Urban Kayaks: Offering A Chicago River Tour & Lake Michigan Excursion

Experience the Windy City like never before! Glide past Chicago’s skyscrapers or paddle along the scenic lakefront when you book with Urban Kayaks today

A Chicago River Tour Designed By Locals

As passionate Chicago locals, we believe in showcasing the city that raised us in a unique and memorable way: on kayaks. Whether you join us at our lakefront or riverwalk location, you’ll learn to love Chicago just as much as we do while enjoying a day out on our beloved urban waters.





For novice and experienced kayakers alike, our Riverwalk location is a great option for paddlers wanting to ‘go it alone.’ We have several tour options available at the riverwalk, but all excursions include:



Join one of the fastest-growing recreational activities in the world when you kayak on Lake Michigan. Start at Monroe Harbor and watch a spectacular sunset behind Chicago’s skyline. All lakefront-based tours include:

Explore the Chicago River
with Urban Kayaks

Open seven days a week at the newly renovated Riverwalk, Urban Kayaks offers kayaking lessons for all skill levels. We also offer a broad selection of kayak rentals and guided tours of the Chicago River. Contact us today to learn more!



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Your Gateway to The Windy City

Founded by two brothers and their lifelong friend, Urban Kayaks provides a unique way to experience Chicago from the water. Guests can be trained by members of the Urban Kayaks team and learn more about the city’s most notable landmarks along their river and lake tours. See Chicago like you never have before and book a kayaking tour today!
Website screenshot featuring people on a dock, book your adventure with Urban Kayaks
A woman in a yellow dress sits at a white table in an outdoor seating area
A hand with red-painted nails holds a lemon-lime margarita with a chili salt rim.
Three women sitting at an outdoor table under umbrellas are smiling and toasting with drinks
A group of five people enjoying a gathering on a luxury boat
A hand with red-painted nails holds a plastic cup filled with an iced peach-colored beverage


Join us for tacos, drinks and more at our restaurant TacoRio next door. All Urban Kayaks clientele get 20% off orders.
  • Open daily weather dependent 
  • Questions? Contact us at eat@tacoriochicago.com
  • Follow us on Instagram @tacorio_chicago
  • Dog Friendly Patio
  • For updated weather related closures please check our Instagram stories.

About our Youth Class

Urban Kayaks’ youth “Kayak Class” offers a comprehensive learn-to-paddle program for kids and teens aged 9-16, aimed at fostering comfort on the water. Set against the serene backdrop of Monroe Harbor at our Lakefront location, children can explore the basics of kayaking and paddleboarding in a secure and tranquil environment, while engaging in exciting activities and cherished lessons. At Urban Kayaks, our mission is to deliver a tailored class for middle schoolers, instilling kayaking fundamentals within a enjoyable and secure learning setting, with the goal of cultivating confidence and proficiency in young individuals, creating memorable experiences for friends and families to share.
A group of kids in green shirts stands on grass and holds up paddles in front of a kayak rental shop.
A group of children wearing life jackets sits on paddleboards on a wooden dock, listening to a woman instructor.
A person in a yellow kayak paddles on calm water near a shoreline with a large building and a slightly cloudy sky

Organize a group trip or corporate retreat on the Chicago river

Navigate, Socialize, and Unwind with an Urban Kayaks Excursion

At Urban Kayaks, our goal is to provide a safe and fun adventure on the water through Chicago’s downtown and lakeside areas. Available for individuals and groups, kayaking is a great way to get some fresh air, socialize, and learn more about life in the city. To top off your day, join us for a drink and taco at Taco Rio Cantina next door where you can relax and swap stories about your experiences. Make sure to contact us about options for customizing your tour before reserving a spot!

Group Outings And Corporate Events

2024 Early Season Pass

What’s Included:
Access to all locations:
Passes are non-transferable and limited to hours of operation. All season pass holders must agree to the terms & rules.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is Urban Kayaks’ cancellation policy?
All tours require at least 24 hours notice for any cancellations or reschedules.
Please arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled departure time to use the bathroom and stow items you don’t want to bring on the tour in our office. If you are late, we can catch you up with the rest of the group as long as they are still on land. Once the group has entered the water, however, we will need to work with you on rescheduling your excursion.
We recommend bringing a bottle of water and any other snacks you want during the tour. If you forget, we do sell beverages, food, and other kayaking essentials at our locations.
Outfits you would wear to the beach are a great option during warm weather. Bathing suits, board shorts, and tank tops are what most guests wear. In other words, plan on getting wet! In the winter, waterproof clothing along with gloves and a hat is the best choice.

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