My family of four took a walking tour of Detroit last month. It was fun and educational. If you come to Detroit, here’s why you should take a walk, too.
More than bad headlines
Before the Detroit Youth Choir rocked it’s way to 2nd place on America’s Got Talent this year, you didn’t hear many good things about Detroit.
Poverty. Corruption. Crime. The usual inner city stuff.
But I know that Detroit used to be a thriving city, that it’s trying to make a comeback, and I know there’s more to the story than crime and despair.
Not growing up around here, though, that’s about all I knew. I needed specifics!
So my family of four booked the “See the D” walking tour with City Tour Detroit. We went with this company because of their excellent Tripadvisor reviews and Saturday morning tour offering that fit our schedule.
We met our fabulous tour guide, Nancy, at Hart Plaza near the Detroit River.
She enveloped us and the rest of our group in enthusiasm as we headed out on our 2 1/2 hour walking trip.
We saw and learned about The Fist. (Hint, it’s about Joe Louis).
Then there was the Spirit of Detroit:
I loved learning about Detroit’s architectural jewels. Chicago gets all the press for its amazing buildings, but Detroit has some gems, too!
Take the Guardian Building. It has an amazing mural inside highlighting Michigan’s industries such as manufacturing, farming and mining. Native American themes and beautiful tile work are common inside and out. Wirt Rowland was the architect (that doesn’t mean a lot to me, but I guess some architecture buffs go crazy about that!).
We walked all over downtown, stopping in Campus Martius, a fun gathering spot for young and old.
We rode the People Mover (like Disney’s monorail) and saw the original K-Mart, Singer Sewing factory and Vernor’s Soda fountain. (After the tour we returned to American and Lafayette Coney Islands to taste the coney dogs and see which one we liked better. The decision was split in our family.)
We ended at GM World Headquarters, called the Renaissance Center, which spits out right onto Detroit’s River Walk.
It was a reasonably priced tour that was entertaining and educational. It definitely puts Detroit in a shining spotlight and I encourage you to put it on your must-do list should you ever come to the Motor City!