Top things to do

Top Choice Mexican in Near North & Navy Pier

Topolobampo/Frontera Grill

You’ve probably seen chef-owner Rick Bayless on TV, stirring up pepper sauces and other jump-off-the-tongue Mexican creations. His isn’t your typical taco menu: Bayless uses seasonal, sustainable ingredients for his…
Top Choice Waterfront in Near North & Navy Pier

Navy Pier

Half-mile-long Navy Pier is one of Chicago's most-visited attractions, sporting a 196ft Ferris wheel and other carnival rides ($6 to $15 each), an IMAX theater, a beer garden and lots of chain restaurants. Locals gr…
Top Choice Pizza in Near North & Navy Pier

Giordano's

Giordano's makes 'stuffed' pizza, a bigger, doughier version of deep dish. It's awesome. If you want a slice of heaven, order the ‘special,' a stuffed pie containing sausage, mushroom, green pepper and onions. Each …
Top Choice Food in Near North & Navy Pier

Garrett Popcorn

Like lemmings drawn to a cliff, people form long lines outside this store on the Mag Mile. Granted, the caramel corn is heavenly and the cheese popcorn decadent, but is it worth waiting in the whipping snow for a ch…
Top Choice Bar in Near North & Navy Pier

Watershed

This cozy basement bar has a speakeasy-meets-ski-lodge vibe. All of the beer and spirits hail from the Great Lakes region (hence the name) and staff procure several hard-to-find gems. Watershed sits beneath Pop's fo…
Burgers in Near North & Navy Pier

Billy Goat Tavern

Tribune and Sun Times reporters have guzzled in the subterranean Billy Goat for decades. Order a 'cheezborger' and Schlitz beer and then look around at the newspapered walls to get the scoop on infamous local storie…
Museum in Near North & Navy Pier

Chicago Children's Museum

Designed to challenge the imaginations of toddlers to 10-year-olds, this colorful museum near Navy Pier's main entrance gives young visitors enough hands-on exhibits to keep them climbing and creating for hours. Amo…
Architecture in Near North & Navy Pier

Tribune Tower

Take a close look when passing by this 1925 neo-Gothic edifice. Colonel Robert McCormick, eccentric owner of the Chicago Tribune in the early 1900s, collected – and asked his reporters to send – rocks from famous bu…
Pizza in Near North & Navy Pier

Gino's East

In the great deep-dish pizza wars, Gino’s is easily one of the top-five heavies. And it encourages customers to do something wacky: cover every available surface – walls, chairs, staircases – with graffiti. The clas…
Theater in Near North & Navy Pier

Chicago Shakespeare Theater

Snuggled into a beautiful glass home on Navy Pier, this company is at the top of its game, presenting works from the Bard that are fresh, inventive and timeless. In summer the group puts on Shakespeare in the Parks …