11) Chicago, Illinois
Budget travelers craving a taste of the big city may find New York City a challenge to do affordably. Chicago is an equally amazing city with a long list of activities to keep busy. Simply walking the city is hours of free sightseeing. Take a photo in Cloud Gate, better known as “the bean,” stroll by Buckingham Fountain with the Chicago skyline on one side and Lake Michigan on the other, and skip the big budget theater productions and attend a more affordable local production. Be flexible about visiting Wrigley Field and buy Cubs tickets the day of the game for face value if it’s a weekday and not a major game. The Art Institute of Chicago is free to Illinois residents on Thursday from 5-8 pm. Additionally, while Chicago has world-class cuisine, it’s most famous for its more affordable deep-dish pizza, hot dogs and Italian sandwiches.
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