Chicago is known worldwide for its spectacular skyline and its glass and steel skyscrapers - and for good reason. Our stunning architecture has become downright iconic, and more remarkable buildings are being constructed all the time. However, the Windy City isn't all concrete; we have plenty of lush green spaces and gorgeous parks along the lakefront, the Chicago river, and elsewhere throughout the city. In fact, we have the largest municipal park system in the country, and our city's official motto is Urbs in Horto - literally, a "city in a garden".
Here are some of our favorites...
Lakeshore East. Of course we have to start with the amazing park that is surrounded by some of our favorite buildings - the Park at Lakeshore East (surrounded by Aqua, 340 on the Park, the Parkhomes, and the other jewels in our real estate crown). An elegantly landscaped urban oasis, the Park at Lakeshore has WiFi, a dog run, and several cafes and other places to relax nearby.
Grant Park. The park where (almost all) of the city's major festivals happen, including the Taste of Chicago and Lollapalooza. It encompasses Millenium Park, the Buckingham Fountain, Lurie Garden, the family-friendly Maggie Daley park, several concert spaces, the ice ribbon and and an ice rink, and the infamous Bean sculpture, and much more.
Jackson Park. Soon to be the home of the Barack Obama presidential library, Jackson Park is one of the prime waterfront spots on the city's south side. Jackson Park is also home to the Japanese-style Osaka garden.
Art Institute of Chicago Parks. Located on each side of the museum, these cozy pocket parks are a great place to relax, check out some unique art, and enjoy a cup of coffee or snack from one of the Museum's cafes.
Wicker Park. A small, cozy park surrounded by gorgeous vintage graystones and brownstones located in one of Chicago's trendiest neighborhoods.
Ping Tom Park. This Chinatown park is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy the sunshine, plus it is connected to plenty of the other parks and the lakefront by numerous trails. In addition, the Chicago river flows through the park so there are kayaks, canoes, and fishing opportunities in the River, along with an annual Dragon Boat race.
Lincoln Park. Home to the Lincoln Park Zoo, the North Pond, miles of soccer fields, baseball diamonds, running trails, and green spaces, and much more including the Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool, this north side park is only steps away from some of the city's best beaches, from the popular waterfront spots at North Avenue or Montrose (which is very dog friendly) to smaller and less crowded Lake Michigan beaches.
Milton L. Olive III Park. Located just south of Ohio Street Beach near Streeterville and Lakeshore East, this small peninsula packs a punch with its tree-lined paths that offer sweeping views of the Lake and the city skyline.
Promontory Point. This Hyde Park spot has some of the best views of the city, making it definitely worth the trip to the south east side of Chicago. Plus the historic homes of Hyde Park and University of Chicago are nearby, along with the prestigious University of Chicago.
And of course, there are so many other smaller neighborhood parks that lend some extra charm, greenery, and places to play, exercise, and relax throughout Chicago. Which are some of your favorite Chicago parks? We're happy to help you discover the best local parks and more near your future home - just get in touch with our real estate agents!