It’s not easy to decide how to spend your time in the Big Apple.
With so many things to see and do, where do you begin? This top-ten list of must-see New York City attractions is a good place to start.
The Statue of Liberty
The Statue of Liberty is one of the most popular of all New York attractions and no trip to the Big Apple is complete without a visit to this iconic structure.
The Statue of Liberty, officially called Liberty Enlightening the World, was constructed from bronze and was given to the United States by France in 1885 as a symbol of freedom and to mark the centenary of America’s Declaration of Independence.
Standing at Liberty Island, in the mouth of the Hudson River in the New York Harbor, it welcomes visitors as it once did for the thousands of immigrants who arrived in New York by boat. The Statue of Liberty has come to symbolize freedom, independence and American values and is an attraction not to be missed by anyone visiting New York.
Empire State Building
The Empire State Building is possibly the most famous skyscraper in the world and one of the greatest New York attractions. It’s been in numerous Hollywood blockbusters and a defining symbol of the city. It was opened on 1 May 1931 and is a must-see for any visitor to New York City – just ask any of the 10,000 to 20,000 people who visit the building every day.
The observatory, located on the 86th floor, 1,050 feet (320 meters) above the city’s busy streets, provides an unsurpassable view of New York City. It offers panoramic views from within a glass enclosed pavilion and from the surrounding open air promenade.
The building offers a variety of attractions for visitors; observatory tours 365 days per year, day and night, rain or shine provider breathtaking views of Manhattan and beyond. There are also, two restaurants, a sushi bar, three coffee shops, a drug store, a Hallmark card shop, a post office and two banks as well as the famous New York SKYRIDE virtual-reality movie theater and various art exhibits.
Times Square is not really a square, it’s more of a district, bordered by 6th Avenue and 9th Avenue and by 39th and 52nd Streets, and is one of the greatest New York attractions. Originally it was called Longacre Square, but in 1904, when the New York Times Company moved there, it took on the name we all know today. Shortly thereafter, in 1907, Times Square began its New Year’s Eve tradition, securing the area’s place in history.
Madison Square Gardens
New York City’s Madison Square Garden is sometimes called “The Most Famous Arena in the World“. It is a 20,000-seat arena located atop the city’s Pennsylvania Station on 7th Avenue between 31st and 33rd Streets. Built in 1968, the current arena is the fourth in a line of Madison Square Gardens; the facility is home to the New York Knicks and New York Liberty basketball teams and the New York Rangers hockey team. In addition, the arena hosts over 600 events per year, including concerts, conventions, award shows, the NBA draft, and the Ringling Bros Barnum Bailey Circus.
United Nations HQ
The United Nations Headquarters is located on an 18-acre site along the East River in New York City. Home to the international organization, The United Nations, the striking glass-fronted “Secretariat” building dominates the New York midtown skyline. The building, opened in 1951, was instantly popular with tourists and continues to be one of the most popular destinations in New York City.
American Museum of Natural History
Located on New York City’s upper west side, the American Museum of Natural history continues to be one of the world’s most important natural history collections and research facilities. It has attracted world-class research scientists throughout its history and today attracts a wide range of visitors from all walks of life. It is a delight for guests young and old, and the sheer volume of exhibits means there’s always something new to see.
Central Park is Manhattan’s back garden – in a city of high-rise apartments with a dense population, this 843-acre oasis is a place to take a walk, read a book, attend a concert, and much, much more. Over 25 million people visit the park each year, making it the most visited of any park in the United States. With four million trees, shrubs, and plants, representing 1500 species, Central Park has something to interest every visitor. In addition to the vast Great Lawn and other green spaces, the park boasts several artificial lakes, two ice-skating rinks, miles of hiking and bike trails, a zoo, a wildlife sanctuary and several children’s playparks.
Wall Street, a narrow street in lower Manhattan between Broadway and the East River, was the first permanent home of the New York Stock Exchange. It was also the one-time headquarters for all of the major banks and brokerage houses in the United States. While the brokerages have since moved to other parts of New York’s financial district, New Jersey, and Connecticut, the term, “Wall Street” is still synonymous with the US financial markets.
Probably one of the most recognizable landmarks in New York City, the Brooklyn Bridge is the oldest suspension bridge in the United States and at 6016-feet long, one of the longest too. When it opened in 1883, after being under construction for almost 14 years, it was the world’s longest suspension bridge. It spans over the East River and links New York’s Manhattan and Brooklyn districts.
Over the years, the traffic across the Brooklyn Bridge has included horses, trolleys, elevated trains, and streetcars as well as pedestrians and automobiles but these days just cars, cyclists, and pedestrians are permitted.
This beautiful and acoustically perfect concert hall, or more accurately, three concert halls, has been the host of over 50,000 events in its long history. Today it is completely restored and as beautiful as ever, Carnegie Hall welcomes visitors to three concert stages, a museum, and fascinating archives. In addition to watching performances, visitors to Carnegie Hall may tour the facility on guided tours, which include back stage, dressing rooms, and rehearsal halls.