Walking tours are a great way for kids to really get a feel for the history of an area
Exploring Black history sites is a great way to educate children on the history of African Americans in the United States. While some sites may be a little heavy for younger children, there are plenty of locations around the country that explain Black history in ways kids can understand. What is the best way to explore? Head out with an expert on a tour to get all the details. Here are some physical and virtual Black history tours that families can enjoy together.
United Street Tours: Black History Tours of Nashville
Nashville is known as the hometown of country music. But the city also has a deep African American history, including being the college hometown of Representative John Lewis. United Street Tours takes visitors on a 90-minute walking tour that explores the city’s involvement in the civil rights movement and the locations where history happened. Tickets are $99 for adults and $45 for children ages four and up.
Tampa History Center Central Avenue Tours
Take a trip back in time to explore the neighborhood where the segregated African American residents of Tampa, Florida, worked, played, and lived. The main street of this neighborhood, Central Avenue, had parks, cemeteries, churches, restaurants and even the first place where Ray Charles recorded his music. The Tampa Bay History Center offers two separate tours—one on the east side of the street and one on the west side. Tours last 90 minutes and are about one mile in length. Adult tickets are $20, and tickets for youths are $10.
National Museum of African American History & Culture Virtual Exhibit Tours
An in-person visit to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture is a must-do for anyone visiting Washington, D.C. For those unable to make it to the nation’s capital, the museum offers a free virtual view of some of its artifacts focused on Black history. Virtual visitors can view and read about items such as a pocket-sized version of the Emancipation Proclamation used by Union soldiers, the passport of writer and civil rights activist James Baldwin, a recording of the Fisk University Singers, and an exhibit on the place of religion in Black music and culture.
Charleston’s African American History and Heritage Tours
Its charming architecture and Southern charm make Charleston, South Carolina, a premier destination vacation spot. However, many visitors need to realize that the city was once the main entry point for almost 50% of enslaved people from Africa, giving it over 300 years of Black history that helped the city grow into what it is today. On the two-hour Charleston’s African American History and Heritage Tour, attendees will learn about the enslaved people who lived in a city setting and the impact of the civil rights movement. The tour will also visit historic Charleston’s Black history sites, including the Mother Emmanuel AME Church. Tickets for children ages 4-12 are $27, and for adults, $37.
Melanin Miami Tour
Beaches, mojitos, and Cuban sandwiches are all things people think about when they hear about Miami. But did you know that almost half of the over 350 men who signed Miami’s charter were African American? Miami’s Black history is vast and includes American and Caribbean influences. The 90-minute Melanin Miami walking tour explores Overtown, once referred to as the Harlem of the South. In addition to seeing historic sites, attendees will enjoy a soul food lunch. Adult tickets are $65, and tickets for children are $45.
Black Heritage Trail Tour
The location of the first shot fired in the Revolutionary War, Boston is also home to a lot of Black history. At the Boston African American National Historical Site, those ages eight and older are welcome to take a 90-minute walking tour of the Black Heritage Trail. The tour, offered during the summer, is free, but entrance fees to the site may apply.
Birthplace of Hip Hop Tour
Since its introduction in the 1970s, hip hop has become an important part of American culture. This three-hour Birthplace of Hip Hop Tour takes a bus through Harlem and the Bronx and lets attendees see where the first hip hop party was held and other significant locations in this musical gene. Children and senior tickets are $58, and adults are $79.99.
Black History River Tour
Known for its Mexican influences, San Antonio, Texas, also has a deep African American influence. The San Antonio African American Community Archive and Museum hosts 100-minute boat tours of the San Antonio River, pointing out historic locations. Tickets are $35 per person.