Circle Line is a longtime New York favorite for locals and tourists alike. The standard three-hour tour circles the island of ... More
Circle Line is a longtime New York favorite for locals and tourists alike. The standard three-hour tour circles the island of Manhattan through three rivers, under seven major bridges, and past a multitude of landmarks. Just seeing the Statue of Liberty from close-up is worth the fare. Several other tours are offered including a 'Semi-Circle Cruise' and a 'Harbor Lights Cruise.' The newest offering is 'The Beast,' a speedboat blasting around lower Manhattan.
I was not prepared for how much I liked the tour. The boat was nice and new. The guide gave so much New York information in such a pleasant and humorous way. We took the Harbor Lights Tour in July so we got to see the city during daylight hours as we headed out and by the time we returned it was dark (city lit up)!! Afterward, the info we learned on the cruise made the city so much more interesting.
We went on the three hour tour. What a horrible experience we had. The boat was old, the seats were uncomfortable, and the PA system was so bad that we couldn't understand the tour guide. People are packed on these boats so that contributed to our overall lousy experience. But there are other problems you should be prepared for if you pick to see NYC this way.
Once the boat starts looping around Manhattan, you'll quickly discover that for some sights, you picked the correct side of the boat to sit on but for other sights, you didn't....and you're pretty much stuck with no view. (Either you won't see the sight at all or you'll see very little of it.) You're not allowed to stand except in the very front of the boat and since all seats are taken, there's no running over to the other side with the view, either. Of course, the front area of the boat is open and allows for a perfect view of all sights but it has a very small capacity. Those who manage to quickly get to the front of the boat know they've got a great spot for seeing everything on both sides of the boat and looking up so they stay there for the entire boat ride. Everyone else is pretty much stuck with looking out just one side unless others leave their seats on the opposite side. Of course, if you switch, you might find you're now on the wrong side to see the next few sights. Grrr.......
The three hour boat ride was also WAY too long. We were bored after the first hour. The beginning of the ride is quite nice when you're near the Statue of Liberty and seeing the tall buildings of Manhattan but it's all down hill from there.The second hour has sights of mild interest; the third hour is absolute torture. It probably would have been slightly better if we could have heard and understood the tour guide at that point but that was impossible. Everyone was complaining and frustrated by this, too, but what can you do once they have your money and you're stuck on the boat? Additionally, not only are the boats old and run down, the food is expensive and lousy.
Skip this one. Instead, buy a ticket for the Gray Line sightseeing bus tour of NYC and get off at the stop for the Staten Island ferry if you want to see the Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island. We found the tour guides on their buses to be fun, informative, and completely intelligible! The buses stop at interesting places all over the city where you can either stay on the bus and listen to your tour guide some more as it continues to the next spot, or you can get off, take your time exploring that location on your own, and then walk back to the bus stop to catch the next bus whenever you're ready to see more. This is definitely the better way to see the sights and hear your guide. We had a blast!
It was a great way to learn a lot of history in a nice setting. The boats are old, but it's what you see and learn that are the great thing about this tour. We did the 3 hour around the island and would do it again the next time we are in NYC since there is no way we were able to get all of the information the guide was giving out.
We purchased the City Pass so a two hour tour was part of this package. I have to say this was probably the best part of our vacation. We took the two hour "Harbor Lights" tour on one of the most beautiful summer days New York will see this summer.
The tour started with tours around the lower 1/3 of Manhattan where we learned about many of the buildings in view, places to travel, and fun trivia. The last part of the tour consisted of a close up view of the Statue of Liberty while the sun was setting. This made for a wonderful view of the Lady.
I recommend this evening tour to anyone.
Anyone who goes to NYC almost has to do the 3 hour Circle Line Cruise. Its an experience you wont forget because it's such a great way to see the city. It gives you many interesting perspectives and beautiful views...
Its affordable, comfortable and has a covered roof in case weather conditions change. Its relaxing and there is a humorous guide giving you details on all that you see!
Its definately worth your time and money!
Take the 3 hour tour all the way around the island. Simply awesome. More information about NY than I could ever process. Great views. Dave, our narrator, was incredible. If you are visiting NYC as a tourist, this is an absolute must.
we took the tour on the last day of our week in new york and wished we'd done it on the first day. so many things pointed out to us, that we wished we had known about earlier, so we could have seen them close up. excellent commentary and value for money.
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