Last updated: 11:00 PM ET, Tue July 12 2016

Opinion Home | Far-Sighted Field Notes

  • Rosalind Cummings-Yeates | July 12, 2016 11:00 PM ET

    A Guide To the Chicago Riverwalk

    A Guide To the Chicago Riverwalk

    Photo courtesy of Chicago Riverwalk

    Chicagoans love being by the water, whether it's taking in lakefront dining or boating on the river, we enjoy soaking up the watery views. The emphasis has historically been on Lake Michigan but with the expansion of the Chicago Riverwalk, the Chicago River has managed to command more attention.

    Stretching along the south bank of the Chicago River from Wacker Drive to LaSalle Street and boasting increasing numbers restaurants and activities, the Chicago Riverwalk is living up to its nickname of Chicago’s Second Lakefront. There’s nothing like experiencing the city with a riverfront perspective, here’s a guide for Riverwalk options to check out:

    Catch The Waves

    Besides walking, there are a number of ways to enjoy this scenic walkway. You can hop on the Chicago Water Taxi at one of its seven dock locations around the Loop and gaze at the sights from the upper decks. A river cruise is another popular excursion with the famous Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise being a top pick but also Wendella Boat Tours and Chicago Line Cruises supply some river fun. For a more active take (and nervy because the river is notoriously polluted) rent a kayak from Urban Kayaks and paddle away. For a steadier adventure, rent a bike from Divvy Bikes or sleeker, tricked-out models like the six-seater Surrey from Wheel Fun.

    READ MORE: 5 Cool Chicago Cafes

    Explore History

    One of the coolest and little known treasures of the Riverwalk is the McCormick Bridgehouse and Chicago River Museum. You’ll get close up views of the famous Chicago moveable bridges and learn about the history of the Chicago River. On summer Mondays through Aug. 29, you can learn about the River’s architecture, history, native plants and wildlife during a free lunchtime speaker series  Experts will give the talks in the river plaza from 12:15-12:45.

    READ MORE: Amtrak Announces Renovations to Chicago Union Station Are Moving Forward

    Feed Your Fancy

    Since this is Chicago, it’s no shocker that the main focus of the Riverwalk scene is food. Currently, there are six full-fledged restaurants that line the area, as well as stalls and carts. But you won’t find deep dish and hot dogs here, the trend is toward lighter, more sophisticated fare. Including Mediterranean dishes at City Winery and French cooking at Cyrano’s Cafe & Wine Bar. For rowdier choices, there’s Island Party Hut for grilled meats and towering tiki drinks and Tiny Hatt for Memphis style BBQ and agave Margaritas.

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Rosalind Cummings-Yeates Far-Sighted Field Notes

Rosalind Cummings-Yeates Rosalind Cummings-Yeates is a journalist, author and blogger who specializes in travel and culture topics. She loves guiding readers through the richness of various cultures and discovering the essence of a destination. Her travel and culture blog, Farsighted Fly Girl, offers travel insights through the music, food, art and history of various countries and cultures. Join her on the journey at www.Rosalindcummingsyeates.
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