A “Downtown Experience” with My Teen Son by Robin Gorman Newman

My son, Seth, 15, and I had been fans of THE RIDE for years.  We were regulars when he was younger and did NYC staycations during holiday time.  It was always a thrill to take THE RIDE at  night especially and experience the city in its luminous glory, including the striking holiday store windows.

When we heard of THE DOWNTOWN EXPERIENCE, we eagerly jumped onboard.  And, it was as exciting in a different way.

We don’t get downtown as often as midtown, so that in itself presented an opportunity.

But, aside from all that we loved about THE RIDE, THE DOWNTOWN EXPERIENCE, Powered by THE RIDE. has added a new dimension…it is an historic touring adventure of Downtown Manhattan enhanced by the magic of TimeLooper Virtual Reality.

It is this country’s first sightseeing tour to immerse its riders in a fully integrated virtual experience that allows you to witness full-scale, 360-degree reenactments of NYC’s most iconic events.  Each rider is given Virtual Reality goggles and is instructed to wear them during specific parts of the trip.  My son, the techie, found it highly intriguing.  There are also small screens on the bus where you can watch moderated videos pertaining to the tour.

In addition to the bus featuring a live tour moderator, there was a guitar playing singer who kicked things off.  And, at one point during the trip, there was a street performer rapping in the street, specifically for THE DOWNTOWN EXPERIENCE.  This is what the original THE RIDE is known for….but in that case, they have street performers sprinkled throughout the city, and there is comedic banter on the bus between two moderators, in addition to contests and giveaways.

(Street Performer…rapper)

Like THE RIDE, you sit stadium style, so that you are looking out the full length of the bus windows for a panoramic view.  THE DOWNTOWN EXPERIENCE, which runs about 75 minutes, includes views of Manhattan’s most vital landmarks and neighborhoods; South Street Seaport, Brooklyn Bridge, Governor’s Island, Battery Park, New York Harbor plus Ellis Island and the Statute of Liberty, Battery Park City, 9/11 Memorial, One World Trade Center & One World Observatory, China Town, Wall Street, Federal Hall, NY’s Towers of Finance, Park Row, The Fulton Center, The Municipal Building, Trinity Churchyard, the Museum of the American Indian, Shrine to Elizabeth Seton, the Jewish Museum, New York Harbor, the Charging Bull, the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, Castle Clinton, an urban garden and more.

As expected, we had a good time!

Visit ExperiencetheRide.com, and use code RIDE15OFF to save on tickets.

We will be back!!!



Note: We were provided with press tickets, but our opinions are our own.