This past week I had such an amazing time in Chicago. I have been there before but only for a quick layover, or a long weekend, so being able to spend a week exploring felt really great. Nestled on the shore of the magnificent Lake Michigan, it is edgy and aggressive, progressive and hip. I have family in the city so this guide won't go over accommodations but I recommend you look into AirBnB for cool places to stay that fit your style and budget. Another great resource for great places to stay is AlltheRooms. I also haven't included the major tourist attractions because I figure that should be easy enough to figure out (such as Cloud Gate-"The Bean", or the boat ride architectural tour). If you are in need of a tour book check out Not for Tourists or AlltheRooms Chicago travel guide.
YOU HAVE TO EAT HERE! 2957 W Diversey in Logan square. This place is out of control delicious and super cute. It has amazing cocktails and a very unique array of flavors. It blends together the flavors of Macau, Portugal, India and South East Asia and China to create an explosion of taste in your moouth. Make sure to order their signature dish "Arroz Gordo- Fat Rice" a loaded Paella that you definitely need to share with a friend. They just won a James Beard Award, so make sure to call ahead for reservations.
Hi vibe Superfood Juicery-
Organic grab and go Juice bar on N Wells and W Kinzie. If you are looking to sit down and enjoy head over to their Cafe inside Merchandise Mart building just across the street. An Amazing variety of bulletproof coffee and a wide range of matcha and açaí bowls, as well as deliocus and unique smoothies. All organic and GF ingredients. I had the Match Vatte a blend of matcha, brain octane MCT, coconut cream, lucuma, and xylitol.
Batter & Berries -
Super cute place in Lincoln Park a young and fun but classy neighborhood with lots of fruity options.
The Bongo Room-
Fun place in Wicker Park a well known hipster neighborhood filled with records shops and vintage stores, known for their CRAZY pancakes and offbeat menu items. After filling your face you can walk to the 606 afterwards. This neighborhood is a must see.
Mortar and Pestle-
This restaurant is nestled in Lakeview and offers a lot ofinternationally inspired dishes. Afterwards you can walk to the Lakefront trail and burn some of the calories off :)
Infamous comfort food diner in Boystown/Lakeview that's all vegan/vegetarian!
For the kids and young-at-heart
Play Garden- Maggie Daley Park
This playground is a must see! It is just east of Millennium Park, right past the mini golf course. It has different sections that are age specific and has swings and slides galore! There is a sunken ship and a suspension bridge too. Its a childs' dream! Bring a lunch and be prepared to spend some time exploring this super fun playground.
Chicago Childrens Museum-
This museum is located on Chicagos' Navy Pier and is a great place to watch your child explore! Check out their website for upcoming events. Save $1 on each full price ticket if you buy in advance.
Bike Ride the Lakefront-
Rent a Divvy Bike and explore the Lakefront trail for amazing views of the city. Stop and eat, play, and take pictures along the way! The whole trail is 18 miles long upon the shore of Lake Michigan!
Acupuncture or Massage at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM)-
Schedule an massage or acupuncture appointment at the student clinic at PCOM. This is a great way to be introduced to these modalities or to continue care while you are traveling. Super affordable too- $45 for an initial visit.
Green Mill Cocktail Lounge-
Again another must on your travel itinerary. This jazz bar was an old hangout of the infamous Al Capone and hosts music EVERY night of the week. I went for my second wedding anniversary with my sexy husband on a Sunday night and it was EPIC- Soul Jazz night with the JOEL PATERSON TRIO featuring CHRIS FOREMAN on the Hammond B-3 Organ. It has such a hip and friendly vibe. You gotta' go!