Things To Do Near Millenium Park in Chicago

Located just east of Chicago's bustling Loop neighborhood, Millennium Park is arguably the most stunning vantage point from which to take in the beauty of the Windy City. You can see the whole of downtown--the towering sky scrapers, the old facades of Michigan Avenue--and if you turn around, you can see out to Lake Michigan. On a clear day, nothing beats the feeling of Millennium Park in the sunshine. Here are some favorite nearby activities to make a day of it! The Art Institute of Chicago is one of the country's finest art museums. It's great for the whole family or for a quiet stroll with a loved one. Full of iconic works and exciting new exhibitions, the Art Institute is a sure bet. If you're in the mood for shopping, head west on Randolph to Macy's (formerly Marshall Field's). This long-standing department store will send you back to a time when shopping felt extremely glamorous. You'll also find several options for food, including fine dining at the Walnut Room on the seventh floor. This is perfect around the holidays, as you get a great view of the enormous tree! In the summer, check the performance schedule at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion at the north end of Millennium Park. Designed by famed architect Frank Gehry, the pavilion offers free performances including the finale of the Chicago Dancing Festival. The Grant Park Music Festival organizes free concerts by popular bands and classical ensembles including the Grant Park Orchestra. This is not to miss if you're visiting in the summer. Classical music fans will not go for wanting--the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's beautiful building (Symphony Center) is just down the block. Here you'll see incredible concerts by one of the country's top orchestras along with touring artists in an unbelievably elegant setting. Try sitting in the seats above and behind the stage for a unique and exciting (not to mention close up) experience. Cloudgate, also known as "The Bean", is an iconic piece of public art that lies in Millennium Park. Due to its contours, you can see the entirety of the city and yourself in its reflection. Everyone loves The Bean! Thinking of picnicking? Pastoral, located on East Lake Street one block north of Millennium Park offers artisan cheeses, sandwiches, salads, wine, and chocolates. You can even pick up a picnic package to go, complete with portable wine glasses. These are perfect for enjoying a concert in the park. Buckingham Fountain is a spectacular sight in the warm weather, shooting water into the air at heights up to 150 feet. It's one of the world's largest fountains, and from its basin, you'll get another gorgeous view of the lake and the skyline. In the winter months, the park opens the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink. Skate rentals are inexpensive, and from between The Bean and Michigan Avenue, you'll get that magic-of-winter feeling even as you shiver. The rink is open to skaters of all ages and abilities. The Chicago Fine Arts Building has a beautiful collection of fine art murals, and often you'll be able to attend a recital or concert. Built in 1898 specifically for artists, this gorgeous historic building houses recital halls, studios, and practice rooms for all kinds of creative people. It also houses one of the only working lever-operated elevators in the country.

expert pick

Art Institute of Chicago

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111 S. Michigan Ave
At Adams St

Global Art Leader... read more

Macy's

111 N. State St
At Randolph St

Original State Street store... read more

Jay Pritzker Pavilion

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Columbus Drive and Randolph Street
Millennium Park

Music in the air... read more

Grant Park Music Festival

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500 South Columbus Drive
(Petrillo Music Shell in Grant Park)

Free Concerts... read more

Symphony Center-Chicago Symphony Orchestra

220 South Michigan Avenue

Rare Recordings and More... read more

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Cloud Gate

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222 North Columbus Drive
(AT&T Plaza, Millennium Park)

Millennium Park's Scene-Stealing Bean... read more

Pastoral

53 East Lake Street

A taste of the good life... read more

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Buckingham Fountain

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500 South Lake Shore Dr
Grant Park

A simple Chicago landmark... read more

McCormick-Tribune Ice Rink

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55 North Michigan Avenue
(at Madison Street)

Free winter fun for the whole family... read more

Fine Arts Building

410 S. Michigan Ave

Former Landmark Home of Studebaker Showroom...
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