Turn your soul’s storage unit over to Dead Apple Tours for a two-hour sightseeing trip covering some of the city's deathiest spots. Up to seven passengers will climb inside "Desdemona," a 1960 Cadillac hearse, and then be whisked away in the funeral coach to Manhattan's macabre landmarks of murder, death, and mystery. See where President James Monroe spent his last days before his patriotic-to-the-end July 4, 1831, death, and cruise past the locations where artists Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring each saw final brushstrokes painted upon their respective mortal canvases. Other sights on the tour include the apartment buildings where Heath Ledger and Sid Vicious died, as well as the scene of mobster "Crazy Joe" Gallo's 1972 death by mob-hit. Dead Apple Tours also highlights the grisly histories of such landmarks as the Empire State Building and the Brooklyn Bridge and explores true-life tales of mayhem and mutilation, such as Hangman's Elm and the Butcher of Tompkins Square Park—the latter of which is guaranteed to temporarily remove soup from tour-takers' diets.
Hush Hip Hop Tours aims to educate and entertain guests in the history of hip-hop, showing the evolution of a truly New York art form through the eyes of actual artists. Each jam-filled journey is led by pioneers, including but not limited to GrandMaster Caz (Cold Crush Brothers), Kurtis Blow, Rahiem (Furious Five), and Reggie Reg (Crash Crew). They'll take you through their old stomping grounds while sharing personal stories and anecdotes as only a pre-old-school rhyme master could. Follow in their footsteps with your choice of two tour options, each covering different boroughs and slices of history. The two-hour guided Walk This Way tour takes movement neophytes and artistic aficionados on an easy stroll through Harlem's historic streets, with photo-friendly pit stops at the legendary Apollo Theater and an array of clubs. Or stake your seat on the four-hour Birthplace of Hip-Hop bus tour, which cruises through Manhattan and the Bronx to learn about the form in its formative years and see its rare, embarrassing baby photos.
New York City Photo Safari coordinates year-round educational excursions that blend hands-on photography lessons with tours of NYC's most famous locales. Owner Diem "Zim" Pham—who works as a travel photographer, a position that often requires the skills to create compelling images in less-than-ideal conditions—and Zim’s team of instructors are all professional photographers currently working in the industry. Safari sizes stay cozy at no more than eight people, allowing for a wealth of personalized feedback and troubleshooting advice for each apprentice. The Metropolitan Museum of Art safari employs the lauded museum halls as a setting for lessons in the use of light and how to overcome difficult lighting challenges, whereas the avant-garde High Line Elevated Park course instructs eyes in the art of composition. Aspiring politicos can embark on the City Hall safari, which fills memory cards with crisp shots of neo-classic architecture and caped superheroes flying to and from the mayor’s office.
Hampton Luxury Liner ferries its passengers around in a lavish motorcoach that boasts five flat-screen TVs, complimentary WiFi, and an on-bus library. The luxury buses travel to destinations ranging from the Hamptons to Atlantic City, with specific stops at wineries, resorts, and casinos. Reclining leather seats with space for laptops and maximum leg extension typify the cushy interior, and each road cruiser also comes equipped with a snack bar, library, and refrigerator, useful for storing steaks to distract the thousands of chasing dogs such a luxurious bus usually attracts.
Recipients of TripAdvisor's certificate of excellence in 2012, NYC GoGreen Tours keep themselves carbon-neutral chiefly by sticking to the favored transportation of native New Yorkers: walking. Their catalog of New York walking tours gives patrons a detailed look of the city that's difficult to get from riding on a bus or the roof of a subway car. Each jaunt focuses on one neighborhood or attraction, whether it's Central Park, Harlem, or downtown. Guides toss an entertaining stream of history and trivia over their shoulders as they lead their groups, pointing out remarkable landmarks.
The company also hops onto eco-friendly wheels to lead bike tours and pedicab tours. Flocks of bikes ride through lower Manhattan, beneath the Brooklyn Bridge, and Central Park, or patrons can sit back in a pedicab carriage while their guide cycles through Chinatown and Gramercy Park.