New York in One Day Sightseeing Tour

This post compares and reviews the various full-day tours available in New York City, including walking, subway, bus, and ferry tours.

 

 


FULL DAY WALKING/SUBWAY TOURS

If you want to see it all and you don’t mind walking, these day trips are going to be some of the most affordable on our list.

Although some walking tours will run you more than $100, others are much more reasonably priced, particularly ours, where you pay whatever you like.

Each trip runs for between 6-8 hours, giving you plenty of time to see sites such as Times Square, The Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street, and Rockefeller Center.

As you might expect, public transport will be required in order to get around town without too much trouble.

Depending on which service you choose, you may be asked to pay for a Metro Card in addition to the cost of your tour ticket.

 

 


Free Tours By Foot

Our tour utilizes your feet and the New York City Subway to transport you from the Financial District (the birthplace of New York) through Wall St. and the World Trade Center, Little Italy, and Chinatown in the morning.

After lunch, it’s on to SoHo, Greenwich Village, Chelsea, and the Highline.

This tour is free to sign up for and you can pay whatever you wish or could afford at the end of the tour. 


WE OFFER SO MANY PAY-WHAT-YOU-WISH TOURS, YOU COULD EASILY PUT TOGETHER YOUR OWN NYC IN A DAY TOUR


The All-in-One (AIO) Tour covers about 75% of the material covered in several of our separate walking tours, including Lower Manhattan, SoHo, Little Italy Chinatown, Greenwich Village, and the High Line.

  • Does this tour cover Midtown, Harlem, Upper West Side or Central Park? No, this is a downtown only tour.
  • Does this tour go into buildings? No, you will hear about the history and stories from outside the buildings. If you would like to tour inside the buildings, like the One World Trade Center Observatory, 9/11 Memorial Museum or the Woolworth Building, you will need to make separate plans.
  • Is this tour suitable for children and strollers? This is a fast-paced tour, and not recommended for those with walking issues, small children or strollers.

Sites we cover on the New York City One Day Tour:

*Guests will need to purchase an MTA Metro Card worth at least $8.25, though a card worth $12.50 would cover subway rides to and from the tour.  Be sure to read our post on which MetroCard to buy as well as tips for navigating the subway system.

Tour information

Reservations: REQUIRED. Click here to reserve. Groups of 5 or more should visit our groups’ page.

Where: Tour meets at the George Washington Statue at Federal Hall on the corner of Broad St. and Wall St. (map). Look for your guides with the Free Tour by Foot logo. Tour ends at the Highline Park in Chelsea.

Duration: Approximately 6 hours.  There will be a break for lunch and a short refreshment break in the afternoon.

When: @10am Tuesdays & Fridays (year round) and Mondays & Saturdays (May-August). View our full Calendar for the most up to date availability.

If you can’t reserve on the above days of the week, consider our Lower Manhattan tour, the SoHo, Little Italy Chinatown tour, the Greenwich Village tour and the High Line tour individually.

Cost: This tour is free to take, and you get to decide what, if anything, the tour was worth when it’s done. A name-your-own-price tour is a tour for anyone’s budget.

 


New York Tour 1

This company is well known for its tour services in NYC, and they actually offer three separate New York City One Day Tours.  

Their tours are geared more for those who want to visit the top must-see sights in NYC.

 

 

Each outing includes different activities not included with other day trips. As a result, you may want to choose your tour based on which additional attraction interests you the most.

Prices range from $60-$110, and tour length can vary between 6-7 hours and include professionally narration and entrance fees to certain locations you will visit along the way.

 


New York City Full-Day Sightseeing Tour

  • Ticket Prices: $74 for Adults | $64 for Children
  • Duration: 6 hours
  • Availability: Daily at 9:30 am

This tour is very well-reviewed (read the reviews).

Attractions/Activities Included

  • Statue of Liberty Ferry Ride
  • 9/11 Memorial
  • Wall Street
  • 5th Avenue
  • Times Square
  • Rockefeller Center

New York City Day Tour w/ One World Observatory

  • Ticket Prices: $109 for Adults | $99 for Children
  • Duration: 7 hours
  • Availability: Daily at 9:30 AM

This tour is very well-reviewed (read the reviews).

Attractions/Activities Included

  • Everything from their 6-hour tour
  • Plus admission to One World Observatory

Statue of Liberty and 9/11 Memorial Tour

  • Ticket Prices: $59 for Adults | $49 for Children
  • Duration: 2 Hours guided; 3-5 hours self-guided
  • Availability: Daily at 9 am.

This tour is also well-reviewed (read the reviews).

Attractions/Activities Included

  • Statue of Liberty Ferry Ride
  • Entrance to Liberty Island Museum
  • 9/11 Memorial
  • New York Stock Exchange

 


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NYC ONE DAY BUS TOURS

Walking around this city for more than a few hours can be very tiring.

Thankfully, some bus tour companies offer day trips in New York City, making it easier to get around and see the sites. These types of bus tours combine bus and walking tours into one.

Ticket prices can vary, but you can generally expect a price between $80-$160 per person. These excursions typically last for between 5-9 hours, giving you plenty of time to explore NYC.


NOTE: There are also hop-on,-hop-off bus tours, which allow you to set your own schedule and see all of the most significant landmarks at your own pace, but we do not include these in our analysis here.  


USA Guided Tours

If you’re looking for a less intense trek around New York City, this tour package might just do the trick.

The bundle includes a bus ride around the city and a cruise past sites such as the Statue of Liberty.

 

 

Professional tour guides will hop off at each stop with you and provide commentary about significant locations in NYC.

At 5 ½ hours in length, this is definitely one of the shorter day trips through the city.

The tour is very well-reviewed (read the reviews).

Considering everything included, the cost of tickets is very reasonable.

  • Ticket Prices: $89 for Adults | $79 for Children
  • Duration: 5 ½ hours
  • Availability: Daily at 10 am
  • Click Here to get your tickets

Attractions/Activities Included:

  • Bus Tour
  • Boat Cruise
  • Rockefeller Center
  • 9/11 Memorial
  • Financial District
  • Strawberry Fields
  • Madison Square Park

 


CitySights NY

If you’re looking for a longer outing in NYC, the Manhattan Experience is an excellent option.

Each fully guided tour covers a lot of important ground, visiting sites such as Times Square, Central Park, the Empire State Building and more.

Unlike their competitors, CitySights NY gives you the opportunity to choose between either a 6 or 8-hour trip.

Each ticket also includes a cruise past the Statue of Liberty, giving you a good look at one of the most significant landmarks in American history.

  • Ticket Prices (6-hour tour): $89 for Adults | $79 for Children
  • Ticket Prices (8-hour tour): $109 for Adults | $84 for Children
  • Duration: Either 6 or 8 hours depending upon your choice of ticket
  • Availability: Daily at 9 or 9:30 am
  • Click Here to get your tickets

Attractions/Activities Included:

  • Times Square
  • Statue of Liberty Cruise
  • Brooklyn Bridge
  • Empire State Building
  • Madison Square Garden
  • Central Park

 


New York Tour Shuttle

This company may offer one of the longest day trips in New York City.

Clocking in at a total of 9 hours, you’ll have the opportunity to see a variety of important sites while riding around the city in comfort.

This full-day experience includes stops at Wall Street and the Empire State Building for guided walking tours around each location.

You’ll also have the opportunity to visit the Statue of Liberty and see it up close!

This is another well-reviewed tour (read the reviews).

Considering all of the activities included, ticket costs are definitely reasonable.

  • Ticket Prices: $159 for Adults | $149 for Children
  • Duration: 9 hours
  • Availability: Thursday – Monday at 8:30 AM
  • Click Here to get your tickets.

Attractions/Activities Included:

  • Empire State Building (w/ Observation Deck visit)
  • Statue of Liberty (w/ access to the Pedestal)
  • Wall Street
  • Times Square
  • Fifth Avenue
  • Lunch in Little Italy

For more information, check out our comparison of New York Bus Tours!

 


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BROOKLYN, QUEENS, AND THE BRONX ONE DAY TOURS

There’s so much to see and do in New York City that you might not get a chance to fully experience Brooklyn. With that in mind, we’ve decided to compare some of the best available Brooklyn day trips.

While some of these excursions explore the food and culture of this borough, others are more focused on its history.

Each outing runs for between 4-5 hours on average, making them a bit more manageable than the typical NYC in a Day tour. Expect ticket prices to fall in the $75-$125 range.


Foods of New York

There are so many amazing restaurants in Brooklyn that this food tour shouldn’t be too surprising.

Whether you’re a connoisseur of pizza or you prefer some juicy kielbasas, this day trip will give you the opportunity to experience a wide variety of tasty treats.

Visit neighborhoods such as West Village, Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and Dumbo as you discover the cuisine that residents get to eat on a daily basis.

This trip is somewhat expensive, but it includes a lot of food tastings along the way which wouldn’t typically be incorporated into other tours.

  • Ticket Prices: $125 for Adults | $95 for Children
  • Duration: 4 ½ hours
  • Availability: Daily at 11 AM
  • Food tastings included
  • Click Here to get your tickets

This company currently has a full 5 out of 5 stars rating on TripAdvisor and Viator (read the reviews). 

 


Opentours

Although this tour isn’t exclusively devoted to Brooklyn, they do visit the borough and uncover its history.

Over the course of 4 hours, you’ll also have the opportunity to explore the Bronx and Queens as a tour guide provides a variety of information about New York City.

This company prides themselves on taking you off the beaten path to show you a side of the city that most tourists don’t get to experience.

Tickets are very affordable, but the trip is also a bit shorter than some of the alternative options above.

This is a well-reviewed tour (read the reviews).

  • Ticket Prices: $72 per person
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Availability: Tuesdays and Thursdays @8:30 AM
  • Meals not included

Click Here to get your tickets

 


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FOREIGN LANGUAGE ONE DAY TOURS

New York City gets a lot of visitors from all around the world, so it makes perfect sense to offer multi-lingual tours.

Although most of the hop-on-hop-off bus tours include commentary in a variety of languages, there aren’t nearly as many fully guided trips which incorporate this option.

With that in mind, we’ve decided to cover the choices that foreign visitors have when it comes to full and half day treks throughout the city.


Opentours

In addition to their tour of Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx, this company also offers a more traditional day trip in several different languages, including English, German, Italian and Spanish.

Over the course of 5 ½ hours, you’ll make 9 different stops at significant locations around the city.

In addition to visiting sites such as the World Trade Center and Central Park, you’ll also discover neighborhoods such as Greenwich Village and Harlem.

Tickets are more affordable than some of the other one-day bus tours you’ll find in NYC.

  • Ticket Prices: $69 for Adults | $55 for Children | Kids 4 and under are free
  • Duration: 5 ½ hours
  • Availability: Daily at 8:30 am
  • Specify your preferred language when ordering tickets
  • Click here to get your tickets.

Ratings for this day trip are very positive on both TripAdvisor and Get Your Guide (read reviews here). 

 


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TOURIST PASSES

If you’re looking to save money on a variety of activities while you’re in New York, there are several tourist passes to consider.

These options could be a good value, particularly for those who want to get the most out of each day.

 

 

Not only will you gain admission to several notable locations, but you’ll also have access to certain tours at a discounted rate.  

Several of the passes offer sample itineraries for 1, 2, 3 even up to 10 days, so you could make your own daily tours of New York.

Here are a few landmarks and tours you can enjoy with a New York tourist pass. For more information, please visit our comparison of each service.

  • One World Observatory Admission
  • Empire State Building Observatory Admission
  • Top of the Rock Admission
  • Madison Square Garden Tour
  • Statue of Liberty Admission
  • Hop-on, Hop-off Bus Tour
  • 9/11 Museum Admission
  • Guggenheim Museum Admission
  • Circle Line Cruise
  • and more!

 


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