Not to be confused with the band, the Lincoln Park neighborhood is named after the park it borders—the largest in the city. The community is bounded by Lake Michigan to the east, Diversey Parkway to the north, North Boulevard to the South and the Chicago River to the west. In early Chicago, the region was considered remote. It housed an Army post, Indian settlement, smallpox hospital, and city cemetery until the 1860s.
Many immigrants flocked to the neighborhood after the Civil War, and in the 1880s, many Victorian structures arose in the region. Today, Lincoln Park is one of Chicago’s most affluent communities, home to mostly young urban professionals and young families who enjoy the proximity to the city’s most impressive park.
Lincoln Park Hotels
Unlike Downtown and the Loop, you aren’t going to find too many accommodations in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. If you’d like to stay in this picturesque area, the Hotel Lincoln dates back to the 1920s. It retains its original flavor with vintage appointments and original artwork from local artists. There are also some free perks including bike rentals, pedicabs, and rooftop yoga classes.
Lincoln Park Restaurants
You might not think of Lincoln Park as a dining destination, but it has a lot to offer—from cheap eats to upscale restaurants. Enjoy the signature pan pizza at Pequod’s Pizza, or try the Nashville hot chicken at The Budlong. There are some Chicago classics, like the Twin Anchors institution, known for its falling-off-the-bone baby backs. Or, pay homage to the area’s immigrant roots and try one of the many international cuisines here—from Middle Eastern to Japanese, Greek, and Indonesian.
Lincoln Park Tourist Attractions
There’s a lot to come see and do in Lincoln Park. Visit the more than 1,000 animals at the free Lincoln park Zoo, or explore the history of the city at the Chicago History Museum. On DePaul University campus, the DePaul Art Museum hosts two or more exhibitions simultaneously. Or, venture into the park for the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, with plenty of interactive displays for kids and adults alike.
Lincoln Park Architecture
Stroll the streets of Lincoln Park to enjoy some beautiful Victorian architecture, including the Romanesque Revival church built in 1902. You can also wander the park itself to see the Lincoln Park Conservatory, built in 1895, or the landscape architecture in Lincoln Park Zoo.
Lincoln Park Shopping
Due to its residential nature, many of the shops in Lincoln Park are chains—like REI and the Container Store. But, there are an array of independent boutiques in the area as well. Dig through the bins of vinyl at Dave’s Records, or select a posh gift at Elizabeth Grace. There are also home design stores, beauty outposts, and off-price shops throughout the nabe, if you do a little digging.
Lincoln Park Theater
Lincoln Park has its own diverse theater scene. There’s the capital of improv at Second City—known for putting comics like Bill Murray and Joan Rivers on the map. For more traditional live performances, Steppenwolf Theatre Company is one of the city’s most respected institutions. Its ensembles have included the likes of Laurie Metcalf, John Malkovich, and Tracy Letts.
Lincoln Park Festivals & Events
There are an array of exciting festivals and events to attend in Lincoln Park each year. It hosts a Greek Fest, Arts Festival, Hot Dog Fest, Wine Stroll, and Air and Water Festival. The Chicago Marathon starts on Clark Street, Sedgewick Street & Stockton Avenue. The Zoo hosts a spooky event for Halloween, and the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum hosts an array of nature-inspired events.
Lincoln Park Parks & Beaches
Of course, Lincoln Park’s best green space is the park of the same name. It is the city’s largest, spanning 1,208 acres along Lake Michigan. It is home to its own zoo (one of the last free zoos in the country), a conservatory, lily pool, nature museum, and history museum. There are also serene public beaches for swimming, sunbathing, and volleyball along the park’s seven miles of shoreline. In the Lincoln Park nabe, that beach is North Avenue Beach, popular for its sandy shorefront, informal dining, and beach house with city views.