Monday, June 25, 2012

Spotlight on: Chicago

Willis Tower and a River Architectural Cruise

Chicago is a fantastic city to visit: excellent museums, fantastic restaurants, great shopping, and a terrific public transportation system. One of the best combinations of activities I have found is the Willis Tower, Greektown and a River Architectural Cruise. 

Willis Tower was formerly known as the Sears Tower. The Sky Deck  offers a 360 degree view of Chicago. You head downstairs to get the tickets, then wind your way through several displays highlighting some of the key attractions in Chicago. I highly recommend the movie that tells the history of the Sears Tower building. Then you head up in an elevator that goes 103 stories in sixty seconds.  They have a fun logo that shows all the building heights you are passing and you go up.

The views are incredible.

The Edge attraction features four windows that jut out past the building so you can look straight down.  It's a little disconcerting at first, but makes for some great pictures.

National Hellenic Museum was named one of the Best Exhibits in 2011 plus there's a great selection of greek restaurants for a hearty, delicious lunch.

After enjoying all those views, it's a fifteen minute walk down Jackson to the heart of Greektown. The
After Greektown, you can take a taxi or bus to one of the many river architectural tours.

 Wendella offers both a 75 minutes river cruise or a 90 minute river and lake cruise.

The Chicago Architectural Foundation offers a 90 minute river cruise.

Shoreline Sightseeing also has some cruise options.

I took the Wendella 75 minute river cruise and really enjoyed. It's especially nice after you have spent the morning at the Willis Tower. This way you have a great sense of the city's layout. Plus you can find your favorite buildings from the river level.

Have you been to Chicago? What's your favorite sightseeing locations?

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