Are Chicago Beaches Open? 

Chairs and umbrellas on a beach

When do Chicago beaches open? How about right now! Chicago beaches are open and ready to invite locals and tourists alike for a sun-filled season of summer fun. With 28 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline to explore, the beaches in Chicago allow for everyone—including four-legged friends!—to get in on the action, so grab some sunscreen and get ready to enjoy everything the lakefront has to offer. 

When Do Chicago Beaches Open

During the summer of 2020, Chicago beaches were closed in response to COVID-19. In an effort to reduce large gatherings and fight the spread of the coronavirus, the Chicago Park District officially closed the beaches, playgrounds, and other popular outdoor spaces to stay in accordance with public health recommendations. 

Happily, Chicago beaches opened as of May 2021, allowing family and friends to spend time in the sun and sand once more. Mayor Lori Lightfoot said, “As the weather warms up and our city begins to safely return to a sense of normalcy, reopening our beloved lakefront beaches is the perfect way to turn the page on spring and get back to our favorite outdoor activities.” She continued by urging Chicagoans to get vaccinated and continue safe practices while congregating in public. 

Chicago Beach Season

Chicago beach season runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day, hosting some of the best summer activities. While the beaches are free and open to all, there are certain guidelines visitors should expect to follow: 

  • Swim with lifeguards on duty: Swimming in Lake Michigan is permitted, but only when lifeguards are on watch, which is from 11am – 7pm daily. 
  • Watch for swim warnings: Swimming may be restricted if the water is too choppy. Look for color-coded flags to see whether or not it’s safe to swim. Green flags mean all is clear, yellow means to swim with caution, and red means swimming has been temporarily banned. 
  • Dog beach: Montrose Avenue Beach has a designated area for dogs to play off-leash in the water. Owners are responsible for their pets at all times. 

Visit Skydeck After a Day at the Beach!  

Chicago beaches are open and make for a laid-back day in the city. As you’re planning your visit, be sure to add Skydeck to your list! At 1,353 feet in the air, we offer spectacular views of Chicago’s beaches, making for Instagram-worthy pictures and memories you’ll never forget.  Get tickets for your next visit today!