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“take it from a local”
Review of Chicago Detours

Chicago Detours
Book In Advance
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$26.00*
and up
Chicago Walking Tour: Interior Architecture of the Loop and Pedway Tour
More Info
$38.00*
and up
Historic Chicago Walking Bar Tour
More Info
$50.00*
and up
Walking and Food Tour: Chicago World's Fair of 1893
Ranked #2 of 563 Nightlife in Chicago
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: This is not your grandma's architecture tour! Our award-winning guided tours of Chicago’s architecture, history, and culture bring curious people to explore stories and places locals don't even know. With Chicago Detours, you'll explore downtown and our diverse neighborhoods to experience the city’s interior architecture, the underground Pedway, jazz and blues, and historic bars. Founded by a former Rick Steves tour guide, Chicago Detours has designed tours that are fun, educational experiences. Our tour guides are are not just volunteer docents, they’re highly trained and educated professionals who know how to spark discussions and create a lively group dynamic. Rated five stars on both Yelp and TripAdvisor, Chicago Detours is one of the top-rated tour companies in the city. We offer regularly scheduled tours for the public, and private group tours for corporate team-building, student field trips, and convention groups. The public walking tours stay mostly indoors, making them great activities for any time of year. Options include the "Loop Interior Architecture Walking Tour," which explores beautiful building interiors and the underground Pedway System, and the "Historic Chicago Walking Bar Tour," which digs into Chicago's entertainment history of social clubs, jazz music, prohibition, and theater. Other public tours include the "Best Architecture Walking Tour Since Sliced Bread," "1893 World's Fair Walking Tour with Bars," and "Pilsen Spaces and Changes Walking Tour with Food." Private group tours include the outings mentioned above, as well as tours by a luxury coach equipped with screens for presentation of historic images and videos. Many of our private group tour options can operate in the evening, and can include food and drink. Our historic bar tours, both by foot and by bus, are the most popular with private groups. Your group will eat, drink and learn about how Chicago has had fun over its history. The "Big Shoulders Historic Bar and Food Bus Tour" visits Bridgeport, Chicago's oldest neighborhood outside downtown, which was home to workers for the nearby Union Stock Yards. Another popular tour is our "Jazz, Blues & Beyond by Bus." This tour explores Chicago neighborhoods north to south for a fun, up-close connection with the cultural history of Chicago's music. This memorable experience reaches its conclusion when a blues musician comes on board for a performance and harmonica lesson. Other private tours include "Chicago Neighborhoods and Cultural Diversity by Bus" and "Old Polonia and Wicker Park Tour with Food." Step-on guide services are also available for private group tours. Tours include lively guide commentary, an interactive group dynamic, and extras like media presentation and special gifts. Rather than a standard lecture format, these tours actively involve guests in a memorable experience that inspires new perspectives of the city's architecture and history. We annually receive TripAdvisor's "Certificate of Excellence," and maintain five stars on Yelp as well. Our tours have been featured in Frommer's, Lonely Planet, ABC 7, WGN, WBEZ, "Chicago Magazine," the Chicago Tribune, and the Guardian.
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“take it from a local”
Reviewed March 19, 2013

chicago detours tour guides show you the hidden gems on their tours! the Good Times Historic Bar Tour was fascinating, fun and just fab! i was engaged and captivated the whole time--places i've walked by my whole life actually came to life in a way. i left the tour with a full belly and brain. just how i like to leave places/experiences! sign up and do it. i'm having my friend Aussie friend do a tour or 2 when she comes for a visit come April.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Molly Rose E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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372 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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  • Any
English first
Stone Mountain, GA
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Fantastic tour”
Reviewed March 4, 2013

I recently did the Interior Architecture tour of the Loop and loved every minute of it. It was an engaging, very informative, and fun way to explore this part of the city. Our guide was awesome- knowledgeable and entertaining. I'm bummed I only had enough time to do one tour. I will definitely check out their other tours during my next visit to Chicago. It was worth every penny!

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank megaluz20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level 6 Contributor
326 reviews
161 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
“Informative, interesting insight for a local”
Reviewed March 2, 2013 via mobile

As one who has lived in Chicago for 9 years, I have investigated it pretty thoroughly. Nevertheless, I learned something new on the two-hour walking tour led by Elizabeth of Chicago Detours. Using iPads...very 21st Century that...three of us went via the Pedway about the Loop. Worth the while of tourist and local alike.

Helpful?
1 Thank Maggie_Oakshot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“walk tour with a different twist”
Reviewed February 23, 2013 via mobile

we enjoyed a lot our engaging tour to see the inner architecture of Chicago buildings. tour was great, very informative and surely not a boring one. the guide was just awesome with lots of charisma and stories that you can not fid elsewhere. very recommended (also for local)

Helpful?
Thank lovelivinig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
København, Denmark
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Well-planned and interesting”
Reviewed February 19, 2013

We were invited as part of a buisness team-building event, and despite jet-lag, we enjoyed the tour and the information.

Visited February 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank CHW1881
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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