5 star rating: Highly Recommended 818 Reviews

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  • Location: Chicago, Illinois
  • Duration:  75 minutes (approx.)

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Experience one of the world’s most beautiful cities on a 75-minute cruise on the historic Chicago River. On this architecture cruise, head down the main branch of the Chicago River, up the north branch to the East Bank Club, and then south past Willis Tower (Sears Tower) to the old Post Office Building. Take in magnificent city skyline views as you see more than 40 notable buildings, including the John Hancock Center and the Wrigley Building, and learn about their distinctive architecture from your onboard guide, an expert in architecture.

Highlights

  • Architecture cruise down the historic Chicago River
  • Discover all three branches of the Chicago River with your guide, an expert in architecture
  • Enjoy the best vantage point to admire the distinct city skyline and admire world-famous architecture
  • See more than 40 buildings including the John Hancock Center, the Wrigley Building and the Aon Center
  • Discover the major events that helped shape the architectural history of Chicago

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Chicago Architecture River Cruise

Architecture River Cruise in Chicago

Take an architecture cruise down the Chicago River and learn about the city’s famed architecture from your knowledgeable guide. Board your tour at Navy Pier for an exciting journey that takes you down all three branches of the historic Chicago River and past impressive architectural landmarks.

Pass by more than 40 distinctive buildings on your cruise including the John Hancock Center, the Wrigley Building, the Aon Center, Willis Tower (Sears Tower), the IBM Building and more. Your guide, an expert in architecture, will recount the two major events that helped shape the architectural history of the city. Learn about how the invention of balloon-frame construction revolutionized how homes were built, and hear the dramatic story of Chicago's rise from the Great Fire of 1871. Both of these milestones led Chicago to become one of the cradles of modern American architecture.

Along the scenic 75-minute route, see buildings by world-famous architects including Mies van der Rohe, Helmut Jahn and Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM). This river tour provides the best advantage point to admire the distinct city skyline and marvel at world-famous architecture while learning about Chicago's fascinating history.

For a full list of Chicago architectural wonders seen on this tour, see the Itinerary section below.

Itinerary

Itinerary: On the Chicago architecture cruise, you will see and learn about the following landmarks:
  • Navy Pier
  • Lake Point Tower
  • Aon Center
  • John Hancock Center
  • Cityfront Center
  • Illinois Center
  • NBC Tower
  • Chicago Tribune Tower
  • London Guarantee Building333 North Michigan Building
  • 401 North Michigan
  • Wrigley Building
  • 35 East Wacker
  • Leo Burnett Building
  • IBM Building
  • Marina City
  • • RR Donnelley Center
  • • LaSalle-Wacker Building
  • • 222 North LaSalle
  • • Central Office Building
  • Merchandise Mart
  • 333 West Wacker, Montgomery Ward Complex
  • River Cottages, Merchandise Mart
  • Fulton House
  • 225 West Wacker
  • Boeing World Headquarters
  • Civic Opera Building
  • AT&T Corporate Center
  • USG Building
  • Riverside Plaza
  • Citicorp Center
  • Willis Tower (Sears Tower)
  • Chicago Board of Trade
  • Central US Post Office
  • US Post Office Central Processing and Distribution Center
  • 311 South Wacker
  • River City

Customer Reviews

Eric C
United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

A beautiful way to explore the beauty of Chicago. Seeing the city from the water has always been a favorite of mine and this Architecture River Cruise allowed us to really get a great feel for the city and its varied buildings. Our guide was extremely informative and this was a perfect trip for our 9-hour layover in Chicago.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

The trip was wonderful, with lots of new buildings to see since our last tour. Our tour guide was great and very knowledgeable. It was a very hot day, so that part was a downer! Also the distance to walk from Navy Pier was difficult as we had a disabled party with a cane in our group.

David C
Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

Very informative and combining history of the city with commentary and song at the end. Good use of the time and to get a wider view of Chicago if you have limited time.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

This is a DO NOT MISS tour - fun and very informative - I would do this again upon my return for certain!!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

very informative guide and complete tour is a must do

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

Just Do It

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

My daughter and I enjoyed the tour. I will be back with friends!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

Great tour, exceptional guide. Provided me with a great history of the Chicago river.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

Very good description of all landmarks.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

The trip was awesome.. we had a beautiful day, and the guide was very interesting and well informed. Highly
recommend this trip and the price was the best deal I could find.

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Tour code: 5580ARC

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