On this day: Millennium Park, Chicago

See more from my On This Day series here, where I celebrate travel memories on their trip anniversaries.

On April 8, 2018, I was at Millennium Park in Chicago, USA.

It was our first full day in Chicago. To start off our trip in style, we visited one of the most iconic spots in the Windy City — Millennium Park.

Located in the Loop community area, Millennium Park opened in 2004 as a civic centre and landmark intended to celebrate the third millennium. It spans 24.5 acres near the Lake Michigan shoreline, covering land previously occupied by parkland, rail yards, and parking lots. Since its opening, Millennium Park has grown into the top tourist attraction in the Midwestern United States.

The best known attraction of the park is undoubtedly Cloud Gate. Situated within the AT&T Plaza, Cloud Gate (popularly nicknamed “The Bean” because of its legume-like shape) is a three-story reflective steel sculpture designed by artist Anish Kapoor. It is composed of 168 stainless steel plates welded together; its smooth shape and mirror-like surface were apparently inspired by the appearance of liquid mercury. On the west facing side, visitors can view a reflection of the city skyline, highlighting the historic Michigan Boulevard District.