For 2018 information, head to our Lollapalooza guide here.
Whether you’re a a local or a first-time visitor heading towards downtown Chicago this weekend for Lollapalooza, there’s a lot to consider and prepare for—namely, how you are planning to to and from Grant Park and how to get around Grant Park once you’re there. Fortunately, Chicago has a robust public transit system with trains, buses, and bicycles that will help thousands get to the park this weekend. And of course, there are your classic cabs and more recent rideshare apps.
You might notice that we didn’t include directions for driving or where to park at Grant Park. Driving to Grant Park is not recommended, but if you absolutely must, there are a couple of parking garages around Grant Park.
However, if you do plan on taking transit, you’ve got several great options for getting to and from Grant Park. Here’s a quick breakdown of what the best options are for this weekend.
Getting to Grant Park
Taking the train:
Grant Park is centrally located in Chicago’s Loop and it can be accessed by virtually any transportation method imaginable. Lollapalooza will be take place in the southern section of Grant Park, so if you plan on taking the CTA, there are stations along the Blue, Red, Brown, Orange, and Pink lines that will get you well within a short walking distance from Lollapalooza. Your best bets are going to be the Jackson station along the Blue Line, the Harold Washington Library stop along the Brown, Orange, and Pink lines, and finally, the Roosevelt station on the Red Line.
If you do plan on using the ‘L’ as your primary mode of transportation during Lollapalooza, the CTA highly recommends that you either have a fully-loaded transit pass or purchase daily passes in order to help reduce congestion. Visitors may be most interested in the 1-, 3-, or 7-day passes offered by the CTA, which cost $10, $20, and $28 respectively.
The CTA is also offering free fare card “wallets” to Lolla attendees this year. They will be given away only at select locations between certain periods this week. The CTA has more information on its website detailing when and where attendees can snag one.
Riding a Divvy bike:
Chicago has an excellent bike sharing (or bike rental as some Curbed commenters argue) system and Divvy is preparing for the influx of attendees heading to Grant Park. Generally, a Divvy station is only able to hold as many bikes as will fit in the dock located at an intersection, however, for Lollapalooza, Divvy staff will be on hand offering bike valet service. This service is only for Divvy bikes, but the service will essentially guarantee that riders will be able to drop off their borrowed bike at one of the stations around Grant Park.
For more details about Divvy’s valet service for Lollapalooza, head over to the official Divvy page for dates and locations.
If you plan on using a ridesharing app, keep in mind that data service may be unreliable around Grant Park during the afternoons and evenings while performances are going on. Also, if you do end up hailing a rideshare app, it’s best to type in the address of your pick up and drop-off spots as these apps often have trouble pinpointing exact locations in downtown Chicago. If you’re having issues with your ridesharing app, don’t be shy about flagging down a taxicab. Considering the outrageous surge pricing that these apps will likely be charging this weekend, your classic taxi will likely be much cheaper in the end.
And while you’re at it, if you have Google Maps on your phone, go ahead and download the map of downtown Chicago to use even while your phone is offline.
The official Lollapalooza shuttle:
So, there will also be a shuttle service for Lolla attendees this weekend. This one is a little trickier and you’ll have to provide some info in order to see when and where it’ll pick you up. Definitely worth a shot though.
Getting around Grant Park
OK, so you’ve made your way to Grant Park but now it’s time to figure out where you need to go. Fortunately, Lollapalooza has provided a nicely illustrated and thoroughly detailed map with important sites like stages, restrooms, and entry points.
The box office for Lollapalooza is located at the corner of S. Michigan Avenue and Balbo Avenue near the main entrance. There is also another main entry and exit point along Monroe Avenue.
Things to see and do around Grant Park:
Be sure to have plenty of storage available on your phone for photos. Downtown Chicago is a beautiful sight to see. If you’re interested in architecture, you’re in the right city. Here’s a list of some of the greatest buildings around downtown Chicago that we think everyone should know, but if you’re into public art, there are many public sculptures and art installations that are closely located to the Lollapalooza location in Grant Park.
But if you’re looking for some good Chicago food, there won’t be a shortage of great food offerings in and around Grant Park this weekend. Our sister site Eater Chicago has highlighted their picks for Lollapalooza—you definitely won’t want to miss out on these delicious spots.