled ciders to powdered pastries that are fresh out of the oven.

With its chic decor and impressive amenities, a trip to the Sky Rink is one of the most fun things to do in Chicago.

You don’t have to be a guest at the hotel.

You can book a ticket anywhere and anytime, so it doesn’t matter if you’re arriving in the city today, tomorrow or this weekend.

Your dreamy date night is a go!

Address: 108 E Superior St, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

41. Welles Park

Welles Park

Harold Angle / Shutterstock

If you’re looking for a quiet place to unwind, Welles Park can offer a respite from all of the lights, noises and crowds of Chicago.

It isn’t without amenities.

Its centerpiece is an ornate, wire-topped gazebo where bands can play outdoor concerts and community leaders can give rallying speeches.

Other features of the park include a swimming pool, fitness center, baseball field, football field and children’s playground.

The best thing about the park, however, is that you can ignore all of the attractions and simply enjoy it for the natural oasis that it is.

It’s a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of Chicago, so whether you’re looking for grassy fields for picnics or shaded tree groves for nature walks, you can find them here.

Don’t get us wrong. Chicago is amazing.

It’s just very, very busy, and there are times when you might need a breather.

Welles Park is where you can get it.

Many Chicago attractions are focused on glitz and glamor.

For a plainer, quieter sort of space, visit Welles Park.

It’ll soothe your frazzled nerves during a stressful vacation, and it’ll recharge your batteries for the rest of your time in the city.

Address: 2333 W Sunnyside Ave, Chicago, IL 60625, United States

42. Magnificent Mile

Magnificent Mile

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Are you wondering what to do on a last-minute trip to Chicago?

Do you need attractions that are always open or ones that can be booked quickly and easily?

The Magnificent Mile is the answer to your prayers.

Framed by shops, restaurants, resorts, malls, landmarks and other places of interest, the Magnificent Mile runs through the heart of downtown Chicago, and it offers a wide variety of fun for both locals and tourists.

You could spend days just sightseeing with all of the towers and skyscrapers looming over you!

To truly experience Chicago, however, you’ll need to dive into its urban landscape.

The good news is that you’ll have plenty of options.

The Magnificent Mile is home to 460 stores, 275 restaurants and 51 hotels, and that’s just the traditional, commercial side of things.

There are even more spaces for things like gardens, museums, theaters, art galleries and historical statues.

The Magnificent Mile is one of the best things to do in Chicago, especially if you’re taking an unexpected trip without the benefits of pre-booked tickets and tours.

It has so many attractions that you can always find something that’s open.

Even if your trip is as early as this weekend, the “Mag Mile” won’t let you down!

Address: North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611, United States

43. Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament

Located a few miles north of Chicago in Schaumburg, Illinois, this is an attraction that will require you to travel outside of the city limits, but it’s definitely worth it.

Where else can you enjoy stew in hollowed-out bread while you watch men in armor fight to the death atop white stallions?

Okay, they aren’t really fighting to the death.

They’re just fantastic actors.

But that’s the whole appeal of the Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament: It takes you right out of this world and into the pageantry and peasantry of 11th century Spain.

The knights will ride, joust, sword fight and perform amazing tests of courage and skill.

You’ll watch all of the action as you’re served a hearty four-course meal.

For authenticity’s sake, you won’t be given any utensils, so you might want to wear clothes that you don’t mind getting splattered with gravy or stained with ale.

If you’re looking for fun things to do in Chicago, consider the Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament.

You’ll need to take a bit of a drive to get there, but once you’re yelling yourself hoarse for knights engaging in hand-to-hand combat, you’ll be glad that you did.

Address: 2001 N Roselle Rd, Schaumburg, IL 60195, United States

44. Second City Chicago

The Second City

The Second City

How long has it been since you’ve enjoyed a real, honest-to-God belly laugh?

If you can’t remember the last time that you cracked up, Second City Chicago can help.

It’s more than just a comedy club.

Second City has locations all across the country, and it’s launched so many careers that it’s basically a pipeline to Hollywood.

When you attend a show, you’re almost guaranteed a good time with up-and-coming talent.

To give you an idea of what might be in store for you, previous acts have included Bill Murray, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Steve Carell and many, many more.

Second City Chicago is one of the most vibrant attractions of the downtown area.

If you’re wondering what to see in terms of shows, plays, musicals and comedy routines, this is a destination to put on your shortlist for sure.

Address: 1616 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60614, United States

45. Chicago Pedway

Chicago Pedway

EQRoy / Shutterstock

How do Chicago natives survive the harsh winter weather?

One of the reasons is the Pedway.

Officially known as a “pedestrian pathway system,” the Pedway is actually more of a sprawling underground network of halls, tunnels and corridors that connect different streets in Chicago.

You can enter and exit at various points to get back to the world above, but since lots of businesses have set up shop in the Pedway, it’s become a destination in its own right.

Stores are available for shopping.

Restaurants are available for dining.

Art exhibits are everywhere; one particular standout is a collection of elaborate stained glass windows.

There are above-ground locations for the Pedway, too.

They’re enclosed paths and footbridges that can lead you through the city without exposing you to the elements.

The Pedway is one of the coolest places to visit in Chicago.

It’s basically a subterranean city, so you can eat, drink, shop and explore in an entirely underground setting.

You don’t have to let Illinois weather define your vacation!

Address: Chicago, IL 60606, United States

46. Poetry Foundation Library

Poetry Foundation Library

Poetry Foundation Library

The Poetry Foundation Library is another attraction that you can’t find anywhere else in Illinois.

In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find it anywhere else in the US.

There are only a handful of poetry libraries in the entire world, but the good news is that the Chicago version is one of the best.

More than 30,000 volumes have been collected over the years.

They contain everything from flowery sonnets to raunchy limericks, so they’re quite diverse.

They can be found in books, diaries, anthologies, newspapers, scholastic works and more.

You don’t have to spend all day hunched over a table, either.

In addition to their printed works, the library also offers listening booths for audio recordings.

Some poetry is recited by the very people who authored it!

One thing to note about the library is that it has limited hours.

It’s only open on weekdays from 11 AM to 4 PM, so it might not be an option for those with a strict itinerary in Chicago.

If you have the time, however, and if you can appreciate a beautiful haiku, you should check out the Poetry Foundation Library.

It’s a unique gem in Chicago, Illinois, so it’s worth a day trip.

Address: 61 W Superior St, Chicago, IL 60654, United States

47. Field Museum of Natural History

Field Museum of Natural History

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With millions of artifacts on display, the Field Museum is one of the largest natural history museums in the world, and it’s renowned for its research and public education efforts as well as its collections that are just plain cool.

Gigantic skeletons will show you the jaw-dropping sizes of dinosaurs and woolly mammoths.

The hall of gems will beckon you with wondrous colors and glittering edges.

Underground tours will show you the earth below; space films will take you out of your seat and into the sky.

Plants are displayed in glass houses. Meteorite pieces are tucked into slides.

Flowers are pressed and preserved; ancient texts are printed on scrolls and silk screens; cultural tokens date back thousands of years and then some.

Taxidermy animals include everything from extinct species to notable creatures like the man-eating lions of Tsavo.

If this sounds like a lot, you should know that it isn’t even a fraction of what the Field Museum has to offer.

It’s home to more than 24 million items in total!

There’s a reason why it always tops the list of Chicago attractions, so whether you’re into birds, bugs or black holes, this is the museum for you.

Address: 1400 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60605, United States

48. Six Flags Great America

Six Flags Great America

Six Flags Great America

Thrill-seekers, this one is for you.

Six Flags Great America offers roller coasters, bungee jumps, water slides, tilt-a-whirls, plummets, racers, bumper cars and much, much more.

It’ll be the ultimate adrenaline rush for folks who are looking for high-octane fun in Chicago.

It should be noted that the amusement park isn’t quite within Chicago.

It’s located in Gurnee, Illinois, which is about an hour north of the city.

That said, you should definitely take advantage of being close to a Six Flags.

It’s one of the best places to travel for food, fun and festivities no matter where you are, so whether you’re looking to chomp on deep-fried candy bars or scream like a banshee on a ricochet ride, it’ll offer an amazing vacation experience.

Make time for a trip to Six Flags while you’re in Chicago.

Book early. Find a coupon for an all-day pass.

A little planning today can net you a big discount tomorrow!

Address: 1 Great America Parkway, Gurnee, IL 60031, United States

49. Chinatown


ben bryant / Shutterstock

Even if you’ve been to Chinatowns in other cities, you’ve never been to Chicago’s Chinatown.

It’s such a vibrant neighborhood that it puts others to shame.

For starters, it really is a neighborhood.

It has all of the shops and street food stalls that you’d expect from a Chinatown, but beyond the gimmicky, touristy areas, there are parks, schools, museums, libraries and other important touchstones for the local Chinese community.

It’s also quite large.

With a population of almost 100,000 throughout the greater Chicago region, it’s easily the biggest Chinatown in the state of Illinois.

As for its attractions, you can drink, dine and shop to your heart’s content.

The food is usually the biggest draw for tourists, but if you’re interested in things like plays, market events and gallery openings, you’ll find plenty of those as well.

A trip to Chinatown is one of the best experiences that you can have in Chicago.

Grab your chopsticks and get going!

A steaming platter of red bean buns is waiting for you!

Address: 318 W Cermak Rd, Chicago, IL 60616, United States

50. Chicago Mosaic School

Chicago Mosaic School

Chicago Mosaic School

If you’re hoping to have unique experiences in Chicago, have you considered learning a new skill or hobby while you’re there?

The Chicago Mosaic School is the only one of its kind in Illinois.

Originally just a workshop offered by a local ceramicist, it’s grown into an award-winning institution that’s dedicated to the preservation of the trade and the celebration of fun, creative artwork.

You can sign up for a number of classes and programs at the school.

If you already know your way around tiles, you can also test your expertise with the only mosaic certification program in the US.

If you just want to take a tour, that can be arranged, too.

The school has lots of its handiwork displayed in galleries, exhibitions, studios and showrooms.

Try something a little different during your vacation with the Chicago Mosaic School.

Whether you’re interested in expressing your own artistic side or just marveling at the creativity and imagination of others, this school is a unique travel destination in Chicago.

Address: 1127 W Granville Ave, Chicago, IL 60660, United States

51. Grant Park

Grant Park

Tupungato / Shutterstock

Grant Park is such a famous destination in Chicago that you might be surprised to find it at the bottom of this list.

The reason is because it’s a massive, multipurpose space that branches off into a thousand different directions with a thousand different attractions, so if you missed any of Chicago’s greatest hits, you’ll have one last chance to visit them before your vacation is over.

Did you check out the metal bean at Millennium Park?

Did you take a selfie at Buckingham Fountain or stroll through the Lurie Garden?

Did you get a little culture at the Art Institute of Chicago, or did you rock with an outdoor concert at the Petrillo Music Shell?

All of these destinations are on or near Grant Park.

There are countless others as well.

Grant Park is known as “Chicago’s front yard,” and once you’re standing at the entrance and seeing the entire buffet of cool things to do, you’ll realize why it earned the nickname.

If it isn’t one of the first places that you visit, make it one of the last.

Address: 337 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601, United States

Start Planning Your Trip To Chicago

These are just a few of the best places to visit in Chicago, Illinois.

Whether you’re looking for refined art or bizarre street food, it’s a city that has a little bit of everything, so it’ll be an excellent destination for your travel bucket list!