5 Travel Tips for Your First Time Visiting Chicago

Are you heading on a trip to Chicago, Illinois?

If so, you’re not alone. Chicago is one of the largest cities in the U.S., and it has a lot of great attractions to offer tourists. That’s probably why over 50 million visitors come to the city annually.

Chicago has a lot to offer every visitor, whether traveling by yourself or coming with a large family to entertain. To help you make the most of your time visiting, here are five things to do in Chicago:

1. Take Advantage of Public Transportation

Chicago is the third-largest city in the U.S., and like most major cities, driving downtown in a car can be difficult. Traffic gets terrible during rush hour, and parking is expensive and hard to find on most days.

The good news is that Chicago has a great public transportation system that will get you anywhere you need. You’ll save a lot of money by using public transportation, and it’ll be one less thing you have to worry about.

Chicago has an expansive train system known as the “El.” You can download an app on your phone to see what routes you need to take and real-time info on when buses and trains arrive.

2. Avoid Chain Restaurants and Hotels

When you’re visiting Chicago, you should eat and stay where the locals dine and live. Chicago has some of the best restaurants in the world. So after you’d have a slice of deep-dish pizza, try something a little different at an award-winning restaurant.

There are also tons of locally owned and operated boutique hotels in the city that will give you a more authentic, local experience.

3. Purchase a Pass to See Multiple Attractions

There are many popular places to go to in Chicago, like Willis Tower, Shedd Aquarium, Navy Pier, Millenium Park, Lincoln Park Zoo, Wrigley Field, The Art Institute of Chicago, and so many more.

Visiting all these attractions in one trip can really add up unless you purchase a pass to visit multiple places. Some sights will offer combined packages with other popular spots, which can save you a lot of money.

4. Take a River Boat Tour

Chicago sits on Lake Michigan, and the beautiful Chicago River runs right through downtown. One attraction you can’t miss while in the city is taking one of the many river boat tours.

Many of the river tours feature guides that give you a history lesson on the beautiful Chicago architecture while enjoying food and drinks and taking in the views.

5. Visit Some Unique Neighborhoods


Many tourists flock to neighborhoods downtown like River North, Lincoln Park, and South Loop. However, these areas are only a small portion of what Chicago has to offer.

Every neighborhood in Chicago has a unique feel and history, so make sure you take time to do some research and step off the beaten path for a day.

Learn More About Visiting Chicago

Visiting Chicago is always a great idea, and the city truly has something to offer everyone. To have the best experience possible, make sure you plan, so you know exactly where to stay and eat, and you don’t miss out on any popular attractions.

For more tips that will help you plan a successful vacation, make sure you check out the rest of our website.

Diana Muniz
Diana Muniz

With over 20+ years of experience in a variety of corporate and entrepreneurial environments, Diana has developed a great understanding of Marketing Strategy, Brand Development, Customer Success, Public Relations and Management. Her internal drive for developing others and external brands, has allowed her to work in some of the largest cities in the world including Milan, Paris, NY, Mexico, and the Middle East. This experience has been fundamental to Diana’s success and ability to communicate cross-culturally.