Tag: Walking ToursView All Tags
Tallinn Field Trip / Estonia Travel / Tallinn Travel / Architecture Travel / Historical Travel / Walking Tours / → All Tags
Who goes to Estonia?! Well, our roaming correspondent John Walton does and, all this week, he'll be filling us in on what's up way up there in this world capital on the Baltic Sea.
Okay, so we're totally obsessed with the Hanseatic League, the 13th-17th century set of merchant guilds spread across northern Europe from Britain to Finland. If you know what you're looking for, you'll spot the signature Hanseatic architecture everywhere from Hull in England to Helsinki in Finland.
Oh look, here's some now!
Models steal children, tell story about 'uncle Gianni'.
It's easy to think that everyone knows the stories that make South Beach the glitzy, sleazy, underdressed spectacle it is, but luckily a brand new company, Discovery Miami Beach, has come along to educate the uninitiated with a new self-guided audio tourone that 'showcases 29 of the most important places in South Beach’s past and present.'
Of course, this includes a stop outside the Versace Mansion--now known as The Villa By Barton G. You can't go inside unless you want to have a very fancy meal or rest your head on a $1,000-a-night pillow, but you can take a peek at the photos our sister site HotelChatter snapped beyond the gate last fall.
As for the story about how Gianni was slain right there on the steps along Ocean Drive--how's that for education, kids?!
Booze Travel / New Orleans Travel / Walking Tours / Photo Gallery / Historical Travel / Drinking Travel / → All Tags
While in New Orleans this last weekend to check out the newly reopened Hyatt Regency, we managed some us-time to see the Saints walk all over the Colts at the Superdome. But the thing we can't stop talking about now we're home? The booze.
While no one needs instruction on how to drink when in NOLA, we decided to take the New Orleans Original Cocktail Tour, so we could wash down our history of the French Quarter with a delightful tonic or two. If you like learning a little somethin' as you get lit, we highly recommend this leisurely afternoon pursuit.
One of the most popular tours in town, it is not a pub crawl but a sophisticated stroll through some of New Orleans' most historic bars and restaurants, with plenty of colorful commentary along the way. Groups are capped at a maximum of 10 to keep things orderly, and our guide was a master at entertaining everyone and moving things along.
Since the tour kicks off at 4pm, the streets of the quarter are already filled with happy, buzzy souls, but we had no trouble finding ourselves a spot at the bar each time we called in for some stories and refreshments.
President Obama is most closely associated with the city of Chicago, but he spent five years in New York as a student and community organizer, and a local actor has created a walking tour that shines a light on what he calls Obama's "lost years" here. The AP introduces us to Jeremiah Miller, whose two-hour "Obama's New York" tour takes visitors to some of the places the 44th president spent time during his 1981-1985 stint in the city.
The cryptic, yet beautiful grounds of Los Angeles' Hollywood Forever Cemetery are known for hosting summertime screenings of classic movies like Cool Hand Luke, and occasional special events like last week's sunrise concert with Bon Iver. But don't let its role as an entertainment venue dwarf the fact that it's a resting ground for many Hollywood luminaries, with floral-strewn monuments to prove it. Take a moment to slow down as your stroll through Hollywood Forever, and might find yourself overcome by its sprawling history.
If you're not adverse to spending your afternoon in the company of massive headstones, then you can learn a little more about the site with a walking tour hosted by guide Karie Bible. Bible claims she could give a six-hour tour of the grounds and still not cover everything there is to know about Hollywood Forever, so you'll get your fill of informational tidbits, and then some. We promise the actual tour won't last that long, and it will cost you a pittance of $12.
Even though New York has more exciting neighborhoods than just about anywhere else in the world, it can still be frustratingly difficult to find anywhere undiscovered, because everything is so overly-documented.
So here's one walking tour activity you won't find in your Lonely Planet book: climb down a manhole underneath Brooklyn's busy Atlantic Avenue and inside the world's oldest subway tunnel.
The Atlantic Avenue tunnel is a half-mile road that was built back in 1844, and then just completely forgotten about for decades until it was rediscovered in 1980. Today, Bob Diamond, who found the lost tunnel, takes groups down on expeditions. If you're already grossed out, we can say that at least from the photos, it looks a lot cleaner than any subway tunnel we've ever seen.
Tours take place once a month; the next one is Sunday, February 22. Bring a flashlight!
Photo: [Brooklyn Rail]
Travel Tours / Walking Tours / Tours / Harvey Milk / Oscars / Movie Travel / → All Tags
Slumdog Millionaire may be dominating the Oscar buzz, but it isn't the only Academy-nominated film catching tour planner's interest.
Best Picture nominee Milk made us want to hang out in San Francisco's Castro District circa 1978, and local walking tour organizers Crusin' the Castro have taken note—they're now offering a "Harvey Milk Tour." The comprehensive three-hour tour (Wednesdays only) takes you to the house where the pioneering politician lived, his campaign headquarters, through City Hall and to Milk's final resting place, along the way taking in the sights of the colorful Castro neighborhood, where much of the gay rights movement was born.
At $55, the price seems a little steep for a walking tour, although that includes admission to the GLBT Historical Society and its new exhibit about the Castro.
· Cruisin' the Castro [Official Site]
· "Milk" Reminds Us To Salute The Castro [Jaunted]
· 'Slumdog Millionaire' Tour: Effective or Exploitative? [Jaunted]
If there's one over-covered travel topic that's been done to death more than them all, it's probably New York restaurants. Millions of pages (and bandwith) have been devoted to that never-ending quest of finding the best dinner in NYC. But in all the fuss, New York dessert is often overlooked. You can dine anywhere from a high-end, raved-about restaurant to a cult favorite hole-in-the-wall, and even the most obsessive food blogger is likely to finish a meal and realize "I have no idea if the dessert is good here."
Which is why we're pretty excited about Free NYC Dessert Fest, a once-monthly walking tour of New York's best dessert destinations. Each tour explores one iconic NYC neighborhood, soaking in the sites and hitting up all the area's best sweet spots. This month's tour takes place Sunday, February 1 (at 11:30am, so you can get back in time for the big game) in the Financial District, which on Super Bowl Sunday should be empty of bankers but full of sugar at stops like Christopher Norman Chocolates, Financier Patisserie and Bubby's Bakery.
The walking tour, which covers a mile, is free, aside from paying for whatever treats you pick up and asking that you donate $1 to a non-profit that helps feed hungry New Yorkers. So you can give in to your dessert cravings, get some exercise and soothe your conscience! Sounds like a sweet deal.
Street Art / Art / Walking Tours / → All Tags
Over the past decade Melbourne’s street art scene has grown to rival that of London or Berlin, thanks to the city's efforts to encourage artists to paint. Melbourne has gone so far as to designate certain streets for graffiti. Business owners are getting into the act as well by hiring street artists to paint the exteriors of their buildings. Still, the bulk of the good stuff is still hiding is the city’s nooks and crannies.
Because it can be a challenge to find the art lurking in remote corners and alleyways, Bernadette Alibrando, a local artist, has started giving walking tours of the best work in town. While many pieces are political statements about war, homelessness or global warming, others are lighter fare dealing with Australian pop culture.
Alibrando leads tours every Wednesday and Saturday afternoon. The itinerary varies slightly each time out and usually ends with a passionate discussion over wine and cheese in the early evening. The cost per person is A$98 ($65).
· Walk to Art Tours [Official Site]
· Walking Tours Bring Melbourne's Street Art to Life [LA Times]
· Street Art coverage [Jaunted]
"Free walking tour" shouted the headline, and we, like dumb tourists, believed it. On further investigation it seems that the "free" London walking tours are only free if you've bought a ticket on the Original London Sightseeing Tour hop-on, hop-off bus.
Just the same, we are rather attracted to walking tours and the outfit has both a "classic" walk through central London and a Changing of the Guard walk as well. Walking tours are often led by young backpackers spending a summer in London, so as well as regurgitating some of the local history, they can be extraordinarily good at pointing out the best pubs.
These "nearly free" walking tours cost £5 (nearly $9) if you haven't bought the too-expensive hop-on, hop-off ticket (which costs £20 ($35) for 24 hours). We advise checking out the walking tour guide first to see if they fit your bill and if not, well, just buy a map. Then you can make your walking tour an entirely free "getting lost" tour instead.
· Original London Sightseeing Tours Introduce Free Walking Tours [eTravel]
· Walk Around London If Your Eurostar Is Late [Jaunted]
[Photo: Salim Virji]
Walking Tours / Boats / Islands / Tours / → All Tags
New York is the kind of city where a tour guide is far from necessary. But sometimes even the most jaded locals want to discover something new.
That's when it's time to consult Urban Tours, the least touristy tour company ever. Organized by the Brooklyn Center for the Urban Environment, Urban Tours offers walking, biking and boat trips around the city's least traveled destinations.
Coming up later this summer: A walk through Brooklyn's Greenwood Cemetery, as well as a water taxi tour of "The Other Islands of New York," which explores the non-Manhattans: Roosevelt, Randall's, Ward's and the two Brother Islands. (Bonus points if you've ever even heard of the Brother Islands, wedged between the Bronx and Rikers Island, they formerly housed quarantined smallpox victims.)
For those who like a bit of good old American weirdness with their tours, San Jose offers a stroll around the famed Winchester Mansion. A 160 room monument to nonstop renovations, the Winchester Mansion features endless arbitrary additions and staircases to nowhere.
The story goes that the widow of William W. Winchester, awash in money from her husband's namesake rifle, was spurred by a psychic to move west and build a sprawling domicile as a cure for a run of bad luck that included the deaths of her famous husband and their only child. This compulsive construction was an attempt to appease the souls of those who had died by means of the rifle that bore her husband's name. Ultimately, this appeasement resulted in thirty-eight years of round the clock construction and a one hundred and fifty six acre spread of idiosyncratic rooms and passageways.
The still-standing mansion and garden grounds offer a variety of daily tours. The best deal--short of faking senior status--is the Grand Estate tour at $28.95. This will take you through 110 of the 160 rooms and give you a behind the scenes look at the building and operation of the estate. If that's too rich for you, Weird US put together the video above.