Chicago O’Hare International Airport serves bustling Chicago, Illinois, the third most populous city in the United States. With more than 66 million passengers yearly, O’Hare Airport is one of the world’s busiest airports and in fact, was the busiest airport in the world for 40 years until the early 2000s. It has an area of more than 7,000 acres and consists of 4 terminals: Terminals 1, 2 and 3 han-dle domestic flights, whilst Terminal 5 is used for international flights. (There is, interestingly, no Terminal 4). With flights to more than 60 international destinations, it was voted the ‘Best Airport in North America’ for a whopping 10 years by the discerning readers of Global Traveler Magazine.
Located about 27 kilometres from the Chicago Loop (the central business district of Chicago), get-ting to and from the O’Hare airport is a piece of cake. There are numerous public transport options available, the most convenient being the Blue Line trains offered by the Chicago Transit Authority (often known as the L trains). Simply walk to the Blue Line station from the airport terminal using pedestrian tunnels and hop on a train - the service is offered 24/7 and can get you to the Loop quickly and efficiently.
Otherwise, you can also take the Metra trains by going through the O’Hare Transfer Station. Hop on the Airport Transit System (ATS) from the airport terminal and ride to ‘Parking Lot F’, where you can get on a shuttle bus that’d take you over to O’Hare Transfer Station for the Metra North Central Service trains.
For those not going to Chicago, regional buses are also available to take you into Wisconsin, Indiana and Iowa from O’Hare airport. Get yourself to the Bus/Shuttle Center to board these buses - you can access the Center from the airport via linking pedestrian tunnels.
What to see and do
If you’re in Chicago don’t miss a visit to Willis Tower, the tallest building in the Western hemi-sphere and 8th tallest building in the world (as of March 2015). Previously named Sears Tower, Wil-lis Tower is considered one of the ‘7 wonders of Chicago’ and is one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions. Ascend the building to get to the Skydeck Chicago for an amazing panoramic view of the city; from there, you can even see as far as 4 different American states. If vertigo is not a problem for you venture onto The Ledge - an all-glass balcony that extends beyond the building’s edge - to get a feel of yourself floating more than 1,000 feet above the ground apparently unsup-ported.
But no trip to Chicago is complete without a visit to Navy Pier, considered an iconic destination of the Midwest. Built around the gorgeous Lake Michigan, Navy Pier features everything you and your kids could dream of for a fun day out - beautiful gardens and promenades, exciting carnival rides, breathtaking lake views, shops and countless eateries. Go on the 15-story-high Ferris Wheel with your kids or take them to the Chicago Children’s Museum before letting them loose on the mini golf course while you relax at the shores of the lake with a cold drink in hand and nothing more pressing to do than while the time away.
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