Happy birthday America! Celebrate Independence Day with our full holiday tour and finish with a front-row seat to the most memorable fireworks show of the year. First, spend 90 minutes kayaking the river's Main Branch, surrounded by skyscrapers lit up in patriotic colors and the Wrigley Building draped with a huge American flag. We make stops at several key locations to learn about city history and early settlements. Then, we finish with a paddle out to the east side of Lake Shore Drive to witness the boom and the bang so synonymous with our country's birthday! What could be more American? There is a 20-minute safety/training session before the tour begins, and lights are mounted on each boat. Not recommended for infants or very small children. Reservations are required.

More Details

  • Arrival Time: Please arrive 15 minutes before the scheduled tour time to check in and store any items you don't want to take with you in one of our lockers
  • Approximate Time: 2 hours on the water
  • Launch Site: This tour starts and finishes at our Riverwalk location.
  • How to Dress: Expect to get wet. Wear workout/cycling gloves if you have them. Your hands will thank you!

Recent Tours

"Choose Urban Kayaks and have fun! As a long time Chicagoan I can attest to how unbeatable the views are of the city from this experience."

- Liam A

"This is an experience that should not be missed.  It was an amazing way to see the city."

- Amber S

"The views are insanely beautiful and romantic. You see the buildings from a new perspective and get the history behind them. I loved hearing the stories and seeing it all. A great experience."

- Harini P

Fequently Asked Questions and our Faq Page

What should I wear?
Beach clothing is ideal. A bathing suit, sandals, hat, and sunglasses work well. Don't forget sunscreen.
Do you provide lockers/ storage to keep valuables safe and dry?
Yes. Locker rentals are available on site for a minimal fee. Free open air cubbies are also available. Additionally, Built into every kayak is a storage hatch where you are able to store some belongings. Please keep in mind this storage hatch is not 100% waterproof. Additionally, we have customer changing rooms on site for your convenience.
How much weight can the kayaks hold?
A single kayak holds one person and has a weight capacity of up to 300 lbs. A tandem kayak can hold one or two people and has a weight capacity of up to 550 lbs.
Should I bring my camera/ phone?
Well, this is a tricky one. On one hand you will get a unique "ducks eye" view of the city while paddling, however you will also get wet. Keeping your camera in a waterproof bag while paddling works well. Bring everything at your own risk.