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THE ESSENTIAL CHICAGO GUIDE DURING C2E2 - A LOCAL’S PERSPECTIVE

MAR 2020
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THE ESSENTIAL CHICAGO GUIDE DURING C2E2 - A LOCAL’S PERSPECTIVE

From places to stay at, through museums you can check out, to other activities you can check out, here is a local guide to things to do in Chicago walking near the Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo.


In Chicago for the tenth Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo?

An all-round exciting event!

Want to make your Chicago sojourn even more exciting? Then you should really get to know The Windy City!


Here’s an insider guide to the Chicago attractions you must check out, all of which are within walking distance of McCormick Place, where the Comic and Entertainment Expo is being held.

Grant Park

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Grant Park in Chicago. Image courtesy https://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/.


Spread out over more than 300 acres, Grant Park is one of the greatest spaces in Chicago to spend your day in.

From long walking paths to gardens, and quite a few statues, Grant Park should definitely be on your list of things to do in Chicago.

The Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park

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A view of Buckingham Fountain. Image courtesy https://www.choosechicago.com/.


Dedicated to Chicago in 1927, the Buckingham Fountain is one of the largest fountains in the world.

At this time of the year, you may not be able to see the magnificent water display it’s famous for, it’s still worth snapping a selfie here, especially if you’re visiting Chicago from elsewhere.

The Art Institute of Chicago in Grant Park

Home to everything from paintings to photographs to even architectural drawings, the Art Institute of Chicago has a collection spanning thousands of years.

It’s open every day from 10:30am to 5pm or to 8pm, depending on the day of the week.

Entry is free for children under 14.

You can consult their website for more details.

The Museum Campus in Grant Park

You can think of this as a package deal. Major institutions like

  • The Shedd Aquarium

  • The Field Museum

  • Adler Planetarium

are within minutes of each other, on this campus.

In addition to those, you can also check out Soldier Field, and admire sculptures of various important figures like Copernicus.

Maggie Daley Park in Grant Park

From places for toddlers to play to various activities for younger children to climbing walls, a skating rink and so on, Maggie Daley Park has something for everybody.

It’s in the northeastern part of Grant Park.

General entry is free, however you may have to pay a fee to take part in some of the activities.


Apart from these, Grant Park has a walking trail (Chicago Lakefront Trail), various gardens, vast open spaces, a dog park, and various other features you may want to check out. 

Address: 337 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601, United States.

Website: https://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/parks-facilities/grant-ulysses-park

Open Hours: Every day of the week, 6am to 11pm.

Entry: Free.

How to reach from McCormick Place: The best way (balancing cost and time) may be to get on the line 3 bus from King Drive & 25th Street and get off at Michigan and Balbo - the total journey shouldn’t take more than 45 minutes.

The Bean

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The Bean, in downtown Chicago. Image courtesy https://www.choosechicago.com/.


Also known as The Cloud Gate, this stainless steel sculpture is a symbol of Chicago, and a must-click, if you’re a selfie person.

Technically, The Bean is located within Grant Park, near Maggie Daley Park, however it deserves a mention on its own - it’s that famous.

How to reach from McCormick Place: It’s an hour’s walk from McCormick Place - and quite a pleasant walk, at that. Or, you can take the line 3 bus from King Drive & 25th Street and get off at Michigan and Madison - a half hour journey.

Northerly Island Park

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Saunter through raw nature, right at Northerly Island. Image courtesy https://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/.


If you’re in the mood for a quiet walk, or a peaceful afternoon among nature’s splendor, you can check out Northerly Island Park.

It’s a first rate example of planned biodiversity management, with huge numbers of trees planted, and other work done to attract wildlife, and recreate the natural space that existed before the area was developed (it used to be an airport).

It’s got a concrete walking path, a lagoon, and wildlife habitats.

Website: https://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/parks-facilities/northerly-island-park

Address: 1521 S Linn White Dr, Chicago, IL 60605, United States.

Open Hours: Every day of the week, 6am to 11pm.

Entry: Free.

How to reach from McCormick Place: It’s a half-hour walk via Mines Drive. Or, you can take the train from McCormick Station to Museum Campus/11th Street, and walk down Solidarity Drive.

31st Street Beach

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People enjoying themselves at 31st Street Beach. Image courtesy https://chicago.suntimes.com/.


Not lagoons, but a beach experience what you’re looking for?

Yep, Chicago has that too!

It’s called the Margaret T. Burroughs Beach, a.k.a. 31st Street Beach.

Open Hours: Swimming is permitted from 11:00am to 7:00pm daily.

How to reach from McCormick Place: Walk down Moe Drive till you hit East 31st Street, and then turn left.

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