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90-Minute Chicago River Architecture Tour

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Chicago, United States
90-Minute Chicago River Architecture Tour
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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon1 hour 30 minutes  (approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English and 2 more

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Overview

Discover the architectural gems of the Windy City from an ideal vantage point on a cruise down the Chicago River. Offered several times throughout the day, it’s easy to fit the leisurely excursion into your itinerary. Covering more than 130 years of architectural history, the tour is the perfect opportunity to see a huge area of the city without the hassle of taxis and public transit.
  • Enjoy unobstructed views of the city’s top attractions
  • Gain an in-depth understanding of local architecture
  • See the sights of Chicago without getting worn out
  • Take the tour when it’s convenient for you
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Indoor and outdoor seating available (indoor is climate controlled)
Narrated tour on board by professionally trained tour guide.
Alcoholic Beverages
400 N Michigan Ave , 400 N Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611, USA

Depart and return to Wendella's Michigan Avenue Docks located in the heart of Chicago's Magnificent Mile, at the base of the Wrigley Building. Look for the blue "Wendella" awning over the dock staircase. Descend the stairs to the river-level dock.

This activity will end right where it started.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Weapons prohibited by US Coast Guard
  • Outside alcohol is prohibited
  • All bags subject to search
  • Near public transportation
  • Increased sanitation
  • Arrive 15-30 Minutes prior to your departure time.
  • Contact tour operator for wheelchair & ADA access
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 300 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Wendella Tours & Cruises
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
Where do we meet for the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:We are located at 400 N Michigan Avenue at the historic Wrigley Building. Wendella has four dock locations that extend west from the Michigan Avenue (DuSable) Bridge to Wabash Avenue.
Apr 2021
Q:
Is there parking available for the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:There are two parking garages near the departure point: AMA Plaza parking at 401 N. State Street and InterPark Public Parking at 430 N. Rush St. (Parking fees apply at both locations.)
Apr 2021
Q:
Is the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour handicap accessible?
A:We operate 3 boats with wheelchair lifts between decks. All our boats can accommodate wheelchairs & have toilets that are ADA compliant. For guests who are deaf or hard of hearing, a written script of the narration is available at the ticket office.
Apr 2021
Q:
Can I bring my service animal with me on the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:A service animal is a dog that is trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability. Pets and dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA and are not allowed.
Apr 2021
Q:
Are there restrooms available on board the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:Yes. Restrooms are located on the lower deck of each vessel; changing tables are also available in each restroom.
Apr 2021
Q:
How early should I arrive for the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:Boarding begins 15-30 minutes prior to the scheduled departure time.
Apr 2021
Q:
Does the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour operate in bad weather?
A:Our cruises depart rain or shine. Our vessels include sheltered areas and climate-controlled lounges. Ponchos are available for purchase onboard. However, in cases of severe weather where the cruise must be canceled, all guests will be refunded.
Apr 2021
Q:
Is the boat climate controlled during the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:Most of our vessels feature an enclosed climate-controlled lounge on the lower deck with speakers to hear the tour guide’s narration. If you have a concern about whether your vessel has an interior lounge, please call the phone number on your ticket.
Apr 2021
Q:
Is food/drink available during the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:A full-service bar is available onboard. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, as well as an assortment of snacks, are available for purchase. Bar sales are credit cards only. No cash purchases.
Apr 2021
Q:
Can I store my luggage during the 90-min Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:There is no storage area on our dock, but guests may bring their luggage aboard keeping in mind it is subject to inspection.
Apr 2021
Q:
What is the policy on sanitization during 90-Minute Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
See all safety measures taken by 90-Minute Chicago River Architecture Tour.
Q:
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during 90-Minute Chicago River Architecture Tour?
A:The policy on staff health & safety is:

  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
See all safety measures taken by 90-Minute Chicago River Architecture Tour.

Traveler Photos

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Traveler Tips


  • "Call ahead if you have mobility issues as there are a lot of stairs to get to the boat." See review
  • "If you planning during the winter, a hat and gloves are on the must do list." See review
  • "I highly recommend this tour to all visitors to Chicago." See review

Reviews by Viator travelers.  We perform checks on reviews

Reviews

4.5
star-4.5
2,196 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

We perform checks on reviews

Showing 1-10 of 2,196 reviews
star-5
Even my blind friend LOVED this remarkable tour!!!
Kinney_d
, Aug 2022
Molly captivated us with dynamic story after story, constructing the remarkable edifices of Chicago’s majestic sky line, structure by structure, story by story. She is a masterful tour guide.
star-5
Great views of Chicago
Caroline_G
, Aug 2022
Really enjoyed the view and the knowledge of our tour guide. Would highly recommend going on this tour.
star-5
This is very very and...
Jeounghun_L
, Aug 2022
This is very very and very interesting tour. I can recommend this tour. My friend and I were satisfied.
star-3
Did this trip in October...
Sandy_R
, Aug 2022
Did this trip in October 2021, the young guide was not only knowledgeable but entertaining! Our guide was knowledgeable however did not connect with the audience.
star-5
Riverfront boat ride
Conni_B
, Aug 2022
The History the weather lovely area to learn about #CHICAGO I love to upload my travels #thecmbshowutube I am renewed with all the information. I will return with new found knowledge.
star-5
Excellent Tour
William_S
, Aug 2022
The Tour Guide was outstanding. He had excellent knowledge of the city and a great personality. The boat ride was really fun as well
star-5
Raining but awesome!
Shalimar_W
, Aug 2022
We had a great time! It was raining and misty but it made the trip really cool. The buildings were submerged in a misty fog super pretty!
star-5
Great Experience!
THOMAS_C
, Aug 2022
Great experience. Kenneth the tour guide was amazing! Great info about so many buildings, Chicago history, etc. Highly recommend!
star-5
Chicago River Architecture Tour is a must for visitors to the city.
marion_s
, Aug 2022
The narrator of our trip was excellent. It was an incredibly hot day but he never wavered. His commentary was delivered with panache and humour.
star-4
it was a great trip,...
Iris_U
, Aug 2022
it was a great trip, especially for first timers to the city however where we were standing we were unable to hear anything.
star-5
Watching all the...
Andrea_Z
, Aug 2022
Watching all the wonderful skyscraper from the river. Nice description and history behind each building.
star-4
Beautiful buildings
Pamela_Y
, Aug 2022
Jolly fine tour of Chicago buildings. Weather great and would recommend to other tourists visiting Chicago
star-5
Great last minute outing
K_M
, Aug 2022
The entire tour was fun and informative! The tour guide spoke about the area where Batman(I forget which one) was filmed, as well as what happened to the construction of the Spiral Tower.I would take the tour again!
star-1
NOT ADA Compliant!!!
Lisa_N
, Aug 2022
Booked this experience the day before our arrival in Chicago. Drove around for more than an hour trying to find handicap accessibility to get to the boat. Called the tour company and after being on hold for 15 minutes was told that there was no handicap accessibility and that "she didn't know what to tell us that we should have left earlier". At this point if we could have found handicap accessibility we still had 1/2 hour to get to the boat. When I asked about ADA compliance I was told that "the boat" was but that was it. Definitely not ADA compliant!!! Called Viator several times and it was like talking to a wall. They spoke with the tour company and they told them that we were late for the boat. Viator told me it states on their WEBSITE, not the specific page of the activity I booked that it wasn't handicap accessible. What??? Everyone had a different story. Unbelievably horrible experience and I will definitely be checking into the ADA violations regarding this experience. Will never use this company again, including Tripadvisor, which is their parent company. ADA is a federal law, how in this day and age can this happen?
star-5
Chicago Boat Ride
Ganganithi_S
, Aug 2022
Superb experience. The guide Lori was exceptional with her wealth of Chicago history, architecture build and her articulation to the tourists.
star-5
Fabulous time in the river led by John
Dori_B
, Aug 2022
john was a great guide! Informative and funny and self-deprecating and working hard to engage with the audience
star-5
Architecture Tour
Eduardo_G
, Aug 2022
Great tour! Amazing way to view the river walk area and amazing buildings. Very knowledgeable your guide.
star-4
good
Mariana_C
, Aug 2022
Good thing to do while in chicago. The person giving the explanation of the buildings was great! The only thing is that there were a lot of people in the boat. too crowded.
star-5
John did a fabulous job...
Nasim_A
, Aug 2022
John did a fabulous job in describing all the architecture. He talked clearly and knew so much about Chicago
star-4
Sit on Starboard side of boat!
Kyle_P
, Aug 2022
You should sit on the starboard side of the boat. That's the only side they talk about. I get that there's so much to talk about but having to sit on the port side because the ship gets so full made it kind of guideless.

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