I wanted to do this journal because I got s0000 much help from reading other journals. I hope this helps someone! It's really just my opinion on the major attractions- with a few good places to eat scattered in.
I am in my 20's and my boyfriend is in his 30's-We went from 10/2-10/6
PS please excuse my spelling- i'm rushing through this!
Arrival/Red Roof Inn (Ontario)
We flew in Midway and took the orange line to downtown. Once we got there we could have transfered to another line to get to our Hotel (Red Roof Inn) on Ontario- a block off Michigan. But we didn't, we took a cab from the State stop to the hotel.
Due to our confusion of figuring out the El... it took us about 45 minutes to get to the hotel... We could have probably shaved off about 20 minutes otherwise.
Red Roof Inn
Okay... I've read tons of mixed reviews on this hotel. It cost 115.00 Monday- Weds night when we were there. Thursday the price jumped to almost 200 dollars. Yes the elevator is slow... yes the rooms are small... sure our toliet didnt flush that well but we didn't care. If you care about those things you're going to have to pay about 100-150 dollars (if not MORE) to stay in this area at a nicer place. I felt for the price - the location was TOTALLY worth it and we were so glad to stay there. We stayed on Thursday night (when the price jumped) with my friends on 16th and South Michigan but it was just sooooo much better to stay right in the middle of everything at the hotel.
We wanted to eat somewhere near the river because we were about to hop on the Architecture Boat Tour. This place is a chain but it was great. I LOVED the deep dish stuffed pizza I got- and it was individual size (individual size only at lunch time) for less than $6. It came with some really great french bread and the salads looked really really good too.
CAF Architecture River Tour
The Chicago Architecture Foundation puts on this Tour. Obviously this one is one of the best. The boat is great, our Tour Guide was wonderful... They served beer and drinks ($4.50 Miller Lite). However- big problem. When we boarded the boat it was COMPLETELY sunny. 1 hour in- pouring rain, lighning and thunder. Everyone onside ran underneath the boat- but the tour guide kept talking. We made the best of it but some people were pissed to not get their money back.
That night we met a friend who lives in Chicago about a mile north of the center part of downtown for dinner at Nookie's. It's a cute diner style place - I think the address is 1746 N. Wells?? We took the 22 bus down Dearborn- and it took us pretty close. My boyfriend got a pasta dish, my friend a turkey burger, and I got a Frittata (open face omelet, see picture) Prices were under 10 dollars. It was really good and we were all happy! It's one of my friends favorite places to eat. Maybe not worth traveling out of your way - but definately worth going if you are in the neighborhood.
Millenium Park/Buckingham Fountain
We walked to the park from the hotel off Ontario and Michigan. It's just beautiful! We also walked to Buckingham Fountain from here... it was far! but we kept walking.... to the Field Museum...
Field Museum/Soldier Field
Okay I'm sure if anyone reads this they are going to hate me but I totally thought this place was going to be cooler. :( I feel bad just saying it. Okay all I'm saying is that I wanted to go because of Sue and really could have stopped there. I went on Tuesday- which was free that day. I still ended up spending a couple hours there but was not impressed. I'm not saying it was terrible- I just was not impressed: ( sorry.
Science and Industry Museum
We screwed this one up :(. Okay first we took the red line to Garfield and then walked from there. THAT'S NOT A GOOD IDEA. For some reason the map we were using alluded that it wouldn't be that far of a walk from the Redline train stop but we were still adjusting to the public transportation. IT was the longest walk ever. BUT we did get to walk by the University of Chicago which was a beautiful campus.
Being a history buff- My boyfriend was really- really into seeing the U-Boat- I was not as excited. But when we got there I fell in love with the place. I felt like it was an AWESOME museum and could have spent 5 + hours there. I would have alloted 5+ hours for this place.
My friend from Chicago recommended this place and we LOVED IT. It's just off Michigan on Grand (I actually think its a small chian but this one seemed so classy and authentic) I got a HUUUUGE salad and my boyfriend got a great hamburger. The menu is only two pages but what's there is great. AND WE GOT OUR FOOD SOOO FAST! It's cheap too- the beer was one of the cheapest we had (around 3.5o) a glass.
Call ahead to see when they close. We thought it would be open till 10... closed at 8pm :(. It's very touristy.
Rush Street/Hunt Club
We walked from Ohio and Michigan to the Rush street bars-almost a mile hike. It would have been fine if I wasn't wearing heels because there's a lot of things to see. (the bars start around Rush and Bellevue) We went to the Hunt Club - which is on State- and it was really nice, but jeans are fine. They had some specials, like on Tuesday all Martinis were $7.25 so I had a key lime martini rimmed with pie crust! The entire Rush street area is really cool- drinks are pricey but if you enjoy going out you can definately spend a night there just going to the different bars. If you don't like to drink- people watching is fun too. It was very crowded and it was in the middle of the week. Our friends also said the place next door to Hunt Club- the Blue Agave - serves strong margaritas for under 8 bucks.
One of my only complaints about our hotel was that everything downtown closes early! We were hungry after our drinks and couldn't find anything to eat! One of the only places open was DUE so we stopped there... even though reviews are mixed. I thought it was pretty good- not as good as Giordanos. It's the crust- its just too dry or something.