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Chicago Riverwalk


Spanning from Lake Shore Drive to LaSalle Street, the Chicago Riverwalk is a waterfront landmark that began development in 2001 from a Wacker Drive reconstruction plan.
The initial plan was to create four distinct districts within the Riverwalk. Confluence is where the North, South, and Main branches of the river intersect and where people can access Upper Wacker Drive. Arcade runs from Franklin to State Street and is known for its architectural design. Civic, located from Dearborn to Michigan Avenue, features notable buildings like Trump Tower and is a popular site for boat launches. Market runs from Columbus to Lake Shore Drive and is home to the Lakeshore East community.
As of 2015, three more additions were completed: the Marina, which offers seating and food, the Cove, which offers kayak and boat rentals, and the River Theater, which houses an amphitheater. The Riverwalk will eventually span to Lake Street and further additions will be completed by the end of 2016.


Escape the industrial steel of the Loop and enjoy a bit of nature in the middle of urban life. Restaurants, seating, boat rentals, escape from steel and glass, jogging, picture-taking, Tiki bar, bicycling, water taxi, fishing, city winery,
The Chicago Riverwalk offers seating with picturesque views, a variety of restaurants, boat and kayak rentals, fishing, and more. It’s also a perfect location for picture-taking, your morning job, or a bike ride. Need to catch a train? Water taxis pick up regularly from the Riverwalk and go straight to Union Station, making it a great and scenic option for commuters.
Pedestrians can look forward to fountains, floating gardens, and other exciting future additions to the Riverwalk.



  • Urban Kayaks
  • Wheels Fun Rentals
  • Illinois Dept. of Natural Resources Fishing License



  • Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise
  • Audobon Great Lakes Chicago Riverwalk Birding Tours
  • Eastland Disaster at River Theater
  • McCormick Bridgehouse and Chicago River Museum
  • Friends of the Chicago River Events


  • City Winery Chicago
  • Cyrano’s Cafe & Wine Bar
  • Dulce In Horto
  • Frost Gelato
  • Island Party Hut Tiki Bar & Grill
  • Lillies Park Grill and Cafe
  • O’Brien’s Riverwalk Cafe
  • Tiny Hatt



  • Chicago’s First Lady Cruises
  • Mercury, Chicago’s Skyline Cruiseline
  • Downtown Docks
  • Chicago Water Taxi
  • Wendella Sightseeing
  • Island Party Hut Docks & Charters


  • Is it free to visit the Chicago Riverwalk?

Absolutely. That’s one of the landmark’s many perks. There is no charge to stroll along the Riverwalk, however any activities or vendors that are on-site will most likely require purchase.


  • Is it open 24 hours?

No. Similar to landmarks of the Chicago Park District, access to the Riverwalk has designated hours. Pedestrians can visit the Riverwalk every day from 6am – 11pm.

  • Are there other things to do outside of walking?

Yes, there are plenty of things to do. From boating to fishing to dining, there are plenty of activities and vendors set up along the Riverwalk to keep you entertained, and new events take place every day.


  • How can I help the Riverwalk?

Friends of the Chicago River is an organization dedicated to keeping the river and its wildlife healthy. Visit their website to learn how you can get involved.

  • I saw a ghost. Is that normal?

Believe it or not, yes! In the summer of 1915, the SS Eastland capsized at the south bank of the river between Clark and LaSalle Street, resulting in the unfortunate loss of over 800 lives. Today, the spot is commemorated and some even say that it’s haunted.


Department of Fleet and Facility Management
30 N. LaSalle St.
Chicago, IL 60602
Open from 6am – 11pm, 365 days a year