Nestled along the picturesque shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago, Illinois, is a captivating blend of sprawling architecture, quaint cafes, luxury parks, hidden gardens, vibrant culture, and culinary delights that are truly awe-inspiring. There are a thousand and one things to do in Chicago, it all depends on when tourists visit the city.
What makes Chicago famous goes beyond just a mosaic of sights and sounds, captivating the senses of all who wander its streets. What makes Chicago interesting is the buzz of endless possibilities and opportunities. It’s how the city throbs with the laughter and chatter of residents and tourists connecting and forging new friendships.
No matter the time of day, the city of Chicago never rests, alive with activity and vibrant city life. As you embark on this journey through the heart of Chicago, get ready to discover and explore the best it has to offer.
Before traveling, visitors should keep in mind that the weather in Chicago can be extreme. Best to visit Chicago during the shoulder seasons(Spring and Fall) which are between April to May and September to October if you want an enjoyable holiday experience. Let’s delve into some of the fun and interesting things to do in Chicago in 2023.
Things to Do in Chicago in 2023
1. Go Sightseeing
From the shores of Lake Michigan to the bustling metropolis brimming with history, stunning architecture, and unforgettable attractions, feed your eyes with the rich social, cultural, and historic sights in Chicago. Here are a few places to go sightseeing.
Prepare to be mesmerized by the majestic Tribune Tower, perched in the heart of Downtown Chicago just along the Magnificent Mile. The Tribune Tower is a testament to architectural brilliance, with its neo-Gothic design, intricate stonework, ornate gargoyles, and spires inspired by European cathedrals. This architectural gem tells a story of grandeur and embodies a longstanding legacy of editorial excellence. It was the home of the Chicago Tribune newspaper from 1925 to 2018.
The Tribune Tower is a striking sight against modern buildings and exudes an aura of timelessness. Truly one of the first things to do in Chicago is to visit the Tribune Tower.
Chicago Cultural Center
Another wonderful place to see is The Chicago Cultural Center, a captivating haven in the heart of the city, which has gained fame for its dynamic artistic offerings. Immediately you step inside you’ll be immersed in a world of art, and music courtesy of various exhibitions, concerts, and festivals. The mesmerizing Tiffany glass dome(one of the two-stained glass domes) casts bright hues throughout the building’s interior.
This cultural hotspot was built in 1897 and promotes creativity and community, welcoming tourists and culture enthusiasts alike. From captivating theatrical showcases like poetry and live music to workshops, the center offers numerous activities for all. If you’re looking for a place in Chicago to visit with rich cultural heritage, this would be the ideal luxury destination.
To soak in the marvels of nature, embark on a tranquil stroll along the picturesque Chicago Riverwalk, a proper metropolitan paradise spanning 1.25 miles of the Chicago River. Find a cozy spot in one of the seating areas, and revel in the mesmerizing skyline views. Dine at charming riverside restaurants, cafes, and bars. Browse some antique shops for souvenirs, as you revel in the serenity of the riverbanks.
Breathe in the fragrant flowers, and listen to the gentle rustle of leaves overhead. Allow the soft meandering of the river to provide respite from the bustling Chicago cityscape. Also, engage in water activities and take photographs to preserve your experiences.
The Rookery Building
Renowned for its exceptional design and rich cultural heritage, the Rookery Building has earned its place among the most famous sights in Chicago. It transports sightseers to an ancient period of grandeur. And definitely needs to be checked off the list of things to do in Chicago.
It was Constructed in 1888 as a center for trade and commerce and boasts an elegant interior with intricate ironwork and a spectacular light court. The building’s historical significance lies in its function as a hub for various enterprises and the city’s touristy appeal.
Today, The Rookery Building in Chicago continues to be a bustling hub of activity and attraction for visitors. While it still retains its architectural magnificence and historical significance, the building has adapted to modern times and offers various experiences to those who visit.
Dive into Chicago’s sporting heritage at Wrigley Field also known as Wrigleyville, home of the legendary Chicago Cubs. This historic stadium, with its iconic ivy-shrouded brick walls and welcoming red marquee, has witnessed over a century of baseball history. It has equally been featured in several movies.
Attend a game, soak up the electric atmosphere, and become part of Chicago’s rich sports culture. The lively neighborhood of Wrigleyville, surrounding the stadium, also offers a warm atmosphere with a couple of bars, restaurants, and entertainment spots.
The last place on our list to discover a world of entertainment and excitement is the Navy Pier. An iconic destination on the shores of Lake Michigan. With its sprawling 50-acre expanse, Navy Pier offers a rich combination of sights to visit and activities to indulge in. From boat cruises to amusement rides, luxury stores, restaurants, and family-friendly appeals.
2. Try Wonderful Cuisines
Chicago’s claim to fame, the deep-dish pizza, is an absolute must-try. Picture a thick, heavenly crust, layered with gooey cheese, delectable toppings, and lumps of tomato dressing.
Each bite of the Chicago barbecue, Chicago hot dog, Jibarito sandwich, steak, or flaming Saganaki is a burst of flavors that will leave you craving for more.
3. Enjoy the Nightlife Scene
Chicago offers an exceptional music and nightlife experience for visitors who want to explore the city after dark. There are interesting nighttime activities such as dance and cocktail clubs, night shows, Chicago jazz, and renowned comedy venues.
Experience Chicago’s rich musical heritage in Uptown neighborhoods like Logan Square. Play board games at Bucktown and grab late-night meals and snacks at Lincoln Park. For a true taste of Chicago’s jazz scene, you can also visit the Jazz Showcase.