Collected by Meagan Mastriani
201 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60602, USA
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. ~ Marcel Proust. For my inaugural highlight on AFAR, I am starting with my wife's favorite quote, and a local sight in Chicago. Sometimes people feel they...
875 N Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, USA
Every city has a building with great views and Chicago’s most famous is the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower. But a little Chicago secret is that the John Hancock building has better views and their Signature Lounge on the 96th floor has free...
565 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60661, USA
Lou Mitchell’s diner has been open in the same location since 1923; so long, in fact, that diner patrons witnessed the heyday of Route 66, which started right here next to Union Station. The Chicago city council renamed Jackson Street “Lou...
401 N Franklin St, Chicago, IL 60654, USA
I have two pieces of advice for you regarding the Doughnut Vault: 1. Go early. They open at 8am Tuesday-Friday and 9:30am on Saturdays and if you want a breath of a hope of a chance of getting a doughnut before they sell out, you want to be there...
111 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603, USA
Just imagine having 264,000 square-feet of modern art at your disposal seven days a week. That is exactly what you have if you visit the Modern Wing of the Art Institute of Chicago. Above is but one example of the funky-cool exhibits that await...
Lower, 430 N Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, USA
Billy Goat Tavern achieved international fame in the 1970’s with a Saturday Night Live skit that mocked the order process and the lack of options. No Pepsi… Coke! No Fries… Chips! The tavern’s been open since 1934 on the lower level of Michigan...
141 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60604, USA
For their roving, event-based Volume Gallery, Claire Warner and Sam Vintz pluck contemporary American designers like Thaddeus Wolf and Rich Brilliant Willing and set up short-run installations at galleries all over Chicago. One of Chicago’s own,...
5700 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60637, USA
Anyone who's into model trains should visit the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. Originally opened in 1941, The Great Train Story was the largest model train of its day. After being briefly shuttered in 2002 for extensive additions, this...
951 Chicago Ave, Oak Park, IL 60302, USA
Frank Lloyd Wright built 700+ houses all over this nation but he lived and worked in Oak Park, just a 45 minute train ride from the city center of Chicago. His house and studio are now a museum with guided tours that let you see the playroom he...
909 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60657, USA
2391 N Stockton Dr, Chicago, IL 60614, USA
Lincoln Park is a wonderful green area nearing Lake Michigan in Chicago. It has a Zoo free to the public as well as green lawns and flower beds. Near the North end is the multiple room conservator. Like the rest if the park it is open free to the...
7705 N Eastlake Terrace, Chicago, IL 60626, USA
Pick up your morning coffee at one of the many local coffee shops, and walk to Rogers Beach (known by locals as Lighthouse Beach). The sunrise over Lake Michigan is stunning! Locals fish off the lighthouse pier in the early morning semi-darkness....
1655 W Cortland St, Chicago, IL 60622, USA
To find the Trap Door Theatre, you walk down a narrow walkway between two white brick walls. A steel door opens onto the kitchen of Jane's Restaurant. A second door leads to a small black box theater. There, for the last 15 plus years, the Trap...
233 S Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606, USA
Willis Tower—originally known as the Sears Tower—was the world's tallest building for 23 years until it was unseated in 1996 by the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur. The 110-story skyscraper is still mighty impressive. Its "bundled...
26 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601, USA
A combination of sugar and salt, sweet and savory, there's nothing like Garrett's "Chicago Mix"—a combination of caramel corn and cheese popcorn. It's the kind of thing I crave in such a way that it's a good thing I don't live in Chicago....
1616 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60614, USA
The Second City has come a long way since the small cabaret theater that launched in 1959. As a sketch comedy and improvisational performance theater, the venue has been keeping people laughing for over 50 years. Situated in the historic Old Town...
6836 N Sheridan Rd, Chicago, IL 60626, USA
Ask any local where to try your first real deep-dish pizza and they'll say "Giordanos." It's obviously the best in town. Chicago-style pizza is unique and totally different than what you'll find in Italy. More like a pie, the crust is tall and...
Streeterville, Chicago, IL 60611, USA
The architectural boat tour of downtown Chicago is the single best way to see this city in a whole new way. From first-timers to lifers, it doesn't matter how long you've been in town, this perspective is going to be new to all. There are many...
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