Corktown is Popping!

Tour Highlights

  • Explore the city’s best-kept secret: the distinctly Irish flavor of Detroit’s oldest neighborhood.
  • Drool over Corktown’s best pubs and grubs, including a stop at the oh-so-official Detroit Institute of Bagels.
  • Grab yourself a bit of the ole Irish luck at the Gaelic League.
  • Take in the “ruin chic” aesthetic at the abandoned Michigan Central Railroad Station.
  • Check out the home of the former Tiger Stadium in Ernie Harwell Park, a true Detroit landmark.

Explore Detroit’s Oldest Neighborhood

Discover what makes Corktown pop on this epic tour chock-full of the best historic landmarks and local haunts. Explore the diverse sites of this Irish enclave, from the awesome modern-era “ruins” of Michigan Central Station to the colorful Victorian homes, and learn why everyone is coming to Corktown these days. Along the way, find out where to go for some of Detroit’s best brews, BBQs, burgers, bagels, and more!

Language: English

Inclusions: Local English-speaking guide, half-pint of draft beer or complimentary soft drink

Exclusions: Food and additional drinks, souvenirs and items of a personal nature, tips and gratuities for your guide

Schedule details

  • Duration: Two hours
  • Meeting point: Outside of 2163 Michigan Ave., Detroit where Mercury Burger & Bar is located. View Location on What3words.
  • Starting time: 1 p.m.
  • Ending point: Gaelic League, 2068 Michigan Ave
  • Chevron down Full Itinerary
  • Strap on your walking shoes for what’s sure to be the most epic tour of Detroit’s historic Corktown this side of Michigan Avenue.

    We start on a block that has been key to Corktown’s revival, where BBQ, burgers, coffee, and craft cocktails beckon crowds of hungry and thirsty Detroiters.

    From here, you take in the contrasting views of Detroit’s highs and lows. We walk toward the massive Michigan Central Railroad Station, left for ruin and a symbol of the decline of Detroit. We get a good look at this hulking structure, which has been ranked as one of the must-see abandoned buildings in the world.

    To contrast that, we continue our Detroit walking tour past the charming, colorful Victorian houses of residential Corktown. This is Detroit’s oldest neighborhood, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Your guide points out some local faves, like a charming Irish tavern, an indie record store, a great deli, and a popular new brewpub. We also hear about the new microbrewery, start-up hub, and technology center that are helping to define Corktown as the neighborhood to know. Along the way, your local guide points out an early 19th-century church that’s one of oldest churches in Detroit.

    By this point, you’ve probably worked up an appetite for a visit to the new Detroit Institute of Bagels — yes, it’s as official as it sounds, and for you bagel snobs out there (we see you, New York), they take traditional bagel-making seriously.

    Start your seventh-inning stretch as we return to Michigan Avenue for a mile-long stroll past The Greening of Detroit office (and learn a little about their tree-planting and beautification efforts), and to Ernie Harwell Park, the gone-but-not-forgotten former home of the Detroit Tigers. This was the home field for baseball greats like Ty Cobb, Hank Greenberg, and Al Kaline, and it’s where Nelson Mandela spoke shortly after his release from prison in South Africa. We make sure to stop by Detroit Athletic Co., which started as a humble peanut stand and has grown to provide the best selection of sports swag.

    Along our Corktown tour, you hear about the local funky spot for live music and art shows and a favorite shop where you can get a Coney dog without having to go to Coney Island. Your local guide also points out where to get some crazy-good shawarma sandwiches that Detroiters absolutely love, as well as epic burgers, wine, and charcuterie.

    Our colorful Detroit tour ends at a pot of gold in the Gaelic League Irish-American Club of Detroit. You may be a wee bit thirsty by the time we arrive, so we’ve got you covered with a complimentary half-pint.

    After the tour has officially ended, you’re free to stay at the Gaelic League for more beer or some Irish whiskey, or maybe you want to visit the tasting room at Two James Distillery or visit Batch Brewing Co., Brew Detroit, or one of the other great bars in Corktown. If all those foodie spots we passed have your stomach rumbling, your guide can point the way. Just ask them for a recap of the local lunch-and-a-pint haunts that make Corktown pop!

    Additional information

    Dress standard: Please wear shoes that allow you to comfortably walk a couple of miles. Please also consider a hat and/or sunscreen on sunny days, bring a jacket on cooler days, and an umbrella if it’s calling for rain.

    Your trip: For your Urban Adventure, you are in a small group of a maximum of 12 people.

    Confirmation of booking: If you have your voucher, your booking is confirmed. See you at the meeting point. But please get in touch with us via the e-mail address or the phone number on your voucher if you have any questions or if you need any additional information.

    Child policy: This is a child-friendly tour. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 inclusively are permitted on this tour at the rate listed above. Please select “child” when booking. Children under the age of 6 are permitted to join this tour free of charge. Please inform us at the time of booking if are bringing a child under the age of 6. You can do so in the special request box on the checkout page.

    Local contact

    Office phone number: + 1 313 701 1900
    Email address: [email protected]

  • Chevron down Reviews
  • Mrs. Suzanne Y. from USA traveled on 08 Jul 2018:

    We took the tour on July 4th so many of the places on the tour were not open. Our guide told us this in advance and offered to refund or reschedule but we declined. However he did buy us a beer at the end of the tour. Our guide (Bob) was knowledgeable. We moved along pretty quickly, I would have liked a slower pace with more opportunity to ask questions we needed to move along to get done at the scheduled time. Have recommended the tour already and would do another Urban Adventure.

    Mrs. ulrika k. from Sweden traveled on 07 Jun 2018:

    Great tour, very interesting!

    Ms. GAIL W. from USA traveled on 11 Sep 2017:

    Tour guide Bruce was informative and fun. He lives in the neighborhood so knew firsthand about Corktown. Beyond the interesting homes and architecture we saw resale shops, bars and restaurants. I’ll be back!

    Mr. Todd R. from USA traveled on 06 May 2017:

    Bob in Detroit was excellent

    Ms. Sandra S. from USA traveled on 25 May 2016:

    Bob did a great job. It was fun walking through the neighborhood and going to the local hot spots (we didn’t even know existed).