Chicago in late July

Discussion in 'Travel' started by matthew_newton, May 14, 2007.

  1. I am heading to Chicago in Late July on business (31-Aug 2) and I was wondering
    if anyone had any suggestions on things to see? I will be working a forum
    during most of the day, but I should have evenings and early morning to do what
    I want. I could also likely arange to travel out early on July 30th before the
    forum instead of the evening of the 30th if there is anything in particular
    someone recommends that I should see during the day time.

    I am looking not just for photo opportunities, but also anything anyone
    recommends on just plain cultural things to do (museums, good food (but not to
    pricey), art museums, any zoos etc). I am staying down town near I-290/W
    Congress parkway and would prefer to keep the travel down, but I don't have
    anything again taking the rail line to get to things (I am staying about 2
    blocks from the Harrison stop).

    This is my first time to the city.

  2. Lincoln Park Zoo is free.
  3. The Art Institute of Chicago has a world class photography collection with good photography always on display; and the depth of its permanent collection of paintings and sculpture, constantly on display, is spectacular. In the summer, there is free admission on Thursday and Friday nights from 5-9 p.m. and its located just a bit north on Michigan Avenue from where Congress intersects with Michigan Avenue at Grant Park:,+IL&sa=X&oi=local&ct=image
  4. The Planetarium, Aquarium, Field Musium, Art Institute are just west of Chicago downtown. Chicago symphony is Michigan ave and Monre.

    Bring cool clothing. Expect 90deg and 90% humidity. July to mid Sept are YUCKY. April May and Oct Nov are best.
  5. Also, you might enjoy a walk through Mellinium Park- again free and not far north from Congress and Michigan Avenue:
  6. Second the Art Institute, and add the Museum of Modern Photography. That's a few blocks further south on Michigan - probably a block or two from your hotel.

    Food - for breakfast, find the nearest Corner Bakery. That's a local chain with branches all over - prices and food are good, service is fantastic. For dinner - well, depends on how much you want to spend. Chicago is a beef town, and there are some fabulous steak houses (Ditka's, Gibson,s Morton's, etc). Seafood is so-so. Good pizza, good asian, especially in China Town. One thing - Chicago is a city of neighborhoods, and the best ethnic food is in the neighborhood. The downtown (loop) area is great for steaks, but for ethnic you need to venture out a bit.
  7. Trees and plants: Morton Arboretum, located about 23 miles west of the loop, just north of Lisle.
  8. For photo opts, Navy Pier is a no-brainer. Lots happening and fun place to watch people (some are pretty weird). Plus, If you espcially like nightlife and can shoot with f/2 lens or faster, at high ISO 1600-3200, then consider checking out Chicagos famous Blues Clubs venues. Flashes are a No-No. See: . Rons warning about the heat/humidity is fair. Also, when the city swelters, crime does go up. There are more than a few bad neighborhoods/steets where a tourist could get in real trouble. This is no joke, so be aware of your surroundings and if at all possible explore the sketchier places with 2-3 friends. Good Luck!
  9. Thanks for all of the advice everyone. So far I am thinking I will try to fly in early on Monday the day before the conference and then go to the Art institute and later in the day the Lincoln park zoo. I will try to get out to the Navy Pier one of the days after the conference. I'll look into China town. Not many an ethnic food that I didn't like and I always love trying something new.

    Anybody have suggestions on a good time to visit the navy pier? I can most likely source some iso1600 or 3200 color or B&W film for night shots and a I have a 50mm f/1.8 or 28mm f/2.8 to pair with that. Or would day time shots be my best bet?

    Part of the reason why I loved London, other then the sites, was the excellent Indian food. I'll admit pub food was high on my list of favorites as well. Good old shepards pie or bangers and mash with a pint (or two) of bitters.
  10. navy pier was abandoned and derelict when i lived in chgo in the late 80's. i knew it was a prime location back then.
  11. I was vacationing there late July last year, and it was very Hot and Humid. In fact the vendors at Millenium park were out of water! So bring a bottle or two. The "Bean" is neat because you can get the whole sky line of chicago in it. Also a great place for people pics. There are two verticle towers also there that spew water out between them. See the website that was posted. If you are shooting film, expect to pay about 5-6 a roll on Michigan ave. Just walkaround, and have a good time, there is always alot going on. Wear cool clothing, and comfortable shoes.

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