One thing i really liked about central city of Chicago is the river. The greeniest I've ever seen. I had a good view of it from our hotel window. Lots of opportunites getting on a boat and ride down it.
After reading about different tours, we decided to go with Chicago Architecture Foundation 1.5 hours river cruise on Saturday.
I can`t say I loved it. First of all, with 77 buildings to mention and only 1.5 hours to do so, our tour guide (volunteer docent from Chicago Architecture Foundation) had to point and speak really fast using a lot of names, dates, architecture terms.. When I tried to follow her, my head started to spin and the joy of slow floating on the river was lost.
So I stopped listening and started to just randomly look at the buildings we were passing.. She did mention some interesting facts but most of the time it was just: 'This building was built in xxxx, by Xxxx, in xxxx style...'
- Dress a bit warmer, cause there is a pretty cold wind blowing and at the end of the tour many people were freezing.
- Unless you have a hearing problem, do not sit down next to the speakers (they are located on both sides of the boat, attached to the handrails and very close to people), because they are loud.
- Bring sunglasses - on a sunny day it`s not possible to look up at buildings without them.
PRICE: $28 per person on weekends and holidays but there are additional charges if you buy your tickets online via ticketmaster: convenience charge ($5.75 per ticket), order processing fee ($3.75 per order) and tax. Also, you may pay $2.50 and print out your tickets or choose a free Will Call and pick them up at the place.
Ended up paying $72 for two people.
I enjoyed my 90-minute boat ride so much, that I also made an album on my cruise. By all means read what I have below and my pictures here. Then click on the link below to take you to that album. I have one album on the cruise in general and another on the locks. They both have links to bring you back here!
The boat ride sailed through the river and then entered Lake Michigan. The travelogue album pictures are taken on the lake. I really enjoyed the 90-minute ride. It really shows the city from a new perspective. We enjoyed travelling through the river and the lake and the locks between them.
Everything was nice, even the guide was a pleasure. Ofcourse, with each section we are limited with space for pictures and commentary, that is why I use the above links for more.
Click here to return to my Chicago Homepage.
Yeah, one more boat tour tip which, since Chicago's built on water is quite natural. See America's largest building on a boat tour. You get some really good views of the building, different views too. You really are looking up at the tower when you see it from the Chicago River.
Day or night, Chicago's majestic skyline and beautiful buildings are all waiting for you - especially on a boat tour. A "must do" when in Chicago.
This view of the river is looking west towards the area known as River North [near the Merchandise Mart].
The best way to see the river is from a boat -- I'd recommend the Chicago Architecture Foundation tours.
Chicago River made Chicago Famous! it is one of the boundaries of the famous Chicago Loop and a river tour of the different bridges and architectural Landmarks of Chicago is a must for visitors coupled with a lake michigan tour. Chicago is also very much defined by water, with the Chicago River flowing straight through the heart of the city and into Lake Michigan. The course of the river also makes it a sightseeing route, with river cruises enabling visitors to take in some of the city's sights from the vantage point of a smooth boat ride and many tour companies offer a 90 minute to a 2 hour river cruise coupled with a lake michigan cruise both during day time and night time.
Every St. Patrick's Day (or weekend in proximity), the Plumbers Union, Local 130 works a miracle by turning the Chicago River a splendid Irish Green. The technique remains a secret, but thousands will turn out along the St. Patrick's Parade route to see it happen. We caught a glimpse from our tour bus - the photo may be blurry, but you can definitely see it is GREEN!
The Chicago River winds its way through the heart of the city before entering Lake Michigan. There are numerous boat trips that you can take on it. I went on the Chicago Architecture Federation River Cruise. This boat trip with a commentary gave you a close up view of the cities buildings from a different angle. Walking along the riverside also gives you spectacular views of the city and many photo opportunities.
If you have the time then spend a couple of hours taking a tour of the Chicago river and the Lake... You can take the tour boats from either the Navy Pier or from underneath the bridge at Michigan Ave and Wacker... literally in the middle of the city ... right next to the Wrigley building !!! Can't miss them from late spring to late summer... I have taken several companies but it seems that Wendella boat tours have the best prices and tours.. $ 23 per person. Check there websites for times....
We enjoyed the boat tour along the river that also went out on Lake Michigan. The trip is about an hour and a half. The cost is $24 per adult. You get some great photo ops of the city.
The tour guide points out many of the buildings in the skyline and tells a bit about them.
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