The City of Chicago


  • 237 square miles of land
  • An estimated 2.7M residents
  • 77 community areas containing more than 100 neighborhoods
  • Over 5,195 restaurants
  • More than 250 theaters, 225 music venues and 200 dance companies
  • 56 museums
  • Over 700 public art works
  • More than 125 art galleries and 20 neighborhood art centers
  • 26 miles of lakefront with an 18.5-mile lakefront path
  • 8,100 acres of green space with 580 parks and 26 beaches
  • 5 citywide music festivals, nearly 50 neighborhood music festivals and 35 neighborhood food festivals
  • Over 30 downtown and neighborhood parades
  • Approximately 369 landmarks and 46 historic districts
  • Over 225 miles of bike lanes and more than 13,000 bike racks
  • Over 3,000 bikes and 300 stations through Divvy bike sharing system
  • 28 CTA bus routes and 8 train routes serving 146 stations
  • 119 hotels with 39,000+ hotel rooms in the Central Business District



  • Chicago was incorporated as a city in 1837.
  • Chicago's first permanent settler — and businessman — was Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, an African-American from what is now Haiti, in 1779. In du Sable's home, which he shared with his Indian wife, the first marriage in Chicago was performed, the first election was held, and the first court handed down justice.
  • The world's first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Company, was built in 1885.
  • The 1893 Columbian Exposition grounds were so strikingly attractive and popular that they launched the so-called ‘City Beautiful' movement, an emphasis on parks, boulevards and other green space, in American city planning.
  • In 1900, Chicago successfully completed a massive and highly innovative engineering project — reversing the flow of the Chicago River so that it emptied into the Mississippi River instead of Lake Michigan. Each year, the Chicago River is dyed green to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.
  • Gwendolyn Brooks became the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize in 1949.
  • The first televised U.S. presidential candidates' debate was broadcast from Chicago's CBS Studios on September 26, 1960, between John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Richard Milhous Nixon.
  • Sen. Carol Moseley Braun became the country's first female African-American U.S. senator in 1992.
  • The atom was first split (leading to the A bomb and nuclear power) under the football stands of Stagg Field at the University of Chicago.
  • Chicago's own Jane Addams, founder of the Hull House, was the first American woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931. The Hull House opened in 1889 to aid Chicago immigrants.
  • The term "Jazz" was coined in Chicago in 1914. The city's native musicians included band leader Benny Goodman and drummer Gene Krupa.



  • The "Historic Route 66" begins in Chicago at Grant Park on Adams Street in front of the Art Institute of Chicago.
  • McCormick Place, Chicago's premier convention center, offers the largest amount of exhibition space in North America (2.6 million square feet).
  • The first Ferris wheel made its debut in Chicago at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition. Today, Navy Pier is home to a 15-story Ferris wheel, modeled after the original one.
  • The Chicago Cultural Center is the first free municipal cultural center in the U.S. and home to the world's largest stained glass Tiffany dome.
  • When it opened in 1991, the Harold Washington Library Center, with approximately 6.5 million books, was the world's largest municipal library.
  • Lincoln Park Zoo, one of only three major free zoos in the country, is one of the country's oldest zoos with an estimated annual attendance of 3.5 million.
  • The Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) is the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere at 110 stories high.
  • The Willis Tower elevators are among the fastest in the world operating as fast as 1,600 feet per minute.
  • Maria Callas made her U.S. debut at the Lyric Opera in 1954.
  • Wrigley Field is the second oldest ballpark in Major League Baseball.



  • Over 52 million people visit Chicago annually.
  • Chicago's nicknames include: The Windy City, City of Big Shoulders, The Second City, and The City That Works.
  • Chicago's downtown area is known as "The Loop." The nickname refers to the area encircled by the elevated (‘L') train tracks.
  • The game of 16-inch softball, played without gloves, was invented in Chicago.
  • Walt Disney was born in Chicago in 1901. He studied drawing at Chicago's McKinley High School and the Institute of Fine Arts.
  • The Twinkie was invented during the Depression by Chicagoan Jimmy Dewar, at the time, manager of Chicago's Continental Baking Company. The dessert was dubbed "Twinkie" after Dewar spotted an ad for Twinkle Toe Shoes. Originally filled with banana cream, but as they became scarce during WWII, vanilla cream was substituted.
  • Frank Sinatra introduced the song, "My Kind of Town (Chicago Is)" in the 1964 Warner Brothers musical "Robin and the Seven Hoods." The song was voted best motion picture song of 1964 by the All American Press Association.
  • The first all-color TV station debuted in Chicago (Channel 5).
  • Chicago has the largest collection of Impressionist paintings outside of Paris.



  • Mail Order Business, 1872
  • Roller Skates, 1884
  • Steel-framed Skyscraper, 1885
  • Elevated Railway, 1892
  • Cracker Jacks, 1893
  • Cafeteria, 1895
  • Car Race, 1895
  • Zipper, 1896
  • Municipal Cultural Center, 1897
  • Window Envelope, 1902
  • Rotary Club, 1905
  • American Nobel Prize-winner, 1907
  • Comprehensive Municipal Plan, 1909
  • U.S. Meat Slicer, 1909
  • Automated Bread Factory, 1910
  • Zoot Suit, 1920s
  • Malted Milkshake, 1922
  • Pinball Game, 1930
  • Planetarium in W. Hemisphere, 1930
  • Hostess Twinkie, 1930
  • All-Star Baseball Game, 1933
  • Blood Bank, 1937
  • Spray Paint, Late 1940s
  • Controlled Atomic Reaction, 1942
  • Daytime TV Soap Opera, 1949


Visa Information


Foreign travelers coming to the United States to conduct temporary business, for example business meetings and consultations, attending conventions and conferences, or negotiating contracts, need visitor visas unless they qualify for entry under the Visa Waiver Program.

Visitor Visa


Generally, a citizen of a foreign country who wishes to enter the United States must first obtain a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay, or an immigrant visa for permanent residence. Visitor visas are nonimmigrant visas for persons who want to enter the United States temporarily for business (visa category B-1), tourism, pleasure or visiting (visa category B-2), or a combination of both purposes (B-1/B-2).


Here are some examples of activities permitted with a visitor visa:

B-1 Visa

  • consult with business associates
  • attend a scientific, educational, professional, or business convention or conference
  • settle an estate
  • negotiate a contract

B-2 Visa

  • tourism
  • vacation (holiday)
  • visit with friends or relatives
  • medical treatment
  • participation in social events hosted by fraternal, social, or service organizations
  • participation by amateurs in musical, sports, or similar events or contests, if not being paid for participating
  • enrollment in a short recreational course of study, not for credit toward a degree (for example, a two-day cooking class while on vacation)

Visa waiver program (VWP)



The Visa Waiver Program (VWP) enables most citizens or nationals of participating countries* to travel to the United States for tourism or business for stays of 90 days or less without first obtaining a visa, when they meet all requirements explained below. Travelers must have a valid Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) approval prior to travel. If you prefer to have a visa in your passport, you may still apply for a visitor (B) visa.


Citizen or National of VWP Designated Country*

Citizens or nationals of the following countries* are currently eligible to travel to the United States under the VWP, unless citizens of one of these countries are also a national of Iraq, Iran, Syria, or Sudan.









San Marino










Czech Republic


South Korea















United Kingdom**


New Zealand



**To be eligible to travel under the VWP, British citizens must have the unrestricted right of permanent abode in England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands, and the Isle of Man.


Each Traveler Must Have Authorization Under ESTA

In order to travel without a visa on the VWP, you must have authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to boarding a U.S. bound air or sea carrier. ESTA is the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) automated web-based system to determine eligibility to travel without a visa to the United States for tourism or business. Visit the ESTA webpage on the CBP website for more information.

Please ensure that you are aware of the visa requirements for your passport type for the USA when planning your trip.
For more information, please visit:



For your accommodation during the forum ChicAfrica 2018 you must book your hotel and pay your accommodation costs. The hotel housing the forum could still have rooms available, and surrounding hotels as well. You are responsible for your accommodation, so make arrangements in time to reserve your room.

However, the ChicAfrica team can facilitate room reservations for a fee, but the payment of your room is entirely at your expense.

Below are some hotel links where you can make your reservations:

  1. Hotel Marriott Chicago Midway       4d19-a255-54ba596febe2
  2. Hotel Hilton GardenInn Chicago Midway
  3. Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Chicago Midway
  4. Hotel Hampton Inn Chicago Midway
  5. Hotel Holiday Inn Express & Suites Chicago Midway
  6. Hotel Hyatt Place Chicago Midway
  7. Hotel Courtyard by Marriott Midway
  8. Hotel Residence Inn Chicago midway
  9. Hotel Holiday Inn Chicago Midway
  10. Hotel Sleep Inn Chicago Midway


Accredited Travel Agency

L`agence Nimbi Voyage, est l`agence agrée par le forum, elle mettra à votre disposition des billets d`avion a des couts réduits afin de faciliter votre participation.

Que fait Nimbi Voyage SA?

Agence de Voyages et de Tourisme très dynamique et efficace vous propose des plans de vols très cool à des tarifs hyper préférentiels !

Hâtez-vous afin de bénéficier des astuces pour agrémenter vos voyages.

Pour nous, votre rêve compte !

Contact : + 226 25362568/ +226 62143191/ +226 78865683



Vous pouvez déjà télécharger les liens suivants pour faciliter vos déplacements à couts réduits une fois à Chicago :




Other important information

How is the weather in Chicago in October?

The weather in Chicago during the month of October is changeable with autumn now in full swing as temperatures are falling, but not yet at those colder winter levels so it is still a good time to visit the nation’s third most populous city.

Early in the month the afternoon temperatures are still pleasant reaching into the upper 60s f (about 20C) with overnight and early morning lows dipping into the upper 40s f (about 9C).  A few days during the early part of this month may see temperatures in the 70s f (21-26C) or even into the lower 80s f (27-28C).

The temperatures will fall as the month progresses with afternoon temperatures dropping into the mid-50s f range (13-14C) and morning lows to near 40f (about 4C) by month’s end.  On about 2-3 of the colder mornings, early risers will see lows at or just below 32f (0C).

Skies can be expected to be clear or partly sunny on about 17-18 days with mostly cloudy conditions likely on 13-14 days.  Rain normally falls on 8-9 days this month, however, significant rainfalls of 0.5 inch (about 13mm) or more occur, on average, only on about 2 days.  Snow can occur in October; however, it is not normally an issue.  Chicago only sees a dusting of snow about once every 5 years and a snowfall of 1 inch or more about once in 10 years.


What to wear in Chicago during October?

It would be best to bring a sweater or two.  Early in the month a sweater may be all you need, however, as the month progresses you may want to add some layers with a medium weight jacket a welcome addition to add to that sweater on the colder days or when touring near the Late Michigan.  

October is a good time to visit the Windy City’s famous neighborhoods. Please visit the site below for some advices on how to benefit from your staying in Chicago.