What are the best winter activities in Chicago?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Lauren Viera

So many! Instead of shutting down, like most towns with a cold snap tend to do, Chicago embraces its long winter with seasonally appropriate activities. The classic winter activity, ice skating, takes place all over town, from downtown’s McCormick Tribune Plaza and Ice Rink, to Hyde Park’s Midway Plaisance Park. A few more details on ice skating in Chicago can be found here.

Leading up to the holidays, it’s fun to check out the window displays at Macy’s on State Street, which are always done to the nines. It’s just a few blocks from Millennium Park, which always has a lot of winter programming, including a whole month of candlelit Caroling at Cloud Gate (aka “The Bean”) on Friday evenings.

Finally, ’tis the season for wrapping your hands around a mug of hot chocolate. The past few years, especially, have seen a massive surge in exotic and decadent hot chocolates, available at finer patisseries and restaurants around town. My favorite is the aptly named Mindy’s HotChocolate in Bucktown, where no less than five types of hot chocolate are on the menu year-round.

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