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Welcome to Chicago, One of the Most Beautiful Cities in the U.S.

Known as the Windy City, due to the cold gusts of wind that blow from the lake, the best time for visiting Chicago is from June through September

by Laura Elia

Chicago.

City of blues and jazz, rich in history, art and culture, Chicago is one of the most beautiful cities in the U.S. Though perhaps less renowned than New York, Los Angeles or San Francisco, the city of the Blues Brothers is nonetheless a wonderful urban center well worth a visit. Known as the Windy City, due to the cold gusts of wind that blow from the lake, Chicago is a great place to visit any time of year, but the best time is from June through September. Then it turns into the perfect town to be out and about in; to enjoy the outdoors at hundreds of summer events that animate the city every weekend, from food festivals to ‘Lollapalooza’, and an annual 4-day music festival. Capital of the Midwest, it lies on the shores of Lake Michigan, the largest U.S. lake, which in the summer draws thousands of people to its beautiful white beaches to enjoy a picnic, play volleyball or go for a boat ride.

From a more urban perspective, the Loop—the economic and commercial center of the city—has nothing to envy New York City. Skyscrapers, historic streets, museums and luxury stores overlook Michigan Avenue, the city’s main strip. Here are also some of the most beautiful buildings, such as the John Hancock Observatory, the Water Tower and the Chicago Tribune. Nestled in the center of Chicago rises the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower), the second tallest skyscraper in the United States. Once here, take the elevator up to the sky deck on the 103rd floor and admire the city’s spectacular skyline. Afterward, go on to Millennium Park, located between the Loop and Lake Michigan; every summer this park hosts several events and outdoor concerts. Millennium Park also has on display some of the most interesting works of art of the city, such as the Crown Fountain, an interactive work created by the Spanish artist Plensa, and the gigantic Cloud Gate, nicknamed “The Bean” because of its shape. This famous attraction draws tourists from all over the world, who get to take unique pictures, thanks to the particular reflective properties of this great steel cloud. Another must-see is the Art Institute of Chicago, the second-largest art museum in the United States. Located in Chicago’s Grant Park, it exhibits collections from all over the world: from Picasso to Monet, Modigliani to Hopper, but also Van Gogh, Chagall and Cézanne. Another visitors’ favorite is Shedd Aquarium, one of the most beautiful aquariums in the world, where you’ll find penguins, sharks and beluga whales, among many other aquatic species.

The Cloud Gate

But to better appreciate the beauty of this city, it is best to walk it and admire its architectural gems. Take a picture in front of the Chicago Theatre, stroll along the Riverwalk or the Navy Pier; and once you get tired, take Chicago’s elevated subway, the “EL,” or stop to grab a bite of the famous Deep-Dish Pizza or a real Chicago hot dog. This is a city full of life and culture, with an incredible charm and wonderful views, with its skyscrapers reflected on Lake Michigan. The unique atmosphere of this enchanting American metropolis is sure to leave you speechless.

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