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Architectural Kayak Tour

Chicago, IL

Item #: WAT-CHI-0003
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Explore the unique and intriguing past of Chicago's historic buildings from the seat of a kayak as you paddle the famous Chicago River! 

  • Paddle the river with an outfitter with 20 years of experience
  • See historic buildings designed by some of architecture's most famous names including Frank Lloyd Wright, Louis Sullivan, Mies van der Rohe, and others
  • Explore the city from a completely different perspective on this 3-hour paddle
  • All skill levels are welcome as no prior experience is necessary! 
Chicago River - Chicago, IL

May - October:
Daily - 10:00 AM & 3:00 PM

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    Option & Pricing:

    Buy now and choose a date & time later.

    Please select an option above.
    Essential Information
    • Basic athleticism and kayak skills are recommended
    • All equipment is provided
    • You will choose a single or double kayak upon arrival
    • Kids must be at least 12 years old to paddle on their own, otherwise any age can paddle in a tandem with an adult. All children under the age of 18 must have their parents sign the waiver for them.
    3-hour paddle
    Experience Provider Info
    Complete information for your Experience Provider, including contact information, will be included on your booking confirmation email once you or your gift recipient have scheduled the experience. Our Product Management team handpicks top-rated experience providers, removing the guesswork for you and ensuring your peace of mind.
    Maximum Participants
    You will be part of a group where the typical size varies between 10 to 50 people.
    Only booked participants are allowed on this tour.
    Weather Dependent
    This experience is weather dependent. Always contact the experience provider with any questions regarding weather conditions.
    What To Wear
    You will be on the water, so come prepared to possibly get a little wet. Dress casual, jeans are not recommended. Bring a towel, and a change of dry clothes.

    For this experience, our partners are taking proactive steps to help mitigate the potential spread of COVID-19.  These measures include practicing social distancing, washing hands, and sanitizing all equipment after use. Our partners will be requiring masks on land but guests will be able to take their masks off once they are beyond the dock.  

    What should I bring?

    You can bring fluids and snacks if you wish, also a camera is great to bring while you're out on the water.

    What if I don't want to bring my keys or other valuables with me while kayaking?
    There is free storage at each of the locations, in case you want to leave something behind, or don't want to get it wet.
    Is alcohol allowed on the tour?
    For your own safety, there is no alcohol allowed in the kayaks. 

    Experience Vouchers that have not been redeemed can be returned hassle-free within 30 days.  All refunds will be made to the original purchaser.

    Experience Vouchers that have not been redeemed can be exchanged for anything else in our marketplace at any time.  If you choose to exchange for an experience that costs more, you'll simply have to pay the difference.  If you choose to exchange for an experience that costs less, you'll have a credit towards your next booking with Cloud 9 Living.

    Cancellation Policy

    Once you have received a booking confirmation, cancellations and rescheduling are allowed up to 10 days prior to the experience. Failure to appear on your booked date or to cancel and reschedule at least 10 days prior to your booked date will result in the loss of the value of your experience.

    Customer Reviews
    (16 reviews)
    View More Reviews:
    “Excellent trip with experienced guides”
    “Our architectural kayak tour with Kayak Chicago was our highlight of our weekend trip to Chicago over Labor Day. The equipment is top of the line and in great shape. We received adequate paddling instruction before getting on the water. The only thing we wanted was more architectural interpretation & details, but overall it was great and definitely worth the money.”
    “Great tour! The guides were super knowledgeable about the history & architecture, were very attentive to the whole group, and were hilarious! Also they gave lots of great tips prior to getting in the water for how to navigate of it was your first time kayaking. 10/10 would recommend this excursion!”
    Response from Cloud 9 Living
    Hi there Maggie!  WOW! What an awesome review! We will be sure to pass the kind words on to our partners. We are overjoyed to hear that not only was a very informative and educational experience, it was exciting, funny, and beginner friendly! Looking forward to getting out on the water again soon.  Best, Sophia
    “We had an incredible time on the Architecture Kayak Tour with our host Bubba. We spent a gorgeous afternoon getting to know the city close-up during our 5-mile kayak. The tour was the highlight of our first trip to Chicago. We highly recommend Kayak Chicago!”
    Response from Cloud 9 Living
    What a neat way to experience Chicago for the first time. I'm so glad to hear you had a wonderful tour with Bubba. We love working with them also!  Thanks for sharing!  Best, Brooke
    “It was a beautiful day on the Chicago River, had a blast! ”
    “The kayak tour was awesome! It got tiring towards the end, but our tour guide pulled us the whole way back to the beginning! He was very funny and informative!”
    “We had a lot of fun. It was a great experience. Very easy and fast booking experience.”
    “The staff didn't have our reservations and we had to show her our confirmation email. The trip was great though. I recommended this tour to my boss, & he is booking his family's adventure shortly.”
    “Enjoyed the kayaking. Wished that the group was smaller. 27 was too large to hear what the guide was saying. It also made it difficult to kayak -- bumping and crashing. Wish the tour covered more architectural information. I thought that we would hear more about the buildings. Seems to be more a short history lesson. Still was fun, but not what was expected.”
    “We love our guide and the overall experience. The only issue was that the location is a bit removed from downtown, so it does mean a fairly long paddle to get downtown and to return to the starting point. But the guide made it enjoyable with stops along the way.”
    “I had an awesome time! The guides were great! Dave truly knows his Chicago history, architecture, and is guaranteed to make you smile and laugh, even if you become exhausted. The whole staff was fantastic. Truly professional and a fun sense of humor. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS EXPERIENCE! ”
    “My only criticism is that the first part (and last, since we come back that way) of the canal stinks. The tour itself was really interesting. Full of information.”
    “Very nice trip, it was nice to be able to switch from the evening paddle to a day time trip since we booked so late in the season. Great way to see the city. Was a little rough where the bigger boats were traveling, but overall a very enjoyable paddle.”
    “Wow! Such a great and well planned kayaking trip. The staff were friendly and nothing was a bother. They were open to questions & feedback and keeping us all safe on the water. The knowledge was well delivered. I will be looking to purchase this experience for friends coming over to visit Chicago for the first time.”
    “Had an absolutely wonderful time. As a long time Chicago area resident I thought I knew the river....I was given a very different and unique view of it. My guide Brad was exceptional.”
    “Our experience was awesome! Our guide was fun and informative and made the experience great! Having never been in a kayak before our guide made me feel relaxed and taught me enough about the in's and out's of paddling a kayak to make me feel comfortable. Thanks for a great adventure!”

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