Did you know that Chicago welcomes over 57 million tourists per year?
This is no surprise, considering that the Windy City is full of incredible things to do year-round. Chicago is full of art, history, food, and counts with fantastic tourist attractions for people of all ages.
So, whether you are planning a trip to Chicago with your family, friends, or exploring the Windy City on your own, you are bound to have an unforgettable trip.
If you’ve been looking for some inspiration to finalize your plans, keep reading for ten of the most exciting things to do in Chicago, Illinois.
1. Enjoy the Skyline at the 360 Chicago Observation Deck
What better way to enjoy Chicago’s skyline than from the 94th floor at the John Hancock Center?
Visiting the 360 Chicago Observation Deck will give you incredible, unobstructed views of the city. You’ll be able to admire iconic buildings like the Willis Tower and see Lake Michigan from an astonishing angle. In addition, the observation deck will also let you get a peak of four neighboring states.
After you soak in the views, you can enjoy a drink at the bar!
2. Have Fun at a Party Boat
A party boat rental is another fantastic way to experience the magic of the Windy City.
Soak in the sun, watch the sunset, relax, and enjoy a fun time while looking at the city’s beautiful skyline from the water!
3. Learn Bone-Chilling Stories at a Crime Tour
Chicago has a rich history, including crime, gang activity, murder, and suspense. That is why if you are visiting for the first time, you won’t want to miss going on a gangster or crime tour to learn all about the villainous activities that happened on its streets.
There are many different crime tours across the city, including those about infamous gangsters like John Dillinger and Al Capone. No matter which tour you pick, you’ll be able to see the city in a completely different light by having seen locations where some serious crimes happened.
4. Visit the Field Museum of Natural History
If you love history but prefer to avoid crime and gangster stories, you should consider visiting the Field Museum of Natural History. With a collection of over 40 million artifacts, this Chicago staple is one of the best natural history museums in the world.
The museum features many exciting interactive exhibits showcasing over 4.6 billion years of history. Whether you are visiting Chicago by yourself or with family or friends, this museum is a spot that you should add to the itinerary, as it is a perfect tourist attraction for people of all ages.
5. Admire Some Art at the Art Institute of Chicago
If you are a fan of visual arts, you have to make it a priority to visit the Art Institute of Chicago, which happens to be one of the oldest art museums in the world. Whether you want to look at some contemporary art, experimental photography, or something else in between, this museum is bound to satisfy all of your artsy needs while visiting Chicago!
With over 260,000 artifacts and artworks, this museum features a little bit of everything.
6. Explore Chicago’s Magic on a Street Art Tour
One of the best things about Chicago is that its art scene does not stop at museums! In fact, the Windy City is full of incredible street art that you must see during your visit. You can explore the street art scene by yourself or join a walking tour to ensure that you won’t miss anything.
7. Visit the Famous Cloud Gate
You cannot visit Chicago without seeing one of its most popular tourist attractions: Cloud Gate!
This bean-shaped mirror is located at Millennium Park and weighs over 100 tons. Because of its size, location, and ability to reflect the city’s skyline, this infamous bean has become a trendy spot to take pictures for social media.
8. Enjoy a Show at the Chicago Theatre
An excellent way to experience some of the Windy City’s magic is by catching a show at the infamous Chicago Theater. This iconic entertainment venue brings to the city some of the best Broadway shows, musicals, concerts, and much more!
While you are there, you should consider asking about tours of the venue. Learning about its history, architecture, and behind the scenes is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you won’t want to miss.
9. Stroll Around Lincoln Park Zoo
The Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the oldest zoos in the country. Located just minutes from downtown Chicago, this free zoo features nearly 200 animal species.
In addition to incredible animal exhibits, guests are also welcome to stroll around gardens that feature more than 1200 plant species!
10. Try Some Deep-Dish Pizza
Although there are many incredible foods in Chicago, you cannot leave the city without trying out some good ole deep-dish pizza.
A deep-dish slice in Chicago is unlike anything you’ve ever tried before- it is denser, thicker, and has a lot more cheese than your typical pizza. No matter where you try out this Chicago favorite, you are bound to want to come for more!
Looking for More Things to Do in Chicago, Illinois?
Whether you are hoping to learn some of the city’s history, or prefer to dive into its art, there are many exciting things to do in Chicago, Illinois.
So, start booking those walking tours, party boats, and museum guides, and don’t forget to leave some room in the itinerary for a nice lunch at a deep-dish pizza restaurant! The Windy City is full of magic, and you’ll be able to experience it all if you do any of the things in this guide.
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