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3-Hour Walking Tour: Chicago World's Fair of 1893

From US$42.00
  • 3-hour Chicago walking and food tour
  • See traces of the 1893 World’s Fair in modern Chicago
  • Learn about Chicago at the end of the 19th century
3-Hour Walking Tour: Chicago World's Fair of 1893
From US$42.00
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  • Overview
  • What to Expect
  • Important Information
  • Reviews
  • Q&A
Select Date and Travellers
Friday 1:30 pmMost Popular
Tour departs at 1:30pm
From US$42.00
4pm Departure
Tour departs 4pm; Saturday only
From US$42.00
Wednesday 5:45pm
Tour departs at 5:45pm
From US$42.00
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Discover the lasting influence of the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago on a 3-hour walking and food tour of downtown. See the historic Auditorium Building, the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel and other examples of Chicago’s fine architecture. You’ll also sample fresh–brewed beers and some tasty German fare among other refreshments, with enough food for a light meal. Your guide provides informative commentary and entertaining games during your Chicago walking tour, which mostly takes place indoors, making it ideal for all seasons.
What to Expect

This very special walking tour digs into how and why the 1893 World’s Fair captures imaginations more than any other event in Chicago history. Unlike other World’s Fair tours and Devil in the White City tours, which likely revolve around facts and trivia, you’ll dig deeper on this downtown tour. You'll visits some of the few remaining and spectacular buildings from the time of the World’s Fair, also known as the World's Columbian Exposition. The fairgrounds themselves were south of downtown, but you can best see the impact of the fair in the Loop. Here the architecture and landscape still show the World’s Fair imprint even today, nearly 125 years later. Beyond just looking at buildings from outside, this mostly indoor walking tour sees the beauty of architectural details within.

On this fun and insightful walking tour, you’ll venture into beautiful architectural spaces from the era. You will play a few thoughtfully designed games, like visual scavenger hunts. Along with guide commentary, your guide will show you photos and archival materials via shared iPads that illuminate this historic event of the 1893 World's Fair.

You will eat a couple light snacks and play a few educational games with prizes for the winning team. Plus, you can opt to get drinks (on you) at two stops. You will end in a building from 1893 that has numerous drinking options!

You can think of this 3-hour long walking tour as being 5% outdoors, 95% indoors, 20% clue-based games and visual scavenger hunts, 10% drinking time, and 100% awesome historical tour time. We know the math doesn’t add up – we hope you get the idea!

With just intermittent walks outside, the 1893 World’s Fair Tour makes for a great walking tour in all seasons. This tour makes the World’s Fair’s lasting impact come to life. We hope you’ll join us!

Drinks are not included in the cost of this tour. At the tour meeting spot, you are welcome to get a drink at the bar before check-in. To streamline the tour, your order will be taken, along with cash for your second drink at check-in ($6 for beer, $8 for wine, includes gratuity). At the third drink stop, you may independently purchase a beer, wine, or cocktail of your choice.
Two small snacks are included. Occasionally, vegetarian options will be available, otherwise, any other dietary restrictions will not be accommodated. If you are gluten-free, dairy-free, or have other allergies, we cannot make substitutions.

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Reviews (19)
1 - 5 of 18 reviews
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile
Fun way to see the city!

My husband and I had a fun time on the tour. We saw lots of things we never would have seen if we hadn’t taken the tour. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and fun! At one point we had to do a type of...More

Thank smcfamily
AmandaDetoursOwner, Manager at Chicago Detours, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Thanks for sharing this review and these cool photos! We love hearing that you had fun and enjoyed the experience. We'd love to see you again for another tour some time!

Reviewed 3 weeks ago
Exceeded Expectations

This tour was more than I could've hoped for. Our guide, Elizabeth, knew her stuff. I've been to Chicago a million times, but she showed me things I'd never seen before. The influence of the World's Fair is all over the city, but I didn't...More

Date of experience: November 2018
Thank dlister100
AmandaDetoursOwner, Manager at Chicago Detours, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thanks for sharing this review! We like to say we share stories and places that even locals don't know, and it sounds like even as a Chicago expert this tour found ways to surprise you! I hope you'll join us for another tour the next...More

Reviewed 10 October 2018
Great Worlds Fair tour

Amanda did a great job of re-textualizing parts of our city that have had the history re-purposed out of them. I appreciate my town just a bit more after having taken this tour and would recommend it for anyone looking to learn just a little...More

Date of experience: October 2018
Thank Guy C
AmandaDetoursOwner, Manager at Chicago Detours, responded to this reviewResponded 14 October 2018

Hey thanks for joining us, Guy! We love sharing stories and places even locals don't know, and we love hearing someone say they appreciate the city more after taking our tour. I hope we'll see you for another tour some time!

Reviewed 24 September 2018
Best tour ever!

I live in Chicago and love doing the local tours just to learn more about the history of my wonderful city...and I also travel to Europe a lot and do tours there, so I've done a ton. THIS ONE is the best I've been on!...More

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank Dmazor
AmandaDetoursOwner, Manager at Chicago Detours, responded to this reviewResponded 2 October 2018

Wow, this is so nice to hear! We love sharing more of the city with locals who want to learn more about Chicago's incredible history and architecture. We hope you'll join us for another one of our tours!

Reviewed 14 September 2018
Interesting Tour

My wife & I took the tour in Sept. 2018 and really enjoyed everything about it. You see Chicago in a whole new light and how it influenced the whole world from the 1893 Exposition. Steve, Vancouver, Canada

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank Steve E
AmandaDetoursOwner, Manager at Chicago Detours, responded to this reviewResponded 16 September 2018

Hi Steve, Thanks so much for joining us for the tour! We're so glad you had a good time and learned something new about Chicago.

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