The Harlem Gospel Tour starts from 690, Eighth Avenue (between 43rd and 44th Streets), New York, NY 10036. Tours are conducted in deluxe AC motor coaches and there are stops for photo-opportunities and short walks.
On the way you will discover the rich history of Harlem. First inhabited by the fierce Manhattan tribe of Native Americans, it was colonized by Dutch and later became an elegant retreat for rich New Yorkers. You will hear about its decline in the 19th century, and how in the early 20th century it became a center for black people moving north to escape the Southern 'Jim Crow' culture.
You'll learn about the remarkable flowering of black culture in the 1920s. Known as the 'Harlem Renaissance', it was spearheaded by notables such as writer Langston Hughes, painter Aaron Douglas, and sculptor Augusta Savage.
In the 20s and 30s Harlem was the center of the New York's nightlife. Musical titans such as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Eubie Blake, and Bessie Smith lived in Harlem and performed at local nightspots.
You'll also hear of troubled times in the 1960s and 70s, and of today's community full of pride and self-confidence.
On your 4-hour tour you will see famous sights and landmarks such as:
Morris-Jumel Mansion: Manhattan's oldest house, which served as a headquarters for both sides in the American Revolution.
935 St. Nicholas Avenue: Where Duke Ellington, American composer and jazz musician, resided from 1939 through 1961.
125th Street: A celebrated thoroughfare, considered to be the Main Street of Harlem.
Cotton Club: A renowned night club that featured many of the greatest 20th century African American entertainers – such as Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and Nat King Cole – but denied admission to blacks.
Apollo Theater: One of the most famous music halls in the United States, and the club most associated with African-American performers.
Finally, you will join a local church congregation and experience the energising and inspirational power of gospel music.
This is the end of the guided tour however you have the option to add a delicious African American-style Brunch at a local Harlem restaurant.