Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA): Chinatown Walking Tour: From Coffeehouses to Banquet Halls

Chinatown Walking Tour: From Coffeehouses to Banquet Halls

New York, United States

Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA)

Non-profit organization

1.5 hours
From$31 USDper person

The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) aims to preserve and present the history, heritage, culture, and diverse experiences of people of Chinese descent in the United States.

Tour Highlights

  • Uncover nearly two centuries of Chinese American history in New York through the lens of food while supporting the preservation of Chinese American culture and history.
  • Explore the evolution and diversity of Chinese restaurants in New York City’s Chinatown.
  • Examine the impact of immigration patterns on the city’s Chinese food scene, and learn how it has changed through the decades.

Revenue is invested in subsidizing museum visits for students from Title I schools across the tri-state area.

Tour Details

  • Frequency


  • Start Time

    1 PM

  • Duration

    1.5 hours

  • Good For

    Adults, Families, Youth, Professionals

  • Languages

    English, Mandarin

  • Tour Participants

    1 to 8

  • Difficulty

    Easy (short walking distances, low or no physical effort)

  • Volunteer Opportunities


Tour Description

Discover the history of Chinese food in New York City on a walking tour of Chinatown’s restaurants. Embark on an exciting journey through 180 years of Chinese American history. Trace the evolution of eateries in Chinatown, from the bachelor society coffeehouses of the late 1800s to the chop suey restaurants of the 1940s to today’s restaurants dishing up the latest culinary specialties. Follow stories of diversity—the flavors of China’s regional cuisines converging in New York City; stories of legacy—Chinatown’s sons and daughters who grow up to be entrepreneurs and restaurateurs; and stories of evolution—a constant weaving between the classic and modern, the old and the new.

Tour Start Address

Museum of Chinese in America, 215 Centre Street, New York, New York, United States

How To Get There

Take subway lines N, Q, R, W, J, Z, or 6 to Canal Street, or buses M9, M15, or M103.

More About Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA)


To engage audiences in an ongoing and historical dialogue, in which people of all backgrounds are able to see American history though a critical perspective, to reflect on their own experiences, and to make meaningful connections between: the past and the present, the global and the local, themselves and others.

Main Programs

  • Walking tours

  • Educational tours

  • Quarterly Family Festivals (Mid-Autumn Moon, Lunar New Year, Family Treasures, Dragon Boat)

  • MOCACREATE drop-in arts & crafts for families (1st and 3rd Saturdays)

  • Adult public programs (film screenings, curator talks, book launches, food tastings, music & theater performances, history programs, etc…)

Awards & Recognition

Smithsonian Magazine
Wall Street Journal
New York Times
Conde Nast Traveler
Cool Culture