Going to the United Nations for a tour is almost the equivalent of going leaving the country although not to worry, you won't need your passport. You will pass through security and need to present proper ID and once you pass through the gates you will no longer be in the United States (though technically you still are).
Once through security, make your way across the courtyard to the main building where your tour will begin. As you do, make sure to check out the amazing sculptures. They are not only beautiful to look at but incredibly symbolic. Great conversation starters to get your kids, family, or friends buzzing.
Make sure you check in at the tour desk and when they call your time meet your guide. Most of the guides are of international stock and our guide was a super metro Serbian guy who was very informative.-thank G-d his accent wasn't too difficult to understand. As you are led through you will notice more incredible art and artifacts that were gifts from various nations. We loved the mosaic of the Norman Rockwell painting The Golden Rule that shows folks from around the world and the phrase "Do unto others as you would have others do unto you".
As you move through the building you will pass by the Security Council meeting room and if you are lucky like we were, you may get to sit in for a few moments on a General Assembly meeting. Very cool.
Our guide did a great job of highlighting the costs (and not just monetary) of war and conflict and it just made me think of the words of Rodney King..."Can't we all just get along?".
We learned of the effects of the atomic bomb on Japanese civilians and other horrific episodes and how life for so many around the world could be improved if we spent less on weapons and more on aid. Now there's a concept to wrap you head around....but only in a perfect world.
Let's hope these folks can put their heads together and come up with some solutions-although it all hasn't been too fruitful in the past, it's still pretty cool to see it all in action. We highly recommend you check it out as well.