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Cleveland to Chicago - Tourist Stopover Suggestions

Cleveland to Chicago - Tourist Stopover Suggestions

Old Jan 18, 16, 8:13 am
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Cleveland to Chicago - Tourist Stopover Suggestions

Greetings! I see the help and advice from the forum.

We (from the UK) will be spending the closing days of our holiday to the USA by visiting the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland on Tuesday 12th April, staying in Cleveland overnight.

We will then drive to Chicago for our departure back to the UK on the early evening of Saturday 16th April.

We have been to Chicago on a previous trip and have visited the major tourist attractions there.

Rather than going back to and staying solely in Chicago we wondered if we should stop off en route to Chicago, or stay out in the Chicago suburbs and make some day trips from there.

We will have three nights to spend Wednesday 13th, Thursday 14th & Friday 15th April before our departure on Saturday 16th April.

Any suggestions help and advice would be most appreciated.
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Old Jan 18, 16, 11:21 am
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April is a bit tough because a lot of the obvious highlights (Cedar Point amusement park, Lake Erie Islands, Indiana Dunes) are better experienced in warmer weather.

How many days are you planning on staying in Cleveland? The art museum is wonderful and worth a day on its own. So you might want to start by adding a day there.

Day trips from Chicago would depend a lot your interests. If you are an architecture buff a trip to the Frank Lloyd Wright home and studio is well worth a visit to Oak Park. Kids might enjoy a trip up to the indoor waterparks in Wisconsin Dells. The Cubs are also in town those days if you wanted to see a baseball -- Wrigley Field is one of the best places in the country to see a game.
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Old Jan 18, 16, 1:34 pm
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If you stay any longer in Cleveland and like orchestral music, Cleveland has one of the best orchestras in the world. April 14 will have a Haydn/Mozart program that looks to be outstanding.

Playhouse Square has a Carole King musical during that time period, and of course there are the usual sports venues if you would like to see a basketball or baseball game.

I've done the drive from Cleveland to Chicago many times, and personally, I think it is a quite unexciting drive. The only things I can think of are stopping at the Toledo Zoo (my family likes that one) or make a stop in South bend (off I-80) and check out the Notre Dame campus. The South Bend Chocolate company has delicious chocolate (the best hot chocolate, in my opinion) if you make that stop.
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Old Jan 18, 16, 8:04 pm
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Originally Posted by plinth857 View Post

I've done the drive from Cleveland to Chicago many times, and personally, I think it is a quite unexciting drive. The only things I can think of are stopping at the Toledo Zoo (my family likes that one) or make a stop in South bend (off I-80) and check out the Notre Dame campus. The South Bend Chocolate company has delicious chocolate (the best hot chocolate, in my opinion) if you make that stop.
Very well stated. If it's an option, I would fly to Chicago. If not, drive straight through and make use of the very nice rest stops along I-90 rather than getting off the interstate.

I'd also stay downtown rather than in the suburbs. There's not a lot to see or do outside the city. One interesting possible day trip is a drive to Milwaukee. It's a very nice city with some decent restaurants, bars with friendly people, an excellent art museum, and some fantastic brewery tours and beer tastings. It's about a 2-2.5 hour drive from Chicago. Or even stay a night there at the Pfister hotel.
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Old Jan 18, 16, 8:21 pm
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Haven't found all that much of note suburban Chicago, though of course it depends on what you find interesting. it's not all shopping complexes and chain restaurants, but it's not exactly a big international attraction.

I agree that there's more to Cleveland than just the R&R hall of fame. It does depend on what you're interested in, of course. If you're a fan of A Christmas Story it's a trip to see Ralphie's House, the house used for exterior shots renovated to match the sound stage

If you do find yourself in Chicago looking for a day trip you might head up to Milwaukee, about 90 minutes by car or by Amtrak. Among other things to do are the Harley-Davidson museum, brewery tours, art museum, food tours, newly-unveiled Streets of Old Milwaukee at the public museum, etc.

I'm a big proponent of Trip Advisor things to do -- worth a look wherever you end up.
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Old Jan 19, 16, 12:12 am
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Thank you for your suggestions. Staying an extra night in Cleveland and a trip to Milwaukee (beer!) sound good.

We both like music (we will be driving to Cleveland from Detroit [having flown in from California] where we will have visited the Motown Museum again!).

Other interests are transport museums (air/road/rail) - we have been to the Ford and Chrysler museums in Detroit on previous visits.

We both like a decent meal - not necessarily anything fancy as long as we are well fed!

The occasional theme park if the weather is good.

As this will be near the end of our holiday a trip to an Outlet Mall is likely to be high on the list to stock up with essentials (mainly clothes).

Thanks again for your suggestions.
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Old Jan 19, 16, 8:18 am
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If you like music, Chicago still has some surviving Blues clubs that can be good. You might check out Buddy Guy's downtown.
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Old Jan 19, 16, 9:49 am
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Originally Posted by Yorkshire Traveller View Post

Other interests are transport museums (air/road/rail) - we have been to the Ford and Chrysler museums in Detroit on previous visits.

We both like a decent meal - not necessarily anything fancy as long as we are well fed!
In Cleveland, check out the Western Reserve Historical society Crawford Auto and Aviation museum:

http://www.wrhs.org/research/crawford/

If you're hungry around there, Uptown is an area right around there with plenty of food options.
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Old Jan 19, 16, 5:36 pm
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Thanks for the continued suggestions.

I think we may well stay in Cleveland for an extra day to visit the transport museum then bypass Chicago and head to Milwaukee. As a biker the Harley Davidson tour sounds interesting.

Will Laverne & Shirley be there to greet us? :-)
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Old Jan 19, 16, 9:58 pm
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Originally Posted by Yorkshire Traveller View Post
Thanks for the continued suggestions.

I think we may well stay in Cleveland for an extra day to visit the transport museum then bypass Chicago and head to Milwaukee. As a biker the Harley Davidson tour sounds interesting.

Will Laverne & Shirley be there to greet us? :-)
Well, there is a nearly life size statue of Fonzie along the river walk!
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Old Jan 21, 16, 11:10 am
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I live in Chicagoland and wife had relatives near CLE. Have driven MANY times.

Not much to see if you ask me.

If you are a beer drinker, stop at Three Floyds, Munster, IN, just off I-80 on the way to Chicago. One of the very best breweries in the world. People travel there specifically from Europe. Their Zombie Dust is generally rated #1 Pale Ale in the world.
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Old Jan 21, 16, 11:39 am
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mmmm Beer (do I sound like Homer Simpson?).

Thanks for the tip - will get my other half to drive
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Old Jan 21, 16, 1:44 pm
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Originally Posted by toomanybooks View Post
I live in Chicagoland and wife had relatives near CLE. Have driven MANY times.

Not much to see if you ask me.

If you are a beer drinker, stop at Three Floyds, Munster, IN, just off I-80 on the way to Chicago. One of the very best breweries in the world. People travel there specifically from Europe. Their Zombie Dust is generally rated #1 Pale Ale in the world.
Excellent suggestion! One of the few things in Indiana worth taking a detour for. Check times on their website to make sure they're open though.
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Old Jan 23, 16, 6:27 pm
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Originally Posted by plinth857 View Post
Originally Posted by Yorkshire Traveller View Post
Other interests are transport museums (air/road/rail) - we have been to the Ford and Chrysler museums in Detroit on previous visits.

We both like a decent meal - not necessarily anything fancy as long as we are well fed!
In Cleveland, check out the Western Reserve Historical society Crawford Auto and Aviation museum:

http://www.wrhs.org/research/crawford/

If you're hungry around there, Uptown is an area right around there with plenty of food options.
If you're driving, there is the Studebaker National Museum in South Bend, Indiana.

In Cleveland, Little Italy, which has some great restaurants, is adjacent to Uptown; however, my favorite area for dining in CLE is Ohio City.
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Old Jan 23, 16, 6:44 pm
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Thanks for the further suggestions - much appreciated.
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