Chicago. City of the Big Shoulders. What started off as a small fur-trading settlement is today a bustling metropolis. Once considered the "hog butcher of the world, stacker of wheat, player with railroads and the nation's freight handler", Chicago's colourful past remains hidden in the nooks and crannies of this wonderful windy city. Adventures await, from the glamorous to the gritty. Sip dirty martinis in an elegant, underground, 1920's bank vault. Paddle a kayak down the infamous Bubbly Creek of Upton Sinclair's The Jungle. While away an afternoon in a salt cave, or smoke a classic cigar in the oldest family-run tobacco shop in the U.S. Snorkel a 32-acre, limestone sheet shoal, one of the most biodiverse ecosystems in the Midwest. Dine outdoors in a 23rd floor Beaux-Arts cupola overlooking the Chicago River. Whether you're an out-of-towner or a diehard Chicago dweller who thinks you've seen it all, these 111 hidden places are waiting for you to discover them.
Amy Bizzarri is an extreme Chicago history buff, and a freelance writer. She lives with her two children in a vintage 1910 home in the Logan Square neighbourhood of Chicago. When she's not writing, you'll most likely find her swimming laps at Holstein Park pool, riding her bicycle around Humboldt Park or sharing an atomic sundae at Margie's Candies.