Musings of a Museum Fanatic: 6 Tips for Your Chicago Visit

8.12.2019

6 Tips for Your Chicago Visit

Visiting a new city can be lots of fun but also daunting. You want to make the most of your trip, do everything and see everything. It can be tough to make sure that you're making the most out of your trip. Chicago is an amazing city and you can really miss out on a lot if you focus on certain areas and things to do. I've got 6 tips for you to make the most of your Chicago visit whether you're visiting for your first time, 100th time or even if you're a local. 


Get out of the Loop
The Loop is one of my favorite places in the city. It is the center of everything amazing Chicago, architecture, restaurants and so much more. Even though there is so much in the Loop there is even more to the city! Fantastic neighborhoods with lots to do, see and eat. Can you see an amazing free zoo if you stay in the Loop nope you have to head north to Lincoln Park Zoo. What about checking out the National Museum of Mexican Art? You'd have to head west. 


Get out of the city

If you want to experience even more of the Chicago area get out of the city itself. Most people don't even think to get out of the city proper but they're missing out. You can hop on the Metra and head in any direction and find some great suburban downtowns and stop. If you've got a car you can really explore! I highly recommend Arlington Heights, Evanston, Geneva and Elmhurst to start with but there are so many to enjoy. You can even make a day of it with a weekend Metra pass and stop at every stop!


Visit more than the tourist traps

There are certain areas and sites that people flock to. Everyone must have a photo with the Bean! We must visit the Shedd! While visiting the tourist trap sights is well and good there are so many more iconic places to visit. I think everyone should put the Chicago History Museum at the top of their museum list. How can you visit a city and not learn about it's amazing history? Want a gorgeous photo? Head to Buckingham Fountain in the morning. Especially on weekdays you'll be able to get great shots with little to no people. 


Enjoy the ethnic food scene

Many people enjoy the food scene in Chicago and head to the high ranking places. With Chicago being a place that people have migrated to throughout history it's ethnic neighborhoods have been very well defined through history. It's ethnic history is such an important part. You can find amazing restaurants in all of these neighborhoods. Head to Devon Ave. for some amazing Indian food. Chinatown will present you with gobbs of delicious Chinese. Andersonville will take you to Sweden. The list goes on and on. 


Shop off of Michigan Avenue

Lots of people get super excited about shopping on Michigan Avenue during their Chicago trip. Michigan Avenue is full of the higher end stores and most of them are ones that you can find everywhere like the Disney Store or Victoria Secret. If you're looking to shop at these type of stores I would suggest doing it at home. There is a good chance you can find the same items plus there is a good change you'll be paying less because of the high Cook County tax rate. 

I recommend heading to other neighborhoods to find local shops. You'll find some amazing one of a kind art stores, clothing shops and other fun stores. Some of my favorites are off Armitage in Lincoln Park. Plus certain times of year, especially around the holidays, it can be treacherous to shop on Michigan Avenue with the sidewalks jam packed with shoppers!


Enjoy the small museums


I love all museums but most people tend to only focus on the heavy hitters like the Art Institute and the big ones on Museum Campus. There are so many smaller museums where you really get to feel and enjoy Chicago. You can find museums about all sorts of topics from surgical science to grand house museums to money In addition to being really cool and getting in-depth a lot of the smaller museums tend to be free or way cheaper than the large museums. 

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1 comment

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