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Duration: 2 hours

Overview

Discover the fascinating history and hidden secrets of the New York City subway system on this guided walking tour. From the illegal beginnings to the abandoned stations, you will explore spaces even the most seasoned commuter might not know about. End your journey at the stunning Guastavino tiles of the Municipal building.

🚇 Ride through abandoned subway stations

🎨 Learn about subway art and the artists who created it

🚪 Discover hidden spaces and secrets of the subway system

🏛️ End at the stunning Guastavino tiles on the Municipal building

Please note that guests will need one MetroCard swipe or OMNY tap to enter the subway.

Availability

When do I choose a date?

After purchase, you can request your preferred dates and times by following the instructions in the email you receive. If it's a gift, the recipient will also get an email with booking instructions.

Year-Round,
Monday-Saturday
11:00am & 2:00pm

Practical information

Any restrictions to participate?

  • Age: All age groups are welcome.
  • Physical limitations: This tour is easy and most people can participate.

Who can you accommodate for?

  • Children: All participants must pay to participate, children included.
  • Individuals with disabilities: Unfortunately this tour is not ADA accessible as subway stations we go to on this tour are not ADA accessible.
  • Pets: Sorry, no pets allowed.

What to expect on the day of the experience?

  • Duration: 2 Hours
  • What’s included:
    • See the architectural ghosts of the nearly forgotten and partially abandoned, Chambers Street station then nicknamed the “Grand Central of Downtown”
    • Discover the remnants of Union Square Station as you learn about a hidden art installation thousands of riders walk by everyday
    • Use the 6 train as your own time machine as you ride through abandoned subway stations that most seasoned NYC commuters don’t know exist
    • Explore the birth of the NYC subway system through amazing archival photos not available to the public
    • Learn about the comically short route of the mythical “Subway before the Subway,” Alfred Ely Beach’s Pneumatic Transit System
    • Ear pieces are provided to each guests, ensuring everyone hears the guide perfectly, even from a distance!
  • Who will be present: You will have a tour guide with you at all times; also, other guests may be joining (up to 15 people).
  • Spectators: No spectators are allowed, everyone must have a ticket/reservations.
  • Photo/ video: You may take your own photos.

How to prepare?

  • Weather dependency: Rain or shine this experience will be running as this is a mostly indoors experience.
  • Arrival: Plan to arrive 20 minutes in advance.
  • Parking: It is recommended to take the subway to the meeting location (2, 3, 4, 5, A, C, J, Z to Fulton Center)
  • What to wear: Good walking shoes
  • What to bring: Your phone, wallet, and water bottle are recommended.
  • Restrooms/ lockers/ changing rooms: Restrooms may be available but are not guaranteed. Please use any facilities before the tour begins.

Anything else I should know before going on this experience?

  • Guests will need one MetroCard swipe or OMNY tap to enter the subway.

Full description

Get ready to explore the world's largest subway system and dive into the heart of the city that never sleeps. Our expert guides will take you on an unforgettable journey through the fascinating history of the New York City subway stations. From the illegal beginnings of the very first subway, to the intricate architecture and design of the modern system, you will discover the stories behind every turnstile.

Using the 6 train as our own ten-car time machine, we will ride through and see abandoned stations that riders unknowingly pass by everyday, including the famed City Hall Station. Learn about the original plans for the subway system and how they evolved into what we know today. Along the way, you'll discover how subway art became a form of public expression and learn about the artists who created some of the most iconic works.

Please note that the abandoned subway stations we will peek at will be observed from the safety of the subway cars! The trains don’t stop inside these stations and accessing them by foot would be illegal.

The tour will end at the stunning Guastavino tiles on the outside of the subway stop and Municipal building, once meant to be the “Grand Central of Downtown”. Take in the beauty of the unique tile work and learn about the history of the building and its role in the city.

Returns, exchanges and cancellation

Unused Experience Vouchers can be returned within 30 days for a full refund to the original purchaser, no questions asked.

If you have any unused Experience Vouchers, you can exchange them for anything else in our marketplace, no matter when. If you choose an experience that's more expensive, you'll need to pay the difference, but if you choose one that costs less, you'll receive a credit towards your next booking.

No refunds are allowed once the experience is booked, but you can reschedule up to 72 hours before your experience, for a date within a year of the original booking. To reschedule, contact the experience provider directly. No-shows or rescheduling less than 72 hours in advance means losing the value of your experience.

Duration: 2 hours
Regular price $38
$38 Regular price $41 Sale price
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Here's what others have to say!

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/5

Based on 0 reviews

Rebecca N

Guide was great. The ear speaker was very helpful!

Ryan H

I thoroughly enjoyed my walking tour with Ben! His extensive knowledge of the Beaux Art, City Hall, City Office Building, and the origins and political context of the subway system made for a fascinating and exciting adventure. Ben presented the information with enthusiasm and animation, and was welcoming of comments from everyone in the tour group. Overall, this experience has me looking forward to doing more tours in NYC in the future.

Reese P

This was one of the best walking tours I've ever been on! The Underground Subway Tour led by Ben far exceeded my already high expectations. Ben's knowledge was extensive and he presented the information with enthusiasm and animation. He shared fascinating details about the Beaux Art, the history of City Hall and City Office Building, the origins of the subway system and its political context, as well as many other interesting factoids. Every stop on the tour was an adventure that got more exciting both literally and figuratively. Ben was welcoming of comments from everyone in the tour group and even welcomed information about other subway systems, such as Boston and Montreal. Overall, this experience has me looking forward to doing more tours in NYC in the future.