There may be no better pastime in New York City than walking its streets. The streets and avenues that form one of the most foot-friendly grids in the world are also a haven for discovery: there’s always something new at every turn. I have made it a habit over the years to hail a cab or take the subway only when absolutely necessary. It’s only been while walking – often with no particular direction – that I’ve found some of my very favorite businesses. Here are a couple of experiences that demand you hit the streets on foot, but with tantalizing consequences.
Some say it’s an aphrodisiac, or at least a mood booster. Regardless, there’s no denying everyone loves chocolate. And with a walking tour from iAdventure, you’re bound to bite into some of the very best. Bob Gelber is your guide as you embark on a 90-minute excursion to boutique chocolate shops like Jacque Torres’ renowned confections shop in SoHo, as well as Kee’s Chocolate and Vosges Haute-Chocolate. The tour begins with a shot of Aztec hot chocolate at MarieBelle’s flagship shop. There are two afternoon tours every Saturday through the end of the year and kids under 5 can come along for free.
If a food-finding mission is on your agenda, then let Food on Foot Tours take the lead. These guided tours can last anywhere from three to five hours, which is good news: plenty of walking to burn off the calories between stops. There are more than a dozen themed tours to choose from, depending on your cravings, including the East Village Variety Food Tour, the All-Beef Brooklyn Food Tour and the Sandwich Salvation Tour. In summer, do the Ice Cream, You Scream Tour. And satisfy your hankering for sugar with the World Famous Sweet Tooth Tour, a 3.5-hour dessert extravaganza through Manhattan. There can be up to eight surprise stops on each tour, with the option of buying extra nibbles at each one. Bon appetite!
This one’s less about food but still all about walking – as in walking past everyone else on your way to the front door. The Skip the Line Pass at the world-famous Metropolitan Museum of Art lets you skip the oft-lengthy general admission line and still have access to all public tours and exhibitions. Once inside, in fact, you’ll find several suggestions on walking itineraries, from half-day to family-friendly.
The walk to the crown of Statue of Liberty’s crown is a workout: 354 steps in all. During the government shutdown, though, that’s not even an option, since the landmark is closed. Until it reopens, your best bet is admiring her from outside. New York Water Taxi runs hour-long Statue of Liberty tours by yacht year-round, one by night (which includes a champagne toast) and several by day.
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