Frequently Asked Questions

What do the tours include?

All tours include a guided visit of the various neighborhoods, and a stroll through one or more of the residential or commercial areas. Each tour focuses on the history and development of the area visited as well as life today. Some tours also cover specific topics or musical genre: the Gospel tours cover the origins of Gospel as well as the Black Church in America, while the Jazz Tour covers Jazz history, and so forth.

Where do the tours start from?

Our tours depart from our ticket office located at 690 Eighth Avenue between 43rd and 44th Street, on the First Floor. We meet 15 minutes prior to tour departure.

Where are you located?

We are located in the Times Square area, close to many attractions and hotels, and easily accessible by subway and bus.

Is Harlem Spirituals accessible by public transportation?

Since we are centrally located our offices are easily accessible. By Subway, take the 1, 9, 2, 3, 7, A, C, E, N, R trains to Times Square/42nd Street station, or take the F, B, D, or Q trains to 42nd Street and Sixth Avenue and walk 2 blocks. By bus, take the M104 or M10 to 42nd Street.

How many churches are visited during a Gospel Tours?

The Sunday gospel tour includes a visit to one local church and visitors take part in a traditional Sunday service for about an hour to an hour and a half.

What church will I attend?

We work with several churches in Harlem and the Bronx.

Churches are assigned by bus based on the number of overall reservations that we receive. Seating on our buses is on a first come basis. Since we have more than one bus your tour guide will advise you as you board his or her coach.

What is the difference between our Sunday and Wednesday Gospel tours?

The Sunday gospel tour includes a visit to a local church and visitors take part in a traditional Sunday service for about an hour to an hour and a half. The Wednesday tours include the "Hour of Power Gospel Service," a collaboration between Harlem Spirituals and The Addicts Rehabilitation Center featuring the talented and inspiring ARC Gospel Choir.

Do the tours include walking?

We invite our guests to take walks through the neighborhoods we visit. The average walk is about 15 minutes.

Are the tours safe?

Yes, the tours are very safe. As in any city, we suggest taking a tour first to get acquainted with the neighborhoods.

What is "Soul Food"?

Soul Food is traditional African American cuisine that originated in the south of the US. Expect hearty portions of spicy BBQ ribs, fried fish and chicken, freshly baked corn bread, collard greens, black eye peas, okra, and macaroni and cheese.

Do you do pick-ups from hotels?

Only groups of ten or more can be picked up from their hotel within Manhattan at no additional charge. Individuals meet at our ticket office located at 690 8th Avenue between 43rd and 44th Street.

Do you offer complimentary drop-offs?

Yes. Complimentary drop-offs are offered on all late night tours and most daytime tours from uptown, down to 34th Street. The drop-offs are made along Columbus Avenue, Broadway, and Seventh Avenue.

Are Harlem Spirituals / New York Visions  tours wheelchair accessible?

With advance notice, wheelchair bound customers with some mobility can be accommodated in the front rows of the tour bus with their wheelchairs folded away in the luggage compartment.  It is mandatory that someone accompany customers with special needs to assist them onto the coach.

For passengers with no mobility or a non foldable wheelchairs we recommend giving at least 3 weeks notice so that we can secure a coach with a wheelchair lift.

Wheelchair lifts are 49" X 28"  and can carry a maximum weight limit of 700lbs.   We kindly ask that you submit the dimensions and model of the chair as our lift may not be able to accommodate scooters and other large sized electric chairs.  A maximum of one person in a wheelchair can be accommodated per bus. 

Private tours are available with accessible ramp transportation.

Many of the churches that we visit have steps. In order to accommodate their wheelchair bound congregation members churches  use portable mobility ramps. 

Are your tours on Double-Decker buses?

No. Our tours are on Single-Deck buses, which are fully equipped with climate-control, large windows, and a Public Address (PA) system for the tour guide.

Is eating allowed on the bus?

Eating and/or drinking are not allowed at any time while on the bus.

Are meals provided during excursions?

Only when specified in the tour description.

Do you accept dogs on your tours?

No we don't. Although we love pets, they won't be accepted on the bus nor inside the church.

How are your tours conducted?

All of our tours are conducted by New York City-certified, multilingual tour guides. We reserve the right to conduct tours in 2 languages.

How far ahead can I book the tours?

For a guaranteed seat on the tour, tickets must be booked at least 24 hours in advance. Reservations made under 24 hours will be placed on a waiting list, and tickets issued depending on seat availability. For wheelchair accessbility, please contact us at least 2 weeks in advance.

Is there a minimum child age requirement?

Child age requirements are different for each tour. Please refer to the individual tour’s "Additional Information" section for more details.

Can I book over the phone?

Tour reservations can't be made over the phone. However, please note customers can book a tour in person at our office, or through our website.

When do I receive confirmation of my booking?

Confirmation is received immediately when booking online.

When will I receive my tickets?

For Harlem Spirituals tours (Gospel & Jazz, "New York, New York", Brooklyn and Bronx tours) tickets can be picked up at our office at any time during our normal business hours, after confirmation is received, and up to 15 minutes prior to the tour’s departure. For all other services tickets are to be picked up at our store long enough in advance to have time to get to the starting point of the service.

Do you accept credit cards?

Yes: we accept American Express, Visa, Mastercard, Diners Club, and Discover.

Is booking with my credit card safe?

Our electronic payment system is completely safe and secure. If you have any questions regarding credit card payments, please do not hesitate to call us.

What is your cancellation policy? What if I miss the tour?

Please refer to our Terms and Conditions section for more information on our cancellation policy.

What are your office hours?

Our office hours are: Monday-Saturday 8:00am-7:00pm, and Sunday 8:00am-3:00pm.

Do you offer customized tours for myself and/or my group?

Yes we do! For more information, please contact us at:

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