Explore Chicago!

For our out of town guests, listed below are a few websites with lots of local ideas and reviews of things to do while you’re in Chicago!


buckingham-fountain-200Buckingham FountainBuckingham Fountain is one of Chicago’s most popular attractions. The Fountain opened on May 26, 1927 and was dedicated on August 26, 1927. Edward H. Bennett designed the Fountain to represent Lake Michigan with four sea horses, built by Marcel Loyau, to symbolize the four states that touch the lake: Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. Bennett attributed the design specifically to the influence of the Latona Basin in Louis XIV’s gardens at Versailles.

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johnhancockobservatory-200John Hancock ObservatoryThe design of the John Hancock Center was influenced by its unique site. Just off Lake Shore Drive, it is surrounded by huge, residential high-rise buildings and yet faces one of the city’s most attractive commercial streets. The developers insisted on producing a tall building with residences above, offices and commercial uses below. The search for a new kind of structure which would accommodate multiple uses and also express the scale and grandeur of a one-hundred-story tower, lead to the diagonal tube.

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millenniumpark-200Millennium ParkMillennium Park is an award-winning center for art, music, architecture and landscape design. The result of a unique partnership between the City of Chicago and the philanthropic community, the 24.5-acre Park features the work of world-renowned architects, planners, artists and designers.

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sheddaquarium-200Shedd AquariumThe galleries at Shedd Aquarium are home to creatures from the Waters of the World – rivers and reefs, Great Lakes and small ones, and the global ocean. So take a tour of the water planet. Want to explore a little deeper? Immerse yourself in the Caribbean Reef, Amazon Rising’s flooded forest, the Oceanarium’s Pacific Northwest coast and Wild Reef’s Indo-Pacific reef. Go totally polar in Polar Play Zone and be sure to see Fantasea, Shedd’s new aquatic show. The Shedd Aquarium is part of the museum campus which includes Adler Planetarium and the Field Museum of Natural History.

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willistower-200Willis TowerThe Skydeck at the Willis Tower provides the best view and best overview of Chicago. At 1,353 feet (412 meters), the Skydeck is the highest observatory in Chicago. You can see 40 – 50 miles (65 – 80 kilometers) on a clear day. Imagine seeing Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin, just by walking around the Skydeck. And there’s no finer view of Chicago architecture.

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explorechicago-200Explore ChicagoExploreChicago.org (soon to be re-named ChooseChicago.com) is the city of Chicago’s official tourism site. Find hundreds of attractions and things to do during your stay in Chicago!

Get more out of your visit to Chicago. Extend your stay, make a vacation out of it, and attend a few of the city’s many fun and entertaining events. Find events here.

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