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Best Time Of Year To Visit Chicago

Best Time To Visit Chicago For Outdoor Events

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The best time to visit Chicago, when the weather is anticipated to be mostly pleasant and dry, is around September. Additionally, while exploring Chicagos diverse neighborhoods, the fall foliages changing hues can provide breathtaking vistas.

But that depends on the time of year you choose. The 26 miles of Chicago beaches that run around Lake Michigan are one of the factors that make Chicago so popular in the summer. The water is ideal for swimming from late May until early September. On the Lakefront Trail, you may also take a beautiful stroll or ride a bike.

Winters in Chicago can be your favorite season if you prefer the cold. Between November until the beginning of March, there are numerous ice skating rinks open. At the Soldier Field Sledding Hill or on Northerly Island, you can go sledding or snowshoeing.

What Is The Best Time Of The Year To Visit Chicago For

Good Weather Weather is very very unpredictable in Chicago especially in the spring and fall. While you can use the average temperature as a guideline what to expect, sometimes the temperature can be much higher or lower than average for that time of year. The temperature can also change drastically from day to day and even hour to hour. For example, you can have a day with a high temperature in the 70s and the next day the weather is only in the 30s.

The months that typically have the worst weather are January and February but winter can start as early as November and end as late as March or April.

The months with the best weather in Chicago are typically September and early October when the weather is warm but usually not too hot and humid like it can be in the summer.

If you are looking for more predictable temperatures, I recommend visiting mid summer when it is guaranteed to be hot .

Avoiding Crowds Chicago is a popular tourist destination year round but the busiest times in terms of tourism are: mid-March to mid-April , summer and the holiday season .

If you want to avoid fellow tourists at popular tourist attractions, visit in the low season .

Shoulder season is a good mix of not too many crowds but pleasant weather.

Foodies While Chicago is a great place for food lovers year round, foodies might want to keep the following events in mind: Chicago Restaurant Week , Taste of Chicago and Chicago Gourmet .

Which Season Has The Fewest Crowds

I get it. Im not a fan of crowds either. Im the crazy person dodging in and out of crowds trying to get to my destination.

If youre the same way, avoid visiting Chicago during the summer months when all the other tourists flock to the city. Instead, the best time to visit Chicago is in the spring and fall.

In addition to the pristine weather, youll enjoy fewer crowds at top attractions and destinations like:

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Quick Faq’s On The Best Time To Visit Chicago

Q – What is the best time to visit Chicago, Illinois?

A – The best times to visit Chicago Illinois are April through May and between September and October, when the temperatures are warm.

Q – What is the best time to visit Chicago Skydeck?

A – The best time to visit is just after opening or after 5:00 pm. For great sunsets and twinkling nightscape viewing, plan on arriving to the Skydeck 30-45 minutes prior to your sunset time!

Q – What is the best time to visit Chicago in Summer?

A – June to September is the season of Summer, there are many festivals, but there are also crowds the weather is quite hot and humid.

Q – What is the best time to visit Chicago Botanical Gardens?

A – Spring and Fall is the best time to visit Chicago Botanical Gardens.

Q – What is the best time to visit Chicago zoo?

A – The best time to visit Chicago’s zoos depends on what you want to see.

Q – What is the best time to visit 360 Chicago?

A – The best time to visit is either early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid the long lines.

Q – What is the best time to visit Legoland Chicago?

A – Weekday evenings is the best time to visit Legoland Chicago.

Q – What is the best time to visit Six Flags Chicago?

A – Weekdays in mid-May is the best time to visit Six Flags Chicago.

Highest temperature in Chicago is recorded as 91.4 in June.

Lowest temperature in Chicago is recorded as -4 in December.

When To Visit Chicago For Good Weather

Best Time to Visit Chicago, Illinois

If experiencing the best weather is top of mind for you, then visiting Chicago when average temperatures are warm but not stifling is key. Generally, this happens from .

Keep in mind that spring weather in Chicago includes a lot of rain, so be prepared with an umbrella if you come during this time.

During these times of the year, you can expect reasonably pleasant weather in the Windy City. You wont have to deal with the notoriously bitter cold temperatures during Chicagos winter, nor the intense heat and humidity of the summer months.

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Day 2 / Stop 5 Wrigley Field

  • Why its awesome: Baseball has been played here for over 100 years!
  • Cost: $13 $154 for a game
  • Food Recommendation: Get something at the lively sports bar Murphys Bleachers.

Wrigley Field is a great American Ball Park with great, enthusiastic fans and a fun environment and vibe. Everything is well run with helpful and friendly security and staff, and well-maintained restrooms.

Across the street from the field, you can find plenty of sport-themed pubs and bars. Go after the game, and celebrate your teams win or mourn their loss with people who are doing the same. Its great fun, either way.

With over 100 years of iconic baseball games here, its a great place to spend a few hours and feel the spirit of Chicago. Recent renovations to the field add convenience to the ambiance of history, and as per tradition, you can buy hotdogs and beers at in-house vendors before taking your seat.

If you are more interested in the famous field than the game, you can go on a Wrigley Field tour! These last 90 minutes, and allow you to experience the beauty and charm of the historic field and learn about its captivating history.

Day 1 / Stop 2 Garfield Park Conservatory

  • Why its awesome: A green oasis under glass, its really something special.
  • Cost: Free, with an optional donation.
  • Food Recommendation: Find something delicious at the charitable restaurant Inspiration Kitchen.

Explore the Conservatorys 2-acres of lush indoor display houses and exotic outdoor gardens! A beautiful getaway from the concrete jungle, the gardens host an incredible amount of flora from all over the world.

Visit the desert house for cacti and succulents, or the Palm House and Fern room, which evokes a swampy prehistoric landscape you can get lost in. In Sugar From the Sun, youll find botanic environments themes around water, air, sunlight, and sugar. Here you can learn about how plants make energy!

Photo: Krzysztof Ziarnek, Kenraiz

The outdoor gardens are a fantastic place to stop and enjoy a picnic, or a bit of lazing on the grass and soaking up the sun. These gardens have more to offer than grass though! The Monet Garden and Sensory Garden are wonderlands for the senses.

You can get a digital guide to the Garfield Park Conservatory for free on your phone, or just stroll around and enjoy the gorgeous plantlife. It is certainly one of the most beautiful places on our Chicago itinerary.

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What Month Has The Best Weather In Chicago

Fall is typically the ideal season to visit because of the beautiful weather because it is typically more comfortable.

Fall temperature ranges and can be less predictable. Some of the same Chicago outdoor activities are still available in the early autumn but without the crowds.

Late autumn might feel like summer, fall, or even winter because of the unpredictability of the temperatures.

Winter Season In Chicago

Our Chicago Part 1: Summer Travel Outlook

The temperature in Chicago in November already starts to go down along with the price and becomes freezing cold in December. January is the coldest month of winter, with mercury as low as -6°C. It also gets the most snowfall. If you must travel during winter, carry the best gears possible, which must include the thickest waterproof boots you have.

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Best Months To Visit The Museums And Indoor Activities

Chicago museums are open year-round for visitors to enjoy, and are an excellent option when the weather is cold or rainy, or when you need to beat the heat for an afternoon.

So no matter when you visit, consider purchasing a museum ticket.

If the skies are clear, our observation decks offer impressive views of Chicago year-round.

These viewing spaces tend to be most popular in the summer, so travelers coming outside of those months will enjoy shorter lines and fewer crowds.

Choose between the Willis Tower Skydeck or 360 Chicago at the John Hancock Tower.

When To Visit Chicago For Food

Shuffle through a veritable smorgasbord at the Taste of Chicago!

Like any big city, Chicago is a great place for foodies. Sample deep dish pizzas at the Chicago Pizza Party in February, or go to the Chicago Hot Dog Fest in August!

If youre visiting between mid-March and early April, then your visit may coincide with Chicago Restaurant Week, a two-week event where you can enjoy fixed prices for multi-course meals from some of the finest places to eat in Chicago.

The two biggest food festivals in Chicago take place during the summer. There is Taste of Chicago in July, which lasts for five days and takes place in the Chicago Loop. In addition to this, the Chicago Gourmet festival takes place in Millennium Park in September this is an upscale fine dining festival.

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How Much Time Do You Need To See Chicago

Most people only need about 3 days to be able to get a taste of what Chicago has to offer. If you only have a handful of places you want to go then this is more than enough time.

However, if youre someone who prefers to take their time, or you have a lot of places that you want to visit, youll need more time. Ideally, to take your time exploring, you will want at least 5 to 7 days.

It helps if you have your reservations booked ahead of time so that you dont have to wait longer than intended to enjoy a restaurant you had your eye on. Call ahead, and book your tickets and reservations before visiting Chicago so that your trip goes smoothly!

Average Temperature In Chicago

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The warm season lasts for 3.6 months, from to , with an average daily high temperature above 23 °C. The hottest month of the year in Chicago is , with an average high of 28 °C and low of 21 °C.

The cold season lasts for 3.2 months, from to , with an average daily high temperature below 6 °C. The coldest month of the year in Chicago is , with an average low of -5 °C and high of 1 °C.

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Best Time Of Year To Visit Chicago

and is the best time to visit Chicago as the weather is mild and tourist numbers are moderate. In late spring, celebrate local beer culture at the Mayfest. Summer in the city is famous for its hotel rates going through the roof and unstable weather when agonizing heat waves from can hinder your sightseeing experience. However, Chicago is lucky to be located next to the lake, that’s why festival goers boldly and enthusiastically attend Lollapalooza and other great summer events. says goodbye to the summer at the Chicago Jazz Festival and during the Chicagohenge at the end of the month. A freezing and windy period between and offers you great deals on airfare and accommodation, just pack your warmest layers. St. Patrick’s Day turns the Chicago River green in March, probably one of the best sights of the city!

Peak Season In Chicago

Chicago has more than 400 festivals per year, and many of them take place in the summer months, July and August specifically, making this season the peak season. Many activities are free and open to the public and a few are the largest in the world, drawing large gatherings. Weather is generally sunny and hot, and after a long winter, Chicagoans are eager to soak in some vitamin D. Expect higher hotel prices and make sure you book well in advance because properties close to the action fill up quickly.

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When To Visit Chicago For Arts And Culture

Chicago is definitely a hub for arts and culture. Theater Week is in February and features more than 100 performances over the course of 10 days. April is Chicago Dance Month with over 50 performances, as well as other events and classes at low prices.

Meanwhile, Chicago summers are known for many music festivals. Lollapalooza in July may be the most well-known of these, but there is also Do Division in June, Riot Fest in September, and countless music festivals of all sorts in between.

Many world-class museums in Chicago, including the Chicago Childrens Museum and Money Museum, will grant free admission on certain days as well.

Best Months For Theater Comedy And Live Entertainment In Chicago

Visit Chicago – The DON’Ts of Visiting Chicago

While you can see great theater, comedy, or live music anytime in Chicago, there are a few special events to be aware of when planning your trip.

The annual four-day music festival Lollapalooza is hosted every late July/early August.

December offers seasonal holiday shows, such as the Goodman Theatres long-running A Christmas Carol. Other popular theatres include:

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Best Time Of The Year To Visit Chicago

What’s actually the best time of the year to visit the city good weather, no conventions…

I like early Fall. The schools are back in so there are not nearly as many tourist but the weather is still really nice.

We have conventions all year round. The ones under 20,000 are not a problem – Chicago has 30,000 hotel rooms in 70+ hotels within a couple of miles of downtown.

Weather is best in May-June and Sept-early October. However, we have many extremes in temperature and conditions, and weather is always difficult to predict more than a few days in advance.

Chicago has distinct seasonal personalities. Try them all.

Conventions come to Chicago year round. So it’s always best to check Just for a double check.

Best Time To Visit Chicago My Overall Recommendation

While I think Chicago is a great place to visit year round, most people would enjoy visiting Chicago in the fall. In early fall the weather is still relatively warm and you can enjoy outdoor activities with fewer crowds because kids and students are back in school. If you warmer weather, September is a great month to visit. If you like more moderate and pleasant temperatures, October and early November are great times to visit.

Spring is also a good time to visit for more pleasant temperatures and pretty spring flowers.

If you enjoy hot weather and outdoor activities, then summer is the best time to visit. The are more bucket list worthy things to do in the summer including many outdoor festivals and events.

If you want to visit Chicago on a budget and want to avoid crowds, then consider visiting mid-winter but you might have to brave the cold and snow or stick to mostly indoor attractions.

Ultimately when to visit Chicago depends on you so hopefully this guide has helped you make a decision on the best time to visit Chicago. If you are still not sure, feel free to ask me any questions in the comments below.

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Score Big Deals During Chicagos Low Season

Although Chicago’s winter temperatures hover around the freezing point, that bitter lake wind can knock several dozen degrees off the highs due to the wind chill effect. But while below-zero temperatures scare many tourists away, bargains abound, particularly for accommodation.

In late November and December, the holiday season brings festive light shows, holiday markets and outdoor ice skating rinks, and the frosty lakeshore adds some extra Chicago magic. Winter is the perfect time to warm up with some Chicago deep-dish pizza and form your own opinion on the city’s feud with the New York-style pizza pie.

Travelers will have their pick of the deals on accommodation throughout the icy winter months, and tables at top restaurants are easy to find. Museums are less crowded, too, making the winter season the best time to explore the Art Institute of Chicago, one of the world’s oldest, largest and most-visited art museums.

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The Best Times To Visit Chicago For Food Festivals Sports And The Blues

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The best times to visit Chicago for food, festivals, sports and the blues

Famous for its blustery winters, steamy summers and skyscraping skyline, Chicago sees the full range of seasons. But thanks to a calendar packed with festivals and events, a rich foodie scene and a full hand of world-class museums to duck into when the evenings get cold, there’s always something happening in the Windy City, no matter what month you visit.

With hot, humid days but plenty of lakeshore to catch the breeze, Chicago shines in the summertime, and spring and fall have their own charm. But with low tourist numbers and plenty of white stuff to bring the holiday magic, winter is an incredible season to see the city by the lake.

If you’re looking for a city break with phenomenal art and architecture, truly globe-trotting cuisine and an exuberant festival season, Chicago has plenty to lure travelers at any time of year. Here’s our guide to the top times to visit the Windy City.

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