Walking Tours of NYC

Walking Tours of NYC

One of the best things about New York City is the wide selection of walking tours available. Some of them are even free! Learning the ins and outs of one of the biggest cities in the world is made so much easier and more informative when you have a local guide to show you around and introduce you to places you might not otherwise see. Make sure to check out some of these tours the next time you’re in The Big Apple.

Free Tours by Foot

Free Tours by Foot offers free volunteer-led tours all over the city. Multiple tours run every day and focus a specific themes like history, food, and culture. As travel blogger Nomadic Matt writes, “The company really shines in its diverse catalog—there’s a neighborhood or tour type for everyone. Most of the guides are actors and other long-time locals. They add a bit of quirky history to each tour, and since there’s no set script, each tour differs based on your guide.”

The Grand Tour by The Grand Central Partnership

The Grand Central Partnership organizes this free tour to educate people about the wonderful Grand Central Station and the surrounding neighborhoods. The tour provides a survey of many of the architecturally and historically significant sites, such as the Chrysler Building, Grand Central Terminal itself, and Pershing Square. No reservations are required, simply show up any Friday of the year at at 12:30pm in the sculpture court at 120 Park Avenue and 42nd Street.

Big Onion Walking Tours

While the Big Onion tours aren’t free ($12 for adults, $10 for students and seniors), they do provide some of the best array of themes including neighborhood tours and in-depth historical and ethnic surveys to special holiday and eating tours. The two-hour tours are held every weekend and holiday, and every single one is led by a Ph.D. candidate in American history, so you know you’re only getting the very best in historical facts.

Central Park Conservancy Tour

Nature lovers will want to check this one out. The Central Park Conservancy Tour will teach you about all the flora and fauna of Central Park. You’ll also learn about the park’s history and design. And all for free! Tours run multiple times a week and last under two hours.

Big Apple Greeter

Big Apple Greeter is a wonderful non-profit organization that connects visitors with local residents who serve as knowledgeable and enthusiastic hosts, introducing their guests to New York’s hidden secrets. Because they are all volunteers, this tour is also free. While you won’t be receiving a professional tour guide, these tour guides more than make up for it with their passion and excitement to show people the city they love. Tours can be arranged in any of the city’s five boroughs, you just need to call in advance to make a reservation. Tours generally last anywhere between two and four hours.

Photo Credit: Werner Kunz

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