Chicago Day 3 and Day 4 – More Things to Do in the Rain

This is the final post about our adventures in Chicago in October – good thing because it has taken me forever to get this all written!

It was still raining on Wednesday morning so after a coffee and pastry we grabbed a cab down to the Museum of Science and Industry. It is a bit out of the way but we’d all read The Devil in the White City and wanted to see what remained of the 1893 World Fair grounds (Jackson Park).

The Museum of Science and Industry
The Museum of Science and Industry – the only remaining building from the 1893 World Fair

Museum isn’t quite the right word – the place is like a giant science experiment. We quickly looked at some of the old artifacts on display in the 80 in 80 Exhibit before getting sucked into the really fantastic U-505 Submarine Exhibit. I think this exhibit alone is worth a visit to the museum – it has videos, artifacts and the actual submarine that was captured during WWII. It was very engaging and informative but takes time to work your way through.

After the U-505 we went to the space exhibit then tried out some of the devices in the Think exhibit. I wanted to explore the interactive weather exhibit so we made tornados, played with magnets and made lightning. This part was full of school kids and I could see why because you could play with almost every display.

Hands on fun at the museum
Hands on fun at the museum

We did a quick walk through of the trains, checked out the bicycles and then watched the Swiss Jolly Ball (the world’s largest pinball machine) before having lunch in the food court.

We left the museum after lunch and walked over to see the Osaka Gardens which were originally built for the 1893 World Fair.

The Osaka Gardens
The Osaka Gardens

After our walk we caught a cab back to our hotel and Jon and I went for a walk to check out the stores. Then we hustled back to our hotel and grabbed another cab out to the United Centre to see a hockey game. I’ve never been to one before and it was neat to see Calgary play. I don’t quite get the appeal of the whole thing but it was certainly an interesting experience.

Lets just say the crowd wasn't thrilled when the Flames won
Lets just say the crowd wasn’t thrilled when the Flames won

It was pretty late by the time the game finished, we made our way back to the hotel and grabbed a bite to eat so I was exhausted, a little cranky and more than ready for bed!

It was still cloudy on Thursday but it was our last day in Chicago so we tried to make the most of it. We said goodbye to Jon’s Dad, stored our luggage with the hotel and headed out to walk around. Our CityPass included the Skydeck so even though visibility was zero, we went up to the observation level of Willis Tower and stared out at a solid wall of fog. I don’t love heights but when you can’t see anything it doesn’t feel very high up. Still, I would have preferred to see the city.

The Skydeck - just imagine the views!
The Skydeck – just imagine the views!

After the tower we walked towards the lakeshore and decided to use the last ticket in our CityPass and visit the Art Institute of Chicago. We downloaded the app and did the 1 hour tour to see some of the highlights. That place is full to the brim so it helped us to have a little focus.

I was starving by the time we were done so we walked back towards our hotel and stopped for another hot dog at Downtown Dogs. Their dogs were pretty reasonably priced and hit the spot for our final Chicago meal.

After our food we did a little shopping to pick up the essentials (cheap liquor and a Chicago themed shot glass) before catching the subway to the airport for our flight home.

While I wish it hadn’t rained every day we both agreed that Chicago was a perfect fall get away. We probably won’t be back soon (just because we have so many places on our bucket list) but I’d recommend it as an easy 5 day city vacation.

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