A Chicago tour company telling stories of Chicago neighborhoods since 2010

A Chicago Tour Company

Our Story a.k.a. the History of Us!

Chicago Detours is a boutique Chicago tour company that tells neighborhood stories through in-person tours, virtual tours, and custom content for private group events. We customize fun and meaningful experiences that connect people to places and each other through the power of storytelling.


The Chicago Detours began
1 st
hyperlocal tourism company in the country!
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in-person and virtual tour guests
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reviews with average rating of 4.5/5
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Custom-designed walking, bus and boat tours in downtown and Chicago neighborhoods
Curated virtual events with 300+ hours development
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donated to a youth theater program that shares stories of our neighborhoods
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blog posts about Chicago history, architectural design and things to do

our journey as a Chicago tour company


Founder Amanda Scotese created Detours as a Chicago tour company with a mission to bring people to explore Chicago stories and places that even locals didn’t know.

Before Chicago Detours, she worked in travel for many years, including a decade as a Tour Guide and Guidebook Researcher with Rick Steves’ Europe.

We designed walking, bus and boat tours of downtown and Chicago neighborhoods.

Amanda and the Chicago Detours team cultivated a reputation as having the best Chicago tour guides, with five stars on Google, Facebook, TripAdvisor and Yelp. 

We supported education in history and architecture with our Community Initiatives

chicago expert neighborhood tour guide alex speaking chicago tour company

Voted Runner-up for “Best Tour of Chicago” in the Chicago Reader’s annual poll.

Best tour of Chicago

We celebrated our 10th anniversary as a Chicago tour company! 

We used our background in visual storytelling, our expertise in Chicago architecture and history, and a decade of curating corporate events to launch our virtual tours for special events.

Our virtual tours were featured in Entrepreneur, Inc. Magazine, WBEZ and many more. 


We officially launched our place-based storytelling and content production services, including video, animations, and all kinds of media for telling Chicago stories.

chicago neighborhood video production amanda with camera on shoot

“Chicago Detours, a touring company…pushing the limits of what is expected.”

Entrepreneur Magazine 3/18/21

Actually Cool Things You Can (Still) Do in Chicago Right Now

thrillist 8/15/2020

How 5 Small Businesses Reinvented Themselves During Covid 

Inc Magazine 3/17/21

meet the team

Executive Director and Tour Guide

Content Manager and Tour Guide

Marketing Manager and Tour Guide

Sales Manager and Tour Guide

Tour Guide

chai headshot tour company assistant

Administrative Assistant

Our Chicago Tour Company Philosophy

We believe we can learn about our communities, ourselves and each other by exploring Chicago history and architecture.

We know that history is best told with a creative approach.

custom chicago neighborhoods building tour icon

We passionately support historic preservation efforts.

river city chicago architecture stories event

ready to book a tour?