Best of 2012: Best downtown (IL)

2012-05-20T00:00:00Z Best of 2012: Best downtown (IL) nwitimes.com
May 20, 2012 12:00 am

Chicago

Explorechicago.org

Downtown Chicago has attractions, amenities, and accommodations to fit every taste. In fact, sometimes the choices can seem a bit overwhelming, so a start at the official Visitor Centers, located at Chicago Water Works, 163 E. Pearson St., or the Chicago Cultural Center, 77 E. Randolph St. may help to narrow down the selections. Here you can pick up helpful brochures and travel maps or talk with one of the friendly, knowledgeable visitor services representatives to make the most of your visit.

Another way to maximize Chicago's downtown is by taking a tour to see the city and learn about Chicago's history, people and culture. Choose from walking tours, neighborhood excursions and self-guided audio tours. Travel by trolley, bus, boat or bike. In addition to the major sights and attractions, you can focus on everything from shopping and gardening to cemeteries and the Great Chicago Fire.

But if shopping, dining, and nightlife are your calling, then look no further than Chicago's downtown, known as the Magnificent Mile. This stretch of Michigan Avenue boasts both historic and brand new boutique hotels to fit every budget; restaurants from a quick sandwich to romantic fondue; famous national chains and unique one-of-a-kind shops; and dance clubs, cruise ships, or comedy clubs to give those in the region the feeling of truly getting away for the weekend.

SECOND PLACE

Lansing

lansingdowntown.com

THIRD PLACE

Hegewisch/Burnham

hegewisch.biz

burnham.pausetime.com

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