The pick-up point for the tour is 690 8th Ave - there was a tour rep at the door and our group of around 40 waited on the sidewalk for the luxury coach which arrived promptly at 9am.
We drove to the Apollo theatre, left the coach for 10 mins or so and took a few pics. We then drove to the 145th St area to check out the Hamilton building and our guide provided background to it's history. A short stroll through sunny Harlem took us back to the coach and we then went to the church to listen to the Gospel choir who were amazing. They sang for around an hour, lots of hand clapping by the choir and audience. The choir members were kind enough to allow our group to pose with them for a few pics and answer any question after they finished singing.
Our guide was knowledgeable and spoke in English and French and the driver expertly and safely navigated the coach through the snarled up Manhattan traffic.
The traffic congestion into and out of Midtown Manhattan meant the tour lasted nearly 4 hours.
A great experience.
Note: there were lavatories at the church for all to use. We also had to wear face coverings when inside the church.
Wonderful experience. The choir and the church members could not have been more gracious and welcome. Each member of the choir is extremely talented and passionate about the music. A highlight of my visit and I have been to NYC many times. Our guide Anthony was a life time New Yorker who was a wealth of information and easy to hear and understand. Enjoy!
This is a must for anyone visiting New York . Our guide was so engaging and lives and breathes this vibrant and beautiful part of the city. I am not a religious person myself but you don’t need to be to be moved and to understand the depth of feeling within this close community.
I highly recommend if you can include this on any trip to New York you will experience the realness of New York.
An inspirational morning tour of Harlem culminating in a performance of the ARC gospel choir. The tour guide was entertaining, knew Harlem as he grew up there and could provide us a with a myriad of facts about changes over the years. The gospel choir was amazing and we loved the fact that we could all join in at the end. Our kids will never forget the experience. Well worth doing if like us you had no idea how wonderful a place Harlem really is.
This tour provides a great insight into Harlem. The online booking process was efficient as was the ticket collection on the day of our tour at Harlem Spirituals’ office in Times Square, which is the tour’s start and finish point. The office staff were friendly and welcoming. The tour itself was also well organised. Our tour guide was very informative about Harlem and its history – she provided a lot of commentary throughout the morning tour which took us through various Harlem neighbourhoods. First stop was the Apollo Theater. The only section we could access inside was the gift store, so a bit of a shame we couldn’t see the main auditorium. After some time browsing the area, it was back on the bus for more of a drive around Harlem while making our way to a church to listen to the ARC Gospel Choir. We had booked the Wednesday tour so it was choir only, no church service. The choir was the tour highlight – they were absolutely amazing! Such beautiful voices and so full of passion and enthusiasm. There was even the opportunity to join the choir in singing ‘Oh Happy Day’ towards the end of their performance. Following the choir concert, we headed back to the Harlem Spirituals office where the tour ended. The tour was an unforgettable experience and it gave us an appreciation of how awesome Harlem is. I’d recommend this tour to anyone visiting NYC.
A well managed tour. Following my booking in the UK I collected my ticket from the office the day before the tour. This was very efficiently handled by a friendly lady.
Anthony, our tour guide was both informative and amusing, and as a Harlem native, was able to give us some insights into the area, past and present. The ARC Choir just blew me away! A most moving and emotional performance! And when they asked us to go and join them singing "O Happy Day" at the end, I was first in line! The brunch at Sylvia's was amazing – even though we were sharing the room with forty-odd children! Sharing a meal with French, German, Australian and Korean fellow travellers was enlightening. A great tour I would recommend to anyone visiting NYC.