One of the greatest cities in the world, New York is a constant whirlwind of activity.

With famous attractions at every turn, there’s never enough time for the erstwhile traveler to enjoy them all.

We know New York City can be difficult to navigate, especially when you’re a visitor trying to explore its iconic landmarks.

But with a bus tour, you get to skip the stress of finding your way among the crowded subways and streets on your own.

New York City bus tours are designed to guarantee fun for the entire family.

In addition to saving hours of time, you get to enjoy panoramic views from the comfort of your bus.

Our top 16 bus tours for families will save you time, money – and your sanity, while exploring the best of the Big Apple.

1. Big Bus New York Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Enjoy hassle-free sightseeing in New York on this bus excursion with your family.

With your Big Bus ticket voucher, you get to avoid the stress of having to find your way.

Choose from multiple ticket options that enhance your experience.

You can go for more time, more routes, more attractions or more transport options.

Highlights include stops at SoHo, Greenwich Village, Lower Manhattan, Chinatown, Times Square and Central Park.

Redeem your voucher for a pass at any stop along the NYC route.

Simply show it to a staff member as you board the bus.

You may upgrade to include a sightseeing cruise or a night bus tour.

  • Start Time: Bus arrives every hour throughout the day
  • Duration: 1-2 hours
  • Departure Point: 5 stops

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2. New York in One Day Guided Sightseeing Tour

Explore the top attractions in New York on this combined tour by bus and boat.

Meet your guide and group in Midtown Manhattan to begin your tour.

Board a bus and ride through Times Square, passing by NBC Studios, Rockefeller Center, Radio City Music Hall and St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

Visit Wall Street, Federal Hall, 9/11 Memorial and South Street Seaport.

Listen to insider commentary from your guide.

After that, go on a harbour cruise via luxury boat.

You will enjoy great views of the Brooklyn Bridge, Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.

Back on land, wrap up this whirlwind tour with a visit to Central Park and the Lincoln Center.

  • Start Time: 9am or 10am
  • Duration: 6 hours
  • Departure Point: 770 7th Ave, New York, NY 10019, USA

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3. Best of Brooklyn Half-Day Food and Culture Tour, Bus & Walking Tour

Savor the hippest borough in New York City on this half-day food and culture tour of Brooklyn.

Experience the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of this cool area of the Big Apple.

Meet your local guide at Manhattan’s West Village and board a comfy coach to begin your tour.

Your friendly guide will take you to where the locals eat.

They will also provide commentary on the history and evolution of Brooklyn’s food culture.

Sample culinary hotspots and traditional ethnic eateries.

Satisfy your sweet tooth at DUMBO.

Snack on pieorgis and kielbasa at Greenpoint.

Finally, taste farm-to-fork freshness at the trendy Williamsburg.

  • Start Time: 11am
  • Duration: 4.5 hours
  • Departure Point: 301 6th Ave, New York, NY 10014, USA

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4. The Sopranos Sites Tour

Discover the world of Tony Soprano and his gang on this half-day tour.

The tour will have you exploring the filming locations featured in the hit HBO series “The Sopranos”.

Meet your friendly guide in Midtown Manhattan and get on board the coach to begin your tour.

For an extra fee, you can upgrade your bus seat to the front.

This guarantees that you won’t miss a thing.

Head over to New Jersey and tour over forty filming sites including Pizza Land, the Bada Bing Nightclub and many more.

Listen to entertaining commentary from your guide as you learn fun facts about the show and its production.

  • Start Time: 10am
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Departure Point: 530 7th Ave, New York, NY 10018, USA

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5. NYC Tour with Statue of Liberty Pedestal Access

Discover the iconic landmarks of New York City on this full-day guided tour.

Meet your guide at St. Patrick’s Cathedral to begin your tour.

Your skip-the-line access pass to the Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building Observatory will save you lots of time.

After that, you can explore Wall Street, Little Italy and Midtown Manhattan.

Your friendly guide will ensure that you see more of the city than you could on your own.

They will provide you with a valuable insider’s perspective of the locations visited.

  • Start Time: Weekends 9am
  • Duration: 5.5 hours
  • Departure Point: 5th Ave, New York, NY 10022, USA

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6. New York TV and Movie Tour

Explore the filming locations of popular movies and TV shows on this guided New York tour.

Meet your guide and group at Ellen’s Stardust Diner in Midtown New York to begin your tour.

The tour is led by a New York actor who’ll share fun trivia about films, TV shows and the Big Apple in general.

Board your climate-controlled bus that ensures you are comfy in any type of weather.

Let someone else worry about the navigation.

You may upgrade to a seat in the first 4 rows of the bus.

This ensures you won’t miss a thing along the way.

  • Start Time: 2pm
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Departure Point: 1650 Broadway, New York, NY 10019, USA

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7. NYC at Night Bus Tour

Explore New York City by night on this combined bus and walking tour.

Meet your guide at Midtown Manhattan to begin your tour.

Get on board the luxury tour bus and take a seat.

During the bus ride you will see charming neighborhoods in Manhattan lit up at night.

After that, you’ll stop for guided walking tours of Grand Central Terminal and the High Line.

Then, stop by the Chelsea Market for a bite to eat.

Your guide will narrate the history of the New York City.

They will also point out landmarks and celebrity homes along the way.

  • Start Time: 5:30pm
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Departure Point: 770 7th Ave, New York, NY 10019, USA

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8. Double Decker Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus and Times Square Dining Experience

Discover the very best of New York City on this double decker bus tour.

Over 3 days, this excursion will have you touring New York’s Uptown, Downtown and Brooklyn.

Visit Harlem, the Apollo Theater and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

See Central Park, Times Square and the Rockefeller Center.

Cross the Brooklyn Bridge to tour Battery Park among others.

With the flexible hop on hop off bus, you can experience the sights and sounds of New York City on a customizable tour.

Your expert tour guide will provide live commentary.

One delicious meal is included in this package.

  • Duration: 1 day, pass valid for 24 hours
  • Departure Points: 12 stops throughout the day

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9. New York City Luxury Bus Tour with Harbor Cruise and One World Observatory Admission

Enjoy the highlights of New York City on this combined bus and cruise tour.

Your tour will begin when you meet your guide and board a luxury bus.

The transportation enables you to experience the Big Apple in comfort and style.

Cruise through the soaring concrete canyons of Wall Street.

Next, head over to the 9/11 Memorial where you will capture some moving images.

Continue on to the chic avenues lining Central Park.

After that you will head over to the New York Harbor for a cruise.

From the water you will get to enjoy sweeping panoramas of the city skyline.

Your expert guide will also provide commentary along the way.

  • Start Time: Daily 11am
  • Duration: 6 hours
  • Departure Point: 119 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019, USA; Front of Le Parker Meridien Hotel

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10. NYC Harlem and Gospel Tour by Bus

Combine a sightseeing excursion and Gospel mass at Harlem on this guided tour.

Enjoy an insider’s scoop of Harlem’s thriving culture and history.

Your tour will begin in the morning when you meet up with your guide.

Explore the area’s religious side by attending mass at the famous St. John the Divine church.

Continue your tour at some of the unique local businesses and cultural institutions.

You will explore landmarks such as Sylvia’s soul food restaurant, the Apollo Theater and many more.

See graffiti celebrating African-American culture and visit the Malcolm X Mosque.

  • Start Time: Sunday 9am
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Departure Point: 324 W 47th St, New York, NY 10036, USA

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11. Washington DC Day Trip from New York

Washington tour from New York

Explore the top attractions of Washington in one day on this tour.

You will travel by luxury bus or van to the nation’s capital.

There you’ll enjoy panoramic sightseeing of key landmarks such as the White House, Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument.

You will also visit Arlington Cemetery and the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum.

Along the way your guide will provide educative commentary.

  • Start Time: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, & Saturday 6:30am
  • Duration: 11-13 hours
  • Departure Point: 330 W 42nd St, New York, NY 10036, USA

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12. 2-Day Niagara Falls Tour from New York by Bus

Explore the natural beauty of Niagara Falls on this 2-day bus tour from New York.

Your tour will begin at the Gray Line New York office where you’ll board your bus.

Enjoy a scenic drive with stops through upstate New York before arriving at the Falls.

See the Falls from both the Canadian and American sides.

You’ll also be provided accommodation for the night.

The next day, take a cruise on the famous Maid of the Mist boast for up-close views of the falls.

Conclude your trip with a stopover at the Crossings Premium Outlets for some shopping, before heading back to New York City.

  • Start Time: Monday, Thursday, & Saturday 6:30am
  • Duration: 2 days
  • Departure Point: 330 W 42nd St, New York, NY 10036, USA

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Also read:

For all new cities, I go overboard on my itinerary, just to see every major attraction. Countries I've visited include New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Cambodia, Japan and Thailand. Mostly Asian countries. Next target - Europe!