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New York City
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New York City Slavery and Underground Railroad Tour

New York, United States

From $39.00

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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
  • 2 hours 30 minutes (approx.)
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Uncover a unique part of New York history not always brushed upon during this New York City Slavery and Underground Railroad tour. Follow the NYC Freedom Trail, and learn how a group of brave men and women forged the network that became the Underground Railroad. View the former city stations that were included on the Underground Railroad, and discover how New Yorkers risked their lives to help people escape slavery.
  • Trace the Underground Railroad, and learn learn about its role in freeing slaves
  • See the NYC African-American Freedom Trail
  • A guide tells you stories about important abolitionist figures of the time
  • An afternoon start time allows you to fit this tour in before dinner

What's Included

  • Local guide
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off

Meeting And Pickup

Meeting point

  • 1 Bowling Green
    1 Bowling Green, New York, NY 10004, USA

    In front of the National Museum of the American Indian.

End point

  • African Burial Ground National Monument
    290 Broadway, New York, NY 10007, USA

What To Expect

Begin this walking tour at the Museum of the American Indian in Manhattan. Then get ready to journey back in time to trace the history of slavery and the Underground Railroad in New York City.

The Underground Railroad was a network of secret routes and safe houses used by 19th-century African-American slaves to escape to freedom with the help of abolitionists and allies who supported their cause. This path from slavery to freedom ran right through New York City, where thousands of people, including noted social reformer and abolitionist Frederick Douglass, escaped to the most populated city in the nation.

Visit the site of Fort Amsterdam, the first settlement in colonial Manhattan, and learn about the important role slaves played in transforming American society. Walk down Wall Street and see where slaves hid while escaping to free states with the help of abolitionists.

Visit the African Burial Ground National Monument, a sacred space in Manhattan and memorial dedicated to enslaved Africans in colonial America. It has been called the most important archaeological find of the 20th century and is an important reminder of a period in New York City history that is oftentimes forgotten.

Finally, walk to the former site of the first African-American church in New York, which was also one of the stops on the Underground Railroad.

National Museum of the American Indian

10 minutesAdmission Ticket Not Included

Battery Park

10 minutesAdmission Ticket Not Included

Fraunces Tavern Museum

15 minutesAdmission Ticket Not Included

Wall Street

30 minutesAdmission Ticket Not Included

Foley Square

15 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

African Burial Ground National Monument

10 minutesAdmission Ticket Free

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 30 travelers

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

about cancellations.

Traveler Photos

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328 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
Reviews by Viator travelers.
Showing 1-10 of 328 reviews
A must-do tour - informative, thought-provoking and emotional.
Juliette_B, May 2023
This was incredible - so informative, thought-provoking and emotional. Our guide Mia was passionate, engaged, and well-informed - I felt they could have taken the tour in multiple directions and happily discussed any related subject for hours. I loved the personal takes and thoughts that they peppered the tour with, borne from the history they were telling us. This This tour could have been twice as long and I wouldn't have been bored (just hungry and tired, lol). It's an absolute must-do.
Awesome and sad
Susan_N, Apr 2023
Great guide: knowledgeable and open! Learned content know known to me before. Mixed past and present!
The most powerfull experience in New York to learn about the history of the city
Androula_M, Mar 2023
Everything was excellent - from the very begining to the end of the tour Ludi told the history with passion and nuance and gave a passionnate perspectives to understand this history. She took all precautions and told that there is no place for shame or blaming but explaining. Definitively a great and profound experience for me.
A fascinating tour with a...
Noam_O, Dec 2022
A fascinating tour with a very knowledgeable and kind guide. We had a wonderful time. Would definitely recommend to friends and family
We liked the ending with...
Erich_S, Oct 2022
We liked the ending with the visit to the cemetary. Wishing that more knowledge of the complicity of Wall Street and the North was shared rather than glanced over...
Raising consciousness.
Odette_N, Oct 2022
Tour guide was expressive, knowledgeable, kind, responsive and kept track of all of us. Heard about the tour reading Clint Smith's book How the Word is Passed. Should have known about it before. Have lived here since 1965.Pick=up easy.
1 traveler found this review helpful
A great way to learn more about a difficult topic.
Deborah_J, Sep 2022
Shawn, the tour guide was amazing! He knew so much. He showed passion for the topic. I would seek him out again.
1 traveler found this review helpful
A microphone should be a...
Kelly_C, Aug 2022
A microphone should be a must. We could barely hear the young lady. My family and I were not comfortable huddling up so closely next to strangers in order to hear, especially during this COVID, Monkey Pox season. Pretty sure the tour was great. The young lady seemed quite knowledgeable, however, my family and I dropped out about 15 minutes in due to the fact that huddling in the heat in order to hear became unbearable. I strongly suggest getting a microphone.
Response from Host, Sep 2022
Thank you for your comments on our guide and the Slavery and Underground Railroad Tour. We shall make sure that this guide has a microphone for amplification. I do hope that you informed your guide that you could not hear her speech. By leaving after 15 minutes you did miss a wonderful tour. Again, thank you for your suggestion.
Amazing & empowering
Kathryn_M, Jul 2022
Ludie took us through the history of NYC in an engaging and powerful way. She brought the story alive
Early NY History and the Slave Trade
Elaine_L, Jul 2022
The tour was great. Our guide had a wealth of background to make the stops come alive. I especially enjoyed the Negro burial grounds, and the symbolism the artist imparted to the site. Lots of background information on NY was discussed.
Informative, moving & fascinating
Catherine_M, Jul 2022
This was an excellent tour. Sean, our guide was an ex history teacher who really knew his stuff .From general history of slavery, to individual's roles in the Underground railway, it was all very informative , moving and fascinating. I would definitely recommend this trip & Sean as a guide
1 traveler found this review helpful
An unforgettable way to see New York and experience its history
Dorothy_N, Jun 2022
Our tour guide was energetic, knowledgeable and genuinely connected to the stories they shared. Parts of the city I thought I knew came alive in different ways. This is the true meaning of teaching history that is accurate and broad in perspective.
Nohemi_V, May 2022
Tour guide was amazing, she made sure all our questions were answered and explained everything thoroughly
Response from Host, Jun 2022
Thank you for your positive review. Please come and experience one of our other walking tours.
Worth Time and Money
Debra_N, Apr 2022
Learning history that is not taught but crucial to any type of racial reconciliation. Be ready for a nice walk and a well informed tour guide
1 traveler found this review helpful
Excellent Tour
Carolyn_H, Apr 2022
This is an excellent tour which illuminates a significant part of NY history. I definitely recommend it for anyone interested in learning more about the history of slavery in New York.
1 traveler found this review helpful
This tour was really...
This tour was really Great! Our tour guide (Miya) was incredibly knowledgeable. I highly recommend anyone traveling to NY - take this tour. Note: Content may not be good for children with short attention span.
Very informative
Ginny_L, Feb 2022
Sean was very knowledgeable and made the tour very interesting. We learned many things about slavery in New York City that we never knew. As we anticipated it wasn’t the best tour for our six year old but our nine, 11 and 14 year old enjoyed it.
Really fascinating and well worth doing!
melanie_h, Jan 2022
Our tour guide was very knowledgable and obviously passionate. I’m from the UK and we are not taught in school about the history of slavery and our part in it so this tour was for me fascinating. I also work within the field of diversity and inclusion so have an additional interest in this. I highly recommend this tour to anyone, it really opens yours eyes to the realities of life for those forced into slavery.
Response from Host, Jun 2022
Thanks for your Great review. Hope that you can join one of our other tours on your next visit to NYC.
Understand our history much better.
Kenneth_A, Sep 2021
I'm sure we all have those historical "facts" that we take for granted...many/most exploded by the facts. One of the best tours I have taken in New York. Maya, our guide was knowledgeable and provided us a excellent review of the history, along with numerous real-life tales concerning the environment in New York at the time. Such a fantastic, and thought provoking tour that I have begun reading further to learn and understand more. Looking forward to future tours.
Rob_R, Aug 2021
Great information here. Our guide was really well I formed and personable. She did a fantastic job and was clearly passionate about this subject. The only critique I’d have was with traffic noise it could sometimes be difficult to hear. Maybe charging a bit more for personal listening devices would help that?
Tierra_F, Aug 2021
The tour is very knowledgeable and inspiring. I loved the way our guide broke down the hidden black history of NYC.
Interesting subject matter but needs more interaction
Joy_M, Jul 2021
Good history of Revolutionary times but tour guide should be more engaging and interactive to get group involved.
1 traveler found this review helpful
Excellent learning experience
Heather_M, Jul 2021
I really appreciated how Maya corrected the general perception of the North and New York as lacking slavery when they both relied heavily on them for their economies, just like the South. It was really useful to see examples of actual Indigenous and Black people, free and enslaved, who changed the face of New York.
History if Slavery in NYC
Erica_S, Jul 2021
While I won't say I was disappointed with the tour, I will say that the tour should be called "History of Slavery in NYC"; very little was about the Underground Railroad. And I am sure every tour is different depending in the group and the guide, but our tour ran long, more than 2.5 hours.
Damarus was fabulous and even though we froze through the tour would not leave it. Thank you
Gail_C, Dec 2019
Damarus was fabulous and even though we froze through the tour would not leave it. Thank you Everyone needs to know this stuff.
1 traveler found this review helpful
Very instructive
acfaucquez, Oct 2019
This tour is amazing, we look at New York City through a totally different angle. Understanding that New York became what it is now because of enslaved Africans toil is something everyone should now. Not only history nerds, slavery was not a Southern institution, it was part of American history as a whole.
1 traveler found this review helpful
Poignant & Informative
Donna P, Sep 2019
This was a deeply historical & densely informative tour. Having said that, it is also incredibly moving & touches your soul. It was not easy to hear about all the injustices that occurred & how NYC prospered through the slave trade, but I’d recommend for people to go & learn & ponder how we should value each other.
Super Great Experience
Aaron H, Aug 2019
I was really happy that we took this tour. Our tour guide was very good. She told the history of New York in such a meaningful and impactful way. I even learned some new things that I did not know before. 2.5 hour tour felt like 30 minutes. I would definitely recommend this tour.
Excellent-a must do
Demetrice_M, Aug 2019
Demaris was amazing! Great tour!!! She was so knowledgeable and interacted with the entire group. A must do when visiting NYC.
Very Informative
Jacqueline_J, Jul 2019
The guide was energetic and thorough and handled sensitive information well. The tour went at a reasonable pace, and the information given was thought provoking. I especially liked ending at the burial ground, and that we had time to just experience the memorial.


Product code: 5637UGRR

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