History School Trips School Trips To New York School Trips To Washington

From exploring the origins of Civil Rights in New York, to the political powerhouse of Washington DC with its many free museums and monuments, this trip is a fantastic way for GCSE and A level students to get a well-rounded view of different aspects of American history.

Combining these two great American cities, a history trip to New York and Washington allows insight into the country's vast historical and political past. Let our experts create this memorable school trip to New York and Washington for you.

If you're studying AQA's America, 1920-1973: Opportunity and Inequality take a look at this new itinerary to support your learning objectives. 

America, 1920-1973: Opportunity and Inequality Sample Itinerary


Tour Day 1

Daytime flight to New York and transfer to your accommodation

Tour Day 2

Walking tour of Midtown Manhattan including Central Park, Broadway and Times Square
Visit the UN Building for a guided tour followed by free time in Midtown Manhattan around Fifth Avenue to see a major shopping area

Tour Day 3

Walking tour of Downtown Manhattan including financial district (Wall Street, New York Stock Exchange, Battery Park)
Visit Ground Zero, 9/11 Memorial and Museum and then St Paul's Church, followed by Statue Cruise to Liberty & Ellis Islands

Tour Day 4

Transfer by coach to Washington DC. En-route guided visit around Gettysburg National Military Park

Tour Day 5

Guided walking tour of the historical sites and memorials including Lincoln Memorial, WW2 memorial and the Korean War Veterans memorial.
Free time to visit Arlington National Cemetery

Tour Day 6

Guided walking tour of the political sites focusing on the Capitol Buildings
Transfer to airport for overnight return flight to the UK

Tour Day 7

Arrive in UK

Curricular Links

A WST tour to New York & Washington can support the study of elements of the following exam board specifications.




Period studies: America, 1920–1973: Opportunity and inequality

Modern depth study: The USA, 1954–75: conflict at home and abroad

A level

  • The Making of a Superpower: USA, 1865–1975
  • The American Dream: Reality and Illusion, 1945–1980




Modern depth study: The USA, 1954–75: conflict at home and abroad

A level

  • In search of the American Dream: the USA, c1917–96
  • The USA, c1920–55: boom, bust and recovery
  • Civil rights and race relations in the USA, 1850–2009




Period study and non-British depth study

  • The USA 1919–1948: The People and the State
  • The USA 1945–1974: The People and the State

A level

  • Civil Rights in the USA 1865–1992



Higher - European and world: Part G: USA, 1918-1968

Advanced Higher - USA: ‘a house divided’, 1850–65



Non-British Study in Depth: The USA: A Nation of Contrasts, 1910-1931

Period Study. The Development of the USA, 1929-2002



AQA - A level

  • Government and politics of the USA


Edexcel - A level

  • Comparative Politics: Government and Politics of the USA


OCR - A level

  • Government and Politics of the USA



Higher - Political systems


WJEC - A level - Government and Politics of the USA

Study Visits


The National September 11 Memorial & Museum

This memorial is a tribute of remembrance and honour to the people killed in the terrorist attacks of 11th September 2001, located on the site where the twin towers stood. Within the actual footprints of the towers, now lie twin reflecting pools, the main feature of the memorial. Along the sides of the pools, the names of every person who died are inscribed into panels. 

The National September 11 Memorial Museum serves as the country's principal institution concerned with exploring the implications of the events of 9/11, documenting the impact of those events and exploring 9/11's continuing significance.

The 9/11 Tribute Center

Located close to the World Trade Center site and next to the  FDNY firehouse lies the Tribute WTC Center which offers a ‘person to person history’, giving students detailed information of the historic events and the people who experienced them. WST groups can have the memorable opportunity of taking a tour around the 9/11 Memorial with a Walking Tour Guide from the center, who are either survivors, workers in the recovery efforts, lower Manhattan residents, or family members who lost loved ones. These personal tours bring home the impact of the event to the students on a personal and wider level and also emphasise how life goes on. 

Walking Tour of Downtown Manhattan

During your school trip to New York, your guide on your Downtown walking tour will focus on the city’s political and economic history and take in famous sits such as Wall Street, the New York Stock Exchange and Battery Park. We believe in New York, the best way to get around and see a city is on foot and our guides are excellent.

Ellis Island Immigration Museum

This former immigration station complex on Ellis Island is now an interactive museum holding the history of 12 million immigrants who came to America through the golden door of Ellis Island. The exhibits in this museum include artefacts, photographs, prints, oral histories and much more. Visit the Island as part of a Statue of Liberty Cruise.

Museum Of American Finance

For students keen to know more about the Wall Street Crash and to also understand how finance impacts our daily lives then this museum is the place to go! As well as undertaking a museum tour with an expert guide, there are also 45-60 minute educational sessions available. These are run by museum educators and industry experts.

Radio City Music Hall

Another iconic building of New York and home to historic Film premieres. Once the largest indoor theatre in the world which became the building opposite the NBC Studios was turned into the Radio City Music Hall. Visit and enjoy a tour and even see the famous 'Rockettes.' 

The Tenement Museum

This modern museum shows the experiences of a host 19th and 20th century immigrants. There are different internal and external tours available to suit your group as they learn about specific individual or groups' experiences of immigrating to this neighbourhood.

The United Nations Building

During their New York school trip, students can enjoy a behind-the-scenes guided tour of the UN Building, the home of deliberation and decisions of peace, justice and economic and social well being.


Political Sites Walking Tour

Our excellent guides can accompany you on a half  day walk of Washington visiting  all the key buildings in American Politics. The key sites included are The George Washington Monument, Pennsylvania Avenue, The Mall and The US Capitol – including; the Senate, House of Representatives, Supreme Court and the Library of Congress. This is a fantastic introduction to 'influence', 'power' and the US 'Government.' 

Historical Sites & Monuments Walking Tour

This guided walking tour passes the Lincoln Memorial, FDR Memorial, WW2 Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial and Arlington Cemetery. We feel that a guided walking tour of the monuments and memorials of Washington tells a great story of the history of the USA from the civil war to today. 

Arlington Cemetery

This is the largest military graveyard in the world including graves from the Civil War and both World Wars. John F. Kennedy's grave is also here along with an eternal burning flame. The cemetery makes for an emotive but also inspiring visit for student groups.

US Holocaust Museum

This excellent museum offers students a memorable visit explaining the story of the Holocaust using film footage, artefacts and eye witness accounts. As well as portraying the story of the Holocaust, the museum addresses human genocide.

Lincoln Memorial Steps

The Lincoln Memorial Steps are popular as students love to say they have stood in the very place that Martin Luther King gave his famous ‘I Have a Dream’ speech in 1963. 

National Air And Space Museum

The National Air and Space Museum is part of the Smithsonian Institution which includes the largest collection of historic air and spacecraft in the world. The original Wright Brother’s ‘Spirit of St Louis’ flyer is a highlight along with the Apollo 11 command module. For groups studying the Cold War, this is a great visit as students can learn more about the Space Race.

The National Archives

Displaying the 'Bill of Rights', the 'Constitution' and the 'Declaration of Independence' students can explore the archives and visit the public vaults displaying original records and interactive exhibits.

National Museum Of American History

The National Museum of American History displays the heritage of the United States in the areas of social, political, cultural, scientific and military history. It is worth checking the museum's website for your New York school trip dates, as they often run a series of exhibitions based on a variety of subjects.

National Museum of African American History & Culture

This museum is a place where people can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience. The collection of stories there give unique insights into three key themes that  continue throughout the museum - history, culture and community of African Americans.    

The Pentagon

Groups can enjoy a one hour guided tour of the Pentagon, the world’s largest office buildings, walking 1 and a half miles. Home to many significant moments in American history the Pentagon 4 miles outside the centre of Washington and can be easily reached by Metro. To visit the Pentagon groups must apply directly to the British Embassy.

The White House

The White House is probably the most famous political building in the world. To enjoy a self guided tour of the White House during your New York school trip schools need to apply direct to the Embassy in Washington.

World Bank Visitor Center 

The Visitor Center showcases the World Bank Group’s efforts to end poverty and boost shared prosperity for the world’s poorest people. Guided tours can be arranged here and also a discussion with a World Bank Group expert on a specific subject matter, for example, economy, poverty, gender, private sector development.

Gettysburg National Military Park

The park can either be visited en route from New York or groups can take a coach out of Washington. This was the site of the bloodiest battle of the American Civil War. A battlefield guide will accompany you for a 2 hour coach tour taking you through the key points of the civil war and the importance of this battle. Groups will also visit the museum and visitor centre.

Cultural Visits


Midtown Manhattan Guided Walking Tours

As always the best way to get around and see a city is on foot, especially when looking at it from a historical perspective. A Midtown walking tour is the best way to see some of New York’s iconic sights in a very short time. You tour can include Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center, Fifth Avenue, 42nd street, Central Park and Times Square or can be tailored to suit your choices. 

Empire State Building

No visit to New York is complete without a visit to the top of New York’s most iconic skyscraper. 

Harbour Cruises

Get a close up view of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. You can choose from two options:

  • Liberty Cruise - A 1 hour cruise of the harbour.
  • Island Cruise - You can disembark at both Liberty Island and Ellis Island on this hop on hop off cruise.

Hershey's Chocolate World  

The Hershey’s Chocolate World Sweet Educational Tour is ready to show you a world you've never known. Set as A walking tour of the iconic Times Square location, this learning experience is about more than milk, sugar and cocoa. You'll learn more about Hershey’s iconic brands, why we decided to come to the crossroads of the World, Times Square, and of course taste several different Hershey’s products. Milton Hershey loved nothing more than to enrich the lives of others, and this tour plans to do just that!

Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum is an American military and maritime history museum with a collection of museum ships in New York City. It is located at Pier 86 at 46th Street in the Hell's Kitchen neighbourhood on the West Side of Manhattan. The museum showcases the aircraft carrier USS Intrepid, the submarine USS Growler, a Concorde SST, a Lockheed A-12 supersonic reconnaissance place and the Space Shuttle Enterprise.

Madison Square Garden All Access Tour

An insider’s look at this state of the art arena. You will explore the Knicks and Rangers locker rooms and relive historic moments with the new Garden 366 experience and Defining Moments exhibit.

NBC Studio Tour

Go behind the scenes of some of the most well-known TV shows. You will visit the NBC Sharp Globe Theatre, Broadcast Operations, the Make Up room, and even produce your very own news and weather programme. 

NFL Experience

Located in Times Square, this live attraction combines interactive games and a state of the art 4D theatre, bringing fans closer than ever to NFL Football (American Football).

Top Of The Rock

The observation desk at the top of the Rockefeller Center provides a unique 360 degree view of New York, including the Empire State Building.

One World Observatory 

The tallest observatory in the western hemisphere, located at the 9/11 memorial site, offering spectacular panoramic views of New York. The visit also includes numerous videos and multimedia experiences. There are 5 lifts including a sky pod elevator that ascends to the 102nd floor in under 60 seconds. You can choose from various cafés and restaurants. Visit lasts approx. 45 to 60 minutes.


The world’s preeminent spy museum and experience. You can explore the fascinating world of hacking and espionage, and discover your inner spy. Real spy challenges include lie-detection in interrogation booths, observation in surveillance missions, and agility in special ops laser tunnels. Their profiling system (developed with a former Head of Training at British Intelligence) will tell you what kind of spy you’d be. SPYSCAPE brings amazing spy artefacts and stories to life in a uniquely entertaining experience.

TV & Movie Sites Tours

Choose from a range of coach or walking tours around the city, taking in locations of well-known shows and movies, venues where the stars hang out and even see where your favourite celebrities live. Shows and movies include Friends, Seinfeld, Glee, The Devil Wears Prada, Spiderman, Elf, Hitch and many more. Themed tours include Sex and the City Hotspots, Central Park Movie Sites, Gossip Girl Sites and Sopranos Sites.

New York’s Most Popular Art Galleries:

  • The Metropolitan Museum
  • Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
  • The Guggenheim

Sporting Events

Subject to availability your group can attend a sporting event in and around the city. If you ask us early enough we can look at what is available with all the different New York teams for something to suit your budget.

Broadway Theatre Productions

Give your students an experience to remember by arranging a trip to a Broadway show. They’ll really go home with the ‘WOW’ factor. Current popular shows are Lion King, Wicked, Jersey Boys, Disney’s Aladdin, Chicago and Matilda.


A trip to New York is not complete without a trip to world famous shops and department stores:

  • Fifth Avenue: Some of New York’s best known shops can be found here including FAO Schwarz, Apple Store, Abercrombie & Fitch and Saks.
  • Bloomingdales: Located close to Fifth Avenue, a little brown bag from Bloomingdales is an iconic souvenir from a trip to New York.
  • Macy’s: The largest department store in New York, located on West 34th Street.
  • Century 21: A bargain hunters paradise, located close to Ground Zero.
  • South Street Seaport: This Lower Manhattan eastside shopping destination offers a distinct mix of shops, restaurants and cafés. 


We can arrange evening meals in restaurants in the city with options to suit all tastes. Our most popular choices are:

  • Planet Hollywood
  • Hard Rock Café
  • Bubba Gump Shrimp
  • Buca Di Bepo
  • Dave & Busters
  • B Smiths
  • Bowlmor – bowling and dining
  • Italian Restaurants
  • Chinese Restaurants 


Smithsonian Institute Museums And Galleries

The Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum and research complex, with 19 museums and galleries to choose from, along with the national zoological park. Most of which are located on or near to the National Mall. Most of the Smithsonian Institute Museums are free.

The Capitol Steps 

This Capitol Steps are an American political satire group. Originally formed in 1981 by senate staff, they perform every Friday and Saturday evening at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center. They dig into the headlines of the day, create song parodies and skits with their own special brand of humour. This show is more suitable for age 16+.

Crime & Punishment Museum

Described by Good Morning America as a "must see for CSI fans," this museum includes a crime lab and the filming studios for America's Most Wanted, a simulated shooting range, high-speed police-chase, and hundreds of interactives and artefacts.

Ford’s Theatre And Petersen House

Visit these two landmarks together, just across the street from one another. Ford’s Theatre, where Abraham Lincoln was shot, is a working theatre, historical monument and a world-class museum so is a must-see on your visit to Washington, DC. Petersen House is a plain red brick three-story and basement townhouse across from Ford’s Theatre is where the injured Lincoln was taken to after he was shot and where he died. The house is now a museum and recreates the interior of the house as it was at the time of Lincoln’s death. 

Mount Vernon

This is the most popular historic estate in America, and was home to Commander-in-Chief of American forces and the first President of the United States, George Washington for more than 40 years. Now, you can visit the Mansion, more than 10 original structures, Washington’s Tomb and almost 50 acres of his extensive estate.

National Spy Museum

This museum is the only one in the United States solely dedicated to espionage and the only one in the world which has given a global outlook on an all-but-invisible profession that has shaped history. Take a look inside the museum and see the largest collection of international espionage artefacts ever placed on public display.


The Newseum’s mission is ‘to help the public and the news media understand one another better.' The highlights here include the Berlin Wall Gallery which tells the story of how news and information helped topple a closed and oppressed society and the 9/11 Gallery, which chronicles the challenges journalists faced in reporting the news to the nation.  

Madame Tussauds

Take a day off for a leisure visit to Madame Tussauds and visit some of the most famous faces around. From music stars such as Rihanna and Beyoncé to political figures such as Benjamin Franklin and Hillary Clinton.

Shopping In Washington

The Washington DC area has a number of great neighbourhoods for shopping. Throughout the region you’ll find multiple locations of the large national retail stores such as Barnes and Noble, Best Buy, Bed Bath & Beyond, Gap, Old Navy, etc.


Georgetown is a popular Washington, DC neighbourhood for shopping. This shopping mecca appeals to the younger crowd but also has plenty of boutiques and antique stores for all ages.

Dupont Circle

The lively Washington, DC neighbourhood has an eclectic selection of bookstores, clothing boutiques, art galleries, gift shops and coffee shops. A few blocks away, along Connecticut Avenue, you'll find more traditional clothing stores.

Penn Quarter

This revitalised neighbourhood near the Verizon Center in downtown Washington, DC is bustling with activity among the new museums, contemporary restaurants and trendy shops.

Capitol Hill

You’ll find lots of upscale shopping at Union Station, the city’s train station and a shopping mall with more than 130 stores, several restaurants and a 9-screen movie theatre.

Potomac Mills

With over 100 stores and restaurants, Potomac Mills is a great place for everyone, with stores from Vans outlets to IKEA, Abercrombie and Fitch to Papaya, there really is something for everyone. Approx. 1 hours drive out of central Washington.


We can arrange evening meals in restaurants in the city with options to suit all tastes. Our most popular choices are:

  • Hard Rock Café
  • Buca di Beppo
  • The Fashion Center at Pentagon - Dining Dollars
  • Gordon Biersch Navy Yard
  • Ben's Chili Bowl

Carole Burrows is the most helpful person I have ever dealt with! Nothing was too much trouble for her and worked with me every step of the way to ensure an extremely successful trip! She is absolutely phenomenal and I will look forward to working with her again this year.
Bridgewater High School, New York

Carole's Expert Tip

The Staten Island Ferry is a great way to get up close to the Statue of Liberty for free. The ferry sails right by providing ample photo opportunities. Avoid rush hour when commuters will also be boarding the ferry, to ensure you get the best experience. 

Top tip from Carole, our New York & Washington Expert