Chicago's Architecture: A Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour

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Be blown away by the design stories that lie beneath the Windy City‘s surface. Experience the magic of GPS-playback on this immersive stroll through Chicago.


  • Learn about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and the city's rebirth
  • See the Monadnock Building, the Rookery Building, and the Marquette Building
  • Discover the impact of the Chicago School architectural style on the city
  • Take in the historical Monadnock Building, which bridges two architectural eras


Discover the history of Chicago's architecture on a self-guided audio tour. Learn about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, the modern elevator, and the design movements that shaped the city's skyline. Download the VoiceMap app and access the tour to begin your adventure. Listen to the audio commentary as you walk around the city. Learn about the visionaries who built the city's iconic architecture, and the design movements that shaped its skyline. Starting in front of the Monadnock Building, learn how the Windy City got its name. Find out how the introduction of passenger railways into the city and the popularity of the 1893 World’s Fair led to a population boom. As you make your way around the outskirts of the Chicago Loop, see the architectural giants that punctuate Chicago's skyline. See historical buildings including the Dirksen Federal Building, the Rookery Building, and the Marquette Building. Find out about the famous buildings that came out of the Chicago World’s Fair (also called the World’s Columbian Exposition) and take in examples of Art Deco in the 1930s, including the Chicago Board of Trade building with its geometric and abstract motifs. Make your way to Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, where the tour ends. Step inside some of the spectacular lobbies that were influenced by Owen Aldis, a Chicago Real Estate Lawyer, who always insisted on beautiful entrance ways.


Lifetime access to this tour in English VoiceMap app for Android and iOS Offline access to audio, maps, and geodata Insights into Chicago's architectural history and design movements Opportunity to explore iconic buildings and their lobbies Stories behind the city's skyline evolution

Important Information

  • You need to install the VoiceMap smartphone app.
  • You can download the tour at any time, before or after your booking date. It’s best to download the tour before you set off for the starting point.
  • This tour follows a set route and includes turn-by-turn directions. It works best if you start it in the right place and follow the directions from one location to the next.
  • When the download completes, you’ll see a screen with a photo of the starting point and directions to it. The red start button will become active when you are at the starting point.
  • This tour is only available in English.

Easy cancellation

Cancel up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund


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