And with summer not far away, no better time than now to start thinking about being outside. Below is a list of some of Chicago's best walking tours, with more tours to be added on a continuous basis. If you have a tour you would like to promote, please e-mail me at Chicago@aboutguide.com.
In honor of baseball, which will begin in Chicago in the next couple of weeks, why not take a tour of the city’s famous Cubs ballpark, Wrigley Field (1060 W. Addison Street). Guided tours are 90 minutes and give you a behind-the-scene glimpse into the Friendly Confines. Price is $25.
Explore Chicago’s neighborhoods, including their history, culture, and cuisine, with the Chicago Cultural Center (77 E. Randolph Street). Neighborhoods include Little Italy, the Ukrainian Village, Old Town, and more. Tours range from $25 – $50.
If you are a fan of Frank Lloyd Wright then check out the Heart of Oak Park Tour (1010 Lake Street, Oak Park). Wright made his home in Oak Park, which is about 20 minutes from downtown Chicago. This self-guided tour includes audio that showcases Oak Park’s vast architectural history, with its Victorian homes and Wright-inspired buildings. Admission is $10 for adults/$5 for kids and seniors. Tour is free on Tuesdays.
For nature lovers, there is the free Lincoln Park Conservatory Tour (2391 N. Stockton Drive) that takes you through the history of the 1890s Victorian glass conservatory and all its wonderful floral collections. After the tour, walk next door to the free Lincoln Park Zoo.
For architecture lovers, the Chicago Architecture Foundation has more than 65 walking tours offered, including 45-minute lunchtime tours of individual buildings in the Loop. Tip: When you become a Chicago Architecture Foundation member (individual membership is $55), its walking tours are free. Tour prices start at about $12. Another tip: Check out the www.85tours.com blog for more information on all of the Chicago Architecture Foundation's walking tours.
If the warmer weather puts you in the mood for a beer, visit the Half Acre Beer Co. (4257 N. Lincoln Avenue) and learn about the brewery’s brewing process and history and enjoy samples of its seasonal beers. Tours are free.