Whether you’re a tourist or a tried-and-true New Yorker, you can always learn more about New York City—especially when you’re on its streets!
That’s the thinking behind Alliance for Downtown New York’s new Walking Tour Incubator Grant Program, which helped bring about five new walking tours of Lower Manhattan this summer. Following an application process that asked for compelling and original tour concepts, the nonprofit selected five winners and paid them a grant of up to $12,500 to help develop, launch and scale their tours.
For two months, these entrepreneurs underwent a “rigorous” two-month incubator, which included one-on-one coaching from tourism industry leaders and a cutting-edge educational curriculum designed for tour businesses.
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Below are the brand-new tours that are launching over the next few weeks:
- Downtown LGBTQ+ Activism Walking Tour by Christopher Street Tours: visits historic sites that shaped the LGBTQ+ Rights Movement, including spots where pivotal protests were ignited and led activists to fight for justice.
- Sinister Secrets of the Seaport by the South Street Seaport Museum: takes visitors on a twisting journey through the Seaport, unraveling scandalous stories ripped from the headlines and publications from the 1790s to the 1990s.
- Escape to New York - Stories of Faith, Freedom and Fortune by Vivace Tours: brings visitors through the history of Lower Manhattan, from New Amsterdam to today, by showing what makes New York City such a unique enclave of people from around the world seeking both religious freedom and fortune.
- How To Be A New Yorker - Downtown Edition: an interactive, immersive audio group walking tour by Awesome Walks, where participants will meet business owners and community leaders, thinkers and doers, and get to see the city through their eyes.
- Culinary Master Dining Experience & NYC Afternoon Culinary Adventure by Inside Out Tours: Culinary Masters is a progressive meal journey featuring three renowned chefs and restaurants; the Culinary Adventure is a mouthwatering tasting tour across Lower Manhattan led by expert guides.
“Pack your walking shoes on your next visit downtown because these new tours will make the perfect addition to any Lower Manhattan itinerary,” said Jessica Lappin, President of the Alliance for Downtown New York. “There’s something for everyone, with each offering a fresh perspective on the neighborhood. As we’re in the midst of a busy tourist season in the neighborhood, these new tours are launching at an ideal time.”
We encourage you to always be a tourist in your own town and get out on the street—always be learning!