Walking in a Winter Wonderland: Upcoming NYC Tours

By Alison Durkee

Don’t let the cold keep you from exploring all that the city has to offer. Here are our picks for the top walks and tours coming up this winter, looking at city landmarks both iconic and obscure.

Image Credit: Green Tara Protectress from Eight Fears ; Tibet; 19th century; Pigments on Cloth; Rubin Museum of Art; Gift of Shelley and Donald Rubin; C2012.4.7 (HAR 53406)

Artistic Adventures: Though MoMA and the Met might be New York’s best-known art spots, there’s plenty of amazing artwork all around the city to discover. Tour some of New York’s smaller galleries on gallery tours throughout the city, with upcoming events taking place in the East Village (November 11), Bushwick (November 18), and on the Lower East Side (November 25). Discover one of the city’s smaller art museums, the Rubin Museum, by enjoying a special exhibition tour during the museum’s K2 Friday Nights on November 24. Of course, art is all around in NYCon the streets and in the parks. Go behind the scenes at the place responsible for some of the city’s most famous pieces of public art, the Modern Art Foundry, on a special Untapped Cities tour on December 8.

Holiday Happenings: As the holiday season approaches, it’s always a delight to take in some holiday cheer as neighborhoods around the city break out their festive decorations. The Municipal Art Society will be offering several holiday-themed tours this winter, including a look at Christmas History in Gramercy (December 2); festive tours of Arthur Avenue in the Bronx (December 16) and the Bloomingdale blocks on the Upper West Side (December 30); and, of course, a tour of the home of Macy’s famed Santa Claus himself, 34th Street (December 23). New Yorkers looking for some holiday cheer further downtown can join Big Onion Tours for their Christmas stroll through Greenwich Village (December 24), or enjoy some alternate Christmas Day plans on their tour of the Jewish Lower East Side. Those wanting to kick off the holiday season with some post-Thanksgiving plans can also join the tour company on their annual post-Thanksgiving multi-ethnic eating tour through the Lower East Side (November 24).

Downtown Dives: New Yorkers hoping to discover the city below Houston Street have plenty of chances this November and December. Head down to the Lower East Side to discover the ornamentation and architecture of the neighborhood’s buildings on a “Tenement Chic” walking tour on November 12, or spend that afternoon instead taking in the Financial District’s art deco stylings. To learn what downtown Manhattan was like during the American Revolution, celebrate the anniversary of Evacuation Day, when the British troops left New York, on a special tour from the Fraunces Tavern Museum on November 25 and 26. The Museum of Chinese in America will offer an in-depth look at Manhattan’s bustling Chinatown through several different tours this December. Discover the neighborhood’s rich history on Chinatown: A Walk Through History on December 2, or learn more specifically about the history of the area’s famed eateries on the From Coffee Houses to Banquet Halls tour on December 16. If you’d like to try the neighborhood’s delicious eats for yourself, the museum will also offer a special Chinatown food tour on November 25 and December 9.

Image (right): George Rex/Flickr

Iconic Itineraries: New York City is home to many world landmarks, and while New Yorkers may have seen these spots hundreds of times, each has plenty of hidden secrets to discover. To discover the secrets behind two of the city’s most iconic spots, join Untapped Cities on tours of Grand Central Station (November 18 and December 16) and the Brooklyn Bridge (November 18 and December 3). Take a stroll around Central Park to get the inside scoop behind some of the park’s most iconic views on November 24, or spend Christmas morning with the most famous Christmas tree in the world on a special tour exploring the history and architecture of Rockefeller Center. As New Years Eve approaches and 2018 begins, meanwhile, head to the most iconic New Year’s spot, Times Square, to learn more about the area’s rapidly changing history on December 11 and January 1.

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