I’ve called Chicago home for almost 4 years now. I’ve been to hundreds of cities and I pinkie promise you; Chicago is the best one. A huge plus when visiting & planning your trip is that you won’t need a car! Promise. It is more of a hassle than a help. Parking is beyond expensive and hard to find. We have incredible public transportation here that will get you all over the city (yes, to and from the airports as well!) You can get a reloadable card or pick from a day pass, 3-7 day pass that will get you on any CTA train line or bus.
P.S. deep dish pizza is fine, but the Chicago dogs are where it’s AT! Deep dish is mostly a tourists thing. We all know NYC style is the best kinda pizza anyways.
Things to do & see
One of Chicago’s most know Tourist Spots: Chicago’s Cloudgate aka THE BEAN! The bean is located in the heart of downtown at Millennium Park which is a cool park you can walk around and explore as well. The Art Institute is right across the street, so if you love art, you can check that out too! The Bean is more of a photo spot, so once you get your photo, you can explore a lot more of what Chicago has to offer!
MCA. Modern Contemporary Art Museum. One of my favorite places in all of Chicago. They always have the best exhibits and you can spend a chunk of a day getting lost looking at all of the art. Also- If you are an Illinois Residence, it’s free on Tuesdays!
Make sure to check out Lake Michigan. It’s BEAUTIFUL. Lake Shore Drive is a fun road you can drive down to see amazing views of the city and also the lake too. My personal favorite “beach” to hang out at is North Avenue Beach.
Favorite Logan Square Spots:
Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits (ALL TIME FAVORITE)
Reno Chicago (best pizza also go for brunch) *CASH ONLY
Lonesome Rose (Tacos & Cocktails) (cute as crap)
Same Day Cafe (brunch spot)
Longman & Eagle (Cocktails)
Lost Lake (Tiki Bar)
Taqueria Moran (Favorite Authentic Mexican)
Mini Mott (Burger spot. YOU MUST TRY the jackfruit burger) !!!
The Chicago Diner (VEGAN)
Ramen Wasabi (best ramen and sushi)
My favorite neighborhood in all of Chicago. It’s been my home over the past 4 years living here and I couldn’t ask for a better neighborhood to live in. It’s filled with some of the coolest, most down to earth humans. A lot of really awesome artists and crusty hipsters (my favorite). Think of Logan Square as the Brooklyn of New York. Tons of really hip places to shop, eat, drink, and hang. If taking the CTA Blue Line, you can get to Logan Square off the Logan Square of California train stops.
Wicker park/ bucktown
Favorite Wicker Park Spots:
Ipsento 606 (coffee Shop. Get an iced Ipsento)
Small Cheval (burger spot)
Gather Home + Lifestyle (pictured above)
Oak + Fort (clothing)
Asrai Garden (flower shop and goods)
Big Star Chicago (tacos. get the fish taco or else)
The Robey (second floor has a great space to work from)
Silom 12 (my forever favorite thai)
Right next door to Logan Square is the cute neighborhood of Wicker Park. I always say Wicker Park is the boujee version of Logan Square. It’s filled with the same charm as Logan, just a total different vibe. There is a lot more shopping and things are a lot more condensed into one main area called “6 Corners”. If taking the CTA Blue Line, you can get to Wicker Park off the Western, Damen, or Division stops.
CLICK ON THIS GOOGLE MAP LINK TO SEE MY PERSONAL MAP CREATED WITH ALL OF MY FAVORITE Chicago SPOTS! IT'S LINKED WITH THE EXACT ADDRESS TO MAKE IT A LOT EASIER FOR YOU TO PLAN YOUR ADVENTURES.
I spend most of my time in Logan Square, Wicker Park, and West Loop. They are definitely the best neighborhoods for all the hip spots and the BEST food. I don’t go downtown that often (and to be honest) it’s not my favorite part of the city. I think more of the touristy stuff is downtown. So maybe spend a day exploring downtown and get all of that stuff out of the way. Go see the bean, visit one of the art museums, see Michigan Ave and the lake, and then spend the rest of your time exploring all of the really awesome neighborhoods Chicago has to offer.