5 Top-Rated NYC Tours to Explore the Big Apple in Style

brooklyn bridge tour

New York City, the city that never sleeps, is one of the most iconic destinations in the world. From the towering skyscrapers to the bustling streets, there is never a dull moment in the Big Apple. With so much to see and do, it can be overwhelming to plan your itinerary. Luckily, there are various types of NYC tours that can help you make the most of your trip. Whether you’re a foodie, a history buff, or just looking to explore the city’s most famous landmarks, there is a tour for everyone. In this article, we’ll cover the different types of NYC tours you can take to discover the city in all its glory.


  1. NYC Walking Tours

Walking tours are a great way to explore the city and learn about its rich history, culture, and architecture. There are many different walking tours available, from exploring famous landmarks and neighborhoods to learning about street art and local cuisine.

These tours are often led by local guides who know the city inside out and can share fascinating stories and insider knowledge about the places you visit. Here are some of the most popular walking tours in NYC:

couple private tour at central park

  • NYC Private Tours: Private tours in NYC such as PhotoTrek Tours can be a great option for those who want a more personalized and tailored experience of the city. Private tours typically have smaller groups or even just one-on-one interactions with the guide. This means you can ask more questions and get more personalized attention and insights into the city. 
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  • Food Tours in NYC: If you’re a foodie visiting the Big Apple, one of the best ways to experience the city’s culinary offerings is by taking a NYC food tour. NYC food tours are a great way to explore the city’s neighborhoods, learn about its history and culture, and of course, sample some of its most iconic dishes. For e.g. one of the most popular tour by Foods of New York Tours is the “Original Greenwich Village Food and Culture Walking Tour,” which takes you through the winding streets of the historic neighborhood and includes tastings of pizza, bagels, and cannoli. If you are a pizza lover, the Slice of Brooklyn Pizza Tour is the perfect way to experience it. This bus tour takes you to some of the best pizzerias in Brooklyn, including Grimaldi’s and L&B Spumoni Gardens, where you’ll enjoy a slice of pie and learn about the history of pizza in New York City.
  • Architecture Tours: New York City is home to some of the most iconic buildings in the world, and an architecture tour will take you on a journey through the city’s most famous structures. From the Empire State Building to the Flatiron Building, you’ll learn about the history and design of these incredible landmarks.


  1. Bus Tours

If you’re short on time or prefer to see the city from the comfort of a bus seat, then a bus tour may be the way to go. These tours typically cover more ground than walking tours and allow you to see the city’s highlights without having to navigate public transportation. Here are some of the most popular bus tours in NYC:

  • Hop-On-Hop-Off Tours: These tours allow you to hop on and off the bus at your leisure, so you can explore the city at your own pace. They often have multiple routes that cover different parts of the city, so you can choose which areas you want to explore.
  • Night Tours: NYC is a different city at night, and a night tour will take you on a journey through the city’s illuminated streets and landmarks. From Times Square to the Brooklyn Bridge, you’ll see the city in a whole new light.
  • TV and Movie Tours: If you’re a fan of TV and movies, then a TV and movie tour is the perfect way to see the city through the lens of your favorite films and shows. You’ll visit locations from classics like “Friends” and “Seinfeld” to more recent hits like “Girls” and “Mr. Robot.”
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  1. NYC Boat Tours

new york city sunset view

NYC boat tours offer a unique and exciting way to explore the city’s iconic landmarks and breathtaking skyline. From the water, you can get a fresh perspective of New York City’s most famous attractions, including the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, and One World Trade Center. There are various boat tours to choose from, ranging from sightseeing cruises to dinner and jazz cruises. Some tours also offer narration or audio guides, providing fascinating historical and cultural insights. There are many boat tours to choose from in NYC, but here are three of the top options:

  • Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises: This iconic boat tour company has been offering sightseeing cruises around NYC for over 70 years. Their popular “Best of NYC” cruise takes passengers on a three-hour journey around Manhattan, offering stunning views of the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, and more.
  • Statue Cruises: If you’re looking for a closer view of the Statue of Liberty, Statue Cruises offers a range of options, including a visit to the statue’s pedestal and crown. Their boat tours also provide excellent views of Ellis Island and the NYC skyline.
  • Classic Harbor Line: For a more upscale and intimate experience, Classic Harbor Line offers smaller, elegant boats with a variety of cruise options, including sunset sails, wine tastings, and jazz brunches. Their boats depart from Chelsea Piers and offer breathtaking views of the city’s skyline.
  1. NYC Helicopter Tours 

New York City is a city that never fails to impress, but imagine seeing it from a bird’s-eye view! NYC helicopter tours offer a unique perspective of the city’s iconic landmarks, such as the Statue of Liberty, Central Park, and the Empire State Building, as well as its breathtaking skyline. These tours can be expensive but are a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Liberty Helicopters is one of the most popular helicopter tour companies in the city, offering a variety of tour options ranging from 15 to 20 minutes. If you are looking for birthday ideas in NYC, Helicopter Flight Services offers private tours and charters for those looking for a more exclusive experience.

Check out top fun things to do in NYC from a local’s perspective without breaking the bank.


  1. Bike Tour

Bike tours are a fun and active way to take you through different neighborhoods and parks. You can see some of the city’s hidden gems that you might miss on foot or by bus. Most NYC bike tours typically last between one and two hours, although some companies offer longer tour options. Some popular bike tours include the Central Park bike tour, the Brooklyn Bridge bike tour, and the Harlem bike tour.

A guided tour in New York City can help you discover its hidden gems and learn more about its history and culture. Choose a NYC tour that is most suitable for your itinerary and to be able to get the most out of it.