Chicago: What You Need to Know Before You Visit

Chicago is undoubtedly one of the biggest and most visited cities in the United States. There’s plenty to see and do in the city, and it has excellent public transport systems linking the area with neighboring cities and states.

If you’ve never been to Chicago before, it makes sense to take some time to prepare for your trip. Visiting Chicago isn’t too different from visiting other major cities in the USA. But, there are some facts specific to this city that you need to keep in mind before you visit:

Chicago: What You Need to Know Before You Visit. Chicago is undoubtedly one of the biggest and most visited cities in the United States.

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Chicago: What You Need to Know Before You Visit

Avoid Visiting the City During Winter

One of the reasons that make Chicago so famous is down to its temperatures during the winter months. December to February are the coldest months for the city, and it’s not uncommon for temperatures to get as low as −3.3 degrees F.

If you can do so, avoid visiting the city during the winter months. Consider making your trip from April or May, where you can enjoy the city’s outdoor attractions.

Keep Your Valuables Secure

Chicago isn’t a crime-ridden city, but it’s also not a city where crime levels are non-existent. With that in mind, it makes sense to be aware of your surroundings when you travel and keep your belongings safe and secure.

For example, look for secure luggage storage in Chicago if your accommodation’s security doesn’t inspire you with confidence. And take practical steps to avoid becoming a victim of crime, such as traveling in groups and keeping your money out of your back pockets.

You should also avoid visiting known crime hotspots within the city. Carjackings, for example, are on the rise in the city, so take adequate precautions when traveling around in your own car.

Don’t Forget Your Bathing Suit

It might seem like a strange suggestion to make, given that Chicago is many miles away from the nearest ocean. But, when you visit the city during the warmer months of the year, you can enjoy a dip in Lake Michigan via one of the city’s 27 beaches.

Of course, you could always visit a location with a swimming pool and do a few laps to keep up to date with your exercise regime while you travel!

You Need to Join an Architecture Tour

There’s no denying that architecture is an integral part of Chicago’s history, especially as the world’s first skyscraper got built there (the Home Insurance Building). With that in mind, it makes perfect sense to join an architecture tour of the city.

It’ll help you learn more about Chicago’s unique buildings and take in the sights at the same time. Many of the city’s tours, such as the Chicago Architecture Foundation’s River Cruise, will give you an in-depth insight into Chicago’s influence on modern architecture.


Keeping in mind the above thoughts and tips will undoubtedly help you to enjoy your time in Chicago. Plus, they’ll help you minimize the risk of anything going wrong during your trip. Thanks for reading!


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  1. Thank you for these helpful tips! I have never been to Chicago, but it is on my bucket list. I never thought of checking out the beaches there.

  2. I have another one – stay outside the city and take an Uber or a Lyft when going into the city. My husband and I stayed at a bed and breakfast right outside the city a few years ago. The first night we drove into the city for Chicago hot dogs (a must) and parking was ATROCIOUS. After that we took Ubers and Lyfts into the city and it was much less expensive (and they can drive better in the city than we can.

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