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Chinatown - Chicago

Chinatown Gate Chinatown Gate Photo: masonliu via Flickr

It seems as though every major city in the United States has a Chinatown district located somewhere in the heart of downtown. New York and San Francisco have perhaps the best known of these, so it may come as a surprise that Chicago is actually home to the second largest Chinatown in the country, second only to the one in the Big Apple.

Located near the south side of the city, Chinatown in a bustling community that is home to some of the best food in the city, whilst also having some must see sights for visitors. One of the most popular spots in the area is Chinatown Square, a two-level shopping and dining spot that pulls in an incredible amount of foot traffic. If you want some great photographic memories, there may be no better spot than Chinatown Gate, which serves as the dramatic entrance to Chinatown proper.

The Nine Dragon Wall is also a must visit when you are in the area. It is a colorful display that has been modeled after a similar looking display in BeiHai Park in Beijing. The colorful dragons that adorn the wall are sure to leave you breathless; such is the intricacy and detail of the piece. Chinatown in Chicago is also home to a number of fantastic parks, with each one more beautiful than the last.

It is often easy to dismiss the Chinatown area of a city as being somewhat clichéd, but the one in Chicago is something that is likely to change that opinion forever.

Location/Map: Chinatown Chicago, IL

Website: Chicago Chinatown