Chicago Water Taxi to Chinatown
It isn’t London’s Thames, or Amsterdam’s Canals, but the Chicago River via boat (sorry San Antonio) offers the most concentrated, up-close view of architecture and infrastructure of any city. And yes, there are architectural, sightseeing and other high-profile cruises, but if you just want to relax and ride for one cheap all-day fare, the Chinatown Ferry might be your best bet. First of all, the price is right. Regular water taxis will take you one way around downtown for $2. But the Chinatown Trip will not only show you the wonders of Chicago’s Loop, but also take you around the South Loop, through the underbelly of Chicago’s industrial Near South Side rail yards, factories and under the magnificent vertical lift bridges before dropping you off at Chicago’s Ping Tom Park—for only $4. See the pagoda buildings, eat a cheap, magnificent Chinese meal, take in a few exotic cocktails and ride back to the Loop. If you want to sight-see, eat, drink and get a waterside tan, an all-day pass on the ferry will run you a total of $6. You can start your ride underneath the Michigan Avenue Bridge (in back of the Wrigley Building at 400 North Michigan), with stops at Madison Avenue/Union Station, La Salle and Clark and Chinatown. The Union Station stop offers a special benefit for drinkers, as you can take a Metra Train to Union or Ogilvie Station into the city, ride the ferry and take the Metra home, drinking to your heart’s content and never getting inside of an automobile or even traveling on a road.
Chicago Water Taxi
400 North Michigan
Best of Chicago 2011