Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum and almost had a coronary when we found out how much valet parking was going to be at our hotel. Pricey restaurants abound, a local food tour was $60 per person, and about the only thing free in the city is walking around – which is honestly a great way to see the Windy City. But if you really want to save money on accommodations, you should check out the varied options available by booking a stay at one of the area hostels. Many of the hostels in Chicago are a great, affordable option to staying at an absurdly expensive hotel.Chicago, like any big city, is an expensive place to visit. We were shocked to be charged $20 to park when we visited the Museum Campus for a tour of the
We are big fans of small, interesting and local boutique hotels rather a huge chain hotel with no personality, so a good choice for anyone who agrees would be the Chicago Getaway Hostel. Check out this video about the place.
Doesn’t that sound like a nice boutique hotel? With spacious, modern common areas, a surprisingly fabulous gourmet kitchen and a lovely outdoor patio, this place would make a great stop for a night or two – or a week!
Offering private rooms with ensuite baths – unusual for many hostels – they are located in a nice neighborhood within walking distance of plenty of bars and restaurants as well as Lake Michigan’s beautiful beaches. Meet the other guests at the free weekend barbecues, take a pub crawl or blues club tour, or rent of their bikes and take a bike tour. It’s easy to see why this location is the most popular and highest-rated hostel in Chicago on Tripadvisor.
The Arlington and Roslyn Place District where the hostel is located, is a beautiful, historic area which was designated a Chicago Landmark in 1989. Stroll around the area, then walk to the Lincoln Park Zoo in about 15 minutes, which is one of the only free zoos in the United States. Grab a slice of deep dish pizza or a Chicago hot dog piled with a variety of ingredients, both of which are famous Chicago gourmet delights. If you are up for a longer walk, head to Millenium Park in about an hour where you can easily spend an entire day. Be sure to take a photo of the famous “Bean” sculpture, play in the huge fountains, take in a rehearsal at the open-air theatre and picnic on the many grassy areas.
From Millenium Park, it’s a short walk to the Chicago River where you can see some of the incredibly varied architecture of the city. If you want to spend a little cash, take an architectural cruise on the river with the Chicago Architecture Foundation or be bold and take one of the urban kayaking tours on the river.
Another day, grab your beach towel and some sublock and head to one of Chicago’s 26 miles of lakeshore beaches. Lake Michigan is clear, clean and beautiful and it’s really incredible to find beaches this nice in the middle of a major metropolis. They will be crowded in the summer but who cares – you are here to meet people!
So, when you plan your next trip to the Windy City, forget about those huge, impersonal, and expensive hotels. Plan a stay at the Chicago Getaway Hostel instead – and maybe you will save enough to enjoy one of those famous deep dish pizzas!