Discover More, Chicago
We sent Christopher Hainey a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Chicago to get his perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in his hometown.
Place you live: Chicago, Illinois
Can you sum up Chicago? Chicago is a wonderful place packed full of beautiful architecture, wonderful food and very creative people. It’s easy to get around and there is so much to experience, so it’s a must visit for everyone.
Can you sum up the people of Chicago? Chicago is a wonderful mix of people from all over the country and world, that culminates in a really strong culture that has a much different vibe than you’d find in New York City or Los Angeles.
What was the experience like looking through the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Chicago? I found the layout really easy to navigate and it seemed like it would be a very helpful tool for both first-time visitors and veterans of this city.
Did you find anything new or inspiring about your area in the Guidebook? Yeah! So actually I’ve been living in Chicago for 13 years now but I had just recently moved to a neighborhood that I had never been really familiar with, so when I moved in I consulted the book and learned a little about my new area, I even found a cool little coffee shop.
How did the Guidebook influence the photos you went out to take? There are so many buildings that I’ve walked by countless times that are so unassuming on the outside but hold really beautiful and intricate interiors. It was nice to have a few pointers to help find those hidden treasures.
Tell us about the photos you shot for this project? Since there’s so much to see here, I tried to capture a wide range of places and landmarks from all corners of the city. In my time here I’ve also come to really enjoy being able to see and photograph the huge variety of weather that rolls through, so I selected photos from all seasons and different types of weather.
Occupation: Photographer, Designer and Musician
What is a perfect day in Chicago? A perfect day would probably include a long walk and taking a lot of photos, and most certainly would include stops for donuts and/or coffee. Maybe a quick stop over at a museum.
What do you love about Chicago? I’m constantly being surprised by this city. I find new things to love about it all the time. I come across new neighborhoods and places I’ve never been and every little part of Chicago has a personality and culture all its own. I love the weather (even the winters), the food, and the people. There’s really not much to dislike about it.
What do you dislike? Road construction everywhere all the time.
What would be surprising about Chicago to an outsider? I think when people think of Chicago or visit here for the first time, a lot of people make the mistake of only experiencing the downtown area. While there’s a lot of must see things downtown, the diverse neighborhoods around the city are what give Chicago its personality and culture and are of equal importance to visit while you are here. I think tourists will be surprised that there’s way more to do outside of downtown.
If Chicago was a person or character who would they be? The rebel teen protagonist from a John Hughes film.
What was your impression of the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Chicago? It’s funny because the first thing I noticed was on the back cover – there’s an illustration of a small few block section of the south loop neighborhood, which was the exact little part of town where I lived when I first moved here to Chicago. Even the building I used to live in is part of the illustration. I didn’t know very much about the city before I moved here, so my Chicago experience started here and moved outward from this point.
DK Travel and Global Yodel have teamed up to bring you an amazing giveaway. We have a couple 10 packs of DK Travel guidebooks as well as a couple big art prints to give away. Who wants them? Jump over here to win.