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A Chicago city guide – high-rise buildings, shopping avenues and sandy beaches

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Sprawling skyscrapers, smoky jazz and sandy beaches, Chicago is a city that has it all. Whether you choose to explore the buzzing Loop District of Downtown Chicago, the immaculate shopping avenues of Chicago O’Hare or the sparkling beaches of Lake Michigan, you are bound to fall in love with one of the greatest cities in Northern America.

Maher Safwat

My Destination local expert on

Chicago

Downtown Chicago

 

Downtown Chicago is the heart of the city and ranks top of any visitor’s list of places to see in Chicago. Home to the iconic Loop District, where you’ll find the one of the tallest buildings in the world in the form of the Sears Tower, this fast-paced spot is filled with local attractions. If you follow the Chicago River, you’ll see most of the city’s impressive skyline, while a walk down Michigan Avenue will lead you past Trump International Hotel and Tower. Of course, downtown is not all about tall buildings, as a visit to Millennium Park will confirm. Millennium Park is a large and open public space among Chicago’s high-rise buildings and is one of the most popular parks for a scenic stroll.

 

Lincoln Park

 

Lincoln Park is on the north side of Chicago, along from the downtown district. Here you can expect beautiful parks and the Lincoln Park zoo. Just south of Lincoln Park is Old Town, boasting the two premier theaters in the city – Steppenwolf and Second City. The lakefront is another major attraction here and is particularly popular in the summer. There is ample seating space where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Chicago skyline overlooking the lake.

 

Chicago O’Hare

 

Chicago isn’t all about tall buildings and famous shopping avenues; the city also offers a tranquil countryside, evident in the area around Chicago O’Hare Airport. There are plenty of hotels in this area that take full advantage of Chicago’s countryside – you’ll find that many capture a sense of seclusion. This area is also a magnet for golf enthusiasts. While you do enjoy a great feel of isolation here, you’re only a 30-minute train journey from Downtown Chicago.

 

Lake View

 

If baseball is more your thing Wrigleyville in Lake View is home to the iconic Wrigley Field where the Chicago Cubs play. As the seconds oldest stadium in the majors league It seats 41,160 people and tours operate for those who want to explore inside. Lake View is also home to the popular music venue, The Metro. It’s been going since 1982 and has played host to such icons as James Brown, Metallica and Bob Dylan.

 

Beaches

 

The beaches of Lake Michigan stretch for miles and miles, requiring no admission fee to enjoy (the entire waterfront is open to the public). Chicago’s beaches are considered the second cleanest urban beaches in the world, which is a particularly impressive feat when you consider that the city has around ten million inhabitants. Perhaps the best beach to head to is North Avenue Beach, just east of Lincoln Park. North Avenue Beach is the volleyball capital of the Midwest, and there is also an enclosed rollerblading rink and wide cycling lanes.

 

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