Chicago: Willis Tower and SkyDeck Chicago Experience

view from Chicago SkyDeck
When I visited Willis Tower (formerly Sears) in 2013 and as of this writing, it is the 2nd tallest building in the USA and the 8th tallest freestanding structure in the world.  It was in my to-do list when I visited the windy city because I read in a travel guide that when in its view deck, one can see three states of the USA.

This is the entrance where I was dropped off.  Before heading to Jackson Boulevard, I took an ant’s point of view of the building.

I had a Chicago CityPass voucher so my visit to SkyDeck Chicago was most convenient.  I skipped the long lines and was immediately accommodated on the Fast Pass Lane.

Before reaching the view deck, we watched a show about the history of this iconic building, and the information that stuck to me was this:   At the time of its completion in 1973, it was the tallest building in the world, and held this rank for nearly 25 years.

When we were finally at the view deck, I was amazed at the views I was having.

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Just look at how this amazing city developed their spaces:  tall buildings coexist with their parks and public spaces and gardens and with Michigan Lake.

Here’s a collage of my views of John Hancock Center (I also visited this iconic building and will blog about it in a future post) and Chicago Sun Times and the roadway below.

Here are more panoramic shots of my view at the deck.

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It’s summer when I was there so the views were clear and stunning.  I’m not really familiar with what I was seeing, but I overheard an American guy tell his children that the 4 states that can be seen are Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

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My most memorable experience in the tower is stepping over the ledge, which was unveiled in 2009.  These all-glass boxes allow visitors to look through the floor on the street 1,353 feet, 412 meters and 103 floors below.  Whew!

This is a must-do when here.  Just be prepared to wait because not everyone is up to the challenge.  It was amusing to see people hold on to their family members as they wailed, “No, nooo, I can’t do this!  I’m scared!”  But there were daredevils too who, once on the ledge, would jump to their heart’s content and were unmindful of the dagger looks from the scared ones.

I exited on another side of the building and was lucky to chance on (okay, I admit it, I got lost, ha ha!) the part of the building with a huge Willis Tower signage.

What more, as I tried to find my way, I found this cool art installation of denims with flowers.  And there’s a smaller Willis Tower signage too!

Willis Tower is located in 233 S Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606, United States.  Visit for more information.


3 thoughts on “Chicago: Willis Tower and SkyDeck Chicago Experience

  1. Pingback: Chicago: 360 Chicago (formerly John Hancock Observatory) | Thoughts, Tales, and Whatnot

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