Below are frequently asked questions for individuals visiting the Tenement Museum.

Didn’t find the information you needed in our FAQs? See our Plan A Visit page or email us.

Planning A Visit

The Tenement Museum is a National Historic Landmark. Unlike many museums, our exhibits are not contained within glass vitrines or surrounded by velvet ropes. Please help us preserve this landmark by adhering to the following rules for the duration of a visit:

  • While children under the age of 12 are welcome inside our Shop, Visitor Center, and Theater, they are not allowed on tours inside the historic buildings, and should schedule a visit to the museum by taking Meet Victoria: 1916, an outdoor walking tour, or virtual tour.
  • CDC-recommended face coverings are required for all visitors and staff at all times while in the Visitor Center and on building tours.
  • Large bags, backpacks, or luggage are not permitted inside 97 Orchard Street. If you have large bags, they can be stored in lockers in the Visitor Center. Please allow enough time to store your bags before the tour.
  • Eating, gum-chewing, and drinking are not permitted inside 97 Orchard Street or 103 Orchard Street. Bottled water may be consumed during your tour.
  • Cell phones, and other electronic devices should be turned to silent prior to the start of your tour.
  • Please stay with your educator at all times. In the case of an emergency, your educator call for a staff member to escort you out of the building.
  • Please do not touch walls, objects, or other areas of the building unless invited to do so by our educators.

We recommend purchasing tickets in advance through our website or call center (Open from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm Monday-Saturday) at 1-877-975-3786. Tickets are also sold at the Museum Shop and Visitor Center on a first-come, first-served basis. Tickets for visitors using a wheelchair or walker must be reserved through our call center at 1-877-975-3786.

Many of our tours sell out, so advance ticket purchase is strongly recommended, especially during weekends and holiday seasons, if you are visiting with a group of 5 or more, or you are on a tight schedule.

Yes. The website lists the number of tickets available for each tour. If it states “Tickets available at the museum on a first-come, first-serve basis” then the tour is only available for sale onsite in the Museum Shop and Visitor Center on the day of the tour.

We recognize the diverse needs of our audience and are committed to enabling all visitors to explore the shared American experiences we interpret at the Museum. View a complete list of our accessible programs and services on our accessibility page.

The Tenement Museum is partially air-conditioned. The following spaces/programs are air-conditioned: the Cultural Crossroads, Finding Home, and the Hard Times: 1880s tours; as well as the Museum Shop, Visitor Center, and theater. Other areas of the buildings are cooled using fans. All visitors are permitted to drink bottled water on their tour to stay cool.

Tickets are non-refundable or exchangeable. Visitor Center staff can catch up visitors to most tours up to 30 minutes after the start time.

Per Museum policy, tours with less than 2 visitors may be canceled. In the event of a tour cancellation, a visitor will be offered the next available tour or refunded in full.

The Museum does not have any eating facilities. Water and select soft drinks are available for sale in our Museum Shop located at 103 Orchard Street and there are water fountains on the lower level. The Lower East Side is also home to a number of excellent restaurants. Feel free to ask Visitor Center staff for suggestions when you come for your tour.

The Tenement Museum does not offer onsite parking. Metered street parking is available, but limited. Please allow a lot of additional time to find parking if you require it. The nearest parking lot is Essex Street Municipal Parking, located at 109 Essex St, New York, NY 10002.

Choosing A Tour

Yes, the Tenement Museum is accessible by guided tours and experiences only. Reservations are recommended for all tours.

Tours begin and end at the Museum Shop and Visitor Center, located at 103 Orchard Street, on the corner of Delancey Street.

Most tours are between one and two hours long. If you’d like to take more than one tour in a day, we recommend combining a building tour with a neighborhood walking tour and leaving 15 minutes between scheduled tours. You can contact our call center for assistance at 1-877-975-3786. Additionally, we have one of the most popular book/gift shops in NYC, so leave yourself time to browse and shop!

Information for Families

While children under the age of 12 are welcome inside our Shop, Visitor Center, and Theater, they are not permitted on building tours.

Instead, we encourage families to take one of our outdoor walking tours, virtual tours, or reserve a spot for our very interactive program, Meet Victoria: 1916, which is a great experience for families with younger children. 

Please note: All visitors over the age of 12 attending tours inside the Tenement Museum’s historic buildings will need to show proof of full vaccination upon arrival.