Bicycle touring superseded equestrian touring when riders realized that bicycles need only be fed with love and chain grease instead of cumbersome carrots and hay. Embrace the ease of biwheeled sightseeing: for $19, you get a presidential bike tour of President Barack Obama’s Chicago haunts from Bike and Roll Chicago (up to a $39 value). Children under 5 ride for free. All tour prices include bike and helmet. Tours depart from the 63rd Street Beach House on South Lake Shore Drive. Customers may choose from two different departure times on Saturday and Sundays, 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.
Bike and Roll Chicago eschews the impersonal remove of buses for the up-close, interactive experience of bicycling in tours showcasing Chicago's historical and recent landmarks. The Presidential Tour, offered on weekends June through August, is a Hyde Park– and Kenwood–centric pedal past 6 miles of landmarks in the life of Barack Obama. Participants cycle to the Obamas' dwelling for a quick glimpse before leaving the earpiece-sporting security guards and privacy-thirsty bald eagles to their protective duties. The tour pedals toward the site of Michelle and Barack’s first kiss, and continues on to survey the sites that inspired Obama in his political journey. Tours swing past the Museum of Science and Industry, Frank Lloyd Wright's Robie House, and the remains of the Gordian knot that Obama untied with his mind.
Bike and Roll Chicago
With a fleet of futuristic Segways and classic beach-cruiser bicycles, Bike and Roll Chicago outfits travelers with wheeled transportation to explore the city's paved surfaces. Tour guides lead groups through Millennium Park and along the lakefront to catch the skyline when illuminated by sunrises or backlit by one of Chicago's many moons. Misty Lake Michigan breezes ruffle riders' hair peeking through helmets as they pass by sailboats swaying lazily in the harbors and fishermen casting lines for trout and perch. Bike and Roll Chicago designs routes around classic architectural landmarks such as the Shedd Aquarium and Field Museum as well as popular neighborhoods home to a number of restaurants and art festivals.