6. The Magnificent Mile, the shopping Mecca of Chicago.  This mile-long stretch of North Michigan Avenue houses 460 stores on eight city blocks, including Bloomingdale’s, Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom.  If you’re from a big city like New York or Los Angeles, you probably won’t find anything different than their outposts in your home city, but the area is worth a stroll.

7. The Art Institute of Chicago.  Besides being one of the top art museums in the world, the Art Institute of Chicago also has a killer gift shop (actually, there’s two).  I like to head to the gift shops AFTER the holidays for major deals on unique gifts (I bought my husband a Pantone laptop bag for $20) and accessories (I bought three bright blue bracelets made out of recycled flip-flops for $3 apiece).

8. Chicago Premium Outlets.  If you’re driving, check out Chicago Premium Outlets in Aurora, a Chicago suburb.  It’s well worth the trip if you’re looking for deals on Giorgio Armani, Polo Ralph Lauren, Coach and BCBG.  Make SURE to score a coupon book before heading out to the store.

9. Gurnee Mills is another great outlet; if you haven’t satisfied your outlet craving at Chicago Premium Outlets, then head west to the Gurnee Mills Outlet Mall, which houses over 200 discount stores.

10. Diamonds are a girl’s best friend.  If you’re looking for jewelry, check out Chicago’s Jeweler’s Row.  This jewelry district is the largest in the Midwest, and the diamonds and gems sell at unbelievable prices.

11. Get mall coupon books.  900 North Michigan Shops, Chicago Place, Water Tower Place and Westfield all have coupon books that offer additional savings for shoppers.  North Bridge gives out coupon books for their stores, which you can often pick up at the Visitor’s Desk.  Some require you to show a hotel room key or an out-of-state driver’s license.

More Chicago Info

Chicago’s Convention and Tourism Bureau
A one-stop shop for everything going on in Chi-town.

Chicago Traveler
Provides a whole a lot of great info, including printable maps.

Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum
The first planetarium in the Western Hemisphere.

Navy Pier
Shops, amusements and more for the entire family.

Wanna share a shopping tip for Chicago?  Post it in the comment section below.