Looking for the coolest photos in The Windy City? From super famous sculptures like Cloud Gate and the Lucent, to historic bridges like the DuSable, to the Gallagher House from "Shameless," we've got you covered.Less
This seemingly fluid stainless steel structure was inspired by mercury, one of two elements that are liquid at room temperature. The rounded surface allows the observer a 66-foot panoramic reflection of Chicago. Most amazing is the nighttime reflection which is awash in the glow of the city lights.
The Willis Tower Skydeck sits almost atop the 108-story building - located on the 103rd floor. Elevators take you up to the top in 60 seconds and you can actually feel the change in pressure as you ascend. The Willis Tower is the second tallest building in the Americas after One World Trade Center in New York.
This theater was built in 1921 when showbiz was at its glitziest. The theater at that time was called Balaban and Katz Chicago Theater after the men who ran it. Fifty years later, the theater was in decline and finally closed in 1985. It reopened in 1986 at an extravagant cost and with much fanfare - Frank Sinatra performed at its reopening. The theater, which took the inspiration for its design from l'Arc de Triomphe, regularly schedules performances of all types.
If you're standing in front of Buckingham Fountain, and feel a sudden urge to sing Sinatra's "Love and Marriage" when the center jet shoots water straight up into the air, there's a reason! The rococo fountain, inspired by the Latona at Versailles, was featured prominently in the opening credits of "Married...With Children." Dedicated in 1927, the fountain has been a centerpiece of downtown Chicago long before the sitcom about Al and Peg Bundy's dysfunctional family.
This 3,300-foot pier is one of the first places you should visit if this is your first time to Chicago. A ferris wheel, great photo opps, a nice view of the city skyline, and a variety of restaurants and bars to choose from, Navy Pier is a perfect family activity.
Downtown Chicago Riverwalk is an all-day adventure and tours for any personality type are available. Foodies can join the Chicago Riverwalk Food Tour where you get a sampling of the Windy City's most interesting refreshment spots. Millenials can participate in the Segway Tour where you can glide through the city on those two-wheeled contraptions. Or, just do it the old-fashioned way and meander along the river with your honey.
Popular because of its irreverence, "Shameless" has been a Showtime fixture since 2011. With a series this long it has garnered quite the following. You can see some of this following in Chicago, loitering about outside the house in which many of the Gallagher family antics take place. Keep in mind that late spring to early fall are the nicest times to visit climate-wise but there will be a larger crowd there.
Even abandoned rail lines can be reused! Once known as the Bloomingdale Line, it has been repurposed as a multi-use recreational trail. You can bike, jog, or walk your way through the 2.7-mile well-kept path - as long as you do it between 6 AM and 11 PM.
The Chicago Cultural Center is the home of the largest single Tiffany piece in the world - a resplendent dome designed by J.A. Holtzer. It tops a room of ornately carved Carrara marble. Free admission is just icing on the cake; this museum should be at the top of your list of things to do while in Chicago.
Once called the John Hancock Observatory (it is located in the John Hancock building), the 360 Chicago offers unparalleled views of the Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan. You will pay for the experience, though -the lowest admission price is about $19 per person. For the most memorable experience, time your visit to coincide around dusk when the city and skyline are swathed in an array of colors like an artist's palette.