Visiting Chicago? If you’ve already been to the Bean, museums and Navy Pier, try something new and step off the beaten path and into one of the city’s 77 unique neighborhoods.
Each has one-of-a-kind places to shop, eat and explore. Need a little guidance? No problem.
This weeks spotlight: South Loop
Summary: As its name suggests, the neighborhood is just south of the Loop. It’s parks and museums make the neighborhood worth a visit.
Attractions and Museums
Soldier Field | 1410 S. Museum Campus Drive
It may be known as home turf of “Daaa Bears,” but Solider Field also hosts a variety of concerts, sporting events, festivals and more. Explore the stadium and its rich history during a weekday tour, or see what events are happening during your visit.
Printers row | Dearborn and Polk streets
Originally named for its location in the heart of Chicago’s publishing district, the area has been transformed into an eclectic, quaint residential area. Stop into the bookstores, or If you happen to be visiting in June, visiting the Printers Row Lit Fest is a must.
Grant Park | 337 E. Randolph St.
This 319-acre park is known as Chicago’s front yard. It houses a number of smaller parks, museums, an ice skating ribbon and a field house. Be sure to visit Buckingham Fountain, and the Agora and “sitting” Lincoln statues while enjoying everything the park has to offer.
Museum Campus | Museum Campus Drive
The campus houses three museums focusing on natural science — in addition to Soldier Field — within a 57-acre green park.
Adler Planetarium | 1300 S. Lake Shore Drive
Dedicates itself to the sciences of space and space exploration.
Field Museum of Natural History | 1400 S. Lake Shore Drive
The museum’s 3.1 million square feet are committed exhibits showing how the world came to be, history of human life on earth and how we can continue making the world a better place.
Shedd Aquarium | 1200 S. Lake Shore Drive
Focuses on the sciences of the sea and animal life.
Clark House Museum | 1827 S. Indiana Ave.
It’s a quintessential representation of what city life was like for Chicagoans during the foundational years. The house has survived fires and has even been relocated twice. Come enjoy a free public tour of the Greek Revival house on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
Glessner House Museum | 1800 S. Prairie Ave.
This controversial house ushered in the era of modern architecture that would give way to Frank Lloyd Wright and and Mies van der Rohe. Explore the house through a variety of tours offered Wednesdays through Sundays.
Eleven City Diner | 1112 S. Wabash Ave.
An old-school diner, food with a Jewish flair, huge proportions and breakfast is served all day. The Eleven City French Toast and The “Schwartzy” are among the favorites.
Manny’s Deli | 1141 S. Jefferson St.
The sandwiches are piled high and aim to leave you full and happy. The corned beef, pastrami sandwich and the matzo soup are crowd favorites.
Flo and Santos | 1310 S. Wabash Ave.
They don’t serve deep-dish, but this thin-crust pizza holds its own. Try the Flo’s Polish Pizza, Cheddar Waffle Fries and Flying Pork Wings while watching a game on the TV screens.
Cafecito | 26 E. Congress Parkway
This quaint cafe is perfect for a quick bite! The sandwiches that locals love include the Cubano and the Guava-Q.
(Photo via Patrick M.)
Acadia | 1639 S. Wabash Ave.
Get a fine-dining experience during your visit. This two-star Michelin restaurant offers a five and a 10-course tasting menu, as well as an al la carte menu.
Mercat a la Planxa | 638 S. Michigan Ave.
The restaurant aims to bring authentic Spanish cuisine to the Windy City. Some of the stars on this tapas restaurant’s menu include the Arroz Con Morillas (risotto,) Rabo de Toro (oxtail ravioli,) and the Hanger Steak.
Reggies’ | 2105 S. State St.
It’s a restaurant, bar, record shop and music venue all under one roof. Enjoy Reggies’ famous, jumbo-sized wings, a burger or a reuben accompanied by low-key live music at Music Joint. If you’re in the mood for a true concert experience, check out what the Rock Club has going on.
Vice District Brewing | 1454 S. Michigan Ave.
Taste what two former home-brewers have developed in their tap room. Start with the five-item sampler to get a taste of everything, then go for a full glass of your favorite. Can’t decide? Opt for a beer flight.
The Scout | 1301 S. Wabash Ave.
Stop in for a burger or a beer before heading to Soldier Field to cheer on the Bears, or to stay and watch the game. The menu includes offerings such as the short rib foot-long grilled cheese, or pulled chicken nachos. There’s also a large selection of beer, wine and cocktails.
Buddy Guy’s Legends | 700 S. Wabash Ave.
This venue is at the heart and soul of the musician’s life-long purpose of “keeping the blues alive.” Drop in any night to hear blues classics and while you’re there, grab a bite, such as the chicken sausage jambalaya and other southern dishes.
* All photos credited to company websites except when noted.