Wellness & Nature

Shore Thing: Discovering Chicago’s 6 Best Beaches

When most people think of Chicago, they may not immediately think of beaches. However, the city has a surprising number of beautiful beaches along the shores of Lake Michigan.

With miles of sandy shores and crystal-clear waters, Chicago's beaches are some of the best in the Midwest.

Whether you're looking for a peaceful spot to relax, a place to swim and play in the water, or a beach with stunning views of the city skyline, Chicago has it all.

Each beach has its own unique charm and offers something different for visitors to enjoy.

From family-friendly spots with playgrounds and picnic areas to secluded coves perfect for a romantic getaway, there's a beach for everyone in Chicago.

Plus, with plenty of amenities like restrooms, showers, and beachside cafes, you can spend the day soaking up the sun and enjoying the waves without having to worry about a thing.

So, if you're looking for a summer escape in the heart of the city, look no further than Chicago's beaches.

In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at some of the best beaches in the area and what makes each one special. Get ready to pack your sunscreen and hit the sand!

1. Montrose Beach

Montrose Beach
4400 N Lake Shore Dr, Chicago, IL 60640 (Google Maps)

Montrose Beach is the perfect place to spend a sunny day in the city. With stunning views of the Chicago skyline, this popular sand beach offers shallow water for swimming and kayaking.

Visitors can enjoy concessions and an outdoor restaurant with music, as well as clean bathrooms and stroller-friendly paths.

The beach also features a dog-friendly area and a bird sanctuary for nature lovers. It's a bustling seasonal swimming beach with amenities like volleyball courts and jet ski rentals.

Montrose Beach is a must-visit tourist attraction that offers something for everyone.

2. Fullerton Beach

Fullerton Beach
Chicago, IL 60614 (Google Maps)

Fullerton Beach is a great option for families visiting Chicago. The clean water and nearby snack stands make it an enjoyable experience.

Chair rentals are available for a reasonable price, but not necessary if you're just there with kids.

It's a great spot to watch the Navy Pier/4th of July Fireworks, with a lively community atmosphere and ice cream vendors.

Compared to nearby North Avenue Beach, Fullerton Beach is less crowded but still offers a fun beach day.

3. Calumet Park Beach

Calumet Park Beach
Chicago, IL 60617 (Google Maps)

Calumet Park Beach is a peaceful and relaxing spot with a stunning view.

The water might be a bit chilly, but the soft sand between your toes makes it worth it.

It's the perfect spot to watch the waves and unwind.

4. 12th Street Beach

12Th Street Beach
Chicago, IL 60605 (Google Maps)

12th Street Beach is a great spot for anyone looking to soak up some sun and enjoy the ocean waves.

The beach is clean, the water is clear, and the lifeguards are always on watch.

If you're looking to avoid crowds, try going on a weekday. But be warned, weekends can get pretty busy.

All in all, it's a great beach to spend a day relaxing and enjoying the beautiful scenery.

5. Belmont Harbor Dog Beach

Belmont Harbor Dog Beach
Chicago, IL 60657 (Google Maps)

Belmont Harbor Dog Beach is a great spot for dog lovers. It's a small beachfront that's perfect for your furry friends to play and swim.

The atmosphere is friendly, and the area is well-maintained. The entrance ramp to the beach is a bit of a challenge when the water level is high.

However, it's less crowded than some other dog beaches in the area.

The beach is a wonderful example of cooperation between the city and dog owners. It's a fantastic place to bring your dog for some fun in the sun.

6. Calumet Beach

Calumet Beach
Chicago, IL 60617 (Google Maps)

Calumet Beach is a family-friendly beach with a nice park nearby. It's one of the few beaches in the city where you can park for free.

The beach is clean and well-maintained. There are lifeguards on duty to ensure the safety of the visitors. The food available is reasonably priced and okay for beach food.

The beach is a bit crowded at times, but there's plenty of space to picnic, play, and chill. The field house provides plenty of activities for Chicago residents, including summer programs and a gym.

Boat docking is also available. If you're looking for a fun family outing away from the city crowds, Calumet Beach is a great option.