Chicago Neighborhoods: Hyde Park

As the home of the University of Chicago, DuSable Museum of African American History, Museum of Science and Industry and other institutions, historic Hyde Park is a treasure trove of cultural and educational riches. The students and professors living alongside longtime Hyde Park residents have a wealth of dining options at their fingertips, including a couple favorites of U.S. President Barack Obama, whose Chicago home is located in nearby Kenwood.

For most Chicago neighborhoods, there is no checklist, no long roster of must-see attractions.

Hyde Park is one of the exceptions. And not only are there myriad sites that should be experienced first-hand within this community, but Hyde Park can launch visitors toward remarkable things in neighboring communities, things they otherwise might miss.

Barack Obama’s house in Kenwood, for one — but we’ll get to that later.

This is Hyde Park, or rather, a quick sampler.

Begin at the corner of 55th Street and Woodlawn Avenue. Now or later, you can grab a cool beer at Jimmy’s Woodlawn Tap (right next to the corner Starbucks), where serious and not-so-serious conversations have taken place over beverages for 60-plus years.

On a wall, framed, are a pair of tickets for a 1928 football game between the University of Chicago and the University of Illinois. Not mentioned: The Maroons beat the Fighting Illini 40-17 that day before 48,714 in Stagg Field. The U of C dropped big-time football after beating Illinois one last time in 1939 — and we’ll get to Stagg Field in a bit.

Walking south on Woodlawn – Hyde Park is a wonderful walking neighborhood of shaded sidewalks and grand residences – apartments soon give way to houses, many built around 1900. At the northeast corner of 58th Street is one unlike the others.

Frank Lloyd Wright designed this house for the Robie family. Completed in 1910, Robie House is considered by many Wright’s quintessential Prairie Style residence. There are tales here, beginning with the Robies moving out in 1911; guided and self-guided tours tell some of them, all irresistible to anyone who cares at all about architecture or stained glass or uncomfortable chairs.

Across the street is the home of the University’s Booth School of Business – interesting to nonstudents because it’s a virtual mirror image of Robie House, only larger and in poured concrete instead of brick.

Stroll south to the end of the 5800 block, and we get a first look at the Midway – formal name, the Midway Plaisance – a parkway, with its own history, that connects Jackson Park with Washington Park. Jackson Park, much of it within the Hyde Park boundaries, is home to the Museum of Science and Industry and, before that, was site of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. The Midway was…”the midway,” with all the freak shows and distractions of the time.

Washington Park is home to the DuSable Museum of African American History and Lorado Taft’s massive sculpture, “Fountain of Time.” (You can walk there from here. Remember what we said earlier about “neighboring communities”? There’s more to come.)

Look right, and you see the University’s Rockefeller Memorial Chapel, a spiritual center, performance venue and yet another architectural jewel. Walk west to the end of the block, take a right onto University Avenue – and soon the University’s quadrangles open to you, on your left, in all their Oxfordian splendor.

Across from the Quad, at the southeast corner of University and 58th Street, is the Oriental Institute. A research institution linked to, among others, the fictional archeologist “Indiana” Jones, its museum is in some ways a junior version of London’s British Museum. See it. Its rooms are filled with artifacts of ancient civilizations, including a huge sculpture of King Tut.

Continue north on University and, a few yards up the next block, look left and see the Regenstein Library. Here sat Stagg Field; in 1942, almost exactly a year after Pearl Harbor, scientists created the world’s first nuclear chain-reaction. A Henry Moore statue near the spot commemorates the event that launched the atomic age…

All this – and we’ve only just tickled Hyde Park.

The University of Chicago dominates the community economically (it owns much of it) and culturally (the neighborhood is noted for its tolerance and civility, in a way an extension of the school).

The resident college community brings with it an interest in the arts. The Smart Museum and Renaissance Society are home to world-class paintings, drawings and sculpture; the Court Theatre is home to first-rate productions of all kinds, from Shakespeare to musicals.

Restaurants range from La Petite Folie (classic French) to jazz-inspired eclectic (Park 52) to Middle Eastern comfort food (The Nile) to Caribbean-Cajun (Calypso Cafe, with some menu items from the departed Dixie Kitchen added) to down-home cafeteria (Valois, a Hyde Park institution and an Obama breakfast choice) and an art cafe (Medici on 57th, another Obama favorite).

And this, not surprisingly, is a community of independent bookstores, new and used, including Frontline Books & Craft, on Harper Avenue, one of only two African American bookstores in the city; and on 57th Street, O’Gara and Wilson Ltd., a used bookstore that’s been here seemingly since Gutenberg was a boy and a Hyde Park gem.

Using Hyde Park for orientation, there’s the Kenwood neighborhood immediately north, site of President Obama’s Chicago home (you may be able to get a distant peek; Secret Service personnel won’t let you get too close) and yet more amazing houses, one a former home of Muhammad Aliand two early Frank Lloyd Wright designs.

Washington Park, directly west, contains not only the DuSable Museum and “Fountain of Time” but some of the best work of famed park designer Frederick Law Olmsted and Chicago architect and planner Daniel Burnham. Woodlawn’s churches and redevelopment are a gateway to Grand Crossing’s Oak Woods Cemetery, final resting place of, among others, Olympic legend Jesse Owens, Chicago mayor Harold Washington and thousands of Confederate soldiers who died at Camp Douglas, a Union prisoner of war camp. That camp was not far north of Kenwood near the present Bronzeville neighborhood, Chicago’s former Black Metropolis, a onetime jazz and blues mecca enjoying a rebirth.



Ben Hecht Marker of Distinction

  • Historical Landmarks

Ben Hecht was a flamboyant figure in Chicago’s literary renaissance. As a writer and producer of plays and films, his legacy includes the newsroom play, The Front Page. Selected as a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction.

Free Admission | 5210 S. Kenwood Ave.

Charles M. Harper Center/University of Chicago Booth School of Business

  • Universities & Colleges

The U of C’s Charles M. Harper Center/Booth School of Business is a beautiful building inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House, located directly across the street. It offers the Rothman “Winter Garden” as well as sitting areas, and the Everett Kovler Cafe.

Free Admission | 5807 S. Woodlawn Ave.

Chicago Jazz Archives and Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library

  • Libraries,
  • Universities & Colleges

The Special Collections Research Center, the principal repository for and steward of the University of Chicago Library’s rare books, manuscripts, University Archives, and the Chicago Jazz Archives, offers exhibitions featuring rare books and manuscripts and archival materials.

Free Admission | 1100 E. 57th St. | 773.702.8705

Chicago Theological Seminary

  • Universities & Colleges

The Chicago Theological Seminary is one of the nation’s premier theological education programs. Visitors can tour the cloisters, library and Thorndike Hilton Chapel as well as touch an “Original Piece of Plymouth Rock.” Additionaly, in the basement is the amazing Seminary Co-op Bookstore.

Free Admission | 5757 S. University Ave. | 773.752.5757

Chicago Tribute Markers of Distinction

  • Other Attractions

Chicago Tribute Markers of Distinction commemorate notable Chicagoans by marking the places where they lived or worked. Since the program started in 1997, eighty markers have been placed across the city. This number will be increased to 100 markers placed by the end of 2009.

Free Admission | 78 E. Washington St. | 312.744.6630

Court Theatre

  • Music,
  • Theater & Dance

Situated in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood on the campus of the University of Chicago, this comfortable, 251-seat professional theatre is committed to presenting both classical drama and modern classics.

5535 S. Ellis Ave. | 773.753.4472

DuSable Museum of African American History

  • Museums & Zoos,
  • Popular Attractions

The DuSable Museum of African American History is the first independent museum in the country dedicated to the African American experience. The mosaic portraits in Founders Hall celebrate figures like Dr. Margaret Burroughs, co-founder of the museum; Harold Washington, the city’s first African American Mayor; and Jean Baptiste Pointe DuSable, the Founder of Chicago.

740 E. 56th Pl., (57th St. and S. Cottage Grove Ave.) | 773-947-0600

Enrico and Laura Fermi Marker of Distinction

  • Historical Landmarks

Enrico Fermi performed the ground-breaking experiment in nuclear physics that led to the nuclear age. Laura Fermi was a writer and political activist. Selected as a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction.

Free Admission | 5537 S. Woodlawn Ave.

Fazlur Khan Marker of Distinction

  • Historical Landmarks

Most Famous for the John Hancock and Sears (now Willis) Tower, Fazlur Khan was an architectural and structural engineer genius, whose contributions to architecture and skyscrapers around the world are still used and celebrated today. Selected as a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction.

Free Admission | 1400 E. 55th Pl.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House

  • Art & Architecture

The Robie House is considered one of the most important buildings in the history of American architecture. Designed in Wright’s Oak Park studio in 1908 and completed in 1910, the building is both a masterpiece of the Prairie style and renowned as a forerunner of modernism in architecture.

5757 S. Woodlawn Ave. | 312.994.4000

Harold Washington Marker of Distinction

  • Historical Landmarks

Harold Washington’s election in 1983 as Chicago’s first black mayor opened up city government to minorities and others who had traditionally been excluded from power. At this location you will find the Harold Washington Playlot Park, located next to Lake Michigan, which was dedicated to the former mayor. Selected as a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction.

Free Admission | 5300 S. Shore Dr.

Heller House

  • Art & Architecture

Built for meatpacker Isidore H. Heller in 1897, this Frank Lloyd Wright-designed house helped introduce a new aesthetic that culminated in the now-famous Prairie School style.

5132 S. Woodlawn Ave.

Hyde Park Art Center

  • Art & Architecture,
  • Museums & Zoos

Since 1939, the Hyde Park Art Center’s mission has been to stimulate and sustain the visual arts in Chicago via innovative exhibitions by primarily Chicago-area artists and art educational programs for people of diverse backgrounds. The Center strives to make contemporary art relevant to people’s lives and actively pursues arts mentorship within the community it serves.

Free Admission | 5020 S. Cornell Ave. | 773.324.5520

Hyde Park Vintage Apartment Buildings

  • Art & Architecture

The Hyde Park neighborhood is noted for its luxurious vintage apartment buildings, many stretching along Lake Michigan, which set new standards in their day for opulent residential architecture. Noted buildings on and off the lakefront include East Park Towers (5242 S. Hyde Park Blvd.), The Shoreland (5454 S. Shore Drive), Hotel Del Prado (5307 S. Hyde Park Blvd.), Poinsettia Apartments (5528 S. Hyde Park Blvd.), Flamingo Apartments (5500 South Shore Dr.), The Windermere (1642 E. 56th St.), The Narragansett (1640 E. 50th St.) and The Powhatan (S. Chicago Beach Dr.).

Free Admission | 4950 S. Chicago Beach Dr.

International House at the University of Chicago

  • Cultural Centers,
  • Universities & Colleges

International House of Chicago, founded in 1932 by John D. Rockefeller, Jr., is a dynamic program center and residence housing students and interns from around the world, including the United States. The House serves the greater Chicago community as a cultural center for programs of outstanding diversity.

Free Admission | 1414 E. 59th St. | 773.753.2270

KAM Isaiah Israel Temple

  • Religious locations

The KAMII Temple houses one of the oldest Jewish congregations in the Midwest. Its sanctuary, filled with brilliant stained glass and intricate mosaics, will awe and inspire you.

Free Admission | 1100 E. Hyde Park Blvd. | 773.924.1234

Lorado Taft Marker of Distinction

  • Historical Landmarks

Lorado Taft was one of the most prominent artists of the early 20th century, known for large scale public works such as “Fountain of Time” (1922). Selected as a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction.

Free Admission | S. Ellis Ave. & E. 60th St.

Museum of Science and Industry

  • Museums & Zoos

One of the largest science museums in the world, Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry is home to more than 35,000 artifacts and nearly 14 acres of hands-on exhibits designed to spark scientific inquiry and creativity.

57th St & Lake Shore Drive | 773.684.1414

New Checkerboard Lounge for Blues ‘n’ Jazz

  • Music

Newly re-opened and re-located, The Checkerboard Lounge for Blues ‘n’ Jazz is bound to continue their famous history. Performers such as Prince and Keith Richards used to jam at the old location. There is live music everyday that caters to the mix of university students and locals.

5201 S. Harper Court | 773.624.1472

Nichols Park

  • Parks & Gardens

This park honors artist and urban planner John Fountain Nichols, a life-long resident of Hyde Park. The park’s expansion brought it to more than 10 acres, giving it a formal garden, a fountain, and a grassy courtyard.

Free Admission | 1355 E. 53rd St. | 312.747.2703

Nuclear Energy by Henry Moore

  • Art & Architecture

This 12-foot bronze sculpture by Henry Moore commemorates the site of the first self-sustaining nuclear reaction initiated by physicist Enrico Fermi. The site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Free Admission | 5621 S. Ellis Ave.

Oriental Institute Museum

  • Museums & Zoos,
  • Universities & Colleges

World-class collection of artifacts that document the history, languages, and cultures of the entire ancient Middle East. The newly redesigned museum presents a 40-ton sculpture from Assyria, a 17-foot tall statue of King Tut and much more. Admission is FREE.

Free Admission | 1155 E. 58th St. | 773.702.9514

Paul Douglas Marker of Distinction

  • Historical Landmarks

A progressive politician who fought for the protection of Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Paul Douglas was an early supporter of civil rights and campaign finance reform. Selected as a Chicago Tribute Marker of Distinction.

Free Admission | 5658 S. Blackstone Ave.

Promontory Point

  • Parks & Gardens

The defining coastal feature of Hyde Park, designed by Alfred Caldwell, Promontory Point features running trails, beachfront, a small community center for special events, and one of the best views of the Chicago skyline.

Free Admission | 5491 S. Shore Dr. | 312.747.6620

Reynolds Club House/Mandel Hall

  • Universities & Colleges

It’s worth visiting this student activities center, even if you’re not a student. The wooden ceilings, portraits of past presidents, and the classic American college architecture make it a great place to grab a bite to eat. Both the University Theater and the Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company perform here.

Free Admission | 5706 S. University Ave.; 1131 E. 57th St. | 773.702.8787

Rockefeller Memorial Chapel

  • Art & Architecture,
  • Music,
  • Universities & Colleges

Gothic grandeur reins in the soaring stone exterior and stained glass interior of the chapel, the spiritual and ceremonial center of the University of Chicago. The chapel serves as a venue for concerts, theater, exhibits, lectures and interfaith worship, and boasts the newly restored Laura Spelman Rockefeller Carillon and E.M. Skinner pipe organ.

Free Admission | 5850 S. Woodlawn Ave. | 773.702.2100

Smart Museum of Art

  • Art & Architecture,
  • Museums & Zoos,
  • Universities & Colleges

As the art museum of the University of Chicago, the Smart Museum of Art takes a distinctly interdisciplinary approach to the collection, display, and interpretation of art. Founded in 1974, the Smart Museum is home to acclaimed special exhibitions and a permanent collection that spans five thousand years.

Free Admission | 5550 S. Greenwood Ave | 773.702.0200

Statue of the Republic (in Jackson Park)

  • Art & Architecture

The Statue of the Republic, often called the Golden Lady, is a scaled-down replica of the iconic monument that stood on the eastern end of the Court of Honor during the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893. The sculptor of the original 65-foot tall monument, Daniel Chester French (1850 -1931), completed this 24-foot version of the Republic in 1918 to commemorate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the fair and centennial of statehood for Illinois.

Free Admission | 1900 E. Hayes Dr. | 312.742.PLAY (7529)

The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago

  • Art & Architecture

The Renaissance Society is internationally recognized as one of the most important contemporary art museums in the United States. The museum has a reputation for presenting important artists early in their careers, including Jeff Koons (1986), Kara Walker (1997), and Kerry James Marshall (1998). In addition, the museum presents lectures, performances and concerts.

Free Admission | 5811 S. Ellis Ave, University of Chicago, Cobb Hall, 4th floor | 773.702.8670

Where We Come From…Where We’re Going by Olivia Gude

  • Art & Architecture

This restored mural located outside the 56th St. Metra station portrays members of the Hyde Park community, along with their dialogue in response to the questions, “Where are you from?” and “Where are you going?”

Free Admission | S. Lake Park Ave. & E. 56th St. | 312.427.2724

Wooded Island (in Jackson Park)

  • Parks & Gardens

The majority of 16 acre Wooded Island has been designated as the Paul Douglas Nature Sanctuary due to the importance of its woodland, prairie, and shrubland as bird habitat.

Free Admission | 6401 S. Stony Island Ave. | 312.742.PLAY (7529)


Asian Dining on 55th Street

  • Asian Fusion

Find an array of Asian dining options on 55th Street including: The Snail Thai Cuisine (1649 E. 55th St.), Siam Thai Restaurant (1641 E. 55th St.), Cafe Corea (1603 E. 55th St.) and Kikuya Japanese Restaurant (1601 E. 55th St.).

1603 E. 55th St.

Bonjour Café Bakery

  • Food Retail: Bakeries

With all its baked goods made from scratch in a French style, this bakery is a fantastic stop for a sweet treat or a cup of fresh mint tea. A fun assortment of decorations and two seater tables adds to the café’s comfortable atmosphere.

1550 E. 55th St. | 773.241.5300

Calypso Café

  • Caribbean

You will not be disappointed with the eclectic décor of Calypso Cafe, the only Caribbean restaurant in Hyde Park located in Harper Court. Southern-style favorites from the former Dixie Kitchen are on the menu, and the food is as colorful as the decorations.

5211 S. Harper Ave. | 773.955.0229

Cedars Mediterranean Kitchen

  • Mediterranean

Cedars has proudly operated as a successful restaurant for over 17 years. It prides itself on a traditional Mediterranean menu that includes Hummus, Falafel, Cous Cous, Shawarma & Kebobs that fill their dining room with magnificent aromas for guests to enjoy as they observe the gallery open-kitchen.

1206 E. 53rd St. | 773.324.6227


  • Asian Fusion

Chant is a fun and funky place to dine. There are cool structures that imitate different Asian styles of design as well as playful decorations on the walls. The furniture is custom-made for the space, adding additional flair and authenticity to this Asian inspired global cuisine restaurant.

1509 E. 53rd St. | 773.324.1999

Istria Café

  • Dining

Attached to the Hyde Park Art Center, this little café sells Intelligentsia coffee, baked goods, paninis and homemade gelato. It is small but has really thoughtful design, and is a comfortable space to relax, study with free wi-fi, read the newspaper or meet someone for a drink.

5030 S. Cornell Ave. | 773.324.9660

La Petite Folie

  • French

This small French restaurant is meant to provide you with the best service and French food the city of Chicago has to offer. Owned and operated by two UChicago alumni, the exclusively French wine list will impress not only wine buffs but also their palate.

1504 E. 55th St. | 773.493.1394

Medici Bakery

  • Dining

Part of the Medici Restaurant–a Hyde Park favorite–offers baked goods such as, breaks, cookies, tarts, and their best known almond croissant. They also offer hot drinks and a selection of ice cream. A great place to grab a quick snack, but it may be tough to snag a seat. Accessibility limitations. Please contact site for more information.

1331 E. 57th St. | 773.667.7394

Medici Restaurant

  • American (New)

This famous Hyde Park eatery started as an art café in the 60s. Its menu has now expanded to include a variety of homemade items, but they have retained their hip vibe with graffiti filled tables and walls filled with artwork. Definitely request a seat on their rooftop patio during summer months.

1327 E. 57th St. | 773.667.7394

Mellow Yellow Restaurant

  • American (Traditional)

A Hyde Park restaurant since the 1970s, Mellow Yellow features 70s flair, hip dim lighting, and “lava lamp” décor. Come for free Jazz Fridays, the full bar, or the early bird special where $5 gets you a full breakfast and a mimosa.

1508 E. 53rd St. | 773.667.2000

More Dining

  • Various

For more dining options, visit the Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce.

5501 S. Everett St. | 773.288.0124

Morry’s Deli

  • Delis

Open seven days a week since the 1960’s, Morry’s Deli provides fine sandwiches made to order “your way.” This deli has all your favorite deli fare on their massive menu, including the highly sought after Reuben, turkey Reuben and pastrami sandwiches. It may have only a few tables but their sizable menu and consistently good cheap eats makes it a stronghold in the Hyde Park area.

5500 S. Cornell Ave. | 773.363.3800

Park 52

  • American (New)

With a spacious interior filled with 20’s era jazz lounge memorabilia, Park 52 Chicago is Hyde Park’s diamond in the rough. The restaurant features world-influenced cuisine and an extensive international wine list.

5201 S. Harper Ave. | 773.241.5200

Piccolo Mondo

  • Italian

Piccolo Mondo features fine Italian dining along with a small Italian deli and dry goods store. A simple, elegant atmosphere and a location overlooking the Museum of Science & Industry makes it ideal for a lunch or dinner.

1642 E. 56th St. | 773.643.1106

Rajun Cajun

  • Indian

Rajun Cajun specializes in a unique Indian/Soul Food fusion. Want to try fried chicken with your veggie samosas? You got it. A relaxed atmosphere, friendly staff, and Indian pop music make this an immediate favorite.

1459 E. 53rd St. | 773.955.1145

Ribs & Bibs

  • Barbeque

Ribs & Bibs is a hole-in-the-wall ribs joint that has served succulent ribs since 1966. You can smell the smoker from a block away.

5300 S. Dorchester Ave. | 773.493.0400


  • Greek

In operation for over 30 years, Salonica offers “Greek Specialties and Homemade Soups.” Salonica is a great place to sit in their cozy booths on weekends and enjoy an excellent breakfast.

1440 E. 57th St. | 773.752.3899

Seven Ten Lanes

  • American (Traditional)

This restaurant/billiard lounge/bowling alley is located in the University of Chicago’s campus, offering eight bowling lanes and eight pool tables. Seven Ten Lanes is a great place to go with friends or family.

1055 E. 55th St. | 773.347.BOWL (2695)

The Big Easy

  • Southern

The Big Easy offers what you would expect from the name, classic New Orleans Cajun/Creole and Southern barbecue dishes. One thing you won’t expect from their bakery is the all-you-can-eat dessert buffet during weekend brunch. Try out the chocolate cappuccino mouse pie to satisfy your sweet tooth; their house jambalaya, a pan friend chicken breast stuffed with shrimp and andouille jambalaya topped with sweet vidalia onion sauce, for the savory; and one of their 15 microbrews on tap to quench your thirst.

1660 E. 55th St. | 773.643.5500

The Nile

  • Middle Eastern

While the aesthetic may be simple, the food is out of this world at this family-owned, welcoming business. The Nile’s chicken shawerma melts in your mouth, which explains why they have such a loyal customer base.

1611 E. 55th St. | 773.324.9499

Third World Café

  • Dining

This is a no frills organic and fair-trade coffee shop where the wait staff knows you by name. A cozy place to study, meet a friend or read a book.

1301 E. 53rd St. | 773.288.3882

Valois Restaurant

  • American (Traditional)

A Hyde Park and South Side favorite that brings in a mix of both U of C professors and Hyde Park residents. This cafeteria style restaurant is known for their great breakfast menu that is offered until 4pm.

1518 E. 53rd St. | 773.667.0647

Woodlawn Tap

  • American (Traditional)

Around since 1948, this famous eclectic dive bar, known as “Jimmy’s,” brings in a variety of Chicago students and professors as well as locals. Try daily lunch specials for great bite in Hyde Park.

1172 E. 55th St. | 773.643.5516


57th Street Books

  • Bookstores

This 26-year-old bookstore, part of the Seminary Co-op Bookstores, Inc., is a visually colorful nook with endless stacks and a wide collection of children’s and cook books. You won’t find these choices in Barnes & Noble! Accessibility limitations. Please contact site for more information.

1301 E. 57th St. | 773.684.1300

Artisans 21 Gallery

  • Arts & Crafts

Artisans 21 is one of the country’s oldest cooperative art galleries owned and operated by 20 artists and artisans. You’ll discover a variety of one-of-a-kind items offered directly from artist to customer including jewelry, ceramics, wearable textiles, photography, calligraphy, digital art, mosaics, quilting and weaving.

1373 E. 53rd St. | 773.288.7450

Frontline Books & Craft and Crystal Power

  • Books, Mags, Music & Video

Frontline is one of the only two African-American bookstores left in Chicago. This unique shop provides many specialty items that are imported from Africa, such as bath and body products. The book selection ranges in topics from metaphysics to Rastafarian.

5206 S. Harper Ave. | 773.288.7718

Hyde Park Records

  • Music and DVDs

A small record store that features a huge selection of Jazz and Soul hits on vinyl and CDs. Original artwork adorns the walls. Check out the 99 cent bins for a steal. A listening booth is available for browsers.

1377 E. 53rd St. | 773.288.6588

More Shopping

  • Various

For more shopping options, visit the Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce.

5501 S. Everett St. | 773.288.0124

O’Gara & Wilson, Ltd.

  • Bookstores

O’Gara & Wilson, Ltd., Chicago’s oldest used bookstore, has sold antique and used books in Hyde Park since the 1920’s. When you walk into this old shop it is a throwback to the 1940’s with the huge oak bookshelves that hold hundreds of old books that are hand-picked by Mr. Wilson himself. It is a true Hyde Park gem.

1448 E. 57th St. | 773.363.0993

Powell’s Bookstores

  • Bookstores

Buy, sell, or just browse through this 57th street used bookstore that features a number of older collectibles and a wide selection of philosophy and theology books. Also, Powell’s will ship a box of books to international locations.

1501 E. 57th St. | 773.955.7780

Seminary Co-op Bookstore Inc.

  • Books, Mags, Music & Video

The Seminary Co-op Book Store is a truly amazing bookstore that has been around since 1961. Uniquely housed in the basement of the U of C Seminary building, it is considered one of the premier academic bookstores in the world. They ship books all around the world and attract professors from across the United States. Additionally, they host special events with authors. Accessibility limitations. Please contact site for more information.

5757 S. University Ave. | 773.752.4381

The Fair Trader

  • Gifts and Souvenirs

In 2007, three women opened up The Fair Trader, ther first Fair Trade retail shop in Chicago. They sell art, hand woven baskets, accessories, jewelry, linens, stationary and much more. All products are hand made by artisans from around the world, and are certified Fair Trade items.

1623 E. 55th St. | 773.966.5269

Toys et Cetera

  • Toy Store

An “independent educational toy store,” Toys et Cetera has imported and hard to find toys for every age group. With friendly staff members who are good with both kids and parents, Toys et Cetera is a store filled with fun for the whole family. Even the bathroom is painted dark blue and has glow in the dark stars!

1502 E. 55th St. | 773.324.6039

What the Traveler Saw

  • Gifts and Souvenirs

A pleasantly oddball shop that features curios from around the world that “the traveler [Owner Laurel Stradford] saw.” Stradford also leads international group tours.

1508 E. 55th St. | 773.955.5055


Hyde Park & Kenwood

  • Bus,
  • Walking

Experience the history and majesty of Hyde Park and neighboring Kenwood on this Chicago Neighborhood Tour. These communities are home to stately mansions, landmark Frank Lloyd Wright buildings, and many more surprises.

77 E. Randolph St. | 312.742.1190 (TTY: 312.744.2947)


Science Storms

  • Museum Exhibitions & Events

The Museum of Science and Industry’s newest permanent exhibit reveals the extraordinary science behind some of nature’s most powerful and compelling phenomena – tornados, lightning, fire, tsunamis, sunlight, avalanches and atoms in motion.

5700 S. Lake Shore Dr. | 773.684.1414

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