Top 10 must-visit Chicago tourist spots (even if you're not a tourist)
Chicago is packed full of cultural, entertaining and exciting tourist spots. These destinations are must-visit locations, whether you’re a tourist visiting the city for the first time or a permanent resident.
Packed with hotels, restaurants and shopping destinations, Chicago’s Magnificent Mile offers something for everyone, whether you’re just visiting the city or you’re a long-time resident. It’s particularly pretty during the holiday season when the street and businesses are decorated for Christmas.
With nearly nine million visitors each year, Navy Pier is one of Chicago’s must-visit tourist spots. The 50-acre spot offers a mix of fun and food. Throughout the year, the spot offers seasonal activities, too.
The Museum of Science and Industry
The Museum of Science and Industry is the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere. With rotating exhibits and a humongous permanent collection, there’s always something new to see, whether you’re a tourist coming for a first-time visit or a Chicago resident checking out the latest exhibits.
A national historic landmark, the Shedd Aquarium opened in 1930. Recently expanded, the aquarium offers unprecedented underwater exhibits at an affordable price -- general admission for children is only $6.
Lincoln Park Zoo
The Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the oldest zoos in the nation. With more than 1,200 animals, the zoo's exhibits are both entertaining and educational.
The water tower
One of the only buildings to survive the Great Chicago Fire, the water tower is the second oldest water tower in the country. Located along the Magnificent Mile, this is a must-see for visitors to Chicago.
The Art Institute of Chicago
Founded in 1879, the Art Institute houses 300,000 permanent works of art in almost a million square feet of space, making this a must-visit destination for art lovers.
The Field Museum
Both a museum and a research institution, the Field Museum was founded in 1893. With over 25 million specimens, the museum houses an impressive collection that includes the Shedd Aquarium.
Architecture boat tour
Though it isn’t a one-stop destination, the architecture boat tour takes visitors to architectural highlights along the Chicago River and Lake Michigan.
Whether or not you’re a baseball fan, Wrigley Field is a can’t-miss Chicago destination. Rich with history and fan loyalty, Wrigley Field was built in 1914 and has been used by the Cubs for 97 years.