Use of public transportation (subway, ferry). Walking up to 8 miles throughout the day.
Tick Tock Diner in hotel.
We’ll head straight out this morning to take best advantage of our time on Liberty and Ellis Islands where we will explore both islands at our own pace to see and do what interests each of most. We’ll begin by boarding the ferry to Liberty Island. Liberty Island features a wonderful state of the art museum dedicated to the statue. It is not to be missed. Additionally, you may choose to stroll around the island while listening to the included audio guide or join up with a NPS Ranger. The Statue of Liberty was an amazing gift to the people of America from the people of France — our oldest ally — celebrating freedom and democracy. We’ve seen this national monument in countless movies and TV shows and may even take it for granted, but at its unveiling on the Fourth of July 1884, it was the biggest event in the country. Years later, these words of poet Emma Lazarus were added: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” With the opening of the new museum, our tickets do not include entry into the pedestal or the statue. If this is something you would like to do, these tickets may be arranged separately, in advance of the program and at your own cost via the NPS exclusive ticket seller: www.statuecruises.com. Note: Choosing to arrange this for yourself will require a great deal more time on Liberty Island and will necessarily reduce your time on Ellis Island.
We’ll have vouchers for lunch at the Statue of Liberty cafeteria on Liberty Island.
Next, it’s on to Ellis Island. From 1892 when the immigration station opened until it closed in 1954, more than 12 million people coming to America passed through Ellis Island. This was their “golden door” to new lives. Today, the descendants of these immigrants make up almost half of all Americans. The Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration tells the story of where people came from and what their experience was like. Many went first from Ellis Island to the Lower East Side of Manhattan, at one time the most densely populated neighborhood on earth. The museum includes numerous exhibits, an included audio guide, NPS Ranger-led walks, a documentary film and the family research center where you may choose to look up the historical documents that pertain to your family’s history through Ellis Island. We’ll reconvene with our Group Leader mid-afternoon for a stroll through the Financial District, the oldest inhabited part of the island. A subway ride will take us to Little Italy for dinner.
At a restaurant in Little Italy, we’ll order plated meals from a select menu with beverages choices of soda, coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.
Before we return to the hotel, we’ll have some independent time in this iconic neighborhood. When people came from other countries, they brought their language, customs, and favorite foods. You might like to taste some authentic Italian gelato.