Even if you're in Manhattan for a short trip, I enthusiastically recommend making time in your itinerary for a Broadway Up Close Tour.
I contacted Tim prior to my long weekend in Manhattan to volunteer for a charity event, and he bent over backwards to work a tour in for me with my crazy schedule and limited availability. Broadway Up Close has an excellent website where you can learn more about Tim and the BUC team, see photos from past tours, and read about what's offered.
You can't walk ten feet in Manhattan without encountering somebody offering a different city tour. What sets Tim's apart is that it is his own business, and he and the rest of the team of BUC treat those on the tour as valued guests and are clearly committed to making sure that they get the most from the experience. Tim, who led my tour, is also a working actor and part of the NYC theater community, and his passion for and inside knowledge of the industry are clearly reflected in his presentation. He is gracious and enthusiastic about answering questions and has a wealth of information on the business and history of Broadway theater.
Both theater novices and those with backgrounds and serious interest in Broadway alike will enjoy this tour; those with an interest in architecture and NYC history and culture will also find it very interesting. I thought I was knowledgeable on the subject of Broadway theater history and I learned a lot from Tim. The ghost stories and local legends concerning some of the old theaters are especially fun!
The route of the Broadway Up Close Walking Tour takes you around the historic theaters of the "Broadway Box" theater district and Times Square/Shubert Alley area. The pace is relaxed as there is so much to see and talk about, and should be manageable even for those with limited mobility. It takes about two hours, though mine ran a little over because of the many questions we asked. Afterward you even get a photo so that you can share this cool adventure with your friends - perfect for Facebook.
If you are fortunate enough to enjoy a Broadway show during your stay, or see one on tour, it will be an even richer experience after Tim's talk. It is a tremendous value for an unforgettable experience and I have already highly recommended BUC to my friends and colleagues.