Architecture Tours

Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise aboard Chicago’s First Lady Cruises

Chicago is legendary for its architecture, and we run the only cruise partnered with the Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF). You’ll appreciate architecture in a new way as your CAF-certified docent/guide offers insights into the history and design of over 50 buildings. Named one of the Top Ten Tours in the U.S. by TripAdvisor, this relaxing 90-minute daily Chicago river tour features open-air rooftop or climate-controlled interior seating, a full service bar aboard each vessel, and is consistently recognized by locals and visitors alike as the best way to see Chicago. A portion of the cruise fee supports architecture education, provided by CAF.

All Chicago architecture boat tours depart from Riverside Gardens on Chicago's Riverwalk at Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive (southeast corner of the Michigan Avenue Bridge). Look for our blue awning. Please arrive 30 minutes prior to departure time. Tickets may not be refunded or exchanged if you miss your boat!

TripAdvisor named the Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise aboard Chicago's First Lady Cruises one of the “Top 10 Tours in the U.S.” See what our reviewers are raving about!

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Discover Chicago’s Legendary Architecture aboard the city’s #1 Tour and TripAdvisor’s “Top 10 Tours in the U.S.”

Tickets

  • Tickets available online through Ticketmaster or in-person at dock
  • $44 per person for daytime tours -Tax included-
  • $46 per person for 7:30p Twilight Tour -Tax included-
  • Each person must have a ticket including infants and children
  • Every ticket is general admission seating
  • Ticket price does not include applicable city tax
  • Tickets may not be refunded or exchanged if you miss your boat. Allow extra time!
  • Choose "Print at Home" or "Mobile Ticketing" for immediate tickets (no need to visit our ticket office). Choose "US Mail" only if you have enough time to receive prior to your visit
  • Select "Will Call" to pick up your tickets at our dockside ticket office. Bring your confirmation number and arrive 30 minutes early to collect your tickets
  • Click here to view our FAQs
Tickets
  • Tickets available online through Ticketmaster or in-person at dock
  • $44 per person for daytime tours -Tax included-
  • $46 per person for 7:30p Twilight Tour -Tax included-
  • Each person must have a ticket including infants and children
  • Every ticket is general admission seating
  • Ticket price does not include applicable city tax
  • Tickets may not be refunded or exchanged if you miss your boat. Allow extra time!
  • Choose "Print at Home" or "Mobile Ticketing" for immediate tickets (no need to visit our ticket office). Choose "US Mail" only if you have enough time to receive prior to your visit
  • Select "Will Call" to pick up your tickets at our dockside ticket office. Bring your confirmation number and arrive 30 minutes early to collect your tickets
  • Click here to view our FAQs

Tour Details & Tips

  • 2016 Cruising Season: April 2nd through November 20th
  • Tour is 90 minutes
  • Advance reservations highly recommended
  • Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your cruise departure time. Allow extra time in summer! Guests board 15 minutes before departure time
  • If you choose a mid-day departure, please be sure to wear sunglasses, visor, or a cap as the sun can interfere with your view of the buildings
  • Cruises depart rain or shine
  • Tour route subject to change without notice
  • Discounted parking is located directly above us at street level at 111 E. Wacker Dr
  • Visit our Location page for full travel and parking details

Amenities & Accessibility

  • Each vessel features an open-air upper deck and a climate-controlled interior salon for guest comfort. Every guest is guaranteed an outdoor seat; indoor seating optional
  • A full-service bar and snack bar are available onboard
  • Well-appointed restrooms onboard each vessel
  • Children must be removed from strollers prior to boarding. Strollers will be folded and stored in salon during cruise
  • Guests with limited mobility: please see our Location page for drop-off location and directions. Please present yourself to our staff if you prefer early boarding
Tour Details & Tips
  • 2016 Cruising Season: April 2nd through November 20th
  • Tour is 90 minutes
  • Advance reservations highly recommended
  • Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your cruise departure time. Allow extra time in summer! Guests board 15 minutes before departure time
  • If you choose a mid-day departure, please be sure to wear sunglasses, visor, or a cap as the sun can interfere with your view of the buildings
  • Cruises depart rain or shine
  • Tour route subject to change without notice
  • Discounted parking is located directly above us at street level at 111 E. Wacker Dr
  • Visit our Location page for full travel and parking details
Amenities & Accessibility
  • Each vessel features an open-air upper deck and a climate-controlled interior salon for guest comfort. Every guest is guaranteed an outdoor seat; indoor seating optional
  • A full-service bar and snack bar are available onboard
  • Well-appointed restrooms onboard each vessel
  • Children must be removed from strollers prior to boarding. Strollers will be folded and stored in salon during cruise
  • Guests with limited mobility: please see our Location page for drop-off location and directions. Please present yourself to our staff if you prefer early boarding

Testimonials