The hottest tourist attraction in Illinois is a hole in Chicago. It's not a golf hole, it's a hole in a sidewalk. How the hole got there is the best thing you'll see today.

Most Popular Tourist Attractions in Illinois

No matter where you search online for the 'most popular attractions in Illinois', you'll end up with a list that looks similar to this list below, with zero mention of the Illinois attraction that's getting all the talk lately.

  • Millennium Park (Chicago): Home to the iconic "Cloud Gate" sculpture, also known as "The Bean."
  • Navy Pier (Chicago): A historic pier featuring shops, restaurants, and attractions like the Centennial Wheel.
  • Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago): A world-renowned art museum with an extensive collection.
  • Willis Tower Skydeck (Chicago): Offers breathtaking views of the city from one of the tallest buildings in the world.
  • Lincoln Park Zoo (Chicago): A free zoo in the heart of Chicago.
  • Shedd Aquarium (Chicago): One of the largest indoor aquariums in the world.
  • Field Museum of Natural History (Chicago): Known for its extensive exhibits on natural history.
  • Chicago Riverwalk (Chicago): A scenic path along the Chicago River with parks, cafes, and public art.
  • The Magnificent Mile (Chicago): A famous shopping district with upscale shops and boutiques.
  • Starved Rock State Park (Oglesby): Offers hiking trails, waterfalls, and stunning views.
  • Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (Springfield): Dedicated to the life and legacy of Abraham Lincoln.
  • Anderson Japanese Gardens (Rockford): A peaceful Japanese garden featuring ponds, streams, and traditional architecture.
  • Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site (Collinsville): Preserves the largest pre-Columbian Native American city north of Mexico.
  • Galena Historic District (Galena): A well-preserved 19th-century town with historic architecture and shops.
  • Route 66: Historic Route (Various locations): A legendary highway with iconic roadside attractions.
  • Illinois State Capitol (Springfield): The seat of the Illinois General Assembly and a historic government building.
  • Illinois State Museum (Springfield): Showcases exhibits on the state's natural and cultural history.
  • Theater District (Chicago): Home to several theaters, including the famous Chicago Theatre.
  • Garden of the Gods (Herod): A stunning natural area known for its unique rock formations.
  • Lincoln Home National Historic Site (Springfield): The preserved home of Abraham Lincoln and his family.

Those are all fantastic places to visit, but not Illinois' most popular right now. The most popular attraction really is just a hole. A hole in a sidewalk

A recent photo of this hole was shared on X (formerly Twitter) and in just a few days it racked up close to 5 million views.

Most Popular Tourist Attraction in Illinois

What makes any attraction famous is often how it came to be. Was it man-made or created by nature?

This attraction (this hole) was partially man-made and the rest was made by just one animal.

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A rat.

The most rat-infested city in America is home to the hottest tourist destination of 2024,

The Chicago Rat Hole

According to, the rat hole was 'created' more than a decade ago when a rat is believed to have fallen from above into the wet concrete.

The splattered rat left its forever mark outside 1918 West Roscoe Street in North Side, Chicago's Roscoe Village neighborhood.

Here's the X post that went viral.

Visitors to the Chicago Rat Hole have even brought flowers.

MORE: 5 Tips To Prevent Mice, Rats from Keeping Warm in Illinois Homes

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Gallery Credit: Steve Shannon

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