The BEST Way to See Chicago this Summer

Take to the Water for Chicago Fun

By Sara Yaniga, Macaroni Kid Chicago June 6, 2022

"We are visiting Chicago this summer!  What should we do and see?

I hear this a lot from friends and family who are coming to Chicago, or even from people who are new to Chicago and there is no doubt I could rattle off a list of dozens of great things to see and experience in this city.  The fact is that there is only ONE thing that I consider a "must-do" no matter if you are exploring solo, with friends or with a family in tow and that is seeing the Windy City from the water!  Most cities with a waterfront presence are situated on the East or West Coast, but Chicago is a midwestern, middle of America, gem with miles of lakefront and a river that travels east/west AND north/south! When you choose to take a cruise, you get the opportunity to see the Third Coast from beautiful Lake Michigan, or the unique Chicago Riverwalk - or even better, BOTH!

Another thing I personally love about a tour from the water is that you get the content of a guided tour without that confined feeling of a bus or the physical demands of a walking tour (which can be hard on kid legs).  Every time we have visitors we try to take them on a cruise and the Urban Adventure Skyline Cruise from Mercury Cruises never disappoints for a fun family outing. This is why Mercury Cruises have been a cornerstone of Chicago's riverfront for 85 years, offering family-friendly cruises day and night.  

“As one of the first local Chicago tour boat operators, we’re honored to continue providing Chicago families and visitors with some outdoor epic fun as they experience Chicago’s Riverwalk, amazing skyline and waterfront. We provide guests with lasting memories of their visit to our City,” said Bob Agra III, Mercury Cruises’ Vice President.

As we begin to open to traveling once again, Mercury offers a great, open-air, attraction for locals and tourists alike and Macaroni Kid Chicago (Midtown) would love to send you on an upcoming Urban Adventure Cruise, where you will really get to experience Chicago from a guided tour along the Chicago River and then take in the entire magnificent skyline from a Lake Michigan cruise.   Just click the link below for a chance to win!

Quick FAQs about Mercury Cruises

  • Mercury Cruises depart from the SE corner of Michigan Ave & Wacker Dr (112 E Wacker Drive)
  • Urban Adventure cruises last 90 minutes
  • Cruises are currently offered Friday, Saturday, and Sundays with multiple cruises offered a day (See Schedule)
  • Tickets are $39/ages 16+, $17/ages 5-15 and FREE for those under age 5
  • Snacks and beverages are available for purchase onboard
  • Cruises happen rain or shine (bring a poncho or umbrella if the forecast is iffy, you will still have fun!)
  • Strollers can be brought on board and stored downstairs during the tour