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Things to do in Lower East Side

Our most recommended things to do in Lower East Side

New York: The New York Pass with 100+ Attractions and Tours

1. New York: The New York Pass with 100+ Attractions and Tours

Use The New York Pass on your phone for cash-free entry to over 100 New York City tourist attractions. See the best that the Big Apple has to offer with access to any of the attractions and experiences covered. Activate your pass at the first attraction or tour you go to. Once activated, your pass records when and where you first used it and how long it will remain valid for. Your New York Pass is then valid for the number of consecutive days that you've purchased. Activities include: Popular Experiences • Empire State Building • Big Bus Tours: 1-day Classic Tour • Top of the Rock Observation Deck • 9/11 Memorial & Museum • Edge (Hudson Yards) • One World Observatory • Statue of Liberty Ferry and Ellis Island Immigration Museum • Circle Line: Best of New York Cruise • Madame Tussauds New York • Central Park Bike Rental by Unlimited Biking • Guggenheim Museum Museums & Galleries • American Museum of Natural History • MoMA - Museum of Modern Art • Intrepid Sea Air and Space Museum • Museum of Sex • Whitney Museum of American Art • Fotografiska New York • Museum of the City of New York • New York Historical Society • Museum of Arts and Design • Museum of Jewish Heritage • Skyscraper Museum • Fraunces Tavern Museum • New York Hall of Science • Brooklyn Museum of Art • Museum at Eldridge Street • International Center of Photography • MOMA PS 1 • Staten Island Museum • Paley Center for Media • Museum of Chinese in America • Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum Family-friendly • Central Park Bike Tour by Unlimited Biking • 9/11 Museum Workshop: Hands-On 9/11 Tour • Marvel & DC Superheroes Walking Tour • Yankee Stadium Tour • LEGOLAND® Discovery Center, Westchester • Staten Island Zoo • LEGOLAND® Discovery Center New Jersey • Staten Island Children’s Museum • Bike Rentals Hidden Gems • New York Botanical Garden • Catacombs by Candlelight Tour • Harlem Jazz Series – Tuesday and Friday • New Museum • El Museo del Barrio • Cathedral of St. John the Divine • Snug Harbor Botanical Garden- Staten Island • Brooklyn Botanical Garden Tours & Cruises • Central Park TV & Movie Sites Walking Tour • Rockefeller Center Tour • The Official Chinatown Walking Tour • How Money Was Made: Wall Street Walking Tour • Circle Line: Harbor Lights Cruise • Circle Line: Landmark Cruise • Manhattan by Sail: Clipper City Tall Ships Cruise (seasonal) • The Official Little Italy Walking Tour • Hamilton Tour • Colonial New York Retold Walking Tour • New York City News Media Tour • Brooklyn Bridge & DUMBO Neighborhood Walking Tour • Brooklyn Bridge Bike Tours Attractions and tours are subject to change. Check the digital guide for an up-to-date attraction line-up including opening times and instructions on how to access each attraction before you go. Some tours and attractions require advance reservations.

NYC: Lower East Side Food Tastings and Culture Tour

2. NYC: Lower East Side Food Tastings and Culture Tour

Stroll the streets of the Lower East Side of Manhattan to discover the history of different immigrant communities. See how they made this part of New York their home and treat your taste buds to food samples from all over the world.  Stop outside significant local landmarks including the African Burial Ground Monument and the New York Supreme Court. Learn about the facinating origins of the African American community in New York.  Head to the Chinatown district and learn more about the Chinese community which once lived in the area. Try some fried dumplings at a spot that is popular with locals. Then, discover the adjacent district of Little Italy which was home to thousands of immigrants from southern Italy. Enjoy some classic Italian flavors which have formed the basis of some of the most popular modern American snacks.  Next, enter the Nolita neighborhood and stop outside St Patrick's Old Cathedral, a key focal point of the Irish Catholic community. Take a short stroll through the Sara D Roosevelt Park.  Learn about the history of the Jewish community as you stroll through the Lower East Side. Try knishes, a traditional Ashkenazi Jewish snack made with potato-based dough and a variety of fillings. End your tour outside the Tenement Museum.

New York City: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

3. New York City: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

With a choice of two different 1-day tickets with two route options, explore New York from onboard the open-top, double-decker sightseeing bus. Hop-off at the attractions you want to explore further, and see the city at your own pace before hopping back on the bus when you're ready to continue your tour. Travel on the Downtown Loop and the Uptown Loop, jumping off at any of the 14 stops along the way. Enjoy the best of Manhattan, from the flashing lights of Times Square and the iconic Empire State Building–New York's most prestigious skyscraper–to the fashion stores of 5th Avenue, or the impressive home of the United Nations. Onboard, you will have access to a high-quality live audio commentary, giving you a general overview of the sights. Downtown Loop Stop 1 - M&M World Stop 2 - Times Square East Stop 3 - Empire State Building / Korea Town Stop 4 - Flatiron District Stop 5 - Soho Stop 6 - Chinatown / Little Italy Stop 7 - Brooklyn Bridge Stop 8 - Wall Street / Charging Bull Stop 9 - Statue of Liberty / Battery Park Stop 10 - Circle Line Sightseeing Uptown Loop Stop 2: Times Square East Stop 11: Times Square North Stop 12: The Metropolitan Museum of Art Stop 13: Central Park Zoo Stop 14: Columbus Circle

NYC: Bus Tour to Superhero Film Locations

4. NYC: Bus Tour to Superhero Film Locations

Don’t miss the chance to see New York City’s best filming locations of your favorite comic book heroes from Spider-Man, Superman, Jessica Jones and more on The Super Tour of NYC. On this super guided sightseeing bus tour, see over 40 locations featured in your favorite super-powered TV shows and movies. Together with your tour guide, discover the most filmed city in the world. Start your adventure in the heart of New York City, Times Square which has been featured in Spider-Man, Captain America, the Amazing Spider-Man 2 and the Incredible Hulk TV series. Continue your journey heading downtown, where you will see great sites such as the Chrysler building, the iconic Empire State Building, the Flatiron Building and Madison Square Park. Drive through unique and cultured neighborhoods like the Lower East Side, Chinatown and see the historical buildings in the Financial District. Finally, stop at Battery Park to see Lady Liberty herself, which was featured in X-men and Superman: The Movie. After the tour, grab a bite to eat or hop-on the Staten Island Ferry, which Spider-Man tries to hold together in Spider-Man: Homecoming. So put on your capes, grab your shields and be prepared to save New York City with over 40 locations featured on this tour.

From Westchester: Private Helicopter Tour for up to 6 People

5. From Westchester: Private Helicopter Tour for up to 6 People

Soak in panoramic views of New York City and its amazing monuments by day or night on a private helicopter flight of Manhattan. Fly aboard an Airbus AS350/H125 helicopter and discover the city like a bird with your family or friends. Escape the city crowds as you depart from Westchester County Airport, located in tranquil White Plains just outside New York City. Catch the Metro-North rail line or use the free parking if you come by car. Listen to a safety briefing on arrival before climbing aboard the helicopter for take-off. Sit back and take in stunning aerial views, revealed straight away as you fly over the Yankee Stadium in the Bronx and head over Manhattan. Admire iconic skyscrapers such as the Empire State Building and Chrysler Building from above. Look down on Central Park and the East River bridges.

New York City: The Sightseeing Day Pass

6. New York City: The Sightseeing Day Pass

Take a bite out of the Big Apple with the Sightseeing Day Pass, with access to over 100 experiences, destinations, museums, and tours to choose from. This includes some of the city’s most popular attractions like Top of the Rock Observatory, the Statue of Liberty, MoMA, the New York Aquarium and more! Simplify and save! With the option to select 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, or 10 days, you can enjoy full admission to the attractions that interest you most, saving up to 65% and no fixed start date. The easy-to-use Sightseeing Day Pass is a perfect choice for first time visitors who are excited to see all of New York City and who plan to use the Pass at more than 10 attractions across the five boroughs.  Get out and hit the streets! See the internationally renowned New York City skyline up close with access to five immersive bus tours or take it all in from the harbor on a ferry tour. Get an authentic taste of the city on one of the many themed walking or biking tours. Your Day Pass is activated in NYC the moment you use it at an attraction or service and is valid through the number of purchased consecutive days. Hop-On, Hop-Off double-decker bus ticket is valid for 1 day, regardless of pass duration. New York Top Destinations: • One World Observatory • Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island • Central Park Zoo  • National 9/11 Memorial and Museum  • Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) • Top of the Rock Observatory  • Whitney Museum of American Art • The Edge Experiences:  • Ground Zero Museum Workshop: 100 Images & Artifacts Tour  • Madison Square Garden Tour  • National Geographic's Beyond King Tut Immersive Experience - New and available for limited time until January 1, 2023 Attractions:  • Luna Park Coney Island (seasonal) • Madame Tussauds NYC • New York Aquarium • New York Botanical Garden • Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden • SPYSCAPE • Museum of Jewish Heritage • St. Patrick’s Cathedral Tour – Gold Pass • Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine • Empire State Building • Escape Game New York • Escape Virtuality Museums:  • American Museum of Natural History • Brooklyn Historical Society  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum • MoMA PS1 • Museum at Eldridge Street • Museum of the City of New York • National Lighthouse Museum • New York Historical Society Museum and Library • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum  • Staten Island Museum and Children’s Museum • Brooklyn Children's Museum • South Street Seaport Museum Bus Tours:  • Hop-On, Hop-Off Uptown and Downtown Bus Tours • Escorted Manhattan 5-Hour Tour • On Location Tours - Central Park TV and Movie Sites  • Woodbury Common Premium Outlets Bus trip Cruises:  • Circle Line Landmarks Cruise • City Cruises Alive After Five (seasonal) • Freedom Liberty Boat Tour Walking and Bike Tours:  • Brooklyn Unplugged Tours  • Food on Foot  • Hush Tours  • Experience 1st • Central Park Bike Rental • 2-hour Central Park Bike Tour • Graffiti & Street Art Walking Tour of Brooklyn • Scavenger Hunts - New York

East Village Rock n' Roll Walking Tour

7. East Village Rock n' Roll Walking Tour

Explore the East Village and learn about rock culture on a 2-hour guided walking tour. What a great neighborhood and one that you may not have explored on your own. The tour takes you through the East Village, Alphabet City and the Bowery. The East Village rock 'n' roll tour explores the music scene from the 60's through to the present. It is a historical tour that will leave you asking 'why didn't I do this tour sooner'. Rock, Punk and Glam are the three genres of music that helped form the history of rock culture and you will explore them all. New York City's East Village helped introduce new music, rock 'n' roll fashion and a way of life to the world. Now you can check out the sites and stories of The Ramones, New York Dolls, CBGB's, Andy Warhol, The Velvet Underground, The Fillmore East, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Iggy Pop and more. Find out where they played, lived, shopped and shot album covers, plus soak up the rich musical history of this Lower East Side neighborhood. Although many of these landmarks have changed, the memories continue to inspire up and coming New York City bands. You will explore the neighborhood's rock history, focusing on sites and artists including: • Fillmore East • Ramones • CBGB's • New York Dolls • Iggy • Album covers and more • A great walk through the historic East Village

New York City: Lower Manhattan Bike Rentals

8. New York City: Lower Manhattan Bike Rentals

Explore Lower Manhattan with a 1-hour, 2-hour, 3-hour, or 4-hour bike rental. You can also rent the bike for 24 hours, or purchase a day-pass to rent the bike for a whole day, returning it before closing on the same day. The area is rich in architecture, history, and culture, making it ideal to tour by bike. Cycle the Lower East Side’s Little Italy to vibrant Chinatown. Go to the site of the former World Trade Center, or bike the café-laden streets of the Meatpacking District, SoHo, or Greenwich Village. You are provided with all bike equipment, including chain locks and baskets, while a city map is included for your convenience. With a 1-hour bike rental, you can easily cycle across the Brooklyn Bridge and back for fantastic city views. Rent a bike for a full 24 hours and cycle the dedicated greenways.

New York City: Lower East Side Food and Culture Walking Tour

9. New York City: Lower East Side Food and Culture Walking Tour

Explore the Lower East Side's history and culture with a local guide on a walking tour designed for foodies. Visit the Essex Market and taste an array of food that reflects this neighborhood's ever-evolving immigrant community.  To ensure that you get the most out of this experience, this tour is designed on a pay-as-you-go basis. That means, at the start of the tour, you'll pay $30 in cash directly to your guide to cover the cost of all the tastings.  They'll take care of the rest, paying for the whole group at each stop to make sure everyone gets the best value for their money. As you walk, pass by a number of historic sites, including the Tenement Museum and Katz's Delicatessen, as well as the recently renovated Essex Market, one of the oldest markets in New York City. Sample some of the foods this neighborhood is famous for, including knishes, dumplings, sweets, and more. Learn about the struggles and triumphs of generations of immigrants and how they shaped this New York neighborhood and made it what it is today. Your New York foodie tour comes to an end at the Essex Market, the ideal spot to continue exploring New York's diverse culinary culture.

East Village NYC Pizza Walking Tour

10. East Village NYC Pizza Walking Tour

Explore New York’s Lower East Side on a unique walking tour that combines a little history, some local color, and a lot of pizza! Once the proving ground for newly arrived immigrants, the Lower East Side housed a mix of Germans, Poles, Ukranians, and Italians - all from working class families just trying to make it their home. It was a neighborhood so cramped, the goal of all who lived there was to get out as quickly as possible. Fast forward a few decades and it has become one of the hottest neighborhoods in New York. More importantly, it has become one of the most pizza-dense neighborhoods on the planet! The streets are filled with classic slice shops, tiny Neapolitan eateries, and creative new angles on century-old techniques. As you walk - and your guide fills you up with pizza knowledge - stop at 3 pizzerias, each specializing in a different stage of the pie's development from a humble Neapolitan street food to a celebrated American staple. Spend time with the owners and pizzaioli (pizza makers) to learn some of the tricks of the trade. Beyond learning about ancient pizza toppings and dough stretching techniques, compare the baking patterns of 3 different pizza ovens. By the end of the tour you’ll have a deep understanding of pizza’s origin, as well as its evolution into a worldwide phenomenon.

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What people are saying about Lower East Side

Overall rating

4.1 / 5

based on 3,862 reviews

Good pass if you keep going and get some things done. We did 9 activities with the 2 day pass, walked everything and didn't even use the subway. Top of the Rock, Empire State Building, Intrepid, CircleLine Cruise 1.5hrs, Edge, 9/11 Memorial, 9/11 Museum, One World Observatory, CircleLine Night Cruise 2hrs, Statue of Liberty Cruise and Ellis Island. All of this can be done in two days with good planning.

Bobby Pinn was very knowledgeable and had first-hand accounts of the scene. A lot of ground was covered, both musically (late 60s to the 90s) and physically - wear comfy walking shoes. We will definitely check out the other tours.

A definite highlight of my trip to NYC. Real historic sites and stories of the East Village. So much to take in, I will likely do the tour again next trip to the city and spend extra time in the area.

Fantastic tour of music history in the East Village with landmarks and stuff. I would definitely recommend.

Absolutely a must if your visiting New York saves you so much money