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Must-See Places in Chicago - Navy Pier

12 Must-See Places in Chicago (2024)

Chicago, also called the “Windy City,” is a beautiful city in the state of Illinois with many attractions like skyscrapers, museums, and more. It is one of the best cities in the United States of America. Home of the famous Chicago Bears, the Chicago White Sox, and the Chicago Bulls, it is a renowned city around the world. With its beautiful beaches and vibrant art scenes, Chicago is a once in a lifetime destination.

12 Must-See Places in Chicago

Here are some of the go-to places in Chicago:

1. Art Institute of Chicago

With its diverse collection of artwork that spans centuries, the Art Institute of Chicago is a go-to place for history enthusiasts. From paintings to prints to sculptures and photography, there is a wide array of artifacts to go through. The institute is known for its collection of Impressionist and post-impressionist collection of paintings; this includes Renoir’s 1879 Acrobats at the Cirque Fernando and various famous paintings by Claude Monet.

The entire institute measures 400,000 square feet.

Must-See Place in Chicago-Art Institute of ChicagoImage Source

Address: 111 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois

Timings: 10 AM to 5 PM

Official site: http://www.artic.edu/

2. Navy Pier

The Navy Pier is an amusement park area opened in 1916 and is now one of the most popular and must see attractions in Chicago. It is made up of 50 acres of shops, restaurants, concert venues, parks, and gardens. There is also a giant Ferris Wheel. The Chicago Shakespeare Theatre is situated here where various famous dramas can be seen. The Chicago Children’s Museum is also located here. The legendary Chicago Festival is held here annually in the month of August.

Must-See Places in Chicago - Navy Pier

Image Source

Address: 600 East Grand Avenue, Chicago, Illinois

Timings: 10 AM to 7 PM

Official site: https://navypier.com/

3. Millennium Park

The Millennium Park is located in downtown Chicago which is part of the Grant Park. It is the must-see place in Chicago. The center piece and main attraction are the Cloud Gate – a 110-ton sculpture that looks mirror-like. The statue was inspired by liquid mercury and had a stainless-steel surface. This mirror-like surface reflects its surrounding buildings, sky, and tourists who walk by the central arch. This is a sight to behold. Another top attraction at the Millennium Park is the Crown Fountain, which is a fountain which gives the appearance that the water is flowing out of the mouths of the projected tourists, this is a gothic interpretation of ancient gargoyle times.  This is also a major shopping center and a convenient place to stay as there are many hotels available in this region.

Amazing Place to See in Chicago-Millennium Park

Photo By Ken Lund  Image Source

Address: 201 East Randolph Street, Chicago, Illinois

Timings: 6 AM to 11 PM

Official site: http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/dca/supp_info/millennium_park.html

4. Willis Tower SkyDeck

Until 1996, the Willis Tower was the world’s tallest office block standing 110 stories high. The view from the SkyDeck of the skyscraper is spectacular and is a sight to behold. You can get a bird’s eye view of the entire city, and it’s architecture. The tower was built in 1974 and took three years to build. There is a glass box with a glass floor known as the Ledge, where tourists can look directly below and see the entire city from the immense height.

Best Place to See in Chicago-Willis Tower SkyDeckImage Source

Address: 233 South Wacker Drive, Chicago, Illinois

5. Buckingham Fountain

The Buckingham Fountain in Chicago is one of the largest fountains in the world. Designed in art cedo style, the central fountain is encircled by seahorses. It is one of the best places to visit in Chicago. The fountain comes to life hourly spraying 15,000 gallons of water through 200 nozzles every minute to create a scintillating display. After the evening, the fountain is lit up by lights making it an even better show of water. The Buckingham fountain is the central focal point to the Grant Park of Chicago, which is the top tourist spot in Chicago. It is home to various concerts and music festivals.

6. John Hancock Observatory

It is an observatory deck designed with a cross-braced style and a dark metallic exterior. It is also called the 360Chicago.  Tourists also like the new feature available here known as the Tilt, and this gives a spectacular view from 100 feet above the Magnificent Mile. The rest of the building contains shops and offices and a multimedia exhibit. You can see up to five states from the Tilt and is one of the best scenes from Chicago.

Best Must-See Place in Chicago-John Hancock ObservatoryImage Source

Address: 875 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois

Timings: 9 AM to 11 PM

Official site: http://www.360chicago.com/

7. Field Museum of Natural History

It houses biological and anthropological collections gathered from the world Columbian exposition. It is named to honor Marshall Field, a major benefactor of the museum. It houses 20 million artifacts from the fields of botany, zoology, geology, and anthropology. The world’s most massive Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton named “Sue” is situated here. Exhibits from ancient Egypt and all over the world can be seen here. It is a go-to destination for paleontology buffs when in Chicago.

Must-See Place in Chicago-Field Museum of Natural HistoryImage Source

Address: 1400 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois

Official site: http://fieldmuseum.org/

8. Riverwalk

A Riverwalk is compulsory for anyone visiting Chicago, choosing a cuisine for dinner from the range of bars and restaurants, they house the best restaurants in Chicago. It can be easily accessed by a Water Taxi. It is known for its movable bridges where you can actually see the gears move. There are several river tours from the Riverwalk.

Amazing Place to See in Chicago-Riverwalk

Photo by Steven Vance  Image Source

Location: Chicago Riverwalk, Chicago
Timings: 6 AM to 11 PM

9. Cloudgate

The cloud gate is yet another must-see place in Chicago, the best place for the Instagram lovers to click the perfect selfie. Also known as the bean bag, is has a house of mirrors and is a must-see for all visitors of the Millennium Park.

Best Place to See in Chicago-CloudgateImage Source

Location: AT&T Plaza at Millennium Park
Timings: 6 AM to 11 PM

10. Michigan Avenue and the Magnificent Mile

This is one of the most attractive boulevards in all of America. The famous Magnificent Mile has numerous galleries and luxury shops, which is a beautiful destination to visit.  This avenue is known for its theatres which houses musicals, historical plays, and comedic dramas.

Top Must-See Place in Chicago-Michigan Avenue and the Magnificent Mile

Photo by Ken Lund  Image Source

Official site: http://www.themagnificentmile.com/

11. Lincoln Park Zoo

A destination for all animal lovers, a trip to the infamous Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago, will not disappoint. Located in the middle of the city, it is a prime location for tourists visiting Chicago. For people who want to enjoy the outdoors will love the many jogging paths, bike trails, and beaches. A significant amount of statues are also present here.


Location: 2001 N Clark St, Chicago
Timings: 7 AM to 4:30 PM

12. Glessner House

One of the prime architectural structures of the city of Chicago, the Glessner House is a famous landmark in the city of Chicago. The timeless construction contains collections of artifacts from the 19th century. It is a must-see fortress by tourists for its historic structural architecture.

 Must-See Place in Chicago-Glessner HouseImage Source

Location: 1800 S. Prairie Ave.

Timings: 11 AM to 4 PM


Chicago is one of the most amazing cities to visit in America. While being here, you are surely going to have a surreal experience- an experience filled with memories and a whole lot of good moments. The beauty lying here is worth it and thus, visiting the best places in Chicago is the finest activity that you could ever imagine.

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