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Chicago is also quite a foodie city, and no visitor should miss out on the city's famous deep-dish pie from Gino's East or a perfect Polish sausage from Hot Doug's. But there's definitely plenty of high-end cuisine to be experienced here, including Rick Bayless' upscale Mexican joints, Frontera Grill and Topolobampo.

The city is easily navigable by public transportation and on foot, which is key for an Olympic city—meaning Chicago is one step ahead of some other bid cities to handle the crowds. One very cool feature is the free Greeter Tours, in which locals show visitors around—whether specific off-the-beaten path neighborhoods, ethnic foodie tours or public art walks—without ever stepping foot in a car.

Read Peter's guide to eco-friendly travel in the Second City.

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