Wrigley Field#16 in Best Things To Do in Chicago
Any fan of "Saturday Night Live" knows that Chicagoans take their love of sports very seriously. So for a real taste of Chicago culture, head north of the Loop to Wrigley Field to see "da Cubs" play ball. History buffs will also appreciate this sports treasure, which was built in 1914 and holds the honor of being the second-oldest MLB ballpark in the country (after Fenway Park in Boston).
Those who have been to a game at Wrigley Field say that the experience is unforgettable – mostly because of the fans' enthusiasm (though the hot dogs also receive a thumbs-up). If you can't score game tickets, consider signing up for a guided tour of the ballpark. Basic tours cost $25 per person and last 75 to 90 minutes. Past travelers who have taken the tour described the experience as nostalgic, noting that they especially loved the stories the guides told about the teams and fans.
Tours are conducted most days starting in mid-May and going through the end of September; tour itineraries vary depending on whether or not there's a game scheduled for that day. Game ticket prices also vary, but especially since the Cubs won the World Series in 2016, tickets have been pretty pricey across the board. Once inside, visitors will have access to restrooms, concessions stands and merchandise booths. Parking is limited by the ballpark (which sits in the Wrigleyville part of Lakeview), so it's best to take the L to Addison. If you'd rather drive, you can park in the Cubs' free remote lot a few blocks to the west and use the ballpark's complimentary shuttle service. Visit the MLB website for more information about Wrigley Field.
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#1 Grant Park and Buckingham Fountain
Often referred to as "Chicago's front yard," Grant Park is a 319-acre swath of green space that starts at the eastern edge of the Loop and stretches down to the northern fringes of the Near South Side. First-time visitors should plan on spending a fair amount of time in Grant Park: This is where you'll find several of Chicago's most popular things to do, including The Field Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago and Shedd Aquarium. (Millennium Park also rubs elbows with the northwest corner of Grant Park.) Baseball diamonds, flower gardens, walking paths and wide-open grassy terrain are available as well.
At the heart of Grant Park is Buckingham Fountain. One of the largest fountains in the world, this tiered water feature boasts 133 jets that shoot water as high as 150 feet into the air during 20-minute choreographed displays (which take place every hour on the hour between 9 a.m. and 10:35 p.m. from April to October). At night, the fountain's performance is accompanied by lights and music.
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