A city with seemingly inexhaustible resources, Chicago cannot be summed up in a few lines, nor explored in a few hours. One of the world's great metropolises, it is so rich in so many ways (architecturally, culturally, historically, commercially, ethnically, etc.) that you really need to spend some time here-lots of time-before you can even attempt to grasp its essence.
The list of things to do and see here is endless: scores of gigantic skyscrapers, public sculptures by great artists, museums full of splendid treasures, ethnic neighbourhoods, fashionable shops, a vibrant nightlife, parks that stretch majestically along the shores of Lake Michigan, university campuses, renowned sports teams, posh neighbourhoods replete with sumptuous residences...
Chicago is a typically American metropolis, where extreme contrasts are routine. As in other big U.S. cities, wealth and poverty, action and torpor and the huge and the small exist side by side, for better or worse. Another thing that makes Chicago typically American is its population: the city is a spectacular melting pot whose various ethnic groups have all had a hand in its evolution. And then there's its fondness for extremes, its obsession with the biggest and the greatest, no doubt inspired by its fratricidal rivalry with New York, the Big Apple.