7 Top-Rated Historic Landmarks In Chicago (2024)
One of the most famous and biggest American cities, Chicago is well known for its Historical Landmarks. The list begins with the classic museums filled with wonderful artefacts, buildings that talk about Lincoln, and other old mansions. Chicago played a crucial role in shaping America’s economic, cultural, and political history, and carved a dominant position for itself. Since the mid of 1800s, it got recognized as the largest Midwest city and U.S.’s prominent metropolitan. Even though the city was initially established as a water transit hub, it evolved into America’s most loved one.
Today, when a history buff steps out to explore the ‘Windy City’, the incredible stories and architecture make the day. Chicago is home to 59 historic districts and 369 historic landmarks. However, because exploring them all is a difficult task, we have compiled the best itinerary for you all. With this guide, be it a history buff or a regular traveller, the trip will ease down for everyone. So, let’s begin:
7 Top-Rated Historic Landmarks In Chicago
1. Wrigley field
If you are a fan of a baseball game, do visit Wrigley field, the second-oldest ballpark in the world. The Park has seen the prominent historic events of baseball and is noted as a National Historic Landmark. Built back in 1914, Wrigley field has celebrated its first anniversary and is still in an absolute best functional condition. Today one can either come here to see a game of baseball. Or, book yourself a stadium tour and explore this Neoclassical architecture landmark. There isn’t another baseball field like Wrigley, a hand-turned scoreboard, a unique marquee, and ivy walls.
2. Lincoln Park Zoo
The name might surprise you, but the Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the oldest Zoos in the North American continent. It is a place for local hangouts and even a top-rated tourist destination. Though you may not find much to learn here as a history buff, the experience will nevertheless turn into an adventure. One can visit here for free and come close to over 1,100 mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians. The zoo features nearly 200 animal species, of which many are rare and endangered. Every time you visit here, you will get something new and exciting to learn. They also have tons of events going around every day, which lets you interact with animals. Or you can walk along the bridge at the Nature’s boardwalk nearby and observe the magnificent Chicago skyline.
3. Chicago Harbor Lighthouse
Chicago Harbor Lighthouse is one of those historic landmarks you cannot miss visiting when in Chicago. It got to build back in 1893, and today even after completing over a century, it is still standing strong. The Chicago Harbor Lighthouse is an automated active lighthouse located at the mouth of the Chicago River. You can see it to the Easy of Navy Pier, a popular tourism destination in Chicago. While it is still in working order, one cannot visit inside the harbour, but still, travellers come to catch its exterior glimpse. Go for a lake boat tour, especially during Wednesdays and Saturdays of summer and observe beautiful fireworks. From close, the lighthouse looks so prominent that one cannot forget the experience ever.
4. Lincoln Park Lily Pond
Located in the famous Lincoln Park, the Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool is a National Historic Landmark in Chicago. It got established in the late 1930s by the well-known American architect Alfred Caldwell. You can enter the pool from the south side of Fullerton Parkway from between Cannon and Stockton drives. The pool is open to exploring from mid of April to mid of November every day from 7:30 am to 7:30 pm. Visitors can take free docent tours every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday during the season. The sight is extremely serene, and for individuals who are looking to spend some time in Nature’s tranquillity, there’s nothing better than the Lily Pond.
Also, despite Lincoln Park drawing a prominent crowd, Lily Pond still remains one of the secretive spaces only a few people know about. Hence when in Chicago, do walk through this beautiful Prairie School landscape architecture and observe the picturesque oasis.
5. Abraham Lincoln: The Man (Standing Lincoln Monument)
To the replicas you may have seen worldwide, the Standing Lincoln Monument is the real deal for them all. Standing Lincoln, also known as the Abraham Lincoln: The Man, is a larger-than-life-size bronze statue of the 16th U.S. President. It got made back in 1887 by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, the famous American sculptor artist. While the original statue is located within the Lincoln Park, Chicago, its beautiful replicas are located in Parliament square, London and Parque Lincoln, Mexico City. Even though it is just a bronze statue, going closer to it is worth making all the efforts. Every Monday, you can find a group of 25 to 75 individuals gathering for the Monday Night Ride.
6. Blackstone Library
Blackstone Library is a century-old library in Chicago, dedicatedly in Kenwood community, Cook County. After celebrating its 100th anniversary, the library acquired its position on the list of Chicago landmark. Today, one can visit here to admire both historical and architectural significance. The library building features four overhead rotunda murals painted by Oliver Dennett Grover, square Italian marble mosaic flooring, 2,800-pound bronze plate, iconic columns and whatnot. It is home to bronze and mahogany furnishings that looks so divine that one cannot stop themselves from praising. Do not let the exterior image fool you, as once you step into the main gate, the world of beauty will change drastically for you. You can visit here from Monday through Saturday, noon to 7 on Monday and Wednesday whereas 10 to 5 on rest of the days.
7. Nuclear Energy Sculpture
If science excites you enough, you should definitely add Nuclear Energy Sculpture into your itinerary. It is one of those historical landmarks that you cannot miss a visit when in Chicago. It is basically a bronze sculpture and also the first nuclear reactor in the world. Built backin 1942 by Henry Moore, and today you can reach it inside the University of Chicago (campus). Back on 2nd December 1942, this was the exact sculpture that led humankind’s way into the world of nuclear energy. In the first instance, it might not look something extravagant to you, but the place is admirable for those who learn science. Hence if you are a Henry Moore fan or a science geek, do add the Nuclear Energy Sculpture to your Chicago itinerary.