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Best Beaches to Explore in Chicago This Summer

As the temperatures rise and the days grow longer, it’s time to start planning your summer activities in Chicago. While the Windy City might be more famous for its iconic architecture, deep-dish pizza, and vibrant arts scene, it’s also home to some truly stunning beaches. Nestled along the shores of Lake Michigan, the city boasts an impressive array of sandy spots perfect for soaking up the sun, splashing in the water, and enjoying the long-awaited summer months. Here is your guide to some of the best beaches in Chicago that residents and visitors alike can enjoy throughout the summer months:

North Avenue Beach

North Avenue Beach

Arguably the most popular beach in the city, North Avenue Beach is located in the heart of Lincoln Park, one of Chicago’s most beloved neighborhoods. This bustling beach is famous for its picturesque views of the city skyline, extensive amenities, and vibrant atmosphere. Whether you’re looking to relax on the sandy shores, play a game of beach volleyball, or rent a jet ski, North Avenue Beach has something for everyone. Don’t forget to grab a bite to eat or enjoy a refreshing cocktail at the iconic Castaways Bar & Grill, a ship-shaped, two-level restaurant right on the beach.

Loyola Beach

Situated in the vibrant Rogers Park neighborhood, Loyola Beach is a true gem for both locals and visitors looking for a peaceful beach experience. This charming beach, adjacent to the Loyola University campus, offers a tranquil atmosphere with ample space for sunbathing, swimming, and strolls along the lakeshore. Its pristine sand and calm waters make it an ideal spot for families and those looking to relax away from the city’s hustle and bustle. For a unique artistic touch, be sure to explore the nearby Loyola Park, which features a colorful array of murals and sculptures that add a creative flair to the area. When hunger strikes, stop by the Heartland Café or one of the many nearby eateries that offer a delightful mix of cuisine to satisfy your taste buds.

57th Street Beach

Located in the historic Hyde Park neighborhood, 57th Street Beach is a hidden gem for those looking to escape the crowds. This quiet and spacious beach is perfect for families, offering a more relaxed atmosphere and ample space for picnics and beach games. The nearby Museum of Science and Industry, as well as the beautiful Jackson Park, provide additional opportunities for exploration and fun. For a refreshing treat, visit the 57th Street Beach House, which serves up a variety of tasty snacks and beverages.

Montrose Beach

Montrose Beach

Montrose Beach, located in the Uptown neighborhood, is Chicago’s largest beach and a favorite among locals. This expansive sandy spot offers plenty of room for sunbathers, swimmers, and beachgoers of all ages. Montrose Beach also boasts a dedicated dog-friendly area, making it an excellent choice for pet owners. When hunger strikes, be sure to check out the Dock at Montrose Beach, a popular open-air restaurant and bar that serves up delicious food and refreshing drinks with a side of stunning lake views.

Chicago’s beaches offer a stunning backdrop for any summer adventure. With so many options to choose from, you can spend your sunny days exploring new shores and creating cherished memories with friends and family. So, don’t let summer slip away—dive into Chicago’s beach scene and experience the magic of our city’s sandy havens. See you at the beach!