Chicago’s scenic Lakefront Trail is an 18-mile paved path that follows the Lake Michigan shoreline on the city’s eastern edge. It extends from Ardmore Street (5800 N. Sheridan Rd) on the north side to 71st Street (7100 S. South Shore Drive) on the south side, traversing a number of stunning lakefront neighborhoods, including EdgewaterUptownLakeviewLincoln ParkSouth LoopBronzeville, and Hyde Park.

Things to do on Chicago’s Lakefront Trail

No matter how you travel the trail, you can take in Lake Michigan’s blue waters to one side and a combination of lush parks and dramatic skyline views to the other. The trail passes through and connects Chicago’s four major lakefront parks along with various beaches, cultural institutions, and recreational amenities.

Here’s a few activities you can do on the Lakefront Trail:

  • Walking
  • Running
  • Biking
  • Rollerblading

Want to hang out outside? The Lakefront Trail connects to many of Chicago’s most popular parks and beaches:

Check out our Chicago beach guide for more.

The trail also offers easy access to a variety of waterfront dining options:

Check out a few of the attractions you can stop at along the Lakefront Trail:

The Lakefront Trail is open 24 hours a day, but the parks and beaches along the path close at 11 p.m. View a map of the Lakefront Trail.

Safety tips

  • Pedestrians have the right of way
  • Wear protective gear while biking or skating
  • At night, wear highly visible, reflective materials
  • Signal to others and always pass on the left
  • Before entering the Trail, look both ways and yield to oncoming traffic
  • If you need to stop for any reason, do so on the side of Trail, allowing others to proceed
  • Don’t bike or skate while wearing headphones or under the influence of alcohol

(Trail safety tips courtesy of the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation)

Clayton Hauck