Exploring Chicago’s metropolis without spending a fortune.
Chicago has long been thriving as the pulse of America, as everything can be found within it’s large parameters. Founded in the early 19th century, the city that started with a population of fifty is one of the nation’s most populous. Most of its visitors are bowled over by its unparalleled skyline, which over the decades has been adorned by some of the finest assemblages or urban architecture in the world. The 110-story Sears Tower and plenty of Mies van der Rohe’s masterpieces are available for sightseeing—without spending a dime. There’s plenty to see without shelling much, such as the extraordinary exhibits of the Art Institute of Chicago, along with sports, restaurants, and other high-brow activities. There’s a phenomenal assortment of jazz and blues clubs that pack its live music scene. Although long eclipsed by New York and Los Angeles when it comes to tourist appeal, Chicago is noticeably less expensive. For example, eating out costs much less without sacrificing good taste. Some of the best ways to explore Chicago won’t cost much, such as spending afternoons watching The Cubs play baseball, or streaming the Chicago River by sunset.
Savings Tip: For huge discounts at five of the city’s major cultural attractions, purchase a city pass for less than $60. Attractions included in the package include the Museum of Science and Industry, the Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum, Shedd Aquarium, the Field Museum, and the Hancock Observatory.
Most of the accommodations in downtown is geared towards convention and business trade rather than solely focusing on tourism, but tourists will find a myriad of reasonably priced rooms around Chicago’s loop. That’s to say nothing of the bout of establishments scattered around it. Even the high-class hotels in downtown are comparatively affordable. The Hyatt Regency Chicago, The Hilton Chicago Northbrook, or The Sheraton Grand Chicago, View more Chicago Hotels on Reservations.com.
Arriving in the bustling city by car and driving towards the glinting glas towers can be memorable, but parking can be a problem and meters are certainly expensive. The best way to see the city is to rent a bike at the Millenium Park’s multi-level bike park. Chicago is the hub of the Amtrak rail system that runs nationwide, so exploring the area shouldn’t be difficult. There are a number of regional buses, while the Chicago Trolley makes regular circuits throughout town for a $29 day pass. Chicago Architecture Foundation offers the best guided tours as its experts can help you understand the story behind each form of architecture in town. You can pick up free maps and other bits of information from the Chicago Office of Tourism.