Souvenir Shopping Part 2, Chicago (Self Guided)

It would be a pity to leave Chicago without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Chicago, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.
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Souvenir Shopping Part 2 Map

Guide Name: Souvenir Shopping Part 2
Guide Location: USA » Chicago (See other walking tours in Chicago)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 5
Tour Duration: 4 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 9.9 km
Author: Daniel
Lincoln Antique Mall

1) Lincoln Antique Mall

Situated on West Irving Park Road in Irving Park, Chicago, Lincoln Antique Mall abounds in antique furniture, jewelry, stained glass, paintings, posters and various tchotchkes. Among other antiques, the shop offers a large choice of chandelier lampshades and items spanning different styles - from Victorian to mid-century modern to Art Deco to Traditional to Mission to French. With over 7,000 square feet of commercial space, the mall houses more than 50 antique dealers showcasing a variety of vintage and savvy finds.

Operation Hours daily: 11 am - 7 pm
Half Acre Beer Company

2) Half Acre Beer Company

What to buy here: locally brewed beer.

Half Acre Beer Company is new on the Chicago beer scene, but is quickly becoming a northside neighborhood staple. Their beer is brewed and packaged on-site at 4257 N. Lincoln Ave., where they offer tours every Saturday at 1 p.m. for $10. In 2010 Half Acre became the first Chicago brewer to can beer. Take home a six-pack of their Daisy Cutter, Gossamer or Over Ale beer for $8.99 or try one of their specialty brews, which vary by season. You can also fill a 64-ounce growler with your choice of golden elixir for $16. The brewery store is closed Mondays and open Tuesday to Friday noon to 8 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m.
Enjoy, An Urban General Store

3) Enjoy, An Urban General Store

What to buy here: Chicago Ties.

Every weekday, an average of 1.6 million rides are taken on the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), the nation’s second largest transportation system. When you’re commuting to work back home, show your love for Chicago with a Josh Bach El map tie ($42). Locals vary their spelling between “L” and “El,” which stands for “elevated,” since the majority of the train system is above ground. The 100-percent silk tie showcases the red line on the northside at the top and ends with the Sox-35th stop on the southside at the tip of the tie. Wear it around the city and you won’t need to carry a map. For a more subtle, sophisticated Chicago tie, there’s Josh Bach’s Civitas ($47), which shows aerial details of the Windy City in an elegant blue or gray. Both ties are available at Enjoy, An Urban General Store, at 4723 N. Lincoln Ave. in Lincoln Square on the northside. The store is open Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. It features hundreds of quirky items, including a large variety of Chicago-themed gifts, such as a Chicago flag zippered clutch for $20 or a Chicago city map baseball for $20.
Koval Distillery Store

4) Koval Distillery Store

What to buy here: Koval Distillery Spirits.

The name “Koval” is Yiddish for “blacksmith,” but can also refer to someone who does something out of the ordinary – a fitting name for the first craft distillery in the city of Chicago. Since 2008 they’ve been making their own spirits entirely in-house in their Ravenswood distillery, which you can tour every Wednesday and Saturday for $10. Enjoy one of their single-grain white whiskeys that got them started, such as their smooth-tasting organic Rye Chicago Whiskey, $38 for a 750 ml bottle. If you’re not into the hard stuff, Koval offers an array of aromatic and flavorful liquors, such as chrysanthemum honey, coffee and orange blossom. Koval liquor runs $24 for a 375 ml bottle. Koval is also known for its single-grain, single-barrel Lion’s Pride Organic Whiskey, available in rye, oat, millet, wheat and spelt. A 750 ml bottle costs $48. The distillery store at 5121 N. Ravenswood Ave. is open from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday.
Wrigleyville Sports

5) Wrigleyville Sports

What to buy here: Sports Jerseys.

Chicago has been voted Best Sports City three times by “Sporting News.” The Windy City is one of only four US cities to have all five professional teams. Customize your favorite team’s jersey with your own name, or choose your favorite player’s, like Jay Cutler’s authentic Bears white jersey for $245 or a $160 Patrick Kane jersey. Wear it and pretend you scored the winning overtime shot to win the Blackhawks the Stanley Cup in 2010. If you’re a fan of “Da Bulls,” pick up a Derrick Rose red replica jersey for $55. If you long for the glory days of Chicago sports, there are plenty of throwback jerseys to choose from, like a 1969 Ernie Banks Cubs home jersey for $275 or White Sox authentic 1990 Carlton Fisk home jersey for $250. For jerseys and all things Chicago sports, head to Wrigleyville Sports at 959 W. Addison, across from Wrigley Field. Store hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Wrigleyville Sports also has a location inside Macy’s on State Street, if you’re in shopping mode and don’t want to leave the Loop.

Walking Tours in Chicago, Illinois

Create Your Own Walk in Chicago

Create Your Own Walk in Chicago

Creating your own self-guided walk in Chicago is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Art Galleries Tour

Art Galleries Tour

The art world in Chicago is considered vast. There is a large number of art galleries in this city and each gallery has its own unique setup and outstanding exhibitions on display. The beautiful galleries feature works in a wide range of fields, from up-and-coming artists to famous artists like Pablo Picasso. Take this walking tour to explore some of the most famous galleries in Chicago.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 km
Discovering Chinatown

Discovering Chinatown

Located in the Armour Square, the Chinatown in Chicago was first established in 1912. It is considered the best example of American Chinatown. Here, you will find a wide range of unique boutiques, specialty shops, amazing religious buildings, Chinese medicine stores and Chinese restaurants. Take this walking tour to discover Chicago's Chinatown.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 km
Best Jazz and Blues Clubs Tour

Best Jazz and Blues Clubs Tour

Chicago is considered to be one of the most important destinations where Jazz & Blues developed. In the 1920s this city became a center of hot jazz. At the same time blues started to invade Chicago. So if you are a fan of Jazz and/or Blues or you simply like listening to great music, take this walking tour and don't miss the chance to visit some of the best Jazz & Blues clubs in...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 km
Souvenir Shopping Part 1

Souvenir Shopping Part 1

It would be a pity to leave Chicago without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Chicago, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.0 km
The Magnificent Mile Area Walk

The Magnificent Mile Area Walk

The Magnificent Mile is located between the Chicago River and the Lake Shore Drive. It is considered one of the great avenues of the world, being Chicago's version of the Champs-Elysees. Take this walk to explore the Magnificent Mile boulevard and the surrounding area, that features a wide selection of amazing shops, world-known museums, restaurants and spectacular architecture.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.4 km
Architectural Walking Tour in The Loop District

Architectural Walking Tour in The Loop District

Chicago features an outstanding architectural legacy. This city has long been connected with some of architecture's most important names: Frank Lloyd Wright, Louis Sullivan, Mies van der Rohe, and Holabird & Root. The Loop District offers an extensive number of Chicago's famous architectural "must-see" buildings such as Aqua Tower, Willis Tower, Chicago Theatre, or Rookery...  view more

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.6 km

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip

Chicago Souvenirs: 15 Distinct Local Products to Bring Home

Chicago Souvenirs: 15 Distinct Local Products to Bring Home

One of the most fascinating cities in the U.S., if not the whole world, Chicago has no shortage of things closely associated with it, often due to their direct origin (blues, gangstership, etc.), so one might literally be spoiled for choice as to what to choose as a "piece" of Chicago to...

Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Chicago for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Chicago has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Saving Money with City Passes

To save yourself time and money visiting Chicago's multiple sights, you may want to resort to the so-called city passes, such as Chicago CityPASS, Go Chicago Card, or Chicago Explorer Pass.

A city pass combines all or multiple Chicago's top highlights, tours and experiences in one prepaid attractions pass, using which you can save incredible amounts on general admission fees as compared to purchasing tickets separately. Often, a city pass also allows you to skip lines at major attractions, thus saving your precious time.

Staying at Walk-Friendly Hotels

Since you're keen on exploring cities on foot (we assume that you are, and this is why you're here), it is important that you stay at a hotel close to the city's major attractions. It saves you time and energy. Here are a few of Chicago hotels conveniently located for a comfortable stroll: The Silversmith Hotel, The Palmer House Hilton, Chicago Athletic Association.

Taking Care of Your Feet

To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Chicago, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device

Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.

Exploring City on Guided Tours

We have a strong bias towards exploring a city on foot, at your own pace, because this is how you get to see things up close with a maximum freedom. You decide how much time you wish to spend at each attraction and don't have to worry about following a crowd. That said, however, we also understand that some of you may want to go with a guided tour. If that is your case, here are some guided tours to consider. Be ready to fork out a bit of money, though, as a guided tour of Chicago typically costs somewhere between US$30 and US$70 or more per person:

- Board a hop-on hop-off double-decker (or a bus trolley, in winter) to enjoy sightseeing of Chicago in comfort listening in the headsets either to the recorded commentary in a variety of foreign languages or to a live on-board commentary from a local expert, and be able get on and off at any of the stops along the route as often as you like. The tickets are valid for 24, 48, or 72 hours.

- Dig into the infamous chapter of the history of Chicago, once the criminal capital of the United States, on a crime tour exploring the city’s underworld at its height back in the 1920s-30s. See the actual places and hear the stories associated with the mob names like Al Capone, John Dillinger, and other notorious gangsters.

- Explore the well- and not so well-known pieces of Chicago's design-rich architecture on a 2-hour guided walk to some of the city's prominent landmarks, elegant lobbies, and underground corridors accompanied by educational insights from an expert guide.

- Pedal your way around Chicago on a 4-hour guided bike tour for a chance to get a profound understanding of the city, to taste all of its classical eats in a single go, plus to see the most spectacular highlights of its north side neighborhoods and to cruise one of the most popular waterfront bike paths in the U.S.

- Embark on a self-balancing Segway tour of Chicago – this usually lasts about 1.5-2 hours and allows visitors to get a real sense of the city. Most people (even those aged 70+) find it quite fun and convenient, enabling to cover much more ground than you otherwise could have done by walking.

Day Trips

If you have a full or half day to spare whilst in Chicago, why not use it to explore some of the out-of-town destinations like Oak Park or Plano. For as little as US$55 per person you will get a chance to discover the Frank Lloyd Wright Historic District – the birthplace of the famed Prairie Style architecture, as well as to explore the exterior and interior of the Farnsworth House by Mies van der Rohe and to learn about the life and work of this prominent architect. For any of these tours you will be picked up at a designated place in Chicago and transported by a comfortable air-conditioned vehicle to the destination of your choice and back again.