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Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady

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Chicago, United States
Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady

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Non-refundable
You will not receive a refund if you cancel. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon1 hour 30 minutes  (approx.)
iconOffered in: English

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Overview

Enjoy a quintessential Chicago experience when you go on an architecture-themed river tour. Pick from multiple convenient start times, and board your vessel—the Lady Liberty—directly from the Chicago Riverwalk. Your trained docent guides will give you a rich introduction to the Windy City’s history, key landmarks, and architectural highlights—and you can spy landmarks like the Marina City towers and Navy Pier from the water’s edge.
  • See a new perspective on the Windy City when you sail the Chicago River
  • Multiple departure times are available to suit your schedule
  • Discover key Chicago landmarks like Navy Pier and Marina City
  • Learn all about the city’s highlights and heritage from your docent guide
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Live commentary on board
Local guide (docents)
River sightseeing cruise
Drinks & light snacks (available to purchase)
Storage for luggage
112 E Wacker Dr , 112 E Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60601, USA

On Chicago's Riverwalk at Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive. Please use 112 E. Wacker for GPS navigation. Look for our blue awning at street level on the southeast corner of the Michigan Avenue Bridge at Wacker Drive.

This activity will end right where it started.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Your tickets will be held at the dockside box office for collection on the day of the cruise
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
  • Not recommended for children younger than 12 years
  • Routes, specific vessels, and schedules are subject to change without notice
  • All seating is General Admission. Boarding is on a first come, first serve basis
  • Most departures wheelchair accessible, please advise at time of booking if wheelchair assistance is required
  • Operates in all weather conditions, please dress appropriately
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
  • Most travelers can participate
  • Pets are not allowed
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 250 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Chicago Architecture Foundation & Chicago's First Lady Cruises
This experience is non-refundable and cannot be changed for any reason. If you cancel or ask for an amendment, the amount you paid will not be refunded.

    Learn more about cancellations.

    The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
    Q:
    Where is the departure point for the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:The cruise departs from the scenic dockside along Chicago’s Riverwalk; 3 blocks north of Millennium Park and steps from The Magnificent Mile. The entrance to the Riverwalk dock is street level on the northeast corner of Michigan Ave. and Wacker Dr.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    Is there parking available for the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:The nearest parking facility is LAZ Parkins Garage at 111 E Wacker Dr. This garage is directly across the street from the stairway to the dock and next door to the Chicago Architecture Center. There is a fee for parking.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    How early should I arrive for my Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your cruise departure time - allow extra time in summer!
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    What should I bring with me on the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:Bring your sunglasses, cap, or visor, as the sun can interfere with your view of the buildings.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    Can I purchase food/drinks while onboard the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:Yes - there is a full bar available onboard.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    Is the seating assigned during the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:No - All seating is general admission. While seat numbers are printed on the tickets, you can ignore these as they are not valid.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    Are there restrooms available during the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:Yes, all the boats have restrooms onboard. Please note: the restrooms close 15 minutes before the end of the tour for safety reasons.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    Can I bring luggage with me on the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:Due to security reasons, luggage cannot be brought on board. There is not an area to store your luggage dockside either. Please leave your luggage at your hotel.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    Can I bring a stroller with me on the Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:Yes, you can bring a stroller onboard. Children must be removed from strollers before boarding. Strollers will be folded and stored in the salon during the cruise.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    What happens if it rains on the date of my Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:All sailings go out rain or shine. All the boats have two levels – the top deck is open-air, and the lower deck is an enclosed, climate-controlled salon. Each salon is surrounded by large windows so you can stay comfortable while taking in the views.
    Apr 2021
    Q:
    What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

    • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
    • Face masks required for guides in public areas
    See all safety measures taken by Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady.
    Q:
    What is the policy on sanitization during Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:The policies on sanitization are:

    • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
    • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
    See all safety measures taken by Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady.
    Q:
    What is the social distancing policy during Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady?
    A:The policy on social distancing is:

    • Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
    See all safety measures taken by Chicago Architecture Center River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady.

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    Traveler Tips


    • "It is difficult to hear the tour guide so you need to get there early and sit close to the guide." See review
    • "Upstairs seating is plenty but don't forget your hats and sunscreen if you visit during summer." See review
    • "However, in the event of rain, sitting in the saloon is a less satisfactory experience." See review

    Reviews by Viator travelers.  We perform checks on reviews

    Reviews

    5.0
    star-5
    782 Reviews

    Reviews by Viator travelers

    We perform checks on reviews

    Showing 1-10 of 782 reviews
    star-5
    Magnificent tour.
    Martha_M
    , Aug 2022
    Excelent experience. Truly enjoyed the views and the stories and descriptions by the docent. Shared the tour with a friend from Argentina.
    star-5
    Very kind crew, very knowledgeable guide, very enjoyable time
    Jan_E
    , Aug 2022
    Very kind crew. Very knowledgeable guide. Very enjoyable time. We liked it a lot and recommend this tour to anybody interested in architecture.
    star-5
    An unforgettable beautiful experience
    dalleynedettmers
    , Aug 2022
    The guide‘s explanation of the buildings and architectural styles. He was very knowledgeable and extremely professional. The boat ride was soothing and very relaxing. I shall definitely take this trip again should I return to Chicago
    star-5
    Highly recommend
    Marcialee_L
    , Aug 2022
    Our tour guide Tim did an excellent job providing fascinating facts about Chicago history and architecture in an engaging and pleasant presentation.
    star-5
    Fantastic start to a day of sightseeing in Chicago
    Patricia_A
    , Aug 2022
    A fantastic activity - the docent from the Architectural Center was informative snd fun and the river boat staffed and driven well!
    star-5
    Great day on the river...
    Matt_M
    , Aug 2022
    Great day on the river with the family. Guide was informative and view of the city was impeccable. Would highly recommend this.
    star-5
    Great tour
    Ben_S
    , Aug 2022
    Kathy and the crew were great. Very informative, clean bathroom, nice bar for water and drinks. Look forward to another
    star-5
    Educating beautiful experience
    Sandy_R
    , Aug 2022
    A lot of insights into the architectural background of Chicago. Guide had a pleasant way to tell Chicagos story.
    star-5
    This is a “Must Do” While in ChiTown!
    Amy_E
    , Jul 2022
    We had a wonderful time. Our docent was terrific. The tour was very informative. We appreciated getting a different perspective of the city from the river.
    star-5
    Highly recommended!
    Natalia_P
    , Jul 2022
    I highly recommend this tour!!! Our guide was so knowledgeable. He know a ton of history about the buildings. A+A+A+
    star-3
    The sign says "not...
    Darric_W
    , Jul 2022
    The sign says "not recommended for 12 and under". Heed the advice. My kids were not enthused. Now - for adults that have an interest in history about the city and buildings it is great.
    star-5
    Last scheduled trip to Chicago.
    Hayward_H
    , Jul 2022
    Mart photo is special, for 22 years I have worked a trade show twice a year in the corner windows on 15th floor. I have never seen that showroom from this perspective:-)
    star-5
    Wonderful tour with a fantastic tour guide!
    Ronald_S
    , Jul 2022
    Our docent, Russ, was absolutely fantastic. He made the day! His knowledge and enthusiasm were just wonderful. We loved him.
    star-5
    Great tour
    Russ_B
    , Jul 2022
    Great mini history lesson on development of Chicago. Most enjoyable. Good value for the money spent. Tour guide was great.
    star-5
    The essential Chicago experience
    DrHoward_G
    , Jul 2022
    Folks have been telling me to do the architecture boat tour ever since I moved to Chicago, saying it was a highlight of the Chicago experience and they were right! Chicago's First Lady, part of the Chicago Architecture Foundation, is the absolute bet way to do it. The docent we had was knowledgeable, charming and funny. The ship is comfortable and the cruise is just the right length. So much has changed in Chicago architecture over the years and the tour was the perfect way to see how it all fits together.
    star-5
    Bob from the Architecture...
    Ali_M
    , Jul 2022
    Bob from the Architecture society was a fantastic and informative guide! Would highly recommend this tour!
    1 traveler found this review helpful
    star-5
    Beautiful day for a cruise!
    Dina_M
    , Jul 2022
    Great tour! Bob was very knowledgeable and fun. The architecture is incredible as well as the history. The river was stunning and it was a beautiful day. Wear sunscreen and bring a hat, it can get a little toasty (July).
    star-5
    Tour is fascinating and...
    Ann_R
    , Jul 2022
    Tour is fascinating and beautiful. Docent was great. This is my second time doing the tour, and I look forward to doing it again.
    star-5
    Well worth the time...highly recommend!
    Todd_H
    , Jul 2022
    Great information and awesome crew. I look forward to my next trip out and another cruise on the rivers.
    star-5
    Wonderful way to see the city and learn it's history all while.enjoykng the fresh air and being on s boat.
    Heather_K
    , Jul 2022
    Great weather for a river cruise that gave us excellent views of the skyline and walked us through the history and architecture of the city. Docent Bill was a wonderful your guide with a health of interesting and accurate knowledge!

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