Things to Do

Unique Tours of New York City

Image of the inside and outside view of The Ride, a tour bus in New York City

Whether it’s your first time to the Big Apple or not, it’s always going to be an exciting experience but extremely overwhelming. As a native New Yorker, my best recommendation for anyone who visits the city for the first time is to explore at least one of the several available tours the first day you arrive. These tours will help you explore specific areas and learn the lay of the land. Contrary to our reputation, New Yorkers are extremely helpful so make sure you have a map handy and a list of questions for your tour guide to answer.  I’ve put together a list of the best experiences for tourists to explore while visiting New York City. So when you come to visit, take a journey through these unique tours of New York City and see why this city is truly one of the best in the world!

Friday Night Lights Bike Tour

Ranked #3 out of 835 attractions in New York on tripadvisor.com, this bike tour is one of the best! This 6-hour ride begins through the historic East Village and Lower East Side, one of the hottest spots for nightlife. Next, ride the bike path over the Brooklyn Bridge and take in the view of Lower Manhattan. Then, you’ll plunge back into the heart of Manhattan – the Financial District. Further west, you’ll enjoy the lights of the New York Harbor and the Statue of Liberty along a waterfront path. Then it’s off to Times Square, riding straight down Broadway. What better way to explore New York’s nightlife than a tour through dozens of bars, restaurants and nightclubs? This tour includes your bike rental, helmet, reflective vest, front and back bike lights and a licensed guide. Please note that food and drinks are not included. Purchase this tour from Cloud 9 Living by clicking HERE.

Image of people congregating during a food tour through New York City

Food Tour

Truly experiencing NYC is knowing the best local restaurants that will make your taste buds dance. So why not book a tour with a born and raised local? Nice Guy Tours creates a laidback tasteful journey throughout the city. Hop on the Greenwich Village Food Tour which is great for vegetarian’s or check out the Lower East Side Food Tour. Both tours include a minimum of six eatery stops. A three hour walking and history tour for two is only $55….not bad! Purchase the best deal online at Groupon by clicking HERE.

Image of Chris Rock during his standup at Stand Up NY

Comedy Club

A great vacation isn’t complete without lots of laughter! So take a seat at one of NYC’s popular comedy clubs, Stand Up NY. They offer some of the best stand-up comedy around, seven days a week. Browse through their full menu, order some cocktails and get ready to laugh! An experience for two is only $17 and a group of four is $29. Purchase the best deal online at Groupon by clicking HERE.

Image of a group of people horseback riding through New York City

Horseback Riding Through Central Park

It’s not very often people have an opportunity to go horseback riding, especially in a huge city. Take a scenic ride from an equestrian’s view and see this park in a unique way. Enjoy an hour long guided tour at $99 for one and $175 for two. Purchase the best deal online at Groupon by clicking HERE.

Image of a helicopter ride over New York City

Helicopter Ride

Capture a special view of some of the most iconic spots in NYC from a helicopter ride. This ride will give you the opportunity to take some great pictures that can’t be taken from the street. New York Helicopter offers three tours: Liberty Tour, Central Park Tour and The Grand Helicopter Tour. Whether you want to capture the Statue of Liberty or Central Park, it is truly an experience you won’t forget. Purchase the best deal online at Groupon by clicking HERE.

Image of the inside and outside view of The Ride, a tour bus in New York City

Tour Bus

Tour buses are a great way to travel through the streets of Manhattan without worrying about driving. The streets of Midtown offer lots of sights to see, from street performers – rappers, Broadway singers and dancers – to significant landmarks such as Central Park, 42nd Street and Grand Central Station. Experience “The Ride,” a company that offers tours throughout 4.2 miles of Midtown. The Ride’s tours have been mentioned in media outlets such as New York Live, Good Morning America and The Today Show. Tours come complete with a PA system that allows riders to communicate directly with those outside and internal speakers that bring sound in from the street, 40 plasma monitors that display images and historical information and group participation sessions that make this tour a truly interactive experience. Purchase the best deal online at Groupon by clicking HERE.

Image of luxury black leather seats

Land and Sea Combo

Since not everything in NYC can be seen from the streets, why not explore the city by land AND sea? High Quality Tours offers luxury bus and yacht tours for one, two or four people. Get picked up by a state-of-the-art vehicle in Midtown, such as a Mercedes van or a custom-build party bus, and explore historical sites, buildings and parks with a professional tour guide. Continue the tour on a 1-hour sightseeing cruise of the New York Harbor on a Zephyr luxury yacht. During the tour, you will visit Ground Zero, the Wall Street District, the New York Stock Exchange, South Street Seaport, Battery Park, Rockefeller Center, Madison Square Park, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park, and more! Take in views of The Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, the Brooklyn Bridge, Fifth Avenue, Trump Tower, Time Warner Center, St. Patrick Cathedral, and many more. Purchase the best deal online at Groupon by clicking HERE.

Image of desserts

Dessert Tour

Some say that some of the best food in New York can be found in Hell’s Kitchen. This diverse neighborhood is known for its amazing restaurants and nightlife. Tantalize your taste buds with a 2-hour dessert tour with Cloud 9 Living where you’ll travel through 6 stops and sample sweets ranging from artisanal hand-crafted chocolates or traditional American pies to the best cookies in NYC. “There’s no better way to taste your way through Hell’s Kitchen!” Purchase the best deal online through Cloud 9 Living by clicking HERE.

Image of the Sweetery NYC food truck in New York City

Food Cart Tour

Food carts are part of what makes NYC so unique. Why not discover some of the most unique culinary creations than through a tour with guides who know exactly where to bring you? This tour will take you on a strolling lunch in Midtown or Lower Manhattan to sample an international buffet of offerings, observe the constructive genius that cram full kitchens into carts and hear their stories. Along the way, learn about the history of the neighborhood and gain insight into what goes into operating a business like these. Tastings on the tour may include:

  • Falafel and Vegetables
  • Chicken and Rice with Tamarind Sauce
  • Korean Short Ribs
  • Waffles with Toppings
  • Vietnamese Sandwiches
  • Schnitzel
  • Soul Food
  • Kati Rolls
  • Jerk or Stewed Chicken
  • Mexican Chocolate Brownies

Price for these tours include six food tastings, a bottle of water and a tour map of the neighborhood. All tours are led by a knowledgeable tour guide. Purchase the best deal online through Cloud 9 Living by clicking HERE.

Image for 3 for the price of 1 Midtown Harbor Cruise

3-for-the-price-of-1: Madame Tussauds, Empire State Building and Midtown Harbor Cruise

This is the ultimate in combo packages! CitySights NY offers visitors and residents the chance to see the city from several different angles. The company offers boat, yachts, helicopter and bus tours. One of the best packages includes admission to Madame Tussauds wax attraction, the Empire State Building observation deck and a 90-minute Midtown Harbor Cruise. Purchase this three-attraction pass for 1 person at $69 or buy 2 passes for $135 through Groupon for the best deal online. Click HERE.

Image of a brewmaster explaining the process of brewing craft beer

Brew, View and Chocolate Bike Tour

What’s better than a tour filled with stops to indulge in beer and chocolate? Cloud 9 Living offers a Brew, View & Chocolate Bike Tour that starts in the historic lower east side and then peddles over the Williamsburg Bridge. Leaving Manhattan, you will enter the hip artistic neighborhood of Williamsburg and head to NYC’s best micro-brewery, The Brooklyn Brewery to try its top-rated beer, ale or stout. You’ll then head to Jacques Torres Chocolate Shop to sample this pastry chef’s pethiviers, which were recently featured in The New York Times.  Finally, you’ll head over the Brooklyn Bridge, taking in incredible views of the New York skyline and harbor. This tour includes the bike rental and helmet. Be aware that extra drinks or treats beyond the samples are not included. Purchase the best deal online through Cloud 9 Living by clicking HERE.