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Chicago is known around the world for its architecture. Whether you tour downtown or a neighborhood, our expert docent guides will tell you the stories behind the buildings. Visit iconic skyscrapers, elegant hotels or the legendary houses of Frank Lloyd Wright. With more than 85 tours to choose from, we won't blame you if you can't pick just one.

Recommended Tours

Behind the Scenes Tour: Logan Square

Go behind the scenes of two of Logan Square’s most exciting recent housing developments. We’ll visit Brininstool + Lynch’s Logan Square L Luxury apartments and Wheeler Kearns’ MiCA towers, for an exclusive tour with the architects and those involved…

Duration
2 Hours
Meet
MiCa, 2733 W. Belden Ave.

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Duration
2 Hours
Meet
MiCa, 2733 W. Belden Ave.

Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise Aboard Chicago's First Lady Cruises

Experience the “top tour in Chicago and one of the top ten tours in the U.S.” according to TripAdvisor users. The Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise is a must for out-of-towners and Chicagoans alike. CAF-certified volunteer tour guides—called…

Price
$44 all daytime cruises, $46 all 7:30pm Twilight Cruises
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
Southeast corner of the Michigan Avenue Bridge at Wacker Dr. Look for our blue awning marking the stairway entrance.

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Price
$44 all daytime cruises, $46 all 7:30pm Twilight Cruises
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
Southeast corner of the Michigan Avenue Bridge at Wacker Dr. Look for our blue awning marking the stairway entrance.

Must-See Chicago

Must-See Chicago is a fast-paced, 90-minute tour introducing Chicago and many of its most famous buildings, including the Art Institute of Chicago, Sears (Willis) Tower, Wrigley Building, Chicago Theatre and John Hancock Center. As you explore downtown…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Discover Chicago's Historic Neighborhoods

CAF has partnered with Big Bus Chicago for a tour that explores Chicago's mosaic of neighborhoods. Discover five fascinating communities from the seats of an open-top bus, and get an intriguing look at the art, architecture and history of Greektown, Little…

Price
$30 public, $27 CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
Michigan Ave., between Adams St. and Jackson Blvd, just north of the CAF Shop and Tour Center

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Price
$30 public, $27 CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
Michigan Ave., between Adams St. and Jackson Blvd, just north of the CAF Shop and Tour Center

Architectural Highlights by Bus

Discover the exciting diversity of Chicago architecture on this wide-ranging odyssey, which traces the city’s development from its founding through the very present.

Price
$45 public, $37 CAF members
Duration
3.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$45 public, $37 CAF members
Duration
3.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Historic Treasures of Culture and Commerce

Learn about the great late 19th— and early 20th—century architectural landmarks of Michigan Ave. and State St., ranging from museums to department stores, skyscrapers to concert halls, including the Reliance Building, the Sullivan Center and the Chicago…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Historic Skyscrapers

Chicago is more than just the birthplace of the skyscraper—it’s also where most innovations in skyscraper design originated. On this tour, take a step back in time to the late 1800s, to hear stories behind the city’s world-famous early tall buildings…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Elevated Architecture: Downtown "L" Train

Explore Chicago’s amazing architecture from the unique perspective of the elevated trains and station platforms while learning the history of the famous "L" system and how it has shaped the development of the buildings within the Loop.

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Chicago Masterworks, Connecting Old and New

Chicago Masterworks offers a lively overview of Chicago architecture in context, exploring iconic buildings from the 1870s to the present. We’ll encounter a variety of architectural styles, connect older structures to new additions to the city’s skyline…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Chicago Modern

Iconic modern and contemporary skyscrapers, as well as works by world-renowned artists, are featured on this 90-minute walking tour. Chicago was at the forefront of Modernism, the style that revolutionized our visual world during the mid-20th century…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Skyline Vistas by Trolley

Opportunities for great photos at every stop. See Chicago's expansive downtown parks, emerging residential neighborhoods, and commercial developments on this introductory tour of Chicago. Learn how both man and nature impacted the development of the city…

Duration
1.75 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Note: Scheduled departures for this tour will return next season. Please email tickets@architecture.org to be notified when tickets are available.

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Duration
1.75 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Evolution of the Skyscraper

Chicago is known for building some of the world’s first skyscrapers, but how have their designs and technologies changed over time? Explore everything from classic buildings to super-tall highrises to discover how each one is representative of major…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Art Deco Skyscrapers: Downtown

Art Deco was a popular, modern style whose lavish materials and geometric ornament epitomized the prosperity and optimism of the Roaring 20s. See how the style enriches the soaring exteriors and opulent interiors of some of the city's most beautiful skyscrapers…

Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$20 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Art Deco Skyscrapers: Riverfront Trolley and Walking Tour

Ride the trolley to the Chicago River, then step off to tour the lobbies of six opulent Art Deco skyscrapers. A popular modern style of the Roaring '20s, Art Deco's lavish materials and geometric ornament adorned new office towers as Chicago's business…

Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Note: Scheduled departures for this tour will return next season. Please email tickets@architecture.org to be notified when tickets are available.

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Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Tiffany Treasures

Visit four of Chicago’s most magnificent art-glass and mosaic installations, each designed and crafted by the Tiffany Glass and Decorating Company. Included are a vault, a rotunda, several domes and light fixtures in four landmark buildings of the late-19th…

Price
$40 public, $20 CAF members, FREE for members of AIC and CAF
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave. Tour ends at Macy’s.

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Price
$40 public, $20 CAF members, FREE for members of AIC and CAF
Duration
2 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave. Tour ends at Macy’s.