Chicago Travel Guide

Geography

Topography

Chicago is located in northeastern Illinois on the southwestern shores of Lake Michigan. It is the principal city in Chicago Metropolitan Area situated in the Midwestern United States and the Great Lakes region. Chicago rests on a continental divide at the site of the Chicago Portage, connecting the Mississippi River and the Great Lakes watersheds. The city lies beside huge freshwater Lake Michigan, and two rivers—the Chicago River in downtown and the Calumet River in the industrial far South Side—flow entirely or partially through Chicago.

Chicago's history and economy are closely tied to its proximity to Lake Michigan. While the Chicago River historically handled much of the region's waterborne cargo, today's huge lake freighters use the city's Lake Calumet Harbor on the South Side. The lake also provides another positive effect, moderating Chicago's climate; making waterfront neighborhoods slightly warmer in winter and cooler in summer.

When Chicago was founded in 1833, most of the early building began around the mouth of the Chicago River, as can be seen on a map of the city's original 58 blocks. The overall grade of the city's central, built-up areas, is relatively consistent with the natural flatness of its overall natural geography, generally exhibiting only slight differentiation otherwise. The average land elevation is above sea level. The lowest points are along the lake shore at, while the highest point, at, is the morainal ridge of Blue Island in the city's far south side.

The Chicago Loop is the central business district, but Chicago is also a city of neighborhoods. Lake Shore Drive runs adjacent to a large portion of Chicago's lakefront. Some of the parks along the waterfront include Lincoln Park, Grant Park, Burnham Park and Jackson Park. Twenty-four public beaches are also found across of the waterfront. Landfill extends into portions of the lake providing space for Navy Pier, Northerly Island, the Museum Campus, and large portions of the McCormick Place Convention Center. Most of the city's high-rise commercial and residential buildings can be found close to the waterfront.

An informal name for the entire Chicago metropolitan area is "Chicagoland". There is no precise definition for the term "Chicagoland", but it generally means the city and its suburbs combined together. The Chicago Tribune, which coined the term, includes the city of Chicago, the rest of Cook County, eight nearby Illinois counties: Lake, McHenry, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Grundy, Will and Kankakee, and three counties in Indiana: Lake, Porter and LaPorte. The Illinois Department of Tourism defines Chicagoland as Cook County without the city of Chicago, and only Lake, DuPage, Kane and Will counties. The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce defines it as all of Cook and DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties.

Climate

The city lies within the humid continental climate zone (Köppen: Dfa ), and experiences four distinct seasons. Summers are hot and humid, with a July daily average of . In a normal summer, temperatures exceed on 21 days. Winters are cold and snowy with few sunny days, and with a January daytime average of . Spring and autumn are mild seasons with low humidity.

According to the National Weather Service, Chicago's highest official temperature reading of was recorded on July 24, 1934, although an unofficial reading of was also recorded at Midway Airport during that month. The lowest temperature of was recorded on January 20, 1985, at O'Hare Airport. The city can experience extreme winter cold waves and summer heat waves that may last for several consecutive days. There are also many mild winter and summer days. Thunderstorms are not uncommon during the spring and summer months which may sometimes produce hail, high winds, and tornadoes.

source: Wikipedia

Things To Do in Chicago See All Things To Do in Chicago

  • Millennium Park

    Millennium Park

    201 E Randolph St

    Millennium Park is a public park located in the Loop community area of Chicago in Illinois, USA and ...

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  • Driehaus Museum

    Driehaus Museum

    40 E. Erie St.

    Attractions,Arts and Culture
  • Art Institute

    Art Institute

    111 S Michigan Ave

    The Art Institute of Chicago (AIC) is an encyclopedic art museum located in Chicago's Grant Park. It...

    Attractions,Arts and Culture
  • Museum Of Science And Industry (chicago)

    The Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) is located in Chicago, Illinois, USA in Jackson Park, in th...

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Hotels in Chicago (130 Hotels) See All Chicago Hotels

  • Four Seasons Hotel Chicago

    Four Seasons Hotel Chicago is among the top, finest places to lodge in Chicago. Perfectly positioned around Studio 110, Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Chicago and Truefitt & H...

  • Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago

    Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago is among the ideal, premium places to remain in Chicago. Beautifully found nearby The Spa at Trump Chicago, Rebar and Chuan Spa,...

  • The Peninsula Chicago

    Located within Chicago, The Peninsula Chicago is a finest hotel comfortably situated around Second City Pizza Tours, Saks Fifth Avenue and Spa at the Peninsula Chicago. M...

  • Hotel Monaco Chicago, a Kimpton Hotel

    Located in Chicago, Hotel Monaco Chicago, a Kimpton Hotel is a finest hotel opportunely found alongside Vietnam Veterans Fountain, Emerald Loop and Chicago Opera Theater....

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