Following on from 2 Chicago establishments making the New York Times’s reveal of the most exciting restaurants in 2023, an annual comprehensive survey carried out by award-winning magazine Condé Nast Traveler has deemed Chicago the best city in the country once again.
Now in its 36th year, the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards allows readers to weigh in on travel experiences each year, compiling lists of the best hotels, airlines, cruises, islands, and more. It’s the cities big and large we have our eyes on each year, of course, and once again we were elated to see that Chicago maintained its position at the top of the Best Big Cities in the United States list.
“This year, you traveled farther and deeper; seeking out remote properties; sailing on smaller, more intimate ships; and prioritizing destinations you’ve been waiting years to visit” wrote Condé Nast Traveler who revealed that 526,518 annual Readers took part in the survey this year.
This year was again split into two categories: big cities with populations of over 250,000 and small cities with populations of under 250,000. While South Carolina’s Charleston reclaimed first place from Colorado’s Aspen in the small city survey, it was Chicago that was again awarded first place in the larger category defending its title as the best big city in the United States.
It’s an unprecedented seventh year running that Chicago has taken the top spot and this year Condé Nast Travel praised the Windy City for “its impressive architecture, first-rate museums, brilliant chefs, and massive brewing scene.”
The Magnificent Mile, “ritzy Gold Coast”, and “funky Old Town” received special mentions but it’s no specific zone of Chicago that defines this wonderful metropolis.
There is no doubt that the 77 diverse and distinct neighborhoods offer an unparalleled array of refreshing restaurants and bustling bars but it’s “some of the most pleasant people you’ll find anywhere” that truly earned Chicago that gold medal.
Condé Nast Travel has been in print since 1987, in the 36th year of the Readers’ Choice Awards, it’s one of the most poignant surveys to date given the vicissitudes of recent years and the limitations to travel.
Following Chicago was San Diego at No. 2 and Milwaukee at No. 3 while New York City came in at No. 7.
Charleston in South Carolina meanwhile, once again took the top spot in the Best Small Cities in the United States list.
“Today’s recognition of our great city as the Condé Nast Traveler’s Best Big City in The U.S., for the seventh year in a row, is proof that Chicago continues to be a force as a destination for visitors from all over the globe,” said Mayor Brandon Johnson in an official release.
“This is a distinction to be proud of, and we will continue to welcome travelers from all over the world to experience all our city has to offer and the soul of Chicago.”
Take pride Chicagoans, in knowing that you live in a city beyond compare!Read the full list from Condé Nast Traveler.
[Featured image by Trace Hudson via Pexels]