Washington DC African-American Heritage Evening Walking Tour


Free cancellation

A full refund will apply if you cancel more than 24 hours before the activity start time.

Duration2 hours
Guide LanguageEnglish
Good To KnowE-voucher
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African-American heritage and community are woven into the fabric of Washington DC—and this walking tour provides an in-depth cultural and historical education. Set off on foot from U Street—once known as the “Black Broadway”—and see the venues where musicians like Duke Ellington once played. From there, venture to other local highlights, from Ben’s Chili Bowl and the Howard Theatre to the streets of Little Ethiopia.


See the African American Civil War Memorial & Museum, U Street, and more
Learn all about Washington DC’s African-American history and community
Exploring on foot lets you soak up the city's atmosphere
Your guide will share insider stories and pointers as you go


Experience during a 2-hour evening tour with a local tour guide, the nightlife of the neighborhood that was dubbed “Black Broadway”, the U Street known for its role in the African-American jazz scene, where theaters and clubs hosted Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, Pearl Bailey, Sarah Vaughn, and Jelly Roll Morton and many more.
WHILE MOST VISITORS FLOCK TO Ben’s Chili Bowl on U Street for its signature half-smoke sausage, the beloved Washington, D.C., landmark also boasts a spectacular mural that celebrates notable Black Americans.
The mural has been changed multiple times since it appeared in 2012, and previously featured a large, smiling Bill Cosby, Barack Obama, Donnie Simpson, and Chuck Brown. That portion of the mural was removed after allegations against Cosby, who was a famous frequent visitor to Ben’s Chili Bowl, came to light. For a short period of time in 2017, the mural featured a tribute to the Washington Wizards in time for the NBA playoffs. Then, later in 2017, local artist Aniekan Udofia painted the mural that stands there today.
The first memorial dedicated solely to the Black troops who fought for the Union.
WHEN THE REBEL STATES REFUSED to rejoin the Union early in the American Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation and created a number of regiments in the Union Army and Navy filled with Black soldiers. This memorial in Washington, D. C. honors those units, who faced particular viciousness from the opposing army and discrimination from within their own.
More than 200,000 Black Americans filled the 175 regiments of the United States Colored Troops (USCT), comprising approximately one-tenth of the Union’s forces. It was largely through the persistence of the Black American community that Union policy on Black military service changed. Eventually, the 180,000 Black soldiers who served, including the 98,500 formerly enslaved men, provided a crucial service to the Union Army. Their names, and those of their white are inscribed on the Wall of Honor.
Throughout the decades, Black music stars have performed at this historic hub for music and the arts.
THE HOWARD THEATRE, KNOWN AS the first Black theater in America, was founded in 1910 in the Shaw neighborhood of Washington, D.C., which surrounds Howard University. It was founded to create a space for Black men and women to be entertained since they weren’t allowed into the other venues in the city at the time. Its inception was revolutionary and would go on to attract a range of Black musicians from Louis Armstrong to Kendrick Lamar.
Before the Howard Theatre gained its national reputation, it was known locally for its amateur open-mic style events and its battle of the band style contests. Prior to the Chicago jazz era and the Harlem Renaissance, the Howard Theatre was at the heart of musical exploration.


Licensed Tour Guide


Food and drink

Additional Information

  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Public transportation options are available nearby
  • Transportation options are wheelchair accessible
  • Travelers should have at least a moderate level of physical fitness

Guide Languages

  • English

Cancellation Policy

  • A full refund will apply if you cancel more than 24 hours before the activity start time.

  • No refund is possible if you cancel less than 24 hours before the activity start time.