Even Detroit’s long-time residents can miss a few nooks and crannies, so whether you’ve been here awhile or are just starting to explore the winding streets around town… there are more than a few tours that can show you around. We tried to make the list as comprehensive as possible, so if you know of another tour be sure to give us a shout.
Located squarely on Woodward Avenue in the heart of Downtown, their tours usually run Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. They cover everything from the history to the latest developments, to where the best restaurants and bars are. Truly an insider’s view of the city. But the best thing about it? They’re free!
2. Detroit Historical Society Tours
Clearly for the history buffs. DHS offers behind the scenes tours of this city’s cultural and historical gems– Max M. Fisher Music Hall, Mt. Elliott Cemetery, Detroit Lions Training Facility, etc. They also do a special tour featuring historic houses of worship, detailing the faith-based organizations contributions to the community.
Walking, Bus, Boat
3. Detroit Tour Connections
Tours here are flexible– whether you’re part of a large or small group, or even want to meet up with a walking tour that’s held every Sunday through September. Tours are led by born and bred Detroit native Bob Goldsmith, who’s held tours for visitors from over 12 countries.
Offering strolling dinner tours, and highlights of monuments and memorials, they say “Detroit is more than a place… it’s an experience.” They also offer a family reunion package for Detroit expatriates out there.
5. Feet on the Street Tours
All about walkability, right? There’s plenty of that, but luckily they have tour buses that pick up from West Bloomfield and Oak Park. Their next planned tour will feature historic homes, cultural centers, and even an art gallery in a former precinct.
6. Fox Theater Tours
Just like it sounds. Check out a literally behind-the-scenes tour of the stage and auditorium, admire the beautifully restored architecture, and learn about the legendary acts that performed on stage, like Frank Sinatra and the Radio City Christmas Show.
7. GM Renaissance Center Tours
Did you know the Ren Cen has its own movie theater? How about a Pure Detroit Store? A CVS? We know, this place is kind of like a maze. Get to learn the ins and outs of the building (and maybe catch a movie…) on its tour.
If you go on the Ren Cen tour, you can leave right from there. Leaving right from the 100 tower, you can either segway with a group or tour on your own. Detroit residents get a discount of $5 off segway rentals and $7.50 off the tours.
9. The Night Move
Party bus! They do shuttles to all major sports games in the city, but they’re available for private rentals too. What makes it better? These guys are green-friendly. In partnership with Greening of Detroit, 1 tree is planted for every hour of service they provide.
10. Preservation Wayne Walking Tours
Every Saturday at 10 am there are two tours– the first encompasses the cultural center and meets at the Detroit Public Library main branch. The second meets at Avalon Bakery and is all about Midtown– from being known as Ribbons Farms, to skid row, to today’s up and coming urban neighborhood.
11. Rickshaw Detroit
Calling themselves, “Detroit’s premier pedicab company,” you can kick back and take it all in while your tour guides will bike you through the city.
12. Show Me Detroit Tours
Get chauffeured around the city with a myriad of different tours– they’re offered daily at 10 am and 2 pm, and custom made for special interests. They’ll even pick up at suburban or hotel sites.
13. Detroit Bus Company
They make a loop around greater downtown– and it’s just $5 for unlimited rides. Check out some of Detroit’s best bars and stop by Comerica Park to catch a game.
These weekend tours are about two hours long, but they cover a lot of ground downtown, one of the highlights being their Riverwalk tour.
15. Detroit Princess River Tour
See Detroit from the water! Cruises are usually 2 to 3 hours long, and they stretch all the way from Hart Plaza to the Ambassador Bridge, past Belle Isle and back.
16. Diamond Jack’s River Tours
Stop by Rivard Plaza downtown or Bishop Park in Wyandotte to purchase your ticket. They set sail Thursdays – Sundays at 1 and 3:30pm for 2 hour narrated tours.
17. Experience Detroit
This website is a great resource to plan your own self-guided tour of the city.
Walking, Biking, Driving
18. Motor City Brew Tours
Learn all about brewing and prohibition history in Detroit, and sample the city’s breweries.
Bus, Bike, Walking
19. Ford Field Tours
Walk up tours get you behind the scenes of the home of the Detroit Lions. Get a look at a Ford Field suite, an NFL locker room, and the field itself.
20. Detroit Masonic Temple
See first hand the largest Masonic Temple in the world. Tours are available daily between 10:30 and 4:40 pm
21. Wheelhouse Detroit
A variety of subjects for a variety of stamina levels here. Bike around with Wheelhouse and learn about Detroit architecture, public art, our automotive heritage and more.
22. First Congregational Church of Detroit
See the wonderful Byzantine architecture and community house designed by Albert Kahn and learn about how their history as one of the forerunners in anti-slavery activism. To set up a tour you can call at (313) 831-4080 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Walking
23. Doug Samsal’s Pro Service
If you’re looking for a guide to fishing on the Detroit river, look no further.
24. Michigan Millenium Metro Tours
Multilingual guides available for attractions tour, casino connections, and visitor guides to pep rallies at major sports games.
25. Detroit Tours
Straightforward as it sounds. A comprehensive look at the city’s must-sees, and a delve into Detroit’s rise, fall, and renewal. Book at least 48 hours in advance.
Walking, Public Transit, Bus, Charter Available
No need to worry about finding a parking spot downtown here. See Detroit via bicycle taxi!
28. Hometown History Tours
Get your hometown history in the civil war remembrance and Underground Railroad tours, and learn about the art scene springing up in Detroit today on the Breakfast & Tiffany’s artsy Midtown walking tour
29. Michigan Modern Tours
For the design minded out there– Michigan Modern covers some of Detroit’s most stunning architecture: Mies Van de Rohe, Minoru Yamasaki and more.
Walking, Driving, Bike