Discover the Top Beach Destination: Best Beaches in Chicago for a Laidback Getaway!

Discover the Top Beach Destination: Best Beaches in Chicago for a Laidback Getaway!

Chill on Chicago’s Shores: The Ultimate Guide to the Windy City’s Best Beaches!

When it comes to a perfect summer vacation, there’s nothing more inviting than the sun, sand, and waves of a beautiful beach. And if you’re looking for the ideal beach destination to relax and unwind, then look no further than Chicago.

Chicago, the ‘Windy City,’ is known for its towering skyscrapers, world-class museums, and bustling food scene, but it’s also home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the United States. From the crystal clear waters of Lake Michigan to the sandy shores dotted with palm trees, Chicago’s beaches have something for everyone.

Whether you’re looking to soak up some rays with your friends and family, or just enjoy a quiet retreat with your significant other, there’s a beach in Chicago that’s perfect for you. So, pack your bags, grab your sunscreen, and join us as we explore some of the best beaches in Chicago for a laidback getaway!

Lake Michigan Beaches

The city of Chicago is blessed with a stunning coastline along Lake Michigan, providing plenty of options for a perfect beach day. With beautiful sandy beaches, crystal clear water, and picturesque views of the city skyline, the beaches along Lake Michigan are the perfect destination for a laidback getaway.

The most popular Lake Michigan beach in Chicago is probably the North Avenue Beach, which attracts locals and tourists alike with its pristine sand, volleyball courts, and watersports rentals. For a more secluded and peaceful experience, 57th Street Beach is a fantastic option. With its natural beauty, walking paths, and quiet atmosphere, this beach is perfect for those who want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.

If you are looking for a family-friendly beach, check out Montrose Beach. With its vast expanse of sand, playgrounds, and outdoor pool, you can enjoy a fun-filled day with your loved ones. Other great options include Oak Street Beach with its stunning views of Lake Michigan and the city skyline, and the serene Rainbow Beach for a peaceful escape.

  • North Avenue Beach
  • 57th Street Beach
  • Montrose Beach
  • Oak Street Beach
  • Rainbow Beach

Whether you’re in Chicago for a weekend or an extended stay, spending a day at one of the city’s Lake Michigan beaches is a must-do activity. With so many great options to choose from, you’ll be sure to find the perfect spot to relax and soak up the sun.

North Avenue Beach

North Avenue Beach is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, located just north of downtown Chicago. The beach stretches for miles along the shore of Lake Michigan, providing plenty of space for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports.

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One of the highlights of North Avenue Beach is its picturesque skyline view. From the sand, you can see the towering buildings of downtown Chicago, making for a unique and beautiful backdrop to your beach day.

If you’re looking for entertainment, North Avenue Beach has it all. There are plenty of food vendors, beachside bars, and even a beach house with a rooftop bar and restaurant. You can also rent beach chairs, umbrellas, and kayaks to take out on the water.

Overall, North Avenue Beach is a great place to spend a summer day in Chicago. Whether you’re looking to relax in the sun, play in the water, or enjoy some great food and drinks, this beach has something for everyone.

Oak Street Beach

Oak Street Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Chicago, situated in the Gold Coast neighborhood. With its white sandy shores and clear blue waters, it attracts thousands of visitors every year.

The beach is perfect for a day of sunbathing, swimming, and relaxing. There are also plenty of activities to enjoy, including beach volleyball, jet skiing, and paddleboarding. Plus, the beach is within walking distance of some of the city’s top restaurants and shopping destinations.

One of the highlights of Oak Street Beach is its breathtaking views of the skyline. Visitors can soak up the sun and take in the cityscape at the same time. Also, there are several beachside cafes and bars where they can grab a drink or a bite to eat.

  • Location: 1000 N. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago IL 60611
  • Facilities: Showers, restrooms, and concessions
  • Activities: Volleyball, jet skiing, paddleboarding
  • Hours: Open daily from 6am to 11pm

If you’re looking for a fun and lively beach atmosphere in the heart of the city, Oak Street Beach is the place to be.

12th Street Beach

If you are looking for a cozy, secluded spot to relax and soak up the sun, the 12th Street Beach is the perfect destination. This beach is situated in the Museum Campus area and offers stunning views of the Chicago skyline.

The 12th Street Beach boasts of crystal clear water and fine sand. It offers a calm and peaceful atmosphere, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. The beach also provides several facilities such as showers, restrooms, and sports equipment rentals.

  • Activities: The beach is ideal for swimming, sunbathing, and playing beach volleyball. Visitors can also enjoy fishing, kayaking, and stand-up paddleboarding.
  • Food and Drinks: There are several food trucks and a restaurant nearby that offer a variety of snacks and drinks.
  • Accessibility: The beach is easily accessible via public transportation, and parking is available at a nearby garage.
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Visit the 12th Street Beach for a serene and relaxing getaway, and experience the best of what Chicago beaches have to offer!

Montrose Beach

Montrose Beach, also known as Wilson Beach, is a wide strip of sandy shoreline along Lake Michigan. It is one of the largest beaches in Chicago and is a popular spot for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports.

The beach has several amenities, including a beach house with bathrooms and changing areas, volleyball courts, and a concession stand. In addition, visitors can rent kayaks and paddleboards to explore the lakefront.

Montrose Beach is also popular for its stunning views of the Chicago skyline. Visitors can relax on the beach while enjoying the sight of skyscrapers rising in the distance.

  • Location: 4400 N Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60640
  • Hours: 6 am to 11 pm
  • Cost: Free

Ohio Street Beach

Located in the heart of downtown Chicago, Ohio Street Beach is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. With its beautiful white sand, crystal-clear water, and stunning skyline views, it’s no wonder why.

Ohio Street Beach is also known for its excellent amenities, including showers, restrooms, and a concession stand. There are plenty of activities to enjoy here as well, such as beach volleyball, swimming, and paddleboarding.

If you’re looking for a quieter experience, Ohio Street Beach also has a separate section for kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding. Additionally, the beach is conveniently located near Navy Pier and the Magnificent Mile, making it easy to explore the city after a day of sun and sand.

Whether you’re looking to relax or engage in some fun activities, Ohio Street Beach is a great choice for a day in the sun.

Questions & Answers:

What is the best time to visit the beaches in Chicago?

The best time to visit the beaches in Chicago is during the summer months – from June to August. The weather is warm and sunny, and the water is usually quite pleasant for swimming.

What amenities can I expect to find at the beaches in Chicago?

Most of the beaches in Chicago have amenities like restrooms, showers, changing rooms, ice cream and snack stands, and outdoor grilling areas. Some of the more popular beaches even have restaurants and bars.

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Which beach in Chicago is the most family-friendly?

North Avenue Beach is one of the most family-friendly beaches in Chicago. It has a playground, lots of space to play, and a wide range of food options. Additionally, there are lifeguards on duty during the summer season.

Are pets allowed at the beaches in Chicago?

No, pets are not allowed at most of the beaches in Chicago. However, there are a few dog-friendly beaches such as Montrose Beach and Belmont Harbor Beach.

Can I go kayaking or paddleboarding at the beaches in Chicago?

Yes, you can rent kayaks, paddleboards, and other water sports equipment at many of the beaches in Chicago. Some of the most popular spots for kayaking or paddleboarding include North Avenue Beach and Montrose Beach.


William Johnson

This article gave me some great recommendations for beaches to check out in Chicago this summer. Can’t wait to hit the sand and soak up some sun!

Henry Lee

As a frequent visitor to the Windy City, I appreciate this comprehensive list of the best beaches in Chicago. I’ve been to a few of them before, but now I know which ones offer the best amenities and views. Thanks for the tips!

Edward Clark

Wow, I had no idea there were so many amazing beaches in Chicago! As a resident of the city, I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve only been to a couple of them. After reading this article, I’m definitely going to make it a priority to explore more of the city’s shoreline this summer. I appreciate the detailed descriptions of each beach, including the pros and cons of each one. It’s helpful to know which ones are less crowded and which ones have the best facilities and attractions nearby. I also appreciate the inclusion of tips for staying safe at the beach, like checking weather and safety advisories and avoiding swimming in unauthorized areas. These are important reminders for anyone planning a beach day in Chicago or anywhere else. Overall, this article has inspired me to make the most of my summer in the city and discover some new favorite beaches. Thanks for the great recommendations!