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13 X the best things to do in Chicago

9 March 2017


Are you going to Chicago soon and are wondering about everything that you can do there? In this blog we put everything fun that there is to do in the windy city on a list! Chicago is the third biggest city in America and that’s very noticeable; there’s so much to do. From food to architecture and super hip neighbourhoods, in Chicago you don’t have to worry about getting bored. The city is positioned alongside Lake Michigan, and in the summer the water is filled with boats. Unfortunately they’re not allowed in every canal. Otherwise you’d get a bit of the Amsterdam feel. I would recommend to visit Chicago in the warmer months. In the summer it’s around 25 degrees, but in the winter it’s so cold and freezes almost the whole day. A city trip isn’t as nice when the cosy terraces aren’t open.

More hotspots in Chicago


Walk on the 606: New York has the High Line which is so popular that in the high season it’s difficult to find a bench where you can relax. Well, Chicago has the 606, old train rails that go through the hip neighbourhood Wicker Park up to Logan Square. In the past, that was a neighbourhood that you really didn’t want to walk around in, but now they’re two of the hippest neighbourhoods in the city. Make sure that you take something to drink with you, because unlike in New York, there aren’t any vendors on the ‘railway’.

Go to upcoming neighbourhoods: The center of Chicago is beautiful, but personally I prefer the upcoming neighbourhoods outside the center. If you’re in Chicago then definitely check out the neighbourhoods Logan Square, Ukrainian Village, West Loop, Fulton Market, and Wicker Park. 

Doen in Chicago

Try local beers: are you crazy about craft beers? Then you’ll want to go to Revolution Brewing in Chicago on Logan Square. The labels themselves are already really interesting, but the flavours are even better. Go to a tasting and the brewpub and order some nice bites to go with it!

Arts Institute of Chicago: this museum is the perfect spot for those who like modern art. A must visit for a rainy day or if you’re looking for an indoor activity. The building alone is already really unique!

North Avenue Beach: YES, Chicago has a beach, and that means that in the summer you can dip feet in the water, sit on the sand and enjoy a drink. On the coast you’ll find lots of different beach restaurants, but North Avenue Beach is the most popular because it’s so close to the city.

Eat burgers at Au Cheval: do you love burgers? For the best of the best you’ll want to go to Au Cheval in West Loop. You won’t find any low calorie dishes at this dark and cosy spot. Here you go for comfort food and a delicious, juicy burger!

Millennium Park & the Bean: You’ve probably know that popular image of Chicago with a huge silver bean? You’ll be able to see that image in Millennium Park! The Bean is actually called Cloud Gate and it’s the entrance to the park where you can go for a lovely walk. Tip: in the summer you can go to free concerts in this park!

Neem de L-Train: The Loop, also known as the L-Train, goes through the entire city in Chicago. I personally think that this train gives in the city gives off that character from which you recognise that you’re in Chicago. A trip with the L-Train metro is a real recommendation.

Thing to do in Chicago

Ga eten bij een Michelin-sterren restaurant: WOW! Chicago really is the food city of the North West if you ask me. During my trip to Chicago I was lucky to have a look inside and taste some things at GraceThis restaurant has 3 Michelin stars, so if it fits into your budget then you should definitely eat there. What I like about Chicago is that they also have non-stiff or non-classical restaurants with a Michelin star like Longman & Eagle. Try to get a table and you’re guaranteed to have a good night. This is thé restaurant that the locals recommended to me, so next time I’m going to make sure to make a reservation on time!

Magnificent Mile (Michigan Avenue): Do  you wanna shop at American stores before going home?  Then Michigan Avenue is the place to be! You can do some really good shopping on this street!

Thing to do in Chicago

Lakefront Trail: walk off all of the extra kilo’s you’ve gained from the Chicago food at the Lakefront Trail. A huge boulevard alongside Lake Michigan. It’s also nice to rent a bike if it’s nice weather (and hopefully less windy!)

Food markets: there are a lot of food markets in Chicago! Check out our list here with the best tips

Chicago Architecture Cruise: One of the things I liked most in Chicago was the river cruise that’s all about the Chicago Architecture. It’s especially nice if you’ve got a spot in the sun on the boat, and you learn all about the unique buildings that you pass on the canals of Chicago.

Doen in Chicago

Chicago Travel Tips

  • How to get there: Icelandair daily flies to Chicago from Amsterdam with one layover. Did you know that it’s free to do a layover in Reykjavik and Iceland to up to seven days? Two places to tick off the foodie bucketlist!
  • These are YOURLBB’S favourite hotels in Chicago: Do you prefer to stay at a boutique hotel or a lifestyle hotel where you can completely relax in your room after a busy day in the city, or still have a drink at the hotelbar?
    >> The Lincoln: hip and vintage interior (Old Town)
    >> Longman & Eagle: 6 room above a Michelin star restaurant (Logan Square)
    >> The Drake:  so typically American that it’s charming (North Side)
    >> Acme Hotel: modern lifestyle hotel with art (River North)
    >> The James:  nice lifestyle with light rooms (River North)
    >> The Langham: luxurious hotel in building designed by Mies van der Rohe (River North)
    >> Millenium Knickerbocker: classic hotel in the center (North Side)
    >> Holiday Jones: officially a hostel, but with really cool vibes! (Wicker Park)
    >> Cambria: trendy hotel with a really cool rooftop (North Side)



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Anne de Buck

Travel Essentials

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