Chicago Tours and Cruises
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Chicago Architectural Cruise - 1 to 19 Persons - Weekends and Holidays
Chicago Architecture Tours
The Chicago Architectural Cruise takes you on a one-hour cruise of the historic Chicago River as your guide showcases over 40 landmarks of modern American architecture.
Join us on an exciting journey as we tour the Chicago River and its architectural landmarks. Our professional guides will recount the dramatic story of Chicago's rise from the Great Fire of 1871 to become the home of the skyscraper and the cradle of modern American architecture. Along the one-hour route, you will see buildings by world-famous architects including Mies van der Rohe, Skidmore Owings & Merrill, and Helmut Jahn. Our complimentary map and guide is yours to keep as a souvenir of your cruise.
Our tour boards at Navy Pier. The Chicago Architectural Cruise goes down the main branch of the Chicago River, up the north branch to the East Bank Club, and then south past Willis Tower to the old Post Office Building.
The cruise is led by a knowledgeable professional in the architecture field who will provide detailed descriptions of more than 40 buildings seen on the river cruise.
There are no refunds. All sales are final.
Change Fee Policy: If changes are allowed on a tour or activity, a $20.00 per reservation change fee will be applied for any change to a reservation. Please note that some tours and activities do not allow any changes. Date changes can be made only if we can confirm availability on the new date. While we cannot guarantee any changes can be made, all change requests must be submitted a minimum of 24 hours prior to the tour departure and must be handled on an individual basis through our Reservations Center.
Our Architecture Cruises begin their regular season in April, but usually are available (depending on weather) in late March. The regular schedule is through October each year, but usually are available (depending on weather) in November as well. Click on the Availability button beneath the Buy Button to see the current schedule and availability. PLEASE NOTE: Schedules are subject to change, based on weather and customer traffic.
The Forest of Skyscrapers lining the Chicago River had its roots in 1770 in the low-lying prairie river area the Indians called "Chicagou," which means smelly onion patch.
Two major events helped shape the architectural history of the city: balloon frame construction and the famous Chicago fire. The unique Chicago invention in the 1830's of balloon frame construction was a method of building in sections that let homes be assempled quickly. This innovative concept was used to build towns from Chicago across the nation to the West Coast.
On the Chicago Architectural Cruise, you will see and learn about the following landmarks:
Navy Pier, Lake Point Tower, Aon Tower, John Hancock Center, Cityfront Center, Illinois Center, NBC Tower, Chicago Tribune Tower, 360 North Michigan, 333 North Michigan, 401 North Michigan, Wrigley Building, 35 East Wacker, Leo Burnett Building, IBM Building, Marina City, R.R. 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 and USG Building, Riverside Plaza, Citicorp Center, Willis Tower, Chicago Board of Trade, Central U.S. Post Office, U.S. Post Office Central Processing and Distribution Center, 311 South Wacker, and River City.
You will see over 40 buildings, learn about the achitects and architecture, and hear the history of this fascinating city.
All boats have full rest rooms, double deck seating, and a full bar. For your convenience, all of our tour boats have easy boarding ramps and are accessible to people with disabilities. However, only the upper decks of our Architecture Cruise boats are handicap accessible. The vessels are not equipped with elevators - therefore restrooms, which are located on the lower deck, are not accessible to those in wheelchairs. Additionally the upper decks of our boat are open and provide no protection from the elements. For those who would like to bring their dogs along, leashed dogs are welcome onboard the cruise.
These rates are for parties of 1 to 19 persons on Weekends and Holidays only. All prices include taxes. All rates and schedules are subject to change. This tour does not offer hotel pick-up. Child rate applies to children ages 3 to 12. Please reserve online or call us toll-free at 888-881-3284.
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