Hidden Gems for Chicago

Find great things to do in Chicago


Chicago, or also called the “Windy City”, is easy to love. You can find here a great mixture of food, design, history, and culture. Not to forget: Lake Michigan. Simply start exploring the world-class museums, inviting parks and colorful neighborhoods. In our travel guide you will find great things to do in Chicago.

1. Hidden Gem Chicago: Garfield Park Conservatory

For a little break from the bustling Chicago city center, visit the conservatory, where you can find greenhouses and outdoor gardens across its 14 acres. It is also called “landscape art under glass” because of its scenic interior vistas comprised of meandering pathways, lagoons and exotic plants. One of our favorites is the Desert House that holds one of the region’s most diverse collections of cacti and succulents. he Palm House is also quite impressive with its seven dozen varieties of palm trees. Make sure to check out their special events like flower shows, art installations and even yoga. The nearest train station is Conservatory-Central Park and the admission is free.

Garfield Park Conservatory

Garfield Park Conservatory / © Instagram: ezziefrost

2. Hidden Gem Chicago: Rainbow Cone

This place is a MUST when you visit Chicago. The Original Rainbow Cone is a local tradition dating all the way back to 1926, when founder Joseph Sapp opened his flagship shop. The Rainbow Cone consists of five ice cream flavors: chocolate, strawberry, Palmer House (New York vanilla with cherries and walnuts), pistachio and orange sherbet, all piled high on a crispy waffle cone. The same ice cream for over 90 years! But there are now also other flavors available for those who do not like the original flavors. How about Chocolate Peanut Butter and Cookie Dough? The store is open every day and can be found here: 9233 S. Western Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60643.

Rainbow Cone

Rainbow Cone / © Instagram: blushandhair

3. Hidden Gem Chicago: Sol Café

At the very north end of Chicago, you can find this funky and fun coffee shop in the Historic Howard Theatre building. Sol Cafe has everything you need including glazed and infused donuts. The inside of the cafe is furnished with numerous plants, dried flowers, rugged concrete counters, as well as steel and timber tables. The large glass windows ensure that a lot of sunlight fills the space. So whether you come with friends or just on your own to read a book, this is the perfect atmosphere for having a good time.

Sol Café

Sol Café / © Instagram: justine_bednarczyk

4. Hidden Gem Chicago: Green City Market

Green city is the largest farmers market in Chicago and is open all year around. The mission of the market is to improve the availability of a diverse range of high quality foods and to connect local producers and farmers to chefs, restaurateurs, food organizations and the public. Here you will be getting the freshest seasonal produce, flowers, cheese, meat, eggs and baked goods – all certified organic. You can also come hungry here as there are a number of venders serving food, like delicious sandwiches. From May to October the market is on Wednesdays and Saturdays in Lincoln Park and during winter you can find the stalls at the Peggy Notebaert Museum.

Green City Market

Green City Market / © Instagram: ninafoley

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