Tenement Museum Tours and Activities
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In an 1863 tenement building, the captivating Tenement Museum provides insights into the hardscrabble lives of newly arrived immigrant families in New York City’s Lower East Side during the 19th and 20th centuries. Guided tours demonstrate the challenges newcomers to America faced and show how migrants helped shape the area.
The Tenement Museum can be visited only as part of a guided tour. Tours fall into three categories: tours of restored and re-created tenement buildings and businesses, neighborhood walking tours, and tours led by costumed interpreters portraying former residents. All tours begin at the visitor center, where a video provides some background information on the tenements and the people who lived in them. For a deeper understanding of the immigrant experience, opt for a private guided tour that includes a cruise around the Statue of Liberty, a trip to Ellis Island, and a walking tour of the formerly immigrant-heavy Lower East Side and East Village neighborhoods. The Tenement Museum also features on some food-focused neighborhood tours that show the big influence multiethnic inhabitants have had on local cuisine.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Most guided museum tours last one to two hours.
- Some tours require participants to climb several flights of stairs so are not accessible to wheelchair users.
- Tours often sell out, so book in advance to ensure a spot on your preferred date and tour.
How to Get There
While the tenement building is at 97 Orchard Street, all tours begin and end at the visitor center at 103 Orchard Street. The nearest subway stops are Delancey Street (F train), Essex Street (J, M, and Z), and Grand Street (B and D), all of which are within five minutes’ walking distance of the museum.
When to Get There
The Tenement Museum is very popular and tours frequently sell out during summer, so it’s best to book in advance. Arrive at least 15 minutes before your tour’s start time so you can check in and store your bags. Allow more time if you want to watch the 30-minute movie at the visitor center before the tour.
How to Choose a Tenement Museum Tour
Hard Times, a building tour that encompasses tours of two apartments—one belonging to the German-Jewish Gumpertz family and the other to the Italian-Catholic Baldizzi family—provides a captivating introduction to life in the tenements, while Irish Outsiders follows the Moore family as they prepare for St. Patrick’s Day in 1869. For children 5 years old and under, Meet Victoria Confino—an interactive tour with a costumed guide—is recommended. Shop Life, a tour that focuses on immigrant businesses, is the only wheelchair-accessible tour to enter 97 Orchard Street.
Address: 103 Orchard St, New York, NY 1002, USA
Hours: Fri - Wed: 10:00am - 6:30pm, Thurs: 10am - 8:30pm; Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years Day.
Admission: Tour prices vary.
4 Tours and Activities to Experience Tenement Museum
From stroopwafel to mozzarella to knishes; there are many amazing eats on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. On this small-group walking tour, discover the neighborhood's diverse cultural heritage and learn how its immigration history has influenced its dynamic foodie scene. Along the way, visit markets, bakeries, and restaurants, and sample delicacies from all around the world.
Taking safety measures
Social distancing enforced throughout experience
Guides required to regularly wash hands
Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
This is not just a tour, bur interactive theater on the streets! Accompanied by a tour guide throughout, the group meets an actor improvising four or five different characters from history along the way.
I have worked with many celebrities such as Beyonce, Taylor Swift, and Gail King, with high end clients who attend the Kentucky Derby, The Central Park Conservancy Luncheon and Ascot. I also work often with press and stylists for Vogue, for TV and print. I make beautiful, one-of -a- kind hats and fascinators in my New York City hat shop every single day. I can help you to realize your own creative vision and understand how to make your own work. We will talk about what makes a hat, what works for you personally, and what are the techniques for creating gorgeous hats and fascinators. You can bring a friend, your daughter or come by yourself. Whatever works!
On this private tour, get up close and personal with the Lower East Side: one of Manhattan’s most diverse and dynamic neighborhoods. Pick a departure time that works for your schedule, and meet your guide. You’ll see the Eldridge Street Synagogue, popular eateries like Katz’s Deli and Russ & Daughters, the Manhattan Bridge, and more. As you go, learn about the immigrants who shaped the area, the history of tenement housing, the Lower East Side’s rich culinary culture, and more.
Taking safety measures
Face masks required for travelers in public areas
Face masks required for guides in public areas
Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are Tenement Museum hours of operation?
Tenement Museum hours of operation: Fri - Wed: 10:00am - 6:30pm, Thurs: 10am - 8:30pm; Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years Day.. Buy tickets in advance on Viator. If you book with Viator, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund.
What's the best way to experience Tenement Museum?
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