Harlem Tours

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This uptown New York City neighborhood caught the public’s attention in the 1920s with the Harlem Renaissance—an explosion of African-American art, literature, and music. Though it has been subject to gentrification, the district remains a cultural powerhouse with jazz clubs, theaters, and soul food restaurants tucked away among old brownstones. 

The Basics
Many tourists in New York City find themselves strolling the streets of Harlem. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard (125th Street), Harlem’s main thoroughfare, holds many of the area’s top attractions including the Apollo Theater and the Studio Museum in Harlem. But to really get to know this part of Upper Manhattan, explore in the company of a tour guide. Walking tours focus on different aspects of its musical heritage—think hip-hop, Harlem gospel, and jazz—as well as Harlem’s history.

Other Harlem tours revolve around food, movie and TV filming locations, and the district’s swing-dance scene. Many tours make stops at notable religious structures, including the as-yet-unfinished Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the lively Abyssinian Baptist Church, and the Rockefeller-built Riverside Church.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Harlem is a must-visit for fans of African-American culture.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and expect to do quite a lot of walking, as Harlem covers a relatively large section of Upper Manhattan. 
  • Curb ramps are commonplace, making much of Harlem accessible to wheelchair users.

How to Get There
Harlem is located in Upper Manhattan. The New York City neighborhood begins at the northern boundary of Central Park between Fifth Avenue and Manhattan Avenue. Harlem’s east-west boundaries widen as you travel north, eventually extending from the Harlem River all the way to the Hudson River. To get to the heart of Harlem, ride the A, B, D, 2, or 3 train to 125th Street. 

When to Get There
Harlem is fun to explore at any time, though the subway trip is probably best avoided during the crowded morning and evening rush hours. On Sundays, you can hear the strains of gospel music emerging from the neighborhood’s many places of worship. Friday and Saturday evenings are best for nightlife. 

Key Historic Sights in Harlem
For a glimpse into the Harlem of old, head for Strivers’ Row, also known as St. Nicholas Historic District. Situated on West 138th and 139th Streets between Frederick Douglass and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevards, this row of elegant 19th-century townhouses has been home to countless historic figures including Scott Joplin and Eubie Blake. Harlem also boasts what is arguably New York’s most glorious cathedral, the Cathedral of St. John the Divine—an immense stone construction blending Romanesque, Gothic, and neo-Gothic elements. 
Location
Address: 10027, USA
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Admission: Free
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34 Tours & Activities to Experience

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Harlem Safe House Jazz Parlor

Enjoy an intimate jazz performance with tickets to the Harlem Safe House Jazz Parlor, a live, monthly concert presented by Harlem-resident Craig Harris. Experience Harlem’s most distinctive sounds in a historic brownstone home, with small bites, wine and dessert. Mingle with local artists and music lovers before the 2-hour performance, and savor the special atmosphere of Harlem’s cutting-edge arts community.
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$65.35
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$65.35

Harlem Historical Food Tour

Taste your way through Harlem's eclectic food scene on a 4-hour walking tour. Sample traditional soul food, African cuisine and Caribbean bites as you explore the neighborhood on foot with a local guide. Listen as your guide fills you in on the rich history, culture and traditions of the vibrant neighborhood. Be sure to bring your appetite, you won't leave hungry; you'll walk away with a list of restaurants you can return to in the future.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$79.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$79.00

Harlem Gospel Experience Walking Tour in English

Experience Harlem’s gospel music and culture with a 4-hour walking tour through the historic New York City neighborhood. Listen to the distinctive harmonies of a Harlem gospel choir in a local church, and hear how that music has transformed American culture. Explore Harlem’s vibrant streets with an experienced guide as you learn about the neighborhood’s art, literature and political history, follow in the footsteps of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, then see the celebrated Apollo Theater, where some of America’s most iconic artists ignited the Harlem renaissance.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$45.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$45.00

Harlem Jazz Series

Experience the iconic sounds of Harlem with tickets to an afternoon jazz series that features today’s most creative and talented artists. Each Tuesday performance brings a different group or soloist for two intimate sets at a history Presbyterian church. Enjoy 90 minutes of music that ranges from laid-back tunes to upbeat horns and drums, and take in Harlem’s cultural heritage and cutting edge compositions.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$16.35
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$16.35

Big Bus New York Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

See the Big Apple with a Big Bus hop-on hop-off tour Classic ticket. Pass top attractions like Central Park, the Empire State Building and more, and learn about the history of the city from an on-board guide. Then, when you're ready to explore a part of town in greater depth, hop off. Upgrade to a Premium ticket that includes the choice of the Brooklyn Loop, the Harlem Loop or the Panoramic Night Tour. Choose the Deluxe ticket to include all loops and a sightseeing cruise.
  • Duration: 2 days
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US$48.00
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  • Duration: 2 days
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US$48.00

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New York City All Around Town Hop-on Hop-off Tour

A hop-on hop-off New York bus tour allows you to see the city at your own pace and provides easy transportation to top sights. Entertaining tour guides keep you informed when you’re on board, and you can hop off and on the distinctive double-decker tour buses when you wish to check out attractions like the Empire State Building and Rockefeller Center. There are several options and combos to choose from with access to the Uptown Loop, Downtown Loop, Brooklyn Loop and Night Tour, or upgrade to add attractions to your tour!
  • Duration: Flexible
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US$29.00
US$59.00  US$30.00 savings
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  • Duration: Flexible
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US$29.00
US$59.00  US$30.00 savings

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Harlem Sunday Morning Gospel Tour

Discover New York City’s gospel heritage on this spirited tour of Harlem, complete with a Sunday morning gospel choir service. See musical landmarks like the Apollo Theater and Cotton Club on a coach tour, and explore parts of this vibrant neighborhood on foot. Visit a local congregation to take part in a traditional Sunday gospel service featuring the soulful stylings of the choir. Upgrade to include a hearty soul food brunch at a favorite local restaurant.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$65.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$65.00

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Harlem Soul Food and Jazz Evening Tour

Delve into the musical legacy of Harlem with a guided jazz tour and live show at one of the neighborhood’s iconic venues. See Harlem landmarks like the Apollo Theater and Savoy Ballroom, and savor a preshow, home-style meal at Sylvia’s restaurant — founded by the ‘Queen of Soul Food.’ After dinner, head to one of Harlem’s hottest nightspots for a live show featuring a 1920s swing ensemble or a modern rhythm and blues or jazz act.
  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$175.00
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  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$175.00

Harlem Wednesday-Morning Gospel Tour

Discover the vibrant history and musical legacy of Harlem with a midweek morning gospel tour. Stroll past beautiful brownstones while learning about Harlem’s famous former residents. Take part in an uplifting morning service featuring the talented ARC gospel choir, which supports drug addiction recovery programs within the community. Upgrade to include a delicious lunch at Sylvia’s, a local eatery renowned for serving up some of the best soul food in New York.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$65.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$65.00

Boroughs Tour: Harlem, Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and Coney Island

Take a break from Manhattan’s major tourist zones on a day trip through Harlem, the Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn. Avoid the hassle of planning logistics your own, and instead enjoy the views as your guide navigates for you through neighborhoods often missed by visitors. Going with a guide also ensures you spot hidden landmarks and leave with an insider’s understanding of New York’s outer boroughs.
  • Duration: 7 hours
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US$46.66
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  • Duration: 7 hours
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US$46.66

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New York Hip-Hop Tour

Hip-hop music began in New York City. There's no better way to explore the genre of music than by taking this entertaining and informative tour with one of rap's Grandmasters. The unique experience offers an interactive tour through Manhattan, Harlem and the Bronx, showing the origins and evolution of hip-hop and rap music.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$74.99
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$74.99

Harlem Gospel Holiday Celebration

Sing along with a traditional gospel choir in Harlem during a holiday celebration at the Mt. Olivet Baptist Church. Join the church on either Christmas Eve or New Year’s Eve morning, and let the uplifting music directed by longtime Harlem resident, Craig Harris, warm your heart during the holiday season.  
  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$21.75
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  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$21.75

New York City Sightseeing Tour by Coach

See as much as you can in fast-moving New York on this comprehensive 5-hour coach sightseeing tour of the Big Apple’s top attractions. Listen to live commentary as you tackle NYC from top to bottom, starting with Uptown highlights like Harlem and the Dakota (once home to John Lennon) before heading towards downtown. After admiring the Flatiron and Empire State Buildings, catch a glimpse of Greenwich Village and Soho and beholding the Brooklyn Bridge. Make sure to watch for the new World Trade Center as you head back to Herald Square.
  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$69.00
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  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$69.00

Harlem Gospel Wednesday Afternoon Tour

Spend an afternoon discovering the historic Manhattan neighborhood of Harlem on a guided, 4-hour tour. From Dutch farming community to the capital of ‘Black America,’ visit popular locations like Sugar Hill, Morningside Heights, the Apollo Theater, Sylvan Terrace, Hamilton Grange National Memorial and more. See where President Bill Clinton’s office is located. Then attend a true gospel mass at local Covenant Avenue Baptist Church. Choose from English and German or Italian and Spanish language.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$64.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$64.00

Excursion Contrastes de Nueva York

Si su intención es hacerse una idea completa de Nueva York, no debe perder la oportunidad de conocer los distritos de Brooklyn, Bronx y Queens con un guia de habla Hispana que los acompañara durante todo el recorrido, haciendo paradas para hacer fotografías, hablando de Historia y compartiendo experiencias. Toda la oferta cultural y turística no acaba en Manhattan, con la excursión contrastes de Nueva York: La excursión autentica con la que usted podrá apreciar el día a día de los New Yorquinos.
  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$40.00
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  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$40.00

Harlem Gospel Sunday Tour

Experience the rich cultural legacy of Harlem and the soul-stilling rhythms of gospel on an immersive Sunday morning tour. Travel through the northern Manhattan neighborhood with a guide while learning about the history of the area and its landmarks like the Apollo Theater, Sugar Hill and Columbia University. Then, join a local Baptist congregation for a Sunday service featuring the exuberant vocals of a live gospel choir. 
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$65.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$65.00

Harlem Walking Tour of Mount Morris Park Historic District with Lunch

Explore Harlem’s most vibrant, historic neighborhoods on a 3-hour walking tour of 125th street and the Mount Morris Historic District with lunch. Follow your guide through the best of Harlem’s elegant architecture as you learn the story of the intellectuals and artists that ignited the Harlem renaissance. See the highlights of ‘Doctor’s Row,’ where perfectly-preserved brownstone homes evoke New York City’s gilded age, hear the echoes of groundbreaking performances at the Apollo Theater, then finish your tour with lunch at a local restaurant.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$65.35
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$65.35

Central Harlem African-American Culture Walking Tour

Considered the Mecca for African-Americans at the turn of the century, Central Harlem is home to Jazz, Lindy Hop and Swing, and continues today to be one of Harlem’s most vibrant for the arts, dining and shopping.
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$25.00
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$25.00

Harlem Gospel and Brunch Tour

Experience Harlem’s authentic sounds and flavors on a 4-hour, guided walking tour with a gospel service and brunch. Follow your experienced guide through the heart of the Mount Morris Historic District, where well-preserved brownstone homes evoke New York City’s gilded age. See the storied historic theater, then attend a local gospel service to clap, stomp and sing along to classic Harlem melodies. Finish your tour with brunch at a local restaurant, and enjoy a leisurely Sunday morning in one of Manhattan’s most vivid neighborhoods. 
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$92.50
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$92.50

Full Day Private Custom Tour of NYC

Customize your itinerary without the stress of navigating when you book a private tour of New York, with pickup available at any accommodation in the city. Going with a guide ensures you see more than you could on your own, including hidden gems that visitors often miss. Leave with an inside perspective on New York and plenty of recommendations for the rest of your trip.
  • Duration: Flexible
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US$476.00
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  • Duration: Flexible
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US$476.00

Evening Harlem Jazz Tour

Watch Harlem come alive after dark with a 3.5-hour evening tour to historic churches, landmarks and one of the neighborhood’s best jazz spots. Walk with your guide along vibrant Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard, and learn about the cultural heritage of Harlem’s night clubs and gospel churches. Spot some of New York City’s distinctive brownstone architecture as you walk, then finish your evening at a live jazz club, where some of today’s best artists play tunes by Harlem’s music greats.
  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$62.00
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  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$62.00

Harlem Hip-Hop Walking Tour

Well before the Globetrotters and the “Harlem Shake” appeared, there was Harlem, the neighborhood that is the birthplace of hip-hop. Harlem’s contributions to hip-hop art and culture are unmatched. On this guided, 2-hour walking tour, led by a hip-hop historian, check out important landmarks like the Apollo Theater, the Graffiti Wall of Fame, Lenox Lounge, historic Harlem jazz clubs and more. See popular locations for hip-hop music videos and hear exclusive stories. Admission to the Museum of the City of New York is included.
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$35.00
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$35.00

Private Harlem Gospel Tour

Experience Harlem’s gospel heritage on a 4-hour private tour that explores the vibrant New York City neighborhood’s music, art and culture. Attend a local church service to hear an extraordinary morning of prayer and singing, then spot area landmarks and architectural gems as you take a walking tour of Harlem’s local markets. Finish your morning with a visit to the iconic Apollo Theatre, the world-famous venue that was at the heart of the Harlem Renaissance.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$149.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$149.00

Double Decker Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus and Times Square Dining Experience

Explore the best of New York City — Downtown, Uptown, Brooklyn and New York at Night — on narrated, hop-on hop-off, double-decker bus tours. Over three days, see everything the Big Apple has to offer. Visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Harlem and the Apollo Theater. See Rockefeller Center, Times Square and Central Park. Then cross the Brooklyn Bridge to discover Battery Park and more. Get to know the sights and sounds of New York City in customized fashion, with live onboard commentary from a professional tour conductor. One meal is included.
  • Duration: 3 days
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US$59.00
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  • Duration: 3 days
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US$59.00

Harlem Renaissance Walking Tour with Lunch

Explore the landmarks of the Harlem renaissance on a 3-hour, guided walking tour with lunch at a local restaurant. Follow in the footsteps of Langston Hughes, Duke Ellington and Zora Neale Hurston as you stroll through Jungle Alley and history-infused 135th Street, and hear stories about the New York City intellectuals and artists that put Harlem on the world stage. Stop to visit scenic highlights and monuments, then finish your tour with a convivial lunch in the heart of the neighborhood. 
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$65.35
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$65.35


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