Our guided tours of architecture, history, and culture bring curious people to explore stories and places locals don't even know. We offer regularly scheduled tours for the public, and private group tours for corporate team-building, student groups, and convention groups. Founded by former Rick Steves tour guide Amanda Scotese, Chicago Detours designs tours as fun, educational experiences. With five stars on both Yelp and TripAdvisor, it is one of top-rated tour companies of Chicago.
Public tours are by foot and stay mostly indoors, making them great activities for any time of year. Options include the "Loop Interior Architectural Tour," which explores beautiful building interiors and underground Pedway System, and "Historic Chicago Walking Bar Tour," which digs into Chicago's entertainment history of social clubs, jazz music, prohibition and theater. For these regularly offered walking tours, guests share iPads with historic photos and video clips while tour guide offers expert commentary.
Private group tours include the above options as well as tours by coach equipped with screens for presentation of historic images. Our most popular tour, other than the public tours mentioned above, is "Jazz, Blues & Beyond by Bus." This special tour explores Chicago neighborhoods north to south for a fun, up-close connection with the cultural history of Chicago's music. Groups get exclusive access inside a building with relics from its time as a 1930s jazz club, and to top off this memorable experience, a blues musician comes on board for a performance and harmonica lesson. Other private tours include Meat History of Fulton Market, an Architectural History Crash Course, and Chicago Neighborhoods and Diversity, as well as evening tours of historic bars and jazz and blues clubs by bus. Step-on guide services available for private group tours.
All tours include media presentation, interactive dynamic, lively guide commentary, 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.