Preservation Detroit Tour Prgram

 Our award-winning tours share our rich architectural and cultural history with residents and visitors to the Detroit region. Through the passion of our knowledgeable volunteer tour guides, you’ll feel a renewed love and interest for our city. You’ll be amazed and inspired! And it’s not just beautiful buildings. You’ll see how adaptive reuse of historic architecture attracts people and jobs to our neighborhoods, while being more eco-friendly.



 As the city’s oldest preservation organization, we pride ourselves on the depth and historical accuracy of our tours. We also firmly believe in the power of Detroit’s stories to help historical preservation. Our guides are engaging, knowledgeable, and dedicated to showcasing the fascinating in every neighborhood, building, and person in Detroit’s rich history. For more info and to purchase tickets, click on the images below.


$15 Members, seniors and students: advance purchase online only

$18 Non-Members: advance purchase and day of (cash only, please)


If you have a group of 15-20 people and want to take one of our tours on Saturday morning at 10am, the price will be $12 per person. Please contact Mickey Lyons at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more info and to make your reservation!


Purchase a tour pass and take all 4 of the regular Saturday morning tours we offer: Downtown, Midtown, Cultural Center and Eastern Market! Cost for members is $40, non-members is $48. Please contact Mickey Lyons atThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more info.



Our award-winning walking tour of Downtown Detroit! Explore the plan for the city from the ground up. Way up! Historic high-rises, towering monuments, grand boulevards, parks and plazas are all part of this groundbreaking tour. Spanning over 300 years of Detroit history, see Detroit gems from streetscape to skyline. 


On the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of the month, we explore Midtown, home to dramatic changes in recent years. Set on Detroit’s original ribbon farms, this dynamic neighborhood became an upscale enclave for Detroit’s movers and shakers! See some of the city’s most cherished historic homes and avant-garde businesses. Transformed from “Piety Hill” to “Skid Row” to today’s vibrant urban neighborhood, Midtown is full of distinctly Detroit stories. 


On the 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month, we highlight the monumental gathering spaces of Detroit. The vision for Detroit’s Cultural Center began more than 100 years ago and has continued to evolve through decades. Uncover the stories behind Detroit’s great cultural institutions, like the magnificent murals and sculpture of the Detroit Public Library, as well as the Ferry Street neighborhood, its people, and their magnificent homes.



Experience the sights, sounds and smells of America’s oldest and largest outdoor farmers market. From woodlands to cemeteries, railroads to prisons, breweries to rum-running and crime, find out what makes Eastern Market so fascinating and learn about the exciting plans for its future.



Info about our weekly walking tours:

We request that groups of more than 6 purchase advance tickets. Advance ticket purchases are available through the afternoon the Friday before the tour. Onsite ticket purchases are cash only. Tickets may be refunded up to 7 days prior to the date of a tour; after that, tickets are not refundable. All tours take place rain or shine, and are about 2 to 2.5 hours long. Please arrive 15 minutes before the start of the tour.


Detroit Bikes! Tours on Two Wheels


Preservation Detroit has teamed up with Detroit Bikes! (the group, not the company) to offer bike tours in Detroit. Rides range from 14 to 24 miles, and can last up to 3 hours. Attendees do not need to RSVP or pre-register. We ask for a $5 suggested donation but members of Preservation Detroit can ride for free. If you have questions, please contact us using this Follow the Detroit Bikes group page on Facebook for the most up-to-date information.


Summer 2019: Art Deco and Modernism Ride | date, time and start location TBA – We will be exploring some of the better and lesser known Art Deco and Modern gems in the city of Detroit. More info will be available soon.


Saturday October 19 at 10am: Detroit Ghost Signs Ride | Start location TBD | please arrive by 9:45am – This is a very relaxed pace, meandering ride, in which we seek out those faded, sometimes painted over, scarred relics of our City’s past. We’ll ride through some of our City’s secondary streets, through the alleys, and wherever our curiosity takes us! Check out the Facebook event for more info.


Saturday November 9 at 9am: Java Junket XIII | Start location TBD | please arrive by 8:45am – We will be visiting some of Detroit’s lesser and better known coffee stops and shops and check out the surrounding historic neighborhoods along the way. Independent coffee shops have historically opened out of the need to foster community and activate vacant spaces within neighborhoods. You’ll see some great examples of smart adaptive reuse of existing structures. 


Info about our bike tours:

All tours take place rain or shine. In cases of inclement weather, visit the link listed for the ride for more info. Please arrive 15 minutes before the start of the ride. For safety and liability reasons, we ask that you wear a helmet. We also suggest that you bring a spare tube, just in case! 




The Detroit Movie Palaces Theatre Tour | 2019 date to be announced Spring 2019


Don’t miss one of Michigan’s most unique and popular walking tours. Join us for a wonderful day of behind-the-scenes tours at Detroit’s legendary movie palaces. Past tours have included the Fox, the Gem, the Detroit Opera House, and the Michigan Theatre, among other legendary movie houses. This is one of Preservation Detroit’s most anticipated tours. The Theatre Tour sells out every year!