Jon Bunge: Boating

When it comes to boating, you cannot find a more perfect haven than Chicago, as it is positioned right on Lake Michigan for your convenience. This lake is especially popular for both expert and novice boaters alike, as it can be navigated easily thanks to the very few shoals and reefs present in it. If you are looking for a place where you can take in some spectacular sights out on the water, Lake Michigan’s blue waters pressed against the Windy City’s famous skyline cannot be beat.

The River

Of course, you cannot stop by Chicago without enjoying some time out on the lake. But that does not mean you should neglect the allure of the river while your boat is in tow. The Chicago River meanders right through Downtown Chicago’s heart, so you get a taste of the natural beauty of the water and the excitement of one of the nation’s most active downtown areas all at the same time. While boating on the river, you can see some unparalleled urban architecture and feel as free as a fish as you set sail.

The Dunes

If you are looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city while still enjoying some beach time close to the city, St. Joseph is an ideal destination for a weekend adventure or even a daytime trip. The Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is a gorgeous area for boating and enjoying the sights of the uniquely breathtaking dunes that can be spotted from the water or enjoyed up close near the coastline.

Party Like a Rockstar

In some areas of Chicago, boating is not for the faint of heart. If you want to add a little spark to your watery experience, then why not participate in one of sailing’s most prestigious races, the Race to Mackinac? This is the longest sailing race in fresh water around the globe and occurs in the month of July.

Then there is the Chicago Scene Boat Party, which also takes place in July. Thousands of people and more than 800 boats make their appearance at this admittedly debaucherous-at-times Playpen boat party. If you are looking for the best of the best of summer social scenes in Chicago, you cannot go wrong with this one-of-a-kind boat party.

July is not the only enjoyable month for boating thrill seekers in the Windy City during the summer. The Chicago Air and Water Show takes place in August and is perfect for the entire family. You can see Blue Angels and stunt planes from the ground or from a boat while attending this free water and air show, the biggest in the United States.

Beach it Up

No boating vacation in the Windy City should feel complete without spending some time at Montrose Harbor and Beach. Here, you can soak in rays and fresh beach air near the busy marina in addition to enjoying some music and dockside barbecues. The friendly atmosphere and beautiful downtown view are sure to make for sweet memories for years to come.