If you are planning a visit to downtown Chicago, be sure to sign up for a tour early in your vacation.
"We encourage guests to take our food tours at the very beginning of their stay or travels, so they have plenty of time to return to their favorite areas and tasting locations with a sense of confidence," said Ismael Seguban of Chicago Food Planet.
"We want our guests to feel confident to return to the neighborhoods where our food tours operate with confidence to explore a bit deeper on their own, and ultimately experience Chicago as locals do," Seguban said.
It is one of the best way to find out the best-kept secrets of Chicago culinary scene. Even local residents are encouraged to participate in the tour to capture the essence of Chicago's culinary best eats.
The tour company offered its first tour back in 2006 with the Old Town and Gold Coast tour route. Since then, media outlets has featured Chicago Food Planet Tour in travel features throughout the United States. Check out Bon Appetit, Lonely Planet and the Chicago Tribune. Television networks, such as CNN, Today Show and the Travel Channel, include a feature of the Chicago Food Planet Tour.
China is another developing country that has been making its presence felt in the United States. Chinese tourists have become particularly sought after in America because of the amount of money that they spend while on vacation. The U.S. Department of Commerce’s annual report indicated Chinese tourists spend about $6,000 per visit compared to the $4,000 average for other nationalities.
In addition, the U.S. Travel Association shared the drive to attract Chinese travelers is also fueled by the massive increase in visas issued to mainlanders, which is expected to become America’s biggest in-bound market by 2016. Seguban confirms the number of guests from Asian "continues to grow each year."
Visit YouTube to check out their tour highlights or check out the tour company's unsolicited reviews on TripAdvisor. The online review company has rated Chicago Food Planet as one of the top five tours in the last three years.
The tour company charges:
Adult - $47
Adolescent - $30
Child - $15
- Samples from seven neighborhood favorites
- Local history tales
- Historic neighborhoods with behind the scenes tales
- Architecture trivia of established neighborhoods
- Aromas are prominent in several of the establishments found in Old Town
- Visually, the store fronts are enticing and alluring to newcomers and veterans alike
- Every establishment offers samples for consumption, enticing tourists and visitors to come back.
Key establishments of this tour
- Lou Malnati's
- The Spice House
- Old Town Oil
- Tea Gschwendner
- The Fudge Pot
- Kamehachi Old Town
- Delightful Pastries
Starting at 11 am, this tour last about three hours. In distance, it's a little more than one mile, walking through the neighborhoods.
Depending on schedule, walking distance and interest, Chicago Food Planet offers two other tours:
830 North Michigan Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60611
Phone: (312) 445-9948 or (800) 979-3370
Tip #1: Wear comfortable walking shoes.
Tip #2: Don't eat before the tour.
Tip #3: Each guests receive a booklet, created by Chicago Food Planet, about the places they've visited on the tour, coupons and a map of their route.
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