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New York Walking Tours

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by Jessica Mousseau (subscribe)
Jessica Mousseau is a copywriter & copy editor from the United States. Her work can be viewed at: www.jessicamousseau.com.
Published June 14th 2011


A walking tour is the best way to see the majority of the New York City sights. You can get fairly close to the things and places you're looking at, and the view is better than if you just glimpse it as you pass by in a speeding cab or lumbering bus that only has specified stops.

Many NYC walking tours are free; those that aren't usually aren't that expensive. You can choose from several different types and companies that offer them; a few are listed below. The addresses listed are usually the offices; tours may start at different places in and around the City.

Walking Tours Manhattan, 124 E. 79th Street, #10d

This company specializes in food tours, although it does offer an outlet shopping tour as well as sightseeing tours to some of the well-known NYC landmarks. If you choose one of the food tours (and there are several), come hungry, because you'll be eating a lot of food. Some of the places will offer three or four courses, and possibly even more.

Food tours include multi-ethnic food tours, food tours that include Soho, Little Italy, and Chinatown, with their different restaurants, and even champagne brunch and wine tasting tours. Again, come hungry.

Big Onion Walking Tours, 1317 3rd Avenue

The tours offered by this company lean heavily toward historical and ethnic tours. You'll see such places at the Brooklyn Bridge and Brooklyn Heights, Central Park, Chelsea and the High Line, Chinatown (of course), and many others.

These tours are intended to be thought-provoking as well as entertaining and educational. You'll enjoy seeing how New York City came to be the bustling, thriving city it is today through these walking tours.

Orchard Street Walking Tour (meet at Katz's Delicatessen, 205 East Houston St.)

This tour takes you to the Lower East Side, where you'll see examples of how it was in the past and how it is today. You'll see such places as the former Municipal Public Bath House and the only remaining umbrella shop (this is a must-see). Tours are held on Sundays at 11:00 AM, Aprils through December. The tours last about 1 hours, which isn't too long, but long enough for you to thoroughly enjoy them.

Grand Central Station (tour starts at information booth in the Station)

This tour is sponsored by the Municipal Art Society, so you won't hear a lot of stories about the people, famous and infamous, who passed through this busy terminal, but you will come away with an appreciation of the architecture, sculpture, and other things that give Grand Central Station its iconic appearance.

Tours are conducted on Wednesdays at 12:30 PM, and last about 1 hours. This is plenty of time for you to see the architectural wonders of one of America's busiest train terminals. This tour is free, but you are asked to give a donation. It's your decision, though.
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Why? Because walking tours are fun when wanting to see New York
When: Whenever tours are planned
Where: All over NYC
Cost: Depends on tour
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