Chicago Architecture Center

Chicago Architecture Center

Chicago Architecture Center
5
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
When you hit the pavement on one of our 75+ walking tours through Chicago neighborhoods, set sail on our award-winning river cruise, gift a membership to friends and family, or visit the stunning riverfront Center, you’re helping fund CAC youth education initiatives like Girls Build!, Teen Fellows and the Newhouse Architecture + Design Competition. Or you may be helping to keep programs like Open House Chicago free for participants for years to come. As a certified nonprofit, all CAC ticket purchases directly support our education efforts and community engagement projects. • 1 walking tour ticket = transportation and lunch for a CAC summer program student. • 2 river cruise tickets = sketching materials and drafting tools for a student. • Sold out walking tour = tuition for a Teen Fellow to take a digital lab course at a local community college. EDUCATION • TOURS • EXHIBITIONS • CRUISES
Duration: 1-2 hours
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Admission tickets
from ₹1,197.02
All you need to step foot in the door.
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Top ways to experience Chicago Architecture Center
The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Downtown / The Loop
Often visitors' first stop in Chicago, The Loop is a good starting point to sample the city's energy and flavor. This central business district boasts Michelin-rated restaurants, upscale hotels, premier shopping, and enough arresting architecture to keep your camera busy for hours. You won’t find too many photo galleries of downtown Chicago without a shot of Millennium Park and Cloud Gate (“The Bean”), one of the most iconic landmarks in the city. A stunning skyline coupled with cultural attractions like the Art Institute of Chicago present a Downtown where work and play peacefully coexist.
How to get there
  • State/Lake • 6 min walk
  • Randolph/Wabash • 6 min walk
Reach out directly
See what travellers are saying
  • Debora
    River Forest, Illinois8 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Humboldt Park Dazzels
    This is my second review of the Walking Tours offered by the Chicago Architect Center (CAC). My most recent adventure was the walking tour through Humboldt Park, led by Susan. Her command of the landscape history and her knowledge of the community culture was impressive. CAC docents never disappoint! I enjoy the tours so much that I have signed up for another 12 through October!
    WOW!! That's awesome! We're so happy that you've enjoyed the tours and that you're taking a bunch more. We look forward to seeing you again soon!
    Written 24 July 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 22 July 2023
  • Gina
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Boat tour
    After taking walking tours with the volunteer docents at the center of architecture, we ended our trip taking their boat tour. We we so impressed with their clear explanations, knowledge, and delivery of the history of the buildings, the styles, and the beautification if the city. We have had a fantastic time touring with this non profit organization. They presented the best tours of the city.
    Thank you for the great review! We're so happy to hear that you've enjoyed both our walking tour and our river cruise. We hope to see you again soon!
    Written 7 August 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 6 August 2023
  • Cynthia M
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    So many great tours
    I'm a local who's done a dozen or so CAC walking tours over the last year or so. All have been excellent. Seeing the buildings is great, of course, but the docents are what make the tours special. Each offers their own insights, and in some cases, personal stories from growing up in the featured neighborhoods. Highly recommended, whether you live in the Chicago area or are visiting.
    Thank you for the great review! We're so happy you have enjoyed your tours with us. We look forward to seeing you again soon!
    Written 15 August 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Written 14 August 2023
  • Jessica C
    Oakland, California8 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Stroll through the Gold Coast's historic mansions!
    Both of the Gold Coast walking tours for Dearborn and Astor streets will have you strolling through a quaint neighborhood with beautiful historical mansions. On these tours, our docents walked us through how the illustrious gold coast came to be and about all of the big name families and architects that help create all of the beautiful mansions. You'll get to learn (and see!) how a myriad of european architectural styles came together to create these iconic mansions. From the brick work to the stained glass to the windows, carriage houses and more, you'll get to see impressive historical homes from some of Chicago's most elite families (both past and present).
    Thank you for the fantastic review! The Gold Coast neighborhood is fascinating. We hope to see you on another tour soon!
    Written 7 September 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 6 September 2023
  • Brian W
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Evanston Along the Lake
    Took the Evanston Along the Lake tour with our guide, Mitch today. It was a wonderful tour of an interesting and beautiful city lakefront. Mitch did a fabulous job. I especially enjoyed learning about the people who designed, built and lived in these beautiful, significant homes. Mitch was well versed in this history and brought these people to life through sharing details of their lives and accomplishments.
    Thank you for the fantastic review! We're so happy you enjoyed the Evanston tour with Mitch. We hope to see you on another tour soon!
    Written 18 September 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 17 September 2023
  • Karen K
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Excellent walking tour of Evanston
    Excellent tour with detailed knowledge of architects, buildings, styles and Evanston/Chicago history. A lot was packed into the two-hour walking tour. Mitch guided us efficiently through residential neighborhoods with opportunity for questions and comments. He brought our local history alive and made me proud of it.
    Thank you so much for the great review! Evanston is beautiful and we're so happy Mitch brought its history to life. We look forward to seeing you on another tour soon!
    Written 18 September 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 17 September 2023
  • Mark Rochefort
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    The Beauty and History of Lincoln Park
    The CAC Lincoln Park walking tour is fabulous. It is a two hour experience chock full of architecture, public statuary and fountains, history, a bit of the Lincoln Park Zoo and, of course, one of the most beautiful lakefront parks in the United States. CAC volunteer docent Dick Clark led the tour with enthusiasm and an impressive knowledge of every aspect of the subject matter. My wife and I wholeheartedly recommend this tour for CAC members and nonmembers alike.
    Thank you so much for the fantastic review! We're so happy you enjoyed the tour of Lincoln Park and hope to see you again soon!
    Written 1 October 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 September 2023
  • Charlotte S
    50 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    The "What's New" walking tour
    We took the CAC's "What's New" walking tour of more recent buildings. It was a most informative overview that covered the history, context, and influences that went into about 10 of the more recent buildings. It was about a 1.5 mile walk with some stairs and took 1.5 hours. Highly recommended if you want to understand more about more recent architectural influences and structures in the city.
    Thank you for the wonderful review! We're so happy you enjoyed the "What's New" and hope to see you on another tour soon!
    Written 3 October 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 2 October 2023
  • Mary W
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Inland Steel Building Tour! An incredible 45 minutes on where it all started in Chicago’s Loop!
    Inland Steel Building Tour! This was a terrific 45 minute tour of a gorgeous, pivotal building in the evolution of Chicago. Our tour guide, Delta was outstanding. She highlighted this beautiful building with great perspectives on art and architecture. We even got to visit an Architecture firm and peruse models from buildings around the world!
    The Inland Steel building is amazing! And Delta is a fantastic guide. We're so happy you enjoyed the tour and hope to see you again soon!
    Written 24 October 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 23 October 2023
  • Meander05224893390
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Chicago's Fine Arts Building: An Amazing Survivor
    It's impossible not to love the Fine Arts Building. And Mary Jo, our guide really helped bring the story of this magical place alive. Nice small group. Lots of good information and interesting stops packed into just an hour. It was great to meet a couple folks in their studios. That was a great touch.
    Thank you for the wonderful review! The Fine Arts building is fabulous and we're so happy you enjoyed the tour with Mary Jo. We hope to see you on more tours soon!
    Written 18 November 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 17 November 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles3,467 reviews
Excellent
3,046
Very good
341
Average
42
Poor
20
Terrible
20

Clare P
St. Petersburg, FL6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Friends
We saw some beautiful architect on this tour. Lesson learned: look up! There is a treasure trove of beauty on the ceilings in Chicago. Matt did a great job and seemed as bummed as we were that certain buildings were not included. Maybe it's time for Part II? Thank you for a nice afternoon.
Written 18 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Heidi M
18 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We loved Bert's personal stories from when he was young and growing up in Chicago.We loved the stops and detailed explanations of all that we saw.
Written 17 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the great review! We're so happy you enjoyed the tour and hope to see you again soon!
Written 18 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Andy W
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Friends
Burt was absolutely delightful. His knowledge coupled with personal experiences really brought the history of Chicago architecture to life.
Written 17 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the wonderful review! We're so happy you enjoyed the tour and hope to see you again soon!
Written 18 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Guide17245677101
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
MaryAnn S provided a great informative upbeat presentation that was complementary to the boat ride. It's about 2 miles of walking and great for those in shape on a nice afternoon. All tours with Chicago Arch Center have been first class. Highly recommend.
Written 17 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the great review! We're so happy you have enjoyed our tours and we hope to see you again soon!
Written 18 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

arlene L
4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
We enjoyed this tremendously. We were able to get into the lobbies and appreciate these Art Deco masterpieces in way that we never would have, if we hadn't had such an excellent tour guide. It really wets our appetite for going on some of your other tours.
Written 15 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the wonderful review! We hope to see you on some of our other tours soon!
Written 17 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jennifer H
Chicago, IL12 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
My husband and I truly enjoyed our walking tour of Chicago's Art Deco Skyscrapers. Our guide was incredibly knowledgeable about each building we visited and educated us on what made each building so special. Getting a glimpse of glamour and glit of the 1920's and 1930's made me feel like I was walking back in time. Chicago, thank you for preserving these gems. Getting to see the interiors of several of the buildings was the icing on the cake. This tour is a must for those wishing to learn more about chicago's rich architectural history.
Written 15 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the wonderful review! We're so happy you enjoyed the Art Deco tour and hope to see you again soon!
Written 17 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sandra D
Chicago, IL257 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Solo
The Gold Coast Dearborn Street walking tour was excellent. The docent, Virginia Gerst, was fun and knowledgeable. Highly recommend.
Written 15 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the fantastic review! That is a great tour. We hope to see you again soon!
Written 17 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

M U
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Katie was great in the way she incorporated history with anecdotal accents. She made the tour fun, kept up a good pace, navigated crowds and treated all of us pleasantly as well as treating hotel staff and shop-keepers nicely. Great way to learn more about Chicago!
Written 15 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the wonderful review! We're so happy you enjoyed the tour with Katie and hope to see you again soon.
Written 17 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Cruiser55504650666
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Solo
Chris is amazing. Fun times and cool vibes throughout the whole boat ride. Learned a lot and some awesome ques when needed.
Written 12 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the wonderful review! We're so happy you enjoyed the tour with Chris and hope to see you again soon!
Written 13 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Meander243466
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Solo
I learned so much for the architecture of the Magnificent Mile on this tour. Our docent Mitch went above and beyond. I would highly recommend this tour!
Written 10 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for the great review! We're so happy you enjoyed the tour with Mitch and hope to see you again soon!
Written 12 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Chicago Architecture Center - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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