One of the most entertaining tourist attractions Chicago has to offer is Navy Pier. The Pier is visited annually by more than 8 million visitors and is known for its massive Ferris Wheel. While the Ferris Wheel is worth the ride please don’t be misled, Navy Pier has much more to offer.
Navy Pier was built in 1916 by city planner and architect David Burnham and cost $4.5 million dollars. Developed as part of the Plan of Chicago, Navy Pier’s primary purpose was to be a cargo facility for lake freighters.
Today Navy Pier is Chicago’s Number 1 tourist attraction. Navy Pier is accessible by trolley, cab, bus or even walking. Once you are there the possibilities and activities are endless. Families can visit the The Children’s Museum, where the motto “Where Play and Learning Connect” holds true. Activities for kids of all ages are held daily so make sure to check the calendar of daily events at www.chicagochildrensmuseum.org
Shakespeare buffs and literary enthusiasts will enjoy the Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Boasting the 2008 Regional Theater Tony Award, the Chicago Shakespeare Theater is a leading international theater company known for vibrant productions that reflect Shakespeare’s genius of intricate storytelling. Visit www.chicagoshakes.com for more information.
The Beer Garden at Navy Pier is known for its lively crowds and entertainment. No matter what your taste in music The Beer Garden at Navy Pier will not leave you disappointed. If you prefer a restaurant for dinner and drinks you can choose from Billy Goat Tavern, Bubba Gump, Harry Caray’s Tavern, Capi’s Italian Kitchen, and Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville Bar and Grill.
What draws tourists to Navy Pier is not just the places and activities listed above. While watching tourists and absorbing the scenery at Navy Pier it became obvious almost immediately that Navy Pier is known for making memories. Wedding parties having pictures taken using the landscape, water and atmosphere at Navy Pier create incredible pictures of a special day. In the evening it is common to see couples walking hand in hand, enjoying each other as the sun is setting or watching shadows dance on the water as stars make their first introduction of the night. Or you may witness a father with his son or daughter walking along the Pier explaining the history of Navy Pier or pointing out landmarks.
As a tourist visiting Navy Pier for the first time you will undoubtedly leave with a refrigerator magnet, coffee cup or T-shirt, however don’t forget to truly enjoy all Navy Pier has to offer. Remember, the memories you create at Navy Pier will last long after you lose the refrigerator magnet and coffee cup or outgrow the T-shirt.