Home to theaters, grand bank buildings, education centers, and flophouses, the historic 1.5-mile Bowery had it all. Originally this path was part of the Mohican or Wickquasgeck Trail, which connected Algonquin territory spanning all the way to Montreal. The Dutch settlers of New Amsterdam built their bouweries, or farms, along the trail, further cementing the land as a major thoroughfare. Later, the Bowery played a role in the Revolutionary War and eventually became a place for wild fun and an anything-goes attitude. On our newest walking tour, Secrets of the Bowery, we’ll dive into each chapter of this street’s fascinating history on the Lower East Side!

Secrets of the Bowery Walking Tour

Citizens bank on the bowery

This 2-hour tour is led by an expert, licensed, New York City tour guide! As you stroll the Bowery you will:

  • Learn about the famous Bull’s Head Tavern on Canal Street where George Washington set up headquarters
  • Visit the spot where P.T. Barnum opened his first store in 1839
  • Stop at the site of the Bowery Mission, a mission started in the 1870s and still operates today
  • Pass by the old Amato Opera house, constructed in 1899
  • Learn about The Bowery’s infamous flophouses
  • Find Manhattan’s oldest brick building and learn about its fascinating history and bright future
  • Uncover a rare Beaux-Arts treasure hidden in plain sight

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Kimlau Square on Secrets of the Bowery tour

Lower East Side residents, along with folks from all over the city, would flock to the Bowery to hear song buskers like Irving Berlin, see moving pictures, open a bank account, or get a bowl of soup when falling on hard times. You’ll retrace the steps of these New Yorkers from the past and visit numerous sites they would have seen including the grand Cooper Union building, the former sites of Amato Opera House, music venue CBGB, and much more. Check out photos from the tour in the gallery below:

  • Secrets of the Bowery Tour
  • Secrets of the Bowery Tour
  • Secrets of the Bowery Tour
  • Secrets of the Bowery Tour
  • Secrets of the Bowery Tour

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