Urban Kayaks
9:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

5.0
581 reviews
Excellent
479
Very good
85
Average
7
Poor
4
Terrible
6

PrairieGodmother
Flossmoor, IL18 contributions
Aug 2022
We kayaked down the Chicago River with our guide, Adam, who was entirely entertaining, knowledgeable, humorous, and very dedicated to our safety. His witty and accurate information about the river's skyline as well as some Chicago history was beyond good. I'm a history nut and he was not only right about what he told us but I learned some history along the way.
Written August 15, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Donald Clark
5 contributions
Aug 2021
We spent a Friday afternoon with Urban Kayaks on the Chicago River. We had friends in from Michigan and used three tandem kayaks. The instructors were great in getting us oriented and our tour guide did an entertaining and knowledgeable job of leading us safely down the river and sharing stories of Chicago history. One of the visiting families had a 4 year old and the Urban team was very helpful getting the preschooler safely settled in the middle between the mom and dad.

It is an experience suitable for many ages...I am 70 and the oldest in this group of 30, 40, and 50 something year-olds :-). If you follow the guides directions, it is absolutely a safe adventure...but it can be a little wet (so plan on it)!

This is a great activity to share our City of Chicago with visitors and the team from Urban Kayaks are outstanding City Ambassadors!
Written August 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Yvonne C
1 contribution
May 2022 • Family
My husband and two kids (ages 9 & 13) and I had never kayaked before, so we signed up for the guided option. Our primary guide, Drew, gave us an excellent rundown of how to steer and to kayak safely. Out on the water, he also pointed out local landmarks and gave some history of the area. We had fun, and plan to kayak again, but without a guide next time, since we feel comfortable now.
Written May 31, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Karen C
1 contribution
Jul 2021 • Family
We signed up for the intro to kayak tour. Our instructor, Brian, said he’d hang back with those who were having trouble. Instead he left us in the back as we obviously struggled. He then came came back and said we were a safety hazard and took my sister’s paddle away. He kept barking instructions at us so I asked if we could leave early. He got very defensive at this point and told his coworker I “refused” to listen to him as we were guided back to the dock.
This place should not offer BEGINNER lessons if their instructors don’t have the patience to teach. A woman who was also on the tour was more concerned and offered more guidance to us than our “instructor”, what a joke. For $40 per person you’re better off finding a different activity around the city.
Written July 31, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

John S
2 contributions
Jun 2021
I took one of the architecture boat tours, saw the kayakers on the river and said to myself, "I have to do that!" I hadn't kayaked in about 20 years, so I got the "intro paddle" package. Just an extra $5 for a few quick minutes of instruction before heading out. The instructor, the fabulous Laura, went out with our small group of beginners as well, which was good because there was a lot of big-boat traffic to navigate, and she has a walkie-talkie to communicate with the big boats. Laura was just so friendly, cool and relatable, clearly a creative, outdoor-loving soul. She gave us encouragement and threw out little bits of info about the river and buildings without making things overly structured. It was so organic and relaxing. Such great bang for your buck. The best possible way to see the loop if you ask me. Unless you're a seasoned pro, I recommend taking the intro paddle and requesting Laura. Next time I'm in town I will go out solo for a different experience.
Written June 8, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

SummerHC
4 contributions
Sep 2021
Google had a mixed review for the "Lakeside kayaking" where I was a bit concerned about bringing 3 families to what I insisted on doing. But, the staffs were very kind and helpful, clear directions, and not very strict with time. Great weather made it even more perfect to see the great skyline of Chicago.
Written September 7, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Paula T
19 contributions
Jun 2021
At twilight, the city looks magical from the water! We kayaked through Monroe Harbor with Aaron, our terrific guide, and his two colleagues. The city lights reflected in the waves. The Museum Campus looked especially beautiful - we could see the Field Museum, the Shedd Aquarium, and the Adler Planetarium, all lit against the evening sky. Boats passed slowly by, many with festive lights, music, and friendly passengers waving and wishing us a good time. A personal flotation device and our pre-tour lesson made me feel safe, prepared and confident.
Written July 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Marcos C
1 contribution
Jul 2022 • Family
Excellent service from when we got to the establishment to when we left. The ride was amazing, the crew was amazing. The man who gave us the tour was super cool and chill, the stories and facts about the city were very interesting. 10/10 would recommend!
Written July 15, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Dannyjoe66
Sidney, OH1 contribution
Sep 2021 • Solo
Rented a kayak early September morning when in town solo. Awesome experience. Great staff, beautiful paddle. Highly recommended. Early, out of season on a weekday if you can will provide a beautiful relaxed experience
Written September 29, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Alexis L
3 contributions
Jun 2022
I've gone kayaking at the riverwalk and Monroe Harbor locations, and I've gone paddle boarding at Monroe Harbor, and every time I've had a great experience. Staff are friendly and knowledgeable, and the equipment is in good condition. So much fun! I highly recommend kayaking or paddle boarding; it's a great way to see Chicago from a different vantage point. Kayaking in Monroe Harbor is also a great family activity. I've taken my kids several times and they are asking to go again!
Written June 29, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Urban Kayaks (Chicago) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go