This post is a self-guided tour of Greenwich Village and includes historically significant sites, famous cultural locations and other highlights of the neighborhood.
- How to Get Here
- Self-Guided Tour
- Greenwich Village Guided Tours
- Things to Do in Greenwich Village
- Other Self-Guided Tours
- Free Tours By Foot
Greenwich Village is located within the greater Lower Manhattan District. It is easily reached by public transportation.
You can use this Google Maps link for directions, but how you get here depends on where you are going, as there are several subway stations throughout Greenwich Village.
Multiple subway lines take you to different parts of Greenwich Village.
- A,B,C,D,E,F trains to West 4th Street Station
- 6 train to Bleecker Street Station or Astor Place Station
- N or R trains to 8th Street - NYU Station
We have 2 posts on the NYC subway that are very handy:
M3, M8, M20, M55
TIP: Most hop-on-hop-off buses will have a stop near Washington Square Park. To see if a bus tour is right for you, read our post, Which New York Bus Tour is Best?
Let Us Take You Here
You could also listen to our NYC Travel Tips podcast episode on Greenwich Village.
This podcast offers bite-sized audio clips with tips on how to plan your trip to NYC. You can get our podcast wherever you get your podcasts.
This tour begins at Waverly Place and continues throughout the Village ending near Washington Square Park.
The duration is between 90-120 minutes to complete. The distance covered is approximately 1.5 miles (2.2 km).
Should you have more time to wander - we've included some optional stops.
Check out our GPS-led audio tour for a professional tour guide's take on the neighborhood.
Click the map to enlarge.
1. The Stonewall Inn
53 Christopher St.
In the 1960s, at a time it was still dangerous to be openly gay, the Stonewall Inn was one of the very few bars that were ‘safe’ for gay patrons.
On June 28, 1969, tensions between the police and the gay community resulted in a riot that went on for three nights.
This was a breakthrough moment in the Gay Civil Rights Movement and one year later, on June 28, 1970, the first Gay Pride Parade in New York was held.
Learn more in our post on The Stonewall Inn Riots.
2. Marie’s Crisis Cafe
59 Grove St. bet. 7th Ave. and Bleecker St.
For a fun evening out, check out Marie’s Crisis Cafe, named for The Crisis Papers written by American Founding Father Thomas Paine who died at that location in 1809.
Across the Street is Arthur’s Tavern, where you can see rhythm & blues, Dixieland jazz & more inside a circa-1937 tavern.
For other music venues in the Village, see our post on nightlife in Greenwich Village.
3. Grove Court
The gated entry between #10 and #12 Grove Street bet. Bedford and Hudson Sts.
Peek in the gates at this narrow entryway to one of the Village’s best-kept secrets.
The brick row houses at the back of the courtyard were originally built in 1854 to house workers at a nearby factory.
They weren’t so pretty back then. Now, houses in this quiet enclave cost over $2 million.
4. The Friends Apartment
90 Bedford St at the corner of Grove St.
You won’t find Central Perk on the ground level of this six-story apartment building.
Here, you’ll find The Little Owl restaurant instead. Read our full post on the Friends apartment building.
It’s impossible to believe that an oft-unemployed actor, a barista, a masseuse, and a graduate student all lived in this impossibly expensive part of town, but that’s Hollywood for you.
Find out some interesting nuggets of information on our free Greenwich Village Walking Tour.
86 Bedford St. (58 Barrow St.)
If you are wondering why there is no sign for this restaurant, go around the corner to Barrow Street and look for the arched gated entryway that leads into a courtyard.
Chumley's is at the back of the courtyard.
Once a speakeasy that served booze to authors like William Faulkner, Eugene O’Neill, and John Steinbeck, it’s now a restaurant.
Chumley's is allegedly the birthplace of the professional kitchen term “86” (which means cancel that order). Find out the whacky story behind this on our tour.
6. Edna St. Vincent Millay House
75 1/2 Bedford St.
This sliver of a building is just 10 feet (9m) wide. It was built on what used to be a carriageway of the home next door.
Many notable people have lived there over the years including Pulitzer Prize winner Edna St. Vincent Millay. (See the plaque on the house).
If you aren’t already shocked that people would live in such a small home, you will be when you learn how much it cost: its most recent owner in 2011 paid $4.2 million.
7. Former site of C.I.A. covert LSD experiments
81 Bedford St.
In the Cold War era, the CIA attempted to create a “truth serum” to use on captured spies. C.I.A. scientists began experimenting in CIA labs with the hallucinogenic LSD.
As the program, called MK-Ultra, grew and so an apartment at this building was leased and used to observe experiment participants under the influence of LSD.
This program and any similar programs were stopped in 1966. A Netflix docu-drama series Wormwood chronicles the MK-ULTRA experiments.
8. Cherry Lane Theatre
38 Commerce St.
This 180-seat Off-Broadway theater was started in 1924 by Edna St. Vincent Millay and gained its fame for putting on ‘ahead-of-its-time’ plays.
It is the city’s oldest continuously running off-Broadway theater. Not sure what off-Broadway is?
See our post explaining the difference between Broadway and Off-Broadway shows.
9. The Cosby Show House
10 Leroy St./10 St. Luke’s Place
This house was used for the exterior shots of the Huxtables’ brownstone which was, on the show, located at 10 Stigwood Place in Brooklyn Heights.
No such street exists in Brooklyn Heights! So you won’t see it on our Brooklyn Heights Tour but you will see many other homes of famous real people!
10. Rocco’s Pastry Shop
243 Bleecker St.
Several generations of Italian families have created delightful pastries and are well known for their cannoli, tube-shaped shells of fried pastry dough, filled with a sweet, creamy ricotta cheese filling.
Rocco's is a site on our pay-what-you-wish Food Tour of Greenwich Village.
11. Our Lady of Pompeii
25 Carmine St. corner of Bleecker St.
Offering mass in both Italian and English, this beautifully appointed church was built in the early 1900s to serve the large Italian immigrant community that lived in the southern part of Greenwich Village.
The other area in NYC that Italian immigrants settled is, of course, the famous Little Italy.
12. Cafe Wha?
115 Macdougal St. bet. Bleecker & West 3rd Sts.
Having fueled the careers of many individuals in the Beat, Folk, and Rock ‘n‘ Roll generations, Café Wha? is a “must-see” for anyone interested in the Greenwich Village scene of the 1950s, and ’60s.
Read more about Cafe Wha? here.
For Bob Dylan fans, you can take our Bob Dylan’s Greenwich Village Walking Tour.
13. New York University Campus
Most of the buildings surrounding Washington Square Park belong to the university. In 1831, NYU was founded as the first public university in New York City.
It is now a private university with one of the highest tuitions of any university in the country at $41,000 per year!
Their School of Law building on the corner of MacDougal Street and Washington Square South is especially lovely. Look for the NYU purple flags everywhere.
14. Washington Square Park and Washington Square Arch
Between 10,000 and 20,000 bodies were unearthed to create this park, which becomes one of the City’s archetypical monuments, and the site of many TV and movie scenes over the years.
From the character who designed the arch, Stanford White, to the characters who frequent the park, like the Pigeon Man, Washington Square Park is not to be missed.
This park is the ultimate place to people-watch. For more details on the Park and what to see there, check out our post, Washington Square Park.
15. The site of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire (Brown Building)
23-29 Washington Pl. bet. Washington Square East & Greene St.
In 1911, in the sweatshop factory on the top floors of this building, a fire broke out.
It rapidly spread and within the hour 146 low-paid workers, mostly young immigrant women, were dead.
Some leaped to their deaths from the windows to escape the blaze.
The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire was a turning point in workers’ rights. Laws were enacted and unions formed to protect workers’ safety.
16. Washington Mews
Small lane just north of Washington Square North, between 5th Ave. and University Place.
These quaint row houses on a cobblestoned lane were built as horse stables in the rear of the exclusive row houses that face Washington Square North.
They are now used by New York University. The Mews are public so walk through and enjoy the historic charm.
17. Electric Lady Studios
52 W. 8th St. bet. 5th & 6th Aves.
This world-class recording studio was commissioned by Jimi Hendrix and his desire to have a studio with both a mellow atmosphere and state-of-the-art equipment.
Tragically, Hendrix spent only two and a half months recording at the Electric Lady Studios in the summer of 1970.
On September 18, 1970, Jimi Hendrix died from an accidental overdose of sleeping pills.
Among the musicians who have recorded here are the Rolling Stones, The Clash, and David Bowie, whose final album before his death, Black Star, was made here.
If you have time to spare and would like to wander the Village, we recommend these sites, marked in purple on the map.
1. Mark Twain House
14 West 10th St bet. 5th and 6th Aves.
This circa-1850s brownstone house is one of the spookiest houses in New York City.
It may look pretty on the outside but legend has it that some of the spirits of the 22 deaths that have occurred here have not left the premises.
The most famous resident was author Mark Twain, who lived there for a year in 1900 (see the plaque on the building).
Even though he died in Connecticut, one resident reported seeing a specter resembling Twain.
2. Jefferson Market Library
Corner of 6th Ave. and West 10th St.
The garden was once the site of a bustling outdoor market and the Victorian Gothic style building was constructed in 1877 as a courthouse.
By 1927, the court heard only women’s cases.
The women prisoners were held in the basement, and for one night, it housed actress Mae West when her stage act became too bawdy and she was arrested.
By 1945 the building was out of use, but it was brought back to life in 1967 and reopened as a New York Public Library branch.
3. Carrie Bradshaw’s stoop
64 Perry St.
This is where Carrie lived in the tv series Sex and the City. Well, fans of SATC know that Carrie lived on the Upper West Side! So what exactly is going on here?
4. White Horse Tavern
567 Hudson St.
You won’t want to drink 18 straight whiskeys as poet Dylan Thomas did, but stop in for an afternoon repast and visit the tavern’s historical past dating back to the 1880s.
If you like the White Horse Tavern, then you will definitely enjoy the bars on our self-guided Historic New York City Bar Tour.