All Turnstile Tours experiences are available for private groups. We have experience hosting everything from college classes to birthday parties to company outings, and we customize our tours to meet your group’s interests and needs. If you are locals looking for a fun afternoon with friends, working professionals looking to learn more about various industries, or a domestic or international tour operator organizing a group trip to New York City, we can help you find experiences to fit your itinerary. The section below is for private groups of adults and individuals. If you are interested in more specialized tours, click below to find more detailed information for:

K-12 StudentsAcademic & Professional Groups • Travel & Tourism Industry

Our central mission is to advance public knowledge about the meaning of place, connect people of diverse backgrounds, and inspire a culture of community participation through well-researched, engaging, and accessible tour experiences. Our guides are engaged in research and are assigned based on their relevant teaching experience and expertise and background in the subject matter. To learn more about our team, please click here.

• Click the tiles below for information on our tour programs •

BNYThe background includes a large atrium with railroad tracks running down the middle with large concrete walls with balconies on both sides of the atrium with a foreground that reads Brooklyn Army Terminal in white lettering.A metal food cart in the background with text that reads Food Cart Tours in white lettering in the foreground.Background includes a market that reads "Moore Street Market" with the words Immigrant Foodways in the foreground in white letteringBOAT


BROOKLYN NAVY YARD TOURS

Aerial perspective of the Brooklyn Navy Yard with industrial buildings and dry docks along Wallabout Bay. Manhattan is in the background.Turnstile Tours offers group tour packages and customized itineraries on behalf of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92 that range in theme from World War II and maritime history to sustainable architecture and 21st-century manufacturing practices. The 1-hour, 1.5-hour, and 2-hour tours highlighted below explore the 300-acre (126-hectare) historic Yard that is today a city-owned industrial park home to more than 330 businesses. Any of these tour programs can be adapted based on your interests and goals for one visit or multiple visits. Packages are also available and can include guided or self-guided explorations of the exhibits at BLDG 92, pre-ordered lunches, and customized half-day or full-day itineraries of Brooklyn (contact us for a proposal and pricing information).

Tour Programs:

A man holds up an image as he sits in front of an industrial crane and people smile as they look on⚓ Past, Present & Future Tour

For over 150 years, the Brooklyn Navy Yard churned out America’s most famous fighting Naval ships, from the USS Maine to the USS Missouri. Today, the Yard is a model for sustainable urban industrial parks and is home to over 330 industrial and creative businesses. This guided tour explores the vast 300-acre (126-hectare) property along Brooklyn’s industrial waterfront and offers opportunities to take a closer look at the Yard’s most intriguing sites, including a dry dock that’s been used for ship repair since 1851, historic buildings that are being adaptively reused for industrial purposes, and the Green Manufacturing Center, a future hub for the development of new products and technologies. Oral history clips and historical photographs from the site’s Naval past, as well as stories of industrial innovators at the Yard today, will also be included on this tour. While we’ll use a bus to get you from place to place, we will be getting off the bus at several locations throughout the Yard to take a closer look.

Wind turbines on top of an aluminum building🏢 Sustainable Architecture & Industry Tour

Explore the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s transition from one of the nation’s foremost naval shipbuilding facilities to a national leader for sustainable urban industrial parks. On this tour, you will learn about many of the yard’s green initiatives, including adaptive reuse of historic structures and materials, alternative energy projects, green infrastructure for managing storm water runoff, and sustainable practices in manufacturing employed by some of the Yard’s 330+ tenants. We will also discuss many of the major development projects currently underway at the Yard, which is undergoing its greatest period of investment and redevelopment since World War II. The tour will cover most of the massive 300-acre campus, including visits to the historic Dry Dock No. 1, built in 1851 and still in use for commercial ship repair, the nation’s first green multi-story industrial building, and the LEED Platinum-certified Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92.

USS Menges and USS Holder being repaired in dry dock 5 or 6, 1944🚢 World War II Tour

The Brooklyn Navy Yard played a pivotal role in World War II, building battleships and aircraft carriers, repairing over 5,000 ships, and sending troops and supplies to fronts across the globe. Not only did the Yard construct the USS Arizona a generation before the war, which was sunk at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, but it is also where the battleship Missouri was constructed, where the peace treaty ending the war was signed in 1945. Thanks to the efforts of its 70,000 workers, the Brooklyn Navy Yard became the world’s busiest shipyard, earning the nickname “The Can-Do Yard” for its ability to patch up wounded ships and put them back in action.

This tour examines the role of the New York City waterfront in the war effort, explores connections between the Yard and famous battles of World War II, and visits sites of significance that remain from this era, including the former ship assembly shops and the historic Dry Dock 1. Throughout the tour, we listen to clips of oral histories recorded with sailors and shipworkers who were at the Yard during the war, including from women working in industrial jobs, and from people of color, for whom the war presented both challenges and new opportunities. This tour aims to evoke a sense of what the Yard was like during the war – a place of tremendous energy, innovation, and achievement, but tempered by terrible loss. While we use a bus to get you from place to place, we provide opportunities for everyone to get off the bus at several stops for a closer look at historically significant sites.

🌻 Urban Ecology Tour

Discover the natural world in the midst a thriving urban industrial park on this 2-hour tour of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where we will explore New York City’s waterways, terrestrial ecosystems and urban farms. The highlight of the tour is the stunning 65,000-square-foot Brooklyn Grange rooftop farm, where we will learn how they produce thousands of pounds of vegetables annually – as well as honey and eggs – and are a national leader in the development of rooftop and urban farming techniques. From the rooftop, we’ll also have amazing views of the Yard, including an extensive green rooftop and one of the largest rooftop solar installations in New York City.

Descending to the bank of the East River, we will visit an oyster restoration project led by students from the New York Harbor School and will discuss the improving health of the city’s waterways, and the challenges that remain. We will also explore planned and unplanned natural landscapes of the Yard, including the landscape architecture surrounding BLDG 92, identifying native and exotic plant species along the way. Finally, we will visit New York City’s newest green space, the Brooklyn Greenway Initiative‘s Naval Cemetery Landscape, a meadow designed to restore the natural habitat, provide a space for environmental education, and commemorate the thousands of sailors, Marines, and others once interred at the site.

This tour will reveal that the natural world truly is all around us, even in the heart of the city.

A museum exhibit that includes a series of photographs and videos to the right and an exhibit case with commercial products to the left

⚓ Explore the Exhibits at the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92

BLDG 92 offers three floors of exhibits about the past, present, and future of the Yard. The galleries are open to the public Wednesday-Sunday, 12-6pm, and admission is always free. If you would like to incorporate a 1-hour guided tour of the exhibits into your visit to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, that can be arranged, subject to availability.

 

Brooklyn Navy Yard Tours are available for 1 hour, 1.5 hours, or 2 hours.

The tours are designed to be 2 hours in length, so only the full 2-hour tour will include all the sites and themes listed in the description. We are happy to discuss any modification to the tour in order to accommodate your desired itinerary.

All rates below include a knowledgeable and engaging guide from Turnstile Tours and a map of the site. Bus tours include a 32-passenger bus and driver provided by the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation, and bicycle tours include a bicycle safety sweep in addition to the tour guide.

All tours require a minimum of 15 participants or equivalent payment.

2-hour Tour (by bus or bicycle):

  • Standard Rate: $30 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $27 per person

1.5-hour Tour (by bus or bicycle): 

  • Standard Rate: $24 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $21.60 per person

1-hour Tour (by bus or bicycle): 

  • Standard Rate: $18 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $16 per person

1-Hour BLDG 92 Exhibit Tour at BLDG 92: Rates below include a knowledgeable and engaging guide from the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92 and an exhibit pamphlet.

  • Standard Rate for all groups: $5 per person (minimum of 10 people)

Customized Itineraries and Tour Packages: Please contact us for customized requests and quotes.

Groups that provide their own bus transportation will receive a discount. Private buses must provide proof of commercial vehicle insurance in order to enter the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

The Brooklyn Navy Yard covers 300 acres, so transportation by bus or bicycle is required to get around the site safely and efficiently. The Yard is a secure industrial park, and their is no public access except for Yard tenants, their guests, and tour participants accompanied by a guide.

Tours using BNYDC Bus:

All tours can be offered year-round using the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation’s 32-passenger bus for private group tours. The BNYDC bus is generally available during the following times (subject to availability):

  • Saturday-Sunday 10:30am-1pm
  • Monday-Tuesday 10:30am-3:30pm
  • Wednesday-Friday 2:30-3:30pm
  • These times apply during the academic year; more dates are available during summer months

Tours using Private Buses:

For groups of 33 or more people, or if the BNYDC bus is unavailable, Turnstile Tours can charter private buses seven days per week, subject to availability, but please note that pricing will differ based on charter rental fees. Groups may also provide their own bus transportation and will receive a discount on group rates. Private buses must provide proof of commercial vehicle insurance in order to enter the Brooklyn Navy Yard and be accompanied by a tour guide.

Tours by bicycle: 

All tours can be offered by bicycle only on Saturdays and Sundays during daylight hours. Groups must provide their own bicycles, and everyone must wear safety helmets in order to participate. Upon request, Turnstile Tours can arrange for bicycle rentals and safety gear with partner bicycle rental companies.

Private tours require a minimum of 15 participants, or equivalent payment. Tours that utilize the Brooklyn Navy Yard bus are restricted to 32 participants. We can accommodate larger groups, including coach buses.

For groups visiting the Brooklyn Navy Yard, we can arrange for catered lunch from nearby establishments in a private room, which can accommodate up to 60 guests.

Please contact us for information on menu options and pricing.

Click here to fill out an inquiry formwhich will help us to better serve your needs. We are usually able to respond to your inquiry within 2 business days.


BROOKLYN ARMY TERMINAL TOURS

Turnstile Tours, Brooklyn Army Terminal

Step inside an engineering marvel that is today a center of innovation and business development in New York City. Built to supply American forces on the Western Front in World War I, this enormous Cass Gilbert-designed complex served as a supply base for the American military until the Vietnam War. Today, this thriving industrial park is home to over 100 companies in a wide array of industries, from precision manufacturers to biotech researchers, online retailers to chocolatiers.

On this 2-hour walking tour, we will explore how millions of tons of war supplies and personnel were shipped through this teeming transportation hub, hear the stories of soldiers, longshoremen, and merchant mariners who worked these piers, rail yards, and warehouses, and learn how these facilities are put to use today. Looking at the broader context, this tour will discuss what made the Port of New York the envy of the world in the mid-20th century, why it went into decline, and how Brooklyn’s working waterfront is being revitalized today. Along the way, we will enjoy sweeping views of the harbor, visit the 600,000-square-foot unrestored space of Building A, and step inside the Terminal’s architectural gem – the breathtaking atrium of Building B, where freight trains once rumbled through to be loaded from the innovative cantilevered balconies. Join us to explore the sights and stories of a century of work at the Brooklyn Army Terminal!

Walking tours can be combined with lunch at the Terminal’s on-site restaurant, Pete’s Brooklyn Eats, or incorporated into full- or half-day itineraries examining history and industry along the Brooklyn waterfront.

Brooklyn Army Terminal walking tours are available for 1 hour, 1.5 hours, or 2 hours. The tour is designed to be 2 hours in length, so only the full 2-hour tour will include all the sites and themes listed in the description. We are happy to discuss any modification to the tour in order to accommodate your desired itinerary.

All rates below include a knowledgeable and engaging guide from Turnstile Tours and a map of the site. All tours require a minimum of 12 participants or equivalent payment. 2-hour Tour:

  • Standard Rate: $22 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $19.80 per person

1.5-hour Tour: 

  • Standard Rate: $19 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $17.10 per person

1-hour Tour: 

  • Standard Rate: $16 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $14.40 per person

Customized Itineraries and Tour Packages: Please contact us for customized requests and quotes.

All Brooklyn Army Terminal Tours are conducted on foot, though private groups that use coach buses may park on site, and some areas of the complex can be explored by by guided bus tour. Private buses must provide proof of commercial vehicle insurance and be accompanied by a tour guide in order to enter the Brooklyn Army Terminal. Tours are offered seven days a week during daylight hours, subject to availability.

Private tours require a minimum of 12 participants, or equivalent payment. Single tours are limited to 30 participants, but we can accommodate up to 60 guests with multiple guides.

For groups visiting the Brooklyn Army Terminal, there is a restaurant on site, Pete’s Brooklyn Eats, which offers delicious, affordable lunch options and can accommodate up to 60 guests in their dining room. Please contact us for information on menu options and pricing.

Click here to fill out an inquiry formwhich will help us to better serve your needs. We are usually able to respond to your inquiry within 2 business days, and you can always contact us for more information.


FOOD CART TOURS OF MANHATTAN

A woman wearing glasses in an apron and a young man next to her are both standing in front of a metal food cart on a busy street.Join us for this strolling lunch through Midtown or the Financial District to learn about the past and present of operating a street food business in New York City. While tasting the borough’s best street food at six different carts and trucks, you’ll taste cuisines ranging from Caribbean and Mexican to Bengali and Korean and learn about the vendors behind each of the recipes. But this is more than just a tasting tour – you will also learn the ins and outs of running one of these demanding small businesses, understand the complex regulations affecting the industry, learn about advocacy efforts led by the street vending community, and meet the vendors. This tour can be adapted to complement courses on a wide range of subjects, from immigration to business, regional and food studies, urban planning and public policy.

Food Cart walking tours are available for 1.5 hours or 2 hours. The tour is designed to be 2 hours in length, so only the full 2-hour tour will include all the tastings and themes listed in the description. We are happy to discuss any modification to the tour in order to accommodate your desired itinerary.

All rates below include a knowledgeable and engaging guide from Turnstile Tours, 5-6 tastings from different carts and trucks, a bottle of water, and a map of NYC food carts and trucks. All tours require a minimum of 6 participants or equivalent payment. 2-hour Tour (includes 5-6 tastings):

  • Standard Rate: $48 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $43.20 per person

1.5-hour Tour (includes 4 tastings): 

  • Standard Rate: $40 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $36 per person

Customized Itineraries and Tour Packages: Please contact us for customized requests and quotes.

All Food Cart Tours are conducted on foot. Tours are offered on weekdays during lunch hours (roughly 11:30am-4pm), subject to availability. Depending on the season or day of the week, we may recommend specific times for the tour in different neighborhoods in order to maximize the number and variety of tastings, and to minimize delays during busy lunch service times.

Private tours require a minimum of 6 participants, or equivalent payment. Single tours are limited to 16 participants, but we can accommodate up to 80 guests with multiple guides.

We work with more than 40 street different street vendors, and our menu varies based on the neighborhood, day of the week, and which vendors are out on the street on a given day. Tastings on your tour may include falafel and lamb off the bone, halal chicken and rice with tamarind sauce, Korean short ribs, Indian kati rolls, Greek souvlaki, Vietnamese sandwiches, Belgian waffles, and Mexican quesadillas, all prepared in these amazing curbside kitchens. We can also accommodate most dietary requirements, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free diets. Please contact us for information on menu options, accommodations, and requests.

Click here to fill out an inquiry formwhich will help us to better serve your needs. We are usually able to respond to your inquiry within 2 business days, and you can always contact us for more information.


IMMIGRANT FOODWAYS PUBLIC MARKET TOUR

Angelo and Holly hi-res

From farms to pushcarts to public markets, this 2-hour walking and tasting tour explores historical aspects of New York’s food system and the influence of Caribbean and Latin American cultures and cuisines on the past and present of Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Once known for its pickles and kosher meat, today the eastern section of Williamsburg serves up herbal tea remedies from Mexicosounds of salsa, and traditional ingredients. Based on more than 20 oral history interviews with neighborhood residents and local business owners, and on original archival research, this tour explores the history of Brooklyn’s “Avenue of Puerto Rico” and takes an in-depth look at the Moore Street Market, built in 1941 to mark the end of the pushcart era and today a centerpiece of the Spanish-speaking community. The tour includes 6-8 generous tastings from market vendors and local eateries.

The Moore Street Market Immigrant Foodways walking tour is 1 hour or 2 hours. We are happy to discuss any modification to the tour in order to accommodate your desired itinerary.

All rates below include a knowledgeable and engaging guide from Turnstile Tours, 6-8 tastings from different market vendors and local restaurants, a bottle of water, and a map of the neighborhood. All tours require a minimum of 8 participants or equivalent payment. 2-hour Tour (includes 6-8 tastings):

  • Standard Rate: $48 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $43.20 per person

1-hour Tour (includes 3 tastings):

  • Standard Rate: $30 per person
  • Non-profit & Educational Rate: $27 per person

Customized Itineraries and Tour Packages: Please contact us for customized requests and quotes.

All Immigrant Foodways Tours are conducted on foot. Tours are offered on weekdays during the market’s operating hours (10am-6pm), subject to availability. Depending on the season or day of the week, we may recommend specific times for the tour in order to maximize the number and variety of tastings.

Private tours require a minimum of 6 participants, or equivalent payment. Single tours are limited to 16 participants, but we can accommodate up to 48 guests with multiple guides.

Tastings on the tour may include (but are subject to change) morcilla sausagegreen bananas and onionsroasted pork and chickensancocho stewbatidos (Latin American hand-made beverages), plantainssorullos (corn fritters), tembleque, and tamarind juice. With advance notice, most dietary preferences or restrictions can be accommodated. Vegetarians can be easily accommodated, and while we strive to accommodate all dietary needs, visitors with a vegan diet may have a more limited menu, though we offer the same quantity of food. Please contact us for information on menu options, accommodations, and requests.

Click here to fill out an inquiry formwhich will help us to better serve your needs. We are usually able to respond to your inquiry within 2 business days, and you can always contact us for more information.


HARBOR TOURS

2-IMG_9101Step aboard the the beautiful vessels of Classic Harbor Line‘s fleet on intimate and informative tours narrated by guides from Turnstile Tours, exploring the historical forces that shaped New York Harbor’s working and industrial shoreline, and examining the resurgence of the city’s waterfront today as a major center of innovation, industry, and recreation. New York City is a city of island’s, and the waterfront has long been a major economic engine and cultural touchstone for New York City – there’s no better way to explore this dynamic landscape than from the water.

Our Brooklyn Waterfront Past & Present Tour is 2 hours, and the Fighting Ships & Working Waterfronts Tour is 2.5 hours. Custom tours are available for 1.5 hours and longer.

Please contact us for more information on charter rates.

Classic Harbor Line has a fleet of beautiful wooden motor yachts and sailing vessels, all designed and built by the Scarano Boat Yard in Albany, NY. Vessels range in side from the intimate 30-seat Kingstonto the regal Manhattan II, which can accommodate more than 100 guests. Tours depart either from the main Classic Harbor Line location in Chelsea Piers, Pier 62, or from Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 5.

Please contact us more information on charter rates and availability.


CUSTOM TOURS

Three women and two men who are all dressed in t-shirts and jeans stand in front of New York Harbor with the skyline of Manhattan in the background 🗽 If there is another topic, neighborhood, or historical period you would like to explore on a tour, the Turnstile Tours team is made up of knowledgable, experienced guides and researchers who can put together a custom experience for you.  Below is a listing of some of the subject areas in which we have special expertise:

  • Waterfront history and the maritime industry
  • Military history
  • Industrial history
  • Parks and public spaces
  • Industrial and factory tours
  • Food tours
  • Immigrant enclaves, past and present
  • Jewish history
  • Family history and genealogy tours