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Chicago Architecture Tour

Book A Guided Walking Tour

Architecture Tour

Our Chicago Architecture Tour will lead you along the Riverwalk through the history of the industrial landscape that is home to the world’s first skyscraper
Schedule: 1-2 A Week
Start Time: 10am
Tour Language: English
Duration: 2 Hours
View Highlights

Architecture Tour Highlights

  • Willis/Sears Tower
  • CME Center (the exchange)
  • Civic Opera Building
  • N. Riverside Plaza
  • 33 West Wacker
  • Merchandise Mart
  • Trump Tower
  • Leo Burnett Building
  • NBC Tower
  • Marina City
  • 35 East Wacker Drive
  • Tribune Tower
  • Crain Communications Center
  • Cloudgate (actual title of “the bean”)
  • Crown Fountain
  • 1 W Washington (Atwood Café/Hotel Burnham)

Our Chicago Architecture Tour will lead you along the Riverwalk and through the history of the industrial landscape that is home to the world’s first skyscraper. Beginning at the country’s second tallest building, the former Sears Tower, and concluding at Frank Ghery’s Pritzker pavilion and Crown Fountain in Millennium Park, this tour will take you along the river and to the waterfront through a path of historically monumental and internationally recognized works of architecture in the downtown loop of Chicago.

This tour will transpose the skyline into a thorough history of Chicago and its people. Guests will discover a wide range of works by streetlight, including one the few remaining buildings designed by the father of urban geography, Louis Sullivan and the Modernist pioneer Mies Van der Rohe. The tour is colored with the personal stories, lore and legends of the turn of the century’s most celebrated and often scandalous architects including the infamous Frank Lloyd Wright. Learn about the trauma of the Chicago fire and how it has left its mark even on Chicago’s most contemporary architecture. Experience all of Chicago’s monuments to the fine arts, such as the Chicago Civic Opera House and the Chicago Theatre. This is a night tour that concludes after dark in the lively Millennium between Michigan Avenue and Lake Michigan.

Sights we cover on the Chicago Architecture Tour:

  • Willis/Sears Tower
  • CME Center (the exchange)
  • Civic Opera Building
  • N. Riverside Plaza
  • 33 West Wacker
  • Merchandise Mart
  • Trump Tower
  • Leo Burnett Building
  • NBC Tower
  • Marina City
  • 35 East Wacker Drive
  • Tribune Tower
  • Crain Communications Center
  • Cloudgate (actual title of “the bean”)
  • Crown Fountain
  • 1 W Washington (Atwood Café/Hotel Burnham)
Tour information

Reservations: REQUIRED. Click here to reserve. Groups of 6 or more must contact us before booking.

Where: Tour departs from underneath the awning of the Willis (Sears) Tower (image), 232 South Franklin Street (map).   Look for your guide with the Free Tours by Foot logo!

Duration: Tour lasts approx. 2 hours. Total walking is just over one mile (1.6km).

When: This tour is offered as a private option only.

Cost: This tour is free to take, and you get to decide what, if anything, the tour was worth when it's done. A name-your-own-price tour is a tour for anyone's budget.

And much, much more

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