Grant Park, located in the heart of downtown Chicago, is known popularly as “Chicago’s Front Yard.” With many of the city's most popular attractions, there are almost endless opportunities for Grant Park engagement photos.
Totaling more than 300 acres Grant Park is actually a collection of many notable parks (Millennium Park, Maggie Daley Park) and iconic landmarks (Buckingham Fountain, Art Institute of Chicago). It also encompasses Museum Campus, home of the Field Museum and Adler Planetarium.
The iconic Buckingham Fountain at the center of Grant Park operates from April to October with water displays every 20 minutes and light displays after dark. Long allées of American Elm trees create leading lines and provide a strong feeling of nature in the urban park.
Much of Grant Park was originally part of Lake Michigan and has been expanded through land reclamation projects in the late 19th century and early 1900s. In the autumn, Grant Park is one of the best places in the city to view fall color - especially the Red Maples that can be seen from Lurie Garden.
The Chicago Lakefront trail carves through the eastern edge of the park along Lake Michigan. Grant Park is also the home to multiple marinas and harbors including Dusable Harbor and Monroe Harbor, the home of the Chicago Yacht Club and Columbia Yacht club.
Located along the park’s western edge, The Art Institute of Chicago South Garden creates an intimate escape next to bustling Michigan Avenue.
Address: 337 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601
Neighborhood: The Loop
As of 2019, the Chicago Park District is requiring permits for wedding and engagement photographers.
For Garfield & Lincoln Park Conservatories and Buckingham Fountain the permit can be purchased here . For other locations, getting a permit is a two step process.
WHY WE LOVE IT
There's no shortage of great places to view Chicago's skyline, but for me the view from North Ave. never gets old. It's a regular stop for me on bike rides on the Lakeshore Trail and I still find myself saying "I can't believe I live here."
I have a soft spot for North Ave. Beach as it's actually where I proposed to my wife and where we went for our own wedding portraits.