Washington, Philadelphia & New York School Tour


Immerse yourself in America’s political and cultural history with this city-hopping adventure to Washington D.C, Philadelphia and New York City. First stop? The nation’s capital. Often described as a living classroom ‒  D.C. is home to an extensive catalogue of memorials, museums, and important political buildings, sure to whet any budding historian’s appetite. Next stop: Philly! The first UNESCO World Heritage City in the USA, a visit to Philadelphia is often overlooked for other major cities, but the former capital boasts many historical strings to its bow. Finally, enjoy some time in the Big Apple! Beyond the glitz and glamour of Broadway and Times Square, N.Y.C has a host of historical gems waiting to be explored.

Things to see & do

  • National Archives Tour, Washington D.C

    The star attractions at the National Archives and Records Administration are, of course, the nation’s original founding documents: the Declaration of Independence, the U.S Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Among these historical highlights, however, you’ll find an extensive display of photographs, documents, and interactive exhibits, including one of four surviving originals of the 1297 Magna Carta, as well as records that give a glimpse into Federal investigations such as the Watergate scandal and Lincoln assassination.

  • Bureau of Engraving & Printing, Washington D.C

    Show me the money! They will, at the Bureau of Engraving & Printing, where paper money has been printed, since 1914. Discover the process of making money (literally!), as you watch millions of dollars cycle through state-of-the-art machinery, as they are printed, cut, counted and inspected. 


  • Smithsonian Museums, Washington D.C

    The Smithsonian is a 19-strong complex of galleries and museums, as well as 9 research centres, and the National Zoological Park. Among the most popular spot to visit is the fascinating National Museum of Natural History, but the real beauty of the Smithsonian is that all galleries and museums are free. This means you can enter and re-enter those that intrigue you the most, as often as you like!

  • Capitol Visitors Centre, Washington D.C

    Arguably the most iconic building in the city, the U.S. Capitol is where visitors go to see politics in action. Guided tours begin with a short intro film, followed by stops in the impressive Rotunda, the Crypt, and the National Statuary Hall. The architecture and interior design here is beautiful, and we highly recommend getting a gallery pass to watch congressmen and women debate their way through the very important job of making the nation’s laws.

  • Library of Congress, Washington D.C

    Founded in 1800, the world’s largest library comprises three buildings and houses over 160 million books, manuscripts, sheet music, maps, photos, and recordings. The pièce de résistance is the Thomas Jefferson Building, the oldest of the three libraries and a true feast for the eye. The lavishly sculpted edifice is richly adorned with marble columns, painted ceilings, mosaics, and curving marble stairways.

  • Arlington National Cemetery, Washington D.C

    Simple, yet sombre, Arlington is the final resting place for more than 400,000 people, including veterans of every American war since the Revolution. Literary figures and presidents are also buried in the 624-acre cemetery, which sits on high hills overlooking the capital. Make time to visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and John F. Kennedy’s gravesite, which is marked by an eternal flame.

  • Independence National Historical Park, Philadelphia

    Independence National Historical Park spans 55 acres and encompasses a plethora of Philadelphia’s famous historical landmarks. Among the highlights, you’ll find the Liberty Bell Center, the UNESCO-listed Independence Hall, Congress Hall, and the Benjamin Franklin Museum.

  • Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia

    You can’t leave Philly without a trip to the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, made famous by Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky. Snap a picture with the Rocky statue at the bottom before ascending the grand stairway (humming the Rocky theme tune is optional), and recreating the famous two-arms-in-the-air victory salute.

  • Liberty Bell, Philadelphia

    The Liberty Bell, America’s symbol of freedom and independence, is a must-visit for any American history enthusiast. Once you enter the visitor’s centre, you will see an exhibit detailing the history of the Bell before taking a look at the bronze, 2,000lb Bell itself.

  • Congress Hall, Philadelphia

    Formerly the Philadelphia County Courthouse, Congress Hall is where the first legislators met when the city was the nation’s capital, from 1790 to 1800. Several historic happenings made it famous, including the establishment of the First Bank of the United States, as well as the inauguration of the second president, John Adams.

  • The Statue of Liberty, New York City

    Unveiled in 1886, Lady Liberty was a beacon of hope to millions of immigrants as they entered New York Harbor. These days, millions of tourists head here to take in some of the best views of NYC’s skyline and learn more about its history.

  • Ellis Island, New York City

    Ellis Island was the American gateway for immigrants between 1892 and 1954. A visit here is not just fascinating, it’s moving, too. Numerous galleries containing artefacts, photographs, and recorded accounts allow visitors to fully understand the experience these 12 million migrants had.

  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, New York City

    Get up, close and personal with the truly awesome collection of maritime and military artefacts on display at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Visitors can explore the WWII aircraft carrier, USS Intrepid, which survived five kamikaze attacks and one torpedo strike. The famed Concorde jet and guided-missile submarine, Growler, are on show here, too, as is the Enterprise space shuttle. Interactive exhibits, simulators and a 4-D film experience, ensure students fully get to grips with this fantastic history and science experience.

  • Brooklyn Bridge, New York City

    The colossal Brooklyn Bridge stands majestically over New York City’s East River, connecting the two boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Officially opened in 1883, it has become one of the city’s most iconic landmarks. Crossing its wooden walkway, above the roaring NYC traffic, allows you to fully appreciate this colossal construction and take in fabulous views of the Manhattan skyline.

  • Freedom Tower, New York City

    A visit to the Freedom Tower, also known as the One World Trade Center, now tops the bucket lists of many a New York visitor. Shortly after the September 11th attacks, a plan was put in place to build a complex of towers, memorials and a museum to commemorate and celebrate those who lost their lives. The complex’s main building, Freedom Tower, boasts SkyPod Elevators, which climb 102 stories in 47 seconds, to the One World Observatory.

  • Empire State Building, New York City

    What better way to get acquainted with the Big Apple, than a visit to one of its most famous landmarks, the Empire State Building. The open-air observation deck on its 86th floor comes complete with 360 degree views of the city. Sixteen floors above, the newly opened 102nd Floor indoor observatory, features floor to ceiling glass windows, and offers unobstructed views of the city and beyond, from an eye-watering height of 1,250 feet.

Sample Itinerary

Day 1
Flight from Dublin to Washington
  • Arrival in Washington
  • Transfer to the hotel
  • Dinner and overnight
Day 2
  • Washington half-day guided sightseeing tour by coach
  • National Archives tour
  • Bureau of Engraving & Printing
  • Smithsonian Museums
  • Dinner and overnight
Day 3
Washington Capitol & Supreme Court
  • Washington Capitol Visitors Center and Tour
  • Supreme Court visit
  • Library of Congress tour
    Arlington National Cemetery
  • Dinner and overnight
Day 4
  • Depart for Philadelphia
  • Tour Independence National Historical Park
  • Art Museum Steps – known as the “Rocky Steps” as a result of the scene from the film Rocky
  • Liberty Bell and Congress Hall
  • Dinner and overnight
Day 5
New York
  • Depart for New York
  • Sightseeing tour by coach
  • Dinner
  • Broadway Show
  • Overnight
Day 6
New York
  • Liberty statue & Ellis Island
  • Afternoon free time for leisure and sightseeing
  • Return flight to Dublin
Contact Us

Republic of Ireland
01 240 1753

Northern Ireland
02890 449665

Why Choose Topflight?

  • 30 years experience

    Our Managing Director, Marco Piccoli has worked in student group travel for 30 years and is as passionate about delivering the best possible experience to his many long term and repeat clients More →

  • A name you can trust

    Marco joined forces with the esteemed Mr. Tony Collins almost 20 years ago, and Topflight for Schools has gone from strength to strength More →

  • Unparalleled service levels

    We pride ourselves on our excellent customer service, which to us means having a thorough knowledge of our inventory, first hand experience of our products and helping you, our valued clients to make the choice of resort/trip that best suits your group’s needs. More →

  • We tailor every package

    We are experts in our field and can tailor make any of our itineraries to best suit our clients’ needs. We offer excellent value and exceptional service. More →

  • We support you at every step

    From our excellent and knowledgable Sales Team to our highly competent Operations Team, we are with you from the first moment of contact. More →

  • We put safety first

    We are dedicated to student safety and assess each component of a tour individually. All air, sea and land safety provided as part of a tour complies with regulations set down by the appropriate regulatory body. More →