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5 Under-the-Radar Spots in Chicago

5 Under-the-Radar Spots in Chicago

Chicago has been around since the early 1800s, and while that’s not exactly ancient history, there are plenty of places in the Windy City that are hidden gems and definitely off the radar of most tourists. If you want to enjoy the food, culture and shopping without the crowds, then make your way over to one of these five under-the-radar spots in Chicago the next time you visit. They’re just far enough off the beaten path that you can rest assured that most tourists have no idea they even exist!

Garfield Park Conservatory

Image Source- Trip Advisor


Discover dozens of different plant species up close at the Garfield Park Conservatory. It is always accessible and full of vibrant surprises. In recent years, it has received more attention than it used to, but it’s still a great spot to go for a date or just enjoy with a friend.
Another plus? Free admission on Tuesdays from 10 AM to 12 PM during its off season (Nov 1st – Feb 28th).
Although it can be difficult to find parking nearby, there are usually spaces open on Diversey Parkway near the conservatory entrance if you’re willing to walk around a bit.

57th Street Books

Image Source- Foursquare


This adorable bookshop is tucked away in the cellar. It is a hidden treasure in the Chicago neighbourhood and is especially well-liked by University of Chicago students. Their staff are passionate about books, so you can expect to be provided with some quality recommendations from them. They also offer some delicious coffee and fresh pastries from their cafe.
One major perk for students is that they will buy back your old textbooks for cash, which saves you the hassle of selling your books online or at used bookstore stalls on campus!
If you’re looking for an affordable bookstore that sells new and used books, then this place is perfect for you!

Room 13

Image Source- Groupon


Everyone enjoys a speakeasy, right? Room 13 is nestled away in the Old Chicago Inn. At this beautiful retreat, sophisticated cocktails and jazz music are to be expected. Its hidden entrance adds an extra layer of mystery, but don’t worry if you can’t find it; there’s always someone on staff who can help you out. Just make sure not to go into the wrong room!

Pequod’s Pizza

See Also

Image Source- TripAdvisor


To write about Chicago without mentioning at least one pizza would be rather audacious. One of the greatest deep dishes in the city can be found at Pequod’s Pizza, a hidden gem. For those who enjoy thin crusts with sauce on top, this is not for you.
The restaurant has been around since 1977 and it’s easy to see why they’ve lasted so long: the pizzas are tasty and generous (especially when you order by the slice). The service is quick and friendly, too.

Oz Park

Image Source- Culturetrip


If you’re a fan of The Wizard of Oz, you must visit Oz Park. A magnificent park and monuments honouring the timeless story may be found there. It is also home to summertime film screenings and musical events. Other parks worth exploring are Sullivan Fountain Park, LaFollette Park, Montrose Harbor Beach Park, Garfield Square Playlot Playground, as well as Oriole Playlot on the South Side of Chicago.

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