New Member
Need some help especially from the well travled or Chicago natives. So today I get to thinking I want to take a weekend trip to Chicago with a buddy to catch a couple of games at Wrigley and see some of the sights and enjoy some Windy City bars. I have found resonable flights and am working on getting some tickets for the Cubbies through a connection (if not hope to get some offline, but hope the free ones come through!).
So I have a few questions. Is it pretty easy to get around Chicago on the trains and busses etc? Where is a good area to stay in? Any hotel recommendations that are nice without breaking the bank. Any good sights to see or bars to visit?! Been doing a little research on it but with some many Chicago natives on here think this might be the best place! Any help would be appreciated! Dont want to break the bank on this trip but am willing to spend some cash! Thanks!

The Doofer
I always enjoy eating dinner at Ed Debevics. It's a 50's style diner where the wait staff has an atitude. It is a pretty fun time because they are pretty rude to you and there is music, etc. Something different if you don't mind being made fun of or having straws thrown at you. Check it out
I would also recommend checking out the Shedd Aquarium if you like that kind of thing. Then just keep walking south and you will go by the "former" Meigs Field (RIP) and Soldier Field. Walking along the shoreline is pretty cool and the parks are pretty nice. Check out this website for pretty much everything you would need to know about entertainment, lodging, and food. The Magnificent Mile Enjoy your trip! Wrigley Field is one of the greatest ballparks of all time and is a great experience. I am just thankful that I got to see Harry Caray do the 7th inning stretch before he passed away. God I love Chicago.
I second the recommendation for Shedd Aquarium and the magnificent mile, and I'll add in Navy Pier. Rush Street (one block from Michigan Ave) is great for bar hopping, I spent a couple St. Patty's Days on Rush St.

The "El" will get you just about anywhere you want to go. It runs from MDW to ORD and everywhere in between. And, if you want to go into the suburbs, you can hop on a commuter train.

I've always stayed with friends in Chi-town so I can't give you any hotel advice, other than find a hotel downtown so you're in the middle of the action.

If it's a clear day, go to the top of the Sears Tower, the view is awesome.
Well if you stay downtown, the cost of the hotels are quite expensive. If your flying into MDW they have the Midway court hotels 1 mile south of the airport which includes a Holiday INN, Sheraton, and a few other hotels. These hotels often have free shuttles from the hotel to the airport, and also downtown. Public transportation is also nearby. I would say that if you are coming to chicago fly into midway. As far as places to visit I would say the shedd aquarium, Planetarium, Navy Pier, Sears Tower observation deck (if a clear day, Burnside Harbor, Museum of Science and Industry just to name a few. As far as places to eat I would go eat at Giordano's I believe they have a location at Water Tower place, they have the best stuffed pizza in chicago. If you have any more questions PM me.
Thanks for all the help so far. Still looking around to see the deals and waiting to hear about the tickets for the Cubs.

The Doofer
If you want to stay down in the Michigan Avenue area, try priceline. I went last summer and we got a wonderful 4* hotel right in the middle of everything for $99/night. Split between 4 girls it was a cheap trip.

I really enjoyed the Adler Planetarium and wanted to go to the Shedd Aquarium but we got there too late and the line was just too long. We went to the Field Museum, the Hancock Tower, half the group went to a Cubs game, ate at Giordano's, shopped (of course!), did the Navy Pier thing, and one of the most cool things was a midnight cruise on Lake Michigan.

I was going to do my long Comm. x/c to Chicago later this summer, but with the closing of Meigs I'm unfortunately looking elsewhere.

I lived in the city for 12 years. Try to stay in the N. Michigan Ave area because you can stay and take the L to the Cubs and northside area. There are lots of pretty ladies and cool bars in Lincoln Park. That's in between downtown and Wrigley. Museum of Science and Industry is really cool, there's a U-Boat from WWII there. Get up on Sears or the Hancock. The Hancock is on Michigan Ave, so if you get a hotel there you can walk. The Art Institute is free on Tuesdays. Also on Michigan, but a little further south.

You can take the bus or train anywhere in the city. If you want a schedule of events check out it will tell you about some cool things like garden walks and street festivals. That city has the BEST street fairs/festival I've ever been to. Every little neighborhood has their own little "Taste" that is topped by the Taste of Chicago. Great food, beer, and bands. Shoot me an e-mail if you want to know more.
You will definitely want to take the "l". I go to high school in downtown Chicago and I see what the traffic is like. Some of those Cab Drivers are some scary drivers. But, definitely fly into MDW and take the Orange Line. It is not a far walk either.
Wow, FlyChicaga doesn't even have to talk up Chicaga... seems like everyone above has covered it!

Actually, it's almost hard for me to give advice like this about the city. I've spent so much time in it, that my opinion of fun stuff to do is different than someone visiting. I think everything above is right on!

Up in Wrigleyville there are lots of good bars and restaurants to chow down and drink a few Old Styles after the game (if of age, of course...
). You can take the El downtown (RIGHT next to Wrigley), and find everything you've ever wanted. Basically from Roosevelt up to North Ave., and I-90/94 to the Lake, there is MONDO things to do. Michigan Ave, the Museum campus, Planetarium, Navy Pier, boat rides, LOTS of restaurants, LOTS of bars.

A good place to start for attractions is Navy Pier. Decent walking distance to the Museum campus, Sears Tower, Hancock, etc. A good place to start for restaurants is Oak and State streets. There is a "square" there, and surrounding it are restaurants. Walk about 5-6 blocks southeast, you are on the Mag Mile.

Enjoy the trip!!!
Avoid the cabs, if you can.. They can get expensive. You can get anywhere you need to be by taking the trains and busses. If you have a specific place you want to get to, you can call the RTA Travel Information Center at 312-836-7000 and they'll tell you what bus/train combos to take. They cover the Metra trains that run into the 'burbs too. Their website is here.

For food, there's ALOT of choices. Perhaps if you give me an idea what you're in the mood for, I can help ya out. If you're looking for something "Chicago", you might want to try Giordano's pizza. There's a bunch of locations in the city. If you make the Cubs game, you might want to stop into the Cubby Bear across the street from the front gate after the game for a beer, or whatever. If you bust out on tickets to the Cubs game, you might want to try to see if the White Sox are playing. Barring that, there's also a bunch of minor league teams that play in the suburbs. If you bust on the Cubs or Sox tickets and are still Jonesing for baseball, let me know and I'll find ya a game. <grin> Heck, you could even conceivably make a Brewers game. Amtrak runs a "commuter" line to and from Milwaukee out of Union Station.

If money is no object and you like a good steak, I'd recommend Ruth Chris' Steakhouse on Dearborn right in the Loop.

Have fun!

You may want to check online for prices on hotels, because they are always changing.......All the downtown places have been mentioned, but if you rather party more with the locals you want to hit these places: Lincoln Park district on Fullerton Av. and Southport Av., Bucktown District on Division Av. and Damen Av., and of coarse if you go to the Cubs game you'll be in the Wrigleyville District-A lot of places there....All these places have Bars concentrated within three blocks of each other, and additional bars scattered within a mile. If you have never driven in these cities: Boston, Philly, N.Y. or S.F. I would recommend NOT driving here eithier it could be a pain. I would stay out of the neighborhood bars unless you know someone. Most of those bars are safe, but you may never know when you have the wrong one.....Good luck and have fun. You'll be in a party man's/women's haven. As far as eats that's another subject-places to eat are endless.

As for Chicago style pizza I recommend Lou Malnati's on Southport Av. and Lincoln Av. (Lincoln Park District)
Thanks for all the info so far. Getting pretty pumped about the trip. Will be flying into ORD most likely cause I can get direct flights. Will not be driving (too young for most rental companies and that is just extra cash) so will take the busses and the "L".
Starting to get a good idea of what to see and do. Will probably ask for bar/food recommendations closer to trip time and when I know where I will be staying. Thanks again!
I second Lou Malnatis, blows away Giordano's. As far as things to do in the Chi, possibilties are endless. I quit going to the city though, purely because I just can't afford it anymore, and I've pretty much been there done that. However, I will be there tommorrow for jury duty at the daley center. Maybe I will stop by and see if good ole dick daley himself is there and query him about meigs.