Here are a few pics from our first trip to Chicago and a super short timeline of what we did:
July 3: Arrived at Chicago Midway at 11pm, took a cab downtown to HI-Chicago, voted Best Hostel in the World in 2006.
July 4: Navigated Chicago's public transportation to the dock to take an architectural boat tour. Took another bus and a free trolley to the Field Museum of Natural History. Walked the waterfront to Grant Park and the Taste of Chicago. Tried a Chicago dog, spinach-stuffed pizza and Eli's famous cheesecake. Hung out all day in the park, listening to Robert Randolph and the Family Band (he toured with DMB a couple years ago) and John Mayer, all for free!! Walked to Millenium Park for dinner, then back out to the waterfront for Fourth of July Fireworks.
July 5: Picked up the rental car and drove four hours north to Door County, Wisconsin. Ate lunch in Sturgeon Bay, walked the town, drove to Bailey's Harbor and had a lovely steak dinner on the harbor, walked that town, tried some Wisconsin ice cream (good stuff!), drove back to Sturgeon Bay.
July 6: Drove north to Egg Harbor for breakfast at the Cupola Cafe, drove north to Gill's Rock to board the passenger ferry to Washington Island, Wisconsin. Rented bikes on the island and pedaled around and out to School House Beach, then back to the ferry landing. Chatted with an odd, loud couple back on the mainland while they ate smoked fish and ice cream and we had Mackinac Island Fudge ice cream. Drove south to Fish Creek for dinner and then to Potawatomi State Park on Sturgeon Bay and camped.
July 7: Visited the Potawatomi State Park tower then drove into Sturgeon Bay for breakfast. Drove north to Sister Bay for groceries at the Piggly Wiggly, then three miles south to Ephraim. Rented kayaks and paddled Green Bay in Lake Michigan. Walked to the public beach and swam in Lake Michigan. We never imagined we'd be swimming in the Great Lakes! Hung out on the beach and walked back to the car at the public marina. Realized the car keys were missing, retraced steps, made many phone calls, got "stranded" in quite possibly the most beautiful little town in America. Checked into the Evergreen Beach Resort kitty corner from the marina, made more phone calls, went to dinner at 9:30pm at Wilson's and enjoyed a lovely walk after dinner back to Evergreen. Watched Sturgeon Bay's fireworks from Ephraim's public dock.
July 8: Called tow truck. Walked to breakfast at The Chef's Hat. Enjoyed a nice walk back in the rain. Tow truck arrived and we rode down to Green Bay to the nearest Budget facility, picked up new rental car, drove four hours south back through Chicago to see Guster and Dave Matthews Band at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, IL. Excellent concert, scary parking lot (inconsiderate drivers). Drove back to hostel in downtown Chicago.
July 9: Walked Millenium Park, Michigan Ave, Wabash Ave and tried to ride the El (elevated train) but they didn't take cash, only tickets, so we walked back to hostel. Picked up luggage, drove to Midway airport. Got delayed about 4 hours due to crazy weather disturbance, got home around 10:30pm. Best trip EVER!!!!!
Sear's Tower from the architectural boat tour
Mold-A-Rama at the Field Museum
Cloudgate and a very tiny portion of the Chicago Skyline, Millenium Park
Us and our rented beach bikes near School House Beach on Washington Island, Wisconsin
TONS MORE on Trav's Flickr page, like 100 pics. Tons.