Best building views in Chicago

Chicago is known to be the 3rd biggest city in The United States of America having a total of 2.7 million of population. The Windy City is very popular for its great architectural tradition. It is spotted to be the 2nd in the whole United States when it comes to skyline. This city is rich in wonderful skylines to be exact it has 1,273 high rise buildings. Chicago ranks 5th for this year’s Top 10 Cities with tallest buildings, having 117 spectacular skyscrapers. And because of that Chicago’s skyline became the most iconic cityscapes worldwide. When you get a chance to visit Chicago complete your amazing Chicago trip but visiting the famous and tallest building so you can enjoy the most memorable view from the top.  

If you want to get up so high, try the Skydeck at Willis Tower also known as Sears Tower, Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier and the 360 Chicago Observation deck just so long you agree to spend some amount of money. But there are also best free views just like the Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo in front of Alder Planetarium, and the Cindy’s Rooftop the only thing is the drinks there are not cheap. There are more than a thousand skyscrapers in this very famous Windy City now let’s talk about the best building views.

Willis Tower

Formerly known as Sears tower and now it is called Willis Tower, it is famous for its title as the tallest building in the entire Western Hemisphere. Considered as one of the best tallest building views because the Skydeck Chicago which is situated on the 103rd floor receives 1.7 million visitors annually another great thing about the Skydeck Chicago it is the tallest observation deck in the entire United States of America.  

Willis Tower has one of the fastest elevator rides in the whole world, you will be welcomed by the jaw - dropping bird’s - eye view that stretches up to four states that includes Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Michigan on a clear day the view can reach nearly 50 miles. The first of its kind namely The Ledge, if you are brave enough you can dare to step onto the glass balcony and it extends up to four feet away from the building. This will give you the opportunity to see the amazing and unforgettable view 1,353 feet above the air.

Interactive museum quality exhibits regarding The Windy City and its architecture are being featured at Skydeck Chicago. There is a nine - minute movie theater presentation called Reaching for the Sky that will show you the journey of the Willis tower when it started as a dream and how it became a world icon that put Chicago on the architectural map. An experience with Chicago’s Skydeck will never be complete without getting yourself a memento from Skydeck Gift Store.  

Important tips so you can make the most of your visit at the Skydeck Chicago:

  • Visit during “off-peak” season: Lesser visitors comes during December, January and February. Unlike peak season that you have to wait at least 45 minutes before you can reach the 103rd floor, off peak will let you experience the Skydeck in about 10 minutes only and no need to wait longer.  

  • Have a closer look by bringing binoculars: A clear day view is really striking it will let you see up to 50 miles away. Get a close up look of Chicago’s remarkable places using binoculars.

  • Wait for the sunset: One of the best sights that you can enjoy 1,353 feet above is the sunset. You will see that how the light starts to glow in every part of Chicago. You should be up there by 5:00 P.M. or sometimes it depends on the time of the year. Better yet check the sunset calendar to be sure.

  • Enjoy learning: The passage going to the elevators is full with pieces of information about the Willis Tower and the Windy City including the visuals that will excite the interest of the entire family. It is worthy to save time to check on the exhibit. Don’t miss out the 9 minute movie presentation to know more about the Willis Tower history and the significant landmarks in Chicago.

  • Enjoy a great breakfast at the top: You have to make a reservation before having a breakfast at the top. There are tables on the glass balcony that will let you enjoy the view over a good food.


A visit in 360 Chicago is worth your while if you are going to have a trip in the Windy City. It was named as one of the Best Views in America by Travel + Leisure magazine. The 360 observation deck is located at the 94th floor of 875 N. Michigan, previously known as the John Hancock Center and it earned the title as the 4th tallest building in the entire city of Chicago. It was recognized due to its Unique X - Shaped exterior bracing that made it as one of Chicago’s architectural icon.  

The fun starts right when you step into the elevator that shoots you up to the 360 Chicago observation deck at 20.5 mph and to be exact it will be a 39 - second ride. From the floors to its ceiling you will be amazed by how the observation deck looks like and the views of the city from there. You can see Lake Michigan and on a clear day you can see up to 80 miles including the four states such as Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. They have interactive touch screens that allows you to see the panoramic views of the Windy City on a high definition quality not only that you will also enjoy the history of Chicago, its architecture, and culture available in seven different languages.  

Experience the Tilt, the highlight and the most thrilling experience that is offered by 360 Chicago. It is a huge combination of still and glass bay window that tilts forward, and it stops at the intervals of 15, 25, and 30 degrees that will let you experience the downward facing view of Chicago from 1,000 feet above. Eight visitors at a time is the capacity of Tilt, each of them needs to stand in place and grip onto the bars as it tilts forward. The awe - inspiring moment lasts for 1 minute and 15 seconds.