Must-see attractions in Illinois

  • CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 30: The Chicago Cubs defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks during a Friday afternoon game at Wrigley Field on April 30, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois

    Wrigley Field


    Built in 1914, Wrigley Field – aka the Friendly Confines – is the second-oldest baseball park in the major leagues. It’s home to the Chicago Cubs and…

  • JUNE 24, 2018: Planes hanging from the ceiling inside the Museum of Science and Industry.

    Museum of Science & Industry


    The MSI is the largest science museum in the Western hemisphere and a place to completely geek out. Highlights include a WWII German U-boat nestled in an…

  • JUL 15, 2018: Exterior of the Art Institute of Chicago museum.

    Art Institute of Chicago


    The second-largest art museum in the country, the Art Institute houses a treasure trove from around the globe. The collection of impressionist and…

  • July 7, 2012: Crowd gathered at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park.

    Millennium Park


    There's free admission to Millennium Park, the playful heart of the city. It shines with whimsical public art, both permanent and temporary exhibits, and…

  • Chicago skyline at dusk.

    Willis Tower


    Willis Tower is Chicago's tallest building (and one of the world's loftiest). Breathe deeply during the ear-popping, 70-second elevator ride to the 103rd…

  • Model of Dinosaur Skeleton

    Field Museum of Natural History


    The Field Museum houses some 30 million artifacts and includes everything but the kitchen sink – beetles, mummies, gemstones, Bushman the stuffed ape –…

  • Navy Pier on Lake Michigan

    Navy Pier


    Half-mile-long Navy Pier is one of Chicago's most-visited attractions, sporting a 196ft Ferris wheel and other carnival rides ($9 to $18 each), an IMAX…

  • Dead of the Dead Art at Mexican Heritage Museum.

    National Museum of Mexican Art


    Founded in 1982, this vibrant museum – the largest Latinx arts institution in the US – has become one of the city’s best. The vivid permanent collection…

  • Leadlight window detail from Frank Lloyd Wright's Robie House.

    Robie House


    Of the numerous buildings that Frank Lloyd Wright designed around Chicago, none is more famous or influential than Robie House. Because its horizontal…

  • Hancock Building and Water Tower

    360° Chicago


    The views from the 94th-floor observatory of this iconic building (formerly known as the John Hancock Center) in many ways surpass those at the Willis…

  • View of Chicago from Lincoln Park

    Lincoln Park


    The park that gave the neighborhood its name is Chicago’s largest. Its 1200 acres stretch for 6 miles from North Ave north to Diversey Pkwy, where it…

  • Museum of Contemporary Art


    Consider it the Art Institute’s brash, rebellious sibling, with especially strong minimalist, surrealist and conceptual photography collections, and…

  • Stony Island Arts Bank


    Artist-activist Theaster Gates bought a tumbledown bank building for $1 in Chicago's neglected South Shore neighborhood, and transformed it into a…

  • Frank Lloyd Wright Home & Studio


    This is where Wright lived and worked from 1889 to 1909 and it's the first home he ever designed. Tour frequency varies, from every 20 minutes on summer…

  • Driehaus Museum


    Set in the exquisite Nickerson Mansion, the Driehaus immerses visitors in Gilded Age decorative arts and architecture. You'll feel like a Great Gatsby…

  • Illinois Holocaust Museum


    This is the third-largest holocaust museum in the world, after those in Jerusalem and Washington, DC. Besides its haunting Nazi-era rail car and its…

  • Busy Beaver Button Museum


    Even George Washington gave out campaign buttons, though in his era they were the sew-on kind. Pin-back buttons came along in 1896. Badge-making company…

  • Dana Thomas House


    The third-largest home Frank Lloyd Wright ever designed, this remarkably preserved Prairie School icon dating to 1902–04 is – dare we say it – more…

  • Galerie F


    Galerie F is exactly the type of laid-back, ubercool gallery you'd expect to find in Logan Square. It specializes in rock-and-roll gig posters,…

  • 500px Photo ID: 123458731 - Northerly Island Wildflowers, Chicago

    Northerly Island


    This hilly, prairie-grassed park has a walking and cycling trail, bird-watching, fishing and an outdoor venue for big-name concerts. It's actually a…

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    The famed firm of Burnham and Root built the Rookery – named for the site's previous building, a temporary city hall that was popular with roosting…

  • Buckingham Fountain at Night

    Buckingham Fountain


    Grant Park's centerpiece is one of the world's largest fountains, with a 1.5-million-gallon capacity and a 15-story-high spray. It lets loose on the hour…

  • Green City Market has been supplying Lincoln Park with responsibly-produced foods since 1998.

    Green City Market


    Stands of purple cabbages, red radishes, green asparagus and other bright-hued produce sprawl through Lincoln Park at Chicago's biggest farmers market…

  • Street signs commemorating the start of the famous U.S. Route 66, Chicago, Illinois, USA

    Route 66 Sign


    Attention Route 66 buffs: the Mother Road begins in downtown Chicago. Look for the 'Historic 66 Begin' sign at the northwestern corner of Adams St and…

  • Chicago Cultural Center


    This exquisite, beaux-arts building began its life as the Chicago Public Library in 1897. Today the block-long structure houses terrific art exhibitions …

  • Newberry Library


    The Newberry's public galleries are a treat for bibliophiles: those who swoon over original Thomas Paine pamphlets about the French Revolution, or get…

  • Chicago Architecture Center


    The CAC is the premier keeper of Chicago’s architectural flame. Pop in to explore its excellent galleries, which feature an interactive 3-D model of…

  • 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,…

  • Money Museum


    This small museum in the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago is fun for a quick browse. The best exhibits include a giant glass cube stuffed with one million …

  • 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…

  • Picasso's Untitled


    Pablo Picasso's abstract work, which everyone just calls 'the Picasso,' is the granddaddy of Chicago's public art. The artist was 82 when the work was…

  • Daley Plaza


    Picasso's eye-popping untitled sculpture marks the heart of Daley Plaza, which is the place to be come lunchtime, particularly when the weather warms up…

  • North Avenue Beach


    Chicago's most popular strand of sand gives off a bit of a Southern California vibe in summer. Buff teams spike volleyballs, kids build sandcastles and…

  • Intuit: The Center for Intuitive & Outsider Art

    Wicker Park, Bucktown & Ukrainian Village

    Behold this small museum's collection of naive and outsider art from Chicago artists, including rotating mixed-media exhibits and watercolors by famed…

  • Lurie Garden


    If the crowds at the Bean, Crown Fountain and Pritzker Pavilion are too much, seek out the peaceful Lurie Garden, which uses native plants to form a…

  • Maggie Daley Park


    Families love this park’s fanciful, free playgrounds in all their enchanted-forest and pirate-themed glory. There’s also a rock-climbing wall, an 18-hole…

  • Aqua Tower


    Aqua made waves when it appeared in 2009. Local architect Jeanne Gang designed the 86-story tower (set to be surpassed in 2020, when her 93-story Vista…

  • Museum of Contemporary Photography


    This small museum focuses on American and international photography from the early 20th century onward, and is the only institution of its kind between…

  • Crown Fountain


    Jaume Plensa’s two 50ft-high glass-block towers contain video displays that flash a thousand different faces of locals. Each mug puckers up and spurts…

  • Four Seasons


    Russian-born artist Marc Chagall loved Chicago, and in 1974 he donated this grand mosaic to the city. Using thousands of bits of glass and stone, the…

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