Chicago Illinois Places of Interest

Chicago Illinois Places of Interest
Chicago is home to a spectrum of sites from world-renowned museums to quaint canals, wealthy shopping districts to peaceful public parks. The intensity of city life is offset by Lake Michigan, which provides miles of beachfront and green spaces in contrast to the bustle of traffic and business. Boat and double-decker bus tours present Chicago's life story as a Midwestern metropolis that rose from the ashes. As a thriving city, intellectual capital and a pioneer in urban gardens and green architecture, Chicago speaks to progress as well as American tradition.

Willis-Sears Tower

Now called the Willis Tower, Chicago's Sears Tower could be the city's mascot. Black and glossy, its tiered design and antennae dominate the skyline. On a clear day, visitors can view the entire city as well as greater Illinois, Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin from the 103rd floor Skydeck. Telescopes, exhibits, interactive kiosks and children's activities make the ascent educational as well as fun.

Willis-Sears Tower Skydeck
233 S. Wacker Dr. Suite 3530
Chicago, Illinois 60606
(312) 875-9447

Millennium Park

Visit Millennium Park for events, art exhibitions or just a stroll. Opened in 2004, the 24.5 acre Millennium Park attracts visitors to its Frank Gehry architecture and its sleek, modern Cloud Gate sculpture. The Lurie Garden presents "Urbs in Horto" (City in a Garden), "which refers to Chicago's transformation from its flat and marshy origins to a bold and powerful city." Visit the park for its numerous festivals, concerts and performances throughout the year.

Millennium Park
201 E. Randolph St.
Chicago, Illinois 60602
(312) 742-1168

Bird Sanctuary

With 570 parks covering 7,600 acres and 24 miles of beaches, visitors and residents alike will never be at a loss for open space in Chicago. Among the sites in Chicago's famous Lincoln Park is The Bill Jarvis Migratory Bird Sanctuary. More than 150 types of birds have been spotted at the sanctuary during their southward journeys each spring and summer, including purple martins, herons and hummingbirds. Although visitors are not allowed inside the sanctuary, you may observe bird and mammal activity from the viewing station and footpaths around the reserve.

East of 3400 N. Lake Shore Dr. in Lincoln Park
Chicago, Illinois 60657

The Art Institute of Chicago

Built in 1893, the Art Institute of Chicago is one of the country's renowned art museums. Along with housing art and artifacts from around the world, the Institute prides itself on its collections composed of works by native Chicago and African American artists.

The Art Institute of Chicago
111 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60603
(312) 443-3600

Buckingham Fountain

One of the largest fountains in the world, Buckingham Fountain has been a Chicago landmark since 1927. Kate Buckingham commissioned the work in honor of her late brother and dedicated it to the people of Chicago. The fountain, ornamented with four seahorses representing Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and Indiana, is one of Chicago's most popular attractions. Don't miss the 20-minute water show every hour on the hour, which becomes a sound and light show in the evenings.

Grant Park
301 East Columbus Drive and 500 South Congress Parkway
Chicago, Illinois

Article Written By Emily Keeler

Emily Keeler is a freelance writer who specializes in travel, religion, environmental and health topics. She holds a B.A. in English and philosophy from Northeastern University and a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. She began writing professionally in 2007 with Gulliver's Travels Associates, who published her travel guides on emerging Middle Eastern and European destinations on

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