Secrets of Bryant Park: A Self-Guided Audio Tour

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Hear "the greatest public space on earth" come alive and learn its origin story on this self-guided audio tour. Experience the magic of GPS-playback on this immersive stroll through Bryant Park.

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  • Learn the history of 'the greatest public space on earth'
  • Hear from producer, Tom Darbyshire, founder of TellBetter Tours
  • Do it all in 75 minutes or linger at stops along the way with complete control
  • Get unlimited use of the tour before your booking date and after it
  • Use the virtual tour option at home


A stroll through a park and around a library might seem a bit dull but Bryant Park is packed to the gills with riveting stories. It hasn’t been dubbed “the greatest public space on earth” for nothing. And, while other tourists wander aimlessly, you’ll walk through time – marveling at true tales, meeting colorful characters and learning hidden secrets. This walking tour starts on Fountain Terrace next to the Josephine Shaw Lowell Memorial Fountain. There, you’ll be introduced to the small green space that’s less than the size of a single city block, yet attracts over twelve million visitors per year. As you make your way to the New York Public Library where our tour ends, I’ll show you the hidden escape hatch that leads from the library to the park. You’ll also see the Empire State building and hear about the night a B-25 Bomber crashed into it. Along the way, you’ll hear about the battle in which George Washington almost lost the Revolutionary War, and how Edgar Alan Poe used to walk around Reservoir Square before it became Bryant Park. In just over an hour, you’ll: • Gasp at Elijah Otis’ first demonstration of the ”elevator brake” at the historic Crystal Palace • Meet four generations of Astors: from the immigrant who rose out of poverty to the richest man to go down with the Titanic • Re-live the heart plummeting moment a woman fell 79-stories down an elevator shaft and survived! • Discover the most powerful force on earth at the ‘Fountain of Truth’ • Hear how NYC’s notorious ‘Needle Park’ became the most successful public space on the planet • Take in the Gertrude Stein statue as well as the William Cullen Bryant statue, and learn how they named the wrong park after him • Weep at the tragic tale of eccentric inventor Nikola Tesla, who fell madly in love with... a pigeon • Decode the hidden symbolism behind the library’s statues and ornaments • Learn how the library was born: a story of opium, cannabis and heartbreak • Greet the library's famous lions, and call them by their original names • Say “hullo” to the actual, original Winnie the Pooh, Piglet, Kanga, Eeyore and Tigger • Stand in awe at the scale of the Rose Reading room, perhaps America’s most inspiring interior, where knowledge is free to all • See where Ripley’s Believe It Or Not found all its unbelievable facts • Sit in the gorgeous periodicals room, at whose tables a visitor created the most successful magazine in history By the end of this Bryant Park tour, you’ll have heard new secrets and stories, all brought vividly to life with masterful storytelling, actors, sound effects and music. NOTE: The Library is free and open 10-6 Mon-Sat; 1-5 Sun; but closed on all major holidays.


Lifetime access to this tour in English VoiceMap app for Android and iOS Offline access to audio, maps, and geodata

Important Information

  • The tour uses a mobile app. You will need to download the app and then use the voucher code provided to download the tour It is a self-guided audio tour that you can start, pause, or restart at any time and complete at your own pace You can download the tour at any time, before or after your booking date. It is best to download the tour before you set off for the starting point When the download is complete, you will see a screen with a photo of the starting point and directions to it. The red start button will become active when you are at the starting point The tour follows a set route and includes turn-by-turn directions. It works best if you start it in the right place and follow the directions from one location to the next Please note that you'll need to use your own mobile device and headphones for this tour. The tour is only available in English.

Easy cancellation

Cancel up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund


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