Willis Tower

The Skydeck at Willis Tower offers the best place in Chicago for a bird’s eye view across the breadth of the city and Lake Michigan.

The tallest building in the entire United States, towering over the Chicago skyline and rising to an incredible 440 metres, Willis Tower is one of the city’s foremost icons and the ideal place from which to observe the whole city and Lake Michigan beyond.

Today, the building is a modern office block, but you can take the lift to the Skydeck viewing platform up on Willis Tower’s 103rd floor. High above the streets, you can enjoying a captivating view day or night, and even pay a visit to a small museum on the site. On a clear day, you can see as far as the states of Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin, not to mention enjoying a new perspective on some of the city's famous attractions, like Lincoln Park.

Constructed in 1973 and first named the Sears Tower, this iconic structure on South Wacker Drive in Chicago’s West Loop had its name changed to Willis Tower in 2003. For a quarter of a century, it stood proud as the tallest building in the world, until the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur seized the crown. Willis Tower nonetheless remains the tallest building in the western hemisphere and seventh tallest in the world.

While you’re on the Skydeck, take some pictures of the dramatic cityscape. Look for the glass ledge built onto the side of the tower, with a glass floor you can walk over, from which you can look down at the street beneath your feet. Glass windows on each side of the viewing platform offer incredible panoramic views – there is a railing for you to hold onto if you start feeling a bit dizzy!

A small interactive museum on the same floor is well worth a visit before heading back down to street level, with short videos, a trivia game and shots of Chicago’s best-loved attractions.

To take the lift up to the top, you should enter Willis Tower on the building’s south side along Jackson Boulevard.