NYC Lower East Side Food and Culture Small-Group Tour

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NYC Lower East Side Food and Culture Small-Group Tour
from USD $86.90
Tacos, dumplings, bagels — America would be a food wasteland without the dishes brought here by immigrants. Join this 3-hour New York City walking tour to sample the best ethnic foods in the Lower East Side. But this experience includes much more than sampling delicious foods, as you’ll learn about the history of the dishes, establishments, sites and people along the way from your guide. The group remains small to ensure a quality experience.
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In Brief

New York, United States
United States
3 hours
Important InfoInfo
This is a typical itinerary for this product

Stop At: City Hall Park, 43 Park Row City Hall, New York City, NY 10038-1508

We meet at the fountain in this park just outside of New York’s City Hall. We discuss the beginnings of the city and sample a local treat. We also see some of the nearby buildings (Municipal Building, Woolworth Building, Brooklyn Bridge), and mention their history.

Duration: 10 minutes

Stop At: The Municipal Building, Chambers and Centre streets, New York City, NY 10007-1602

We point out some of the exterior features and talk about the building’s history.

Duration: 5 minutes

Pass By: Brooklyn Bridge, New York City, NY 10038

Take in the beauty of this amazing feat of engineering as we get a view from the Manhattan side. Our guides will give you tips on how to walk across it and can share some stories about its history.

Stop At: African Burial Ground National Monument, Duane and Elk Streets next to 290 Broadway, New York City, NY

We discuss the discovery of the burial ground and the building of the memorial and monument, including the significance of some of the design. We also talk a little bit about the early African experience in New York through those that were brought here as slaves and those that were freed.

Duration: 5 minutes

Stop At: New York City Supreme Court, 60 Centre St, New York City, NY 10007-1402

We talk about the history of the surrounding area that was once a poor Irish community and before that a polluted pond. You get to see the building that is now most famous for being featured on most episodes of Law & Order.

Duration: 5 minutes

Stop At: Columbus Park, 67 Mulberry St Baxter St, New York City, NY 10013-4331

We briefly walk through this park on the edge of Chinatown and talk about what used to be here: the notorious neighborhood of the Five Points. We discuss the Irish immigration and show photos of what the neighborhood used to look like.

Duration: 10 minutes

Stop At: Chinatown, Canal Street to Bayard Street, New York City, NY 10013

We walk through part of the neighborhood, discuss Chinese immigration, and visit a dumpling shop that is a local favorite. We also give tips on where else to visit in the large community.

Duration: 20 minutes

Stop At: Little Italy, Mulberry Street, New York City, NY 10013

We head up and around Mulberry Street and discuss Italian immigration. We get to see some amazing modern street art, hear stories about organized crime, and visit an historic local Italian food shop for a delicious tasting.

Duration: 20 minutes

Stop At: Nolita, New York City, NY

We cruise through one of the most trendy neighborhoods in New York today and discuss the changing neighborhood. This used to be Little Italy, but today it’s loaded with hip bars and restaurants and we get to see some of the best street art in the city.

Duration: 15 minutes

Stop At: St. Patrick's Cathedral, 50th Street & 5th Avenue Wheelchair accessibility located off the corner of 51st Street and 5th Avenue, New York City, NY 10022-6863

As we walk through Nolita, you get a chance to see the original St. Patrick’s and learn about the hardships Catholic immigrants first suffered when coming to this country.

Duration: 5 minutes

Stop At: Sara D Roosevelt Park, E Houston St Between Chrystie & Forsyth St, New York City, NY 10002

Learn about the history of this park, named for FDR’s mother, and take a quick stroll through the northern end. We’ll also stop at the M’Finda Kalunga Garden inside the park to discuss Latin American immigration and how this neighborhood has changed throughout the decades.

Duration: 10 minutes

Stop At: Lower East Side, New York City, NY

See the transformation of the neighborhood from an area filled with run-down tenements and poverty to one that is currently being gentrified. See lots of great street art and community gardens. Learn about Jewish, German, and Latin American immigration in this neighborhood and sample some traditional food.

Duration: 30 minutes

Pass By: Tenement Museum, 103 Orchard St Lower East Side, New York City, NY 10002-3102

We share stories about the founding of the museum and its important part in Lower East Side history. Our tour ends very close to the museum and our guides can give you tips on how to get tickets and explore their excellent gift shop.


  • Traditional Dutch Cookie
  • Fried Chinese Dumplings
  • Cheesy Italian Tasting
  • Savory Jewish Baked Good
  • German Pretzel
  • Professional Local Guide


  • Gratuities

Departure Time

10:00 AM

Departure Point

City Hall Park Path, New York, NY 10007, USA

Returns To

Loreley Beer Garden, 7 Rivington St, New York, NY 10002, USA

Additional Information

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Children aged 5 years and younger are welcome at no charge
  • Tour runs rain or shine
  • Comfortable walking shoes recommended
  • Maximum group size is 12
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 12 travelers

Booking Information

You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.

Cancellation Terms

This trip is fully refundable up to 96 hours prior to the commencement of your trip.

Booking Terms and Conditions

When you book this trip, you need to read and accept the terms and conditions for booking our day trips in excursions.

Scoring an average traveller rating of 5 out of 5 based on the last 24 recent reviews

I ended up being the only person on the tour. Brian, my tour guide was great. Had a lot of information and could answer all my questions. I would highly recommend this tour.
• Submitted 31 Jan 2020
Our tour was hosted by Astrid (Ace) of who was a very pleasant and knowledgeable guide. The tour area of the Lower East Side encompassed mainly China Town and Little Italy although the foods provided also included Jewish and German fare. All the tasters were very good, particularly the Chinese potstickers. The other members of our tour were from various countries /locations and all mixed well. Ace ensured that she kept everyone involved and spoke on a one-to-one with everyone at some point. An excellent introduction to New York.
• Submitted 21 Nov 2019
It was a great tour. Josh made it so interesting. Just what we were looking for - a look into the ethnic neighborhoods of New York!
• Submitted 16 Oct 2019
Josh was a wonderful guide who provided lots of history about the immigrants who settled New York and the food they produced.
• Submitted 08 Oct 2019
Bruce gave us a great tour and seemed to know a lot about the culture and NYC. He was able to answer all of the questions the group had. He even sent us an email afterward giving us tips about seeing the city.
• Submitted 26 Sep 2019
Brian was a fantastic guide, so knowledgeable and enthusiastic. The small group was ideal. Would recommend this tour anytime.
• Submitted 22 Aug 2019
Our lower Manhattan history and food tour was terrific. Josh J. is an amazing tour guide. He has so much knowledge about the city, is very engaging and enthusiastic! We enjoyed the various food taste stops and the chance to learn about the history of this island of immigrants at the same time.
• Submitted 13 May 2019
Definitely a highlight of a 9 day trip to the big Apple. Tour guide was well versed in NY history and the food stops were great. From the Five Points to Chinatown to Little Italy and Nikita. Bravo!
• Submitted 22 Mar 2019
We have done these sort of tours in many different cities around the world....this one ranks with the best of them. The route is intelligently planned, interesting sites and stories, and feels like a great value for the time invested.Important: the tour stands on its own, but if you can get assigned to the section led by "Elena", then you will be very pleased. Elena is very personable, works hard to spend individual time with each guest, and is well-versed in almost every area of knowledge associated with the tour, and general aspects of NYC. A real stand-out in the world of guides!
• Submitted 07 Jan 2019
Lots of fun, the food tasting was a delight. the Tour guid was very good and knew what she was talkng about. The tour was somewhat different than I expected but still fun
• Submitted 17 Dec 2018
Even though I come from that area, I learned things that I never knew. Our guide Brian made the tour fun and even more interesting by adding little things like our impromptu stop at Cha Cha’s Macha.
• Submitted 11 Dec 2018
This was one of our favorite things we did on this trip to NYC. Our guide, Bruce, was very knowledgeable and personable. He shared history and insight into the areas we walked through. The foods we sampled were wonderful, plentiful, and representative of the areas. The tour took us into places we wouldn't have tried on our own, but that are certainly we'll worth visiting. Would highly recommend this tour!
• Submitted 07 Dec 2018
If you really want to say you visited NYC, be sure to take a tour with Josh. From knowledge about the history of the neighborhoods to the best ethnic food from 5 area locales, this tour is a must.
• Submitted 19 Sep 2018
Great tour with Brian! He included a lot of history around the area and had great photos of how the area looked back in the early 1900's. Great combination of history and food samplings from different cultures who immigrated to the area.
• Submitted 13 Aug 2018
Brian gives an excellent tour. He’s very knowledgeable about the area and the food was fantastic! It was a little bit history tour and a little bit food tour. The perfect cultural experience!
• Submitted 22 Jul 2018
Elena was informative, answered all our questions. We love to sign up for food tours at the beginning of a trip to get culture, history, sample foods and recommendations on other places to return.
• Submitted 17 Jul 2018
Alex was a fantastic tour guide on this walking tour of the Lower East Side. The food was great, and the information was interesting. Highly recommended!
• Submitted 10 Jul 2018
This was my first NY walking tour and I am so glad I went! Elena, our tour guide, was great: knowledgeable, well-spoken, and very personable. We learned a lot of interesting facts and stories about the history of the Lower East Side and tasted some delicious foods from Dutch, Chinese, Italian, Jewish, and German cultures along the way. I highly recommend this tour!
• Submitted 09 Jul 2018
We had Brain as our tour guide, he was the absolute best. He was so knowledgeable and charismatic, we didn't want the tour to end. When you go on this tour you'll experience wonderful food, but mostly you'll gain so much knowledge of the Lower East side. I would go on this tour again. My family and I had the best experience.
• Submitted 09 Jul 2018
This was a highlight of our 4 day trip to New York! Elena was very knowledgable and the food was delicious. We learned so much about the lower east side and even a few things about other parts of New York.
• Submitted 29 May 2018
great food and great guide! loved every stop and every story. Highly recommend
• Submitted 29 Apr 2018
Our guide Astrid was excellent! It was ranining the entire time but she found awnings wherever she could to give the tour. It takes you to a lot of places you would not go to on your own, including an amazing dumpling shop in Chinatown. Would have liked to have gone to Essex Market but the rain may have prevented it. Just FYI, this is a WALKING tour, you do walk for 3 hours. It is NYC, so this is fast paced. My wife was 4 months pregnant and it was right on the edge of being too much, but we still had a great time.
• Submitted 30 Apr 2018
This was a fun way to learn about the effect of immigration on the culture and climate in NY. Great guide who was realyl knowledgeable, loved tasting different foods as we walked around the various areas. Thank Ace - you did a great job!
• Submitted 08 Apr 2018
Excellent tour. We had a blast. We ate great food, met interesting people and learned a lot of the history of the Lower East Side. We took our 13 year old on this tour and he loved it. The food was more than I thought so we were definitely not hungry. Our guide, John was fantastic and his knowledge and delivery of the information was outstanding. We highly recommend this tour. If we had not taken this tour we would have missed out on an important part of New York City.
• Submitted 07 Apr 2018

In Brief

New York, United States
United States
3 hours

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