Chicago: Downtown & Central

Millennium Park, Grant Park, Museum Campus, Northerly Island

As part of a Lakefront Path run, there are all sorts of ways to mix and match Millennium Park, Grant Park, the Museum Campus, Soldier Field, and Northerly Island. A couple of options:

millenniumparkmp
Millennium Park

Option 1: Millennium Park/Grant Park Loop. 3.5 miles. For a short, scenic, and easy run in central Chicago, we recommend combining Millennium Park, Maggie Daley Park, and Grant Park. We’ve mapped a 3.5-mile route to use as an outline, but runners will want to create their own route on the parks’ numerous paths. Grant Park, modeled after the gardens at Versailles, runs between Michigan Ave. and the Museum Campus. It is a treat to run along the ~3 miles of allées of trees and paths, and provides a pastoral break from the elements along the Lakefront Trail. Scenic highlights include the Buckingham Fountain and numerous outdoor sculptures and monuments. The northwest section of the park features a ~1 mile loop around Millennium Park and the Art Institute of Chicago. Be sure to include the BP Pedestrian Bridge, designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry. The bridge connects Millennium Park and Maggie Daley Park, running over Columbus Dr. and spans 0.2 miles.

Museum Campus. Chris Smith

Option 2: Museum Campus, Soldier Field. & Northerly Island. 4 miles. Run this loop standalone or combine with Grant Park & Lakefront trail. Access the Museum Campus from the southern end of Grant Park. It’s a ~2 mile loop, jutting spectacularly out onto the lake, including the Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, and Adler Planetarium. From the Planetarium at 12th St. Beach, a nice option is the ~2 mile loop of Northerly Island, which has nice paths, plus lake & skyline views.

Add-Ons: Riverwalk is just north of Millennium Park. Can also add-on with adjacent Shedd Aquarium/Museum Campus/Northerly Island loop.

 

Essentials
  • 3-5 miles, with options
  • Flat
  • Either park, connect to Lakefront Path as well
  • Accessible from downtown - see trail info for tunnels crossing Shore Drive

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Essentials
  • 3-5 miles, with options
  • Flat
  • Either park, connect to Lakefront Path as well
  • Accessible from downtown - see trail info for tunnels crossing Shore Drive