Chicago

Located at the southern tip of Lake Michigan, in America's north-eastern state of Ilinois, is the vibrant city of Chicago. Also known as the ‘Windy City', Chicago is also famed to be the birthplace of Chicago Deep Dish Pizza and the skyscraper, which dominate its skyline, and also home to the infamous gangster Al Capone. Parks and beaches, jazz and blues, art and architecture, sightseeing, entertainment and shopping – what more could you want from a city. For the best view of the city take a trip up to Skydeck Chicago, at the top of the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) and try out the latest attraction The Ledge, a glass-floored platform 1,353ft above the ground! Downtown Chicago, also known as the Loop, is a shopper's paradise with Michigan Avenue, also called the Magnificent Mile, is lined with the finest shops and small exclusive boutiques. Explore the beautiful lakefront and the famous Navy Pier or enjoy Millennium Park with its art, architecture and many festivals. Chicago is also the starting point of the famous Route 66. Take a trip out to the capital of Illinois, Springfield, the final resting place of Abraham Lincoln. With so much to see and experience in and around Chicago it's easy to see why it's a popular choice for a holiday to America.


Our Top recommended Chicago holidays

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Chicago facts at a glance
Flight time:
9 hours
Time difference:
-6 hours
Currency:
United States dollar
Flying from
Birmingham, Gatwick, Glasgow, Heathrow, Manchester, Newcastle

Best time to go

Chicago is a shoppers dream and is the perfect city break for shopping lovers all year round.

Chicago has an extreme climate with very hot summers and bitterly cold winters, its lakeside setting moderates the temperatures slightly and adds some humidity to the atmosphere. Chicago enjoys a short spring when temperatures are moderate and nights frosty. Summers, from June to the end of September, are hot, sunny and humid and are prone to thunderstorms. August is usually the wettest month of the year. Autumn is a lovely time of year when the air is crisp and cool, with blue skies and sunshine. Winters in Chicago are icy and prone to cold, harsh winds and snow is common.

Things to do

You'll be spoilt for choice of things to do in and around Chicago. Tour the city by bike on a Lakefront Bicycle Tour. Enjoy a cruise on Lake Michigan. The children will love the Six Flags Great America theme park, Legoland Chicago, the Kohl Children's Museum, the Shedd Aquarium and Lincoln Park Zoo. Visit Cloud Gate home of the Chicago Bean. Plant lovers will enjoy the Chicago Botanic Garden. Spend a day on the beach. Millennium Park plays host a Jazz Festival in September. Brave The Ledge at Skydeck Chicago. Catch a Chicago Bears game at the Soldiers Field stadium.

Food and drink

There's a restaurant in to suit every taste and pocket in Chicago with everything from fast food to fine dining available to enjoy. There are a wide selection of Asian restaurants in Chinatown and traditional Italian eateries in Little Italy. Mexican and European cuisine, steak and seafood are popular choices too. Local favourites include the Chicago Hotdog and the Italian Beef Sandwich.You must try Chicago's famous Chicago Deep Dish Pizza at Pizzeria Uno where it was created in 1943. Local beers and wine will quench your thirst.

In the evening

Chicago has had some of the best nightlife in America. There are nightclubs in abundance all over town, especially along Halstead Street, Lincoln Avenue and Clark Street on the North Side. Live blues and jazz music are a popular choice. Enjoy a flutter at the Chicago Trump Casino. See a show at the Chicago Theatre or the Chicago Apollo Theatre. Have a laugh at one of the many comedy clubs including Second City and Lincoln Lodge Chicago.

Health and entry requirements

It is your responsibility to ensure you have the correct travel insurance and vaccinations and / or special medication for your destination. Please consult your GP for advice at least one month ahead of travel. It is essential that you meet the visa and passport requirements for your chosen destination. Visit the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (http://www.fco.gov.uk) website for up to date entry requirements listed by country.

All Passengers travelling to the USA require a compulsory ESTA (visa) to gain entry into the county to find out more please click here


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