Visiting Chicago? 5 Things You Should Know… | American Travel Blogger
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Visiting Chicago? 5 Things You Should Know…

Chi-Town is one of the USA’s most interesting cities. Home of the White Sox, Al Capone and the deep pan pizza, it’s rich in history and has an attitude and aura that makes it a truly special place.

Today, it’s the second most visited city in the United States, and it’s no wonder. If you’re flying into the Windy City then below you’ll find the top five things to know, from what to eat to the local laws and getting around…

Be Aware Of The Local Laws

Whenever you visit somewhere new it’s important to know the laws of the land, and while Chicago is a rather liberal city, it’s still no different.

As the beginning of Route 66, the reason thousands of tourists flock to the city, one of the key things to be aware of are the road laws. In Illinois you’ll find most urban districts operate at 20mph limits, while freeways through downtown Chicago may go up to 45mph, with the interstates capped at 70mph.

When driving it is important to be careful in unfamiliar territories and should you get into an accident you should be aware of the help that you have on offer. Naturally, 911 is the number to call in an emergency, while you should also look up an auto accident lawyer in Chicago in case they are required.

In such case you’ll then be able to find help when you need it as well as having expert advice on laws you aren’t overly familiar with.

Other laws to be aware of include the drinking age of 21 in Illinois, along with dangling items in your rearview mirror!

The L System

If you’re planning on using public transport rather than a car then the Chicago L is most likely what you’ll be using. 

The service runs 24-hours on a number of lines and is essentially the city’s version of a subway. It’s the second oldest rapid transit system in the Americas and like the trams of San Francisco, are well worth a ride, even simply for the experience.

You can explore the entire city and it’s relatively easy to navigate, particularly with a map in hand.

The Windy Weather

There’s a reason why Chicago is the Windy city and the climate is largely dictated by Lake Michigan. You’ll find it’s a little different to the surrounding cities, with damp and mild springs and hot and very humid summers. 

Dressing for the occasion can be tough so do ensure you pack for all eventualities as you never know when the wet and windy weather will hit.

The Food

Famed for its deep pan pizza, Chicago has a wealth of local dishes that must be tried. Of course the pizza pie being one. Pequod’s is an institution in the city, located in Lincoln Park with its famed caramelised crust, while you’ll be able to pick up a nice slice on almost every corner.

Chicago is also the birthplace of the hotdog and the Chicago-style is one you really ought to try. The all-beef sausage is topped with yellow mustard, white onions, pickles, tomatoes, chili peppers and sweet pickle relish. One thing to note is that tomato ketchup is a no-no with this particular dog.

Of course, there’s so much more on offer too in what is a multicultural and vibrant city.

Don’t Mention the Cardinals

Finally, Chicago is one of the most sporting cities in the US, so don’t mention the Cardinals! The Route 66 rivalry is one of the most hotly contested in Major League Baseball and the Cubs are just one of a host of top teams in the city.

The Cubs play at the legendary Wrigley Field, while the White Sox, also a baseball team, place in the centre of the city at the Guaranteed Rate Field. 

The Chicago Bulls are internationally renowned in the NBA, where Michael Jordan spent much of his career, while the Bears are the city’s NFL side and the Blackhawks are the NHL ice hockey team. There really is nothing like Chicago on gameday!

Victoria Brewood
vbrewood@gmail.com

Although very much British, Victoria always felt like she was meant to be living the 'American Dream'. She loves the US and has travelled to over 14 states.

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