New York offers no shortage of things to see and do, from postcard-worthy landmarks and museums to iconic entertainment venues. Avoid lines by prebooking tickets for top attractions like Guggenheim Museum, Top of the Rock and Edge for a seamless NYC vacation experience. Numerous flights to New York are now available through Cathay Pacific so accessing the attractions is very simple.
Avoid traffic and public transit stress with an interactive bus tour or sightseeing cruise!
1. Statue of Liberty
The Statue of Liberty is an iconic work of art that stands as a monument of freedom and democracy, drawing more than 4 million visitors each year to New York City. Before you visit, be sure to read up on its history and significance – doing so will deepen your appreciation of this iconic landmark.
The statue’s skin is constructed of copper. At first it had a dark brown hue but over time began oxidizing into its current sea green hue.
Explore Liberty Island by boat and admire its views from beneath the Statue of Liberty’s base. Plus, tour its pedestal or even climb to its crown (though this requires prior reservations).
After you’ve had enough of admiring the Statue, head over to Ellis Island in New York Harbor in order to connect with your own family’s heritage and learn more about America’s immigrant experience. Be sure to also explore top NYC museums like Metropolitan Museum of Art and Guggenheim!
Even non-shoppers will enjoy taking a walk down Fifth Avenue, lined with high-end stores and breathtaking Beaux Arts buildings. For something more natural, check out Central Park; an iconic borough landmark with sprawling lawns and blooming gardens as well as lakes, Belvedere Castle (home of New York Public Library), and Belvedere Castle which houses it.
2. Times Square
Times Square is one of New York City’s main tourist spots, known for Broadway shows, shopping and its vibrant atmosphere. Dubbed “The Crossroads of the World,” Times Square sits where Broadway meets Seventh Avenue at 42nd Street – home to numerous historic theaters, restaurants and state-of-the-art flagship stores like Sephora, H&M GAP & Krispy Kreme.
One of the most iconic landmarks in this vibrant area is the New York Times Building, home of an annual New Year’s Eve celebration where an illuminated Waterford crystal ball drops at midnight and is lit with 32,256 LED lights for illumination. Furthermore, this building also houses one of the world’s largest clocks known as Big Ben.
Times Square bustles with visitors all day, but at night it really comes alive when shops stay open until midnight and the iconic Washington Square Arch lights up with colors. While you’ll likely find typical tourist souvenirs here, for something truly unique or special visit Hershey’s World and M&M’s World to find customized treats or merchandise from TV shows or movies you love!
If you’re up for an adventure, walk along the High Line – an elevated freight rail converted into an urban park that offers stunning views of New York’s skyline and features outdoor art installations. Additionally, visit the iconic USS Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum housed on an aircraft carrier for even more amazing sights!
3. Empire State Building
Empire State Building, one of the world’s most iconic skyscrapers, should be on any New York visitors’ itinerary. Dubbed as “The Crossroads of the World”, its constant buzz is always captivating travelers – bewitching passersby with massive billboards and neon signs, as well as offering incredible views over Manhattan – from Brooklyn Bridge and Central Park! It offers something special for everyone visiting this iconic landmark!
Empire State Building opens its doors at 8 am each morning, and visitors may experience lengthy lines at peak times to access its observation decks. To beat this crowds and avoid long wait times, pre-book your tickets online or arrive first thing on weekday morning or early weekend morning for best results. Alternatively, pre-book NY Skyride, an interactive motion simulator tour through some of Manhattan’s iconic sites located within Empire State Building itself.
Following its recent renovation of its second and 80th floor exhibit spaces, the Empire State Building now provides an interactive experience combining history, pop culture and glamour with NYC’s most spectacular views. There are special exhibits highlighting Hollywood ties of this landmark building as well as galleries dedicated to King Kong and other celebrities who have visited its many floors.
The Empire State Building features one of the finest panoramic views in all of Manhattan from its 102nd-floor observation deck, offering some of the best panoramas available anywhere in town on clear days – you may even be able to spot as many as five states from here! Furthermore, this iconic structure can often be seen appearing prominently in movies and TV shows due to its stunning appearance and iconic status.
4. The Metropolitan Museum of Art
If you appreciate art, there’s no better place than New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art – better known as “the Met”. One of the world’s premier museums, it features over two million works dating back 5,000 years spanning paintings, sculptures, textiles and photographs from all corners of the globe. Prebook a skip-the-line ticket ahead of time and save yourself valuable time at this popular attraction!
Third Avenue in midtown Manhattan offers an enthralling promenade of luxurious stores and iconic buildings that is an absolute delight to stroll down. Be sure to see Grand Central Terminal, a Beaux Arts building that once served as both subway station and train terminal; marvel at its statues and statuary; or just admire its beautiful Grand Staircase!
Culture lovers will find great delight at the Met, where galleries feature ancient Greek and Roman artwork. Visit the main Greek and Roman showroom, with its two-story Ionic columns bathed in natural light. Admire marble statues, portrait busts, and the Three Graces (though their heads have since been removed).
The Metropolitan Museum of Art houses one of the world’s finest art collections, taking days or weeks to fully discover. Art lovers may wish to take a guided tour or purchase a low-cost audio guide so as to follow along with all its exhibits. There is also a branch in Washington Heights known as The Cloisters which showcases medieval art and architecture from European cloisters.
5. Coney Island
Coney Island evokes images of bustling boardwalks, light-drenched beaches and legendary amusement parks for New York visitors. The area’s rich history dates back decades; when its trains cost only one nickel.
Riegelmann Boardwalk, stretching 2.7 miles long, offers some of the area’s best shops and restaurants, along with iconic Coney Island attractions like Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park and Cyclone Roller Coaster. Additionally, you’ll find New York Aquarium which is one of the oldest aquariums in the US and a popular Coney Island attraction.
This Brooklyn locale offers visitors an excellent opportunity to get some exercise while taking in nature. Take an ice skateboard around Wollman Pond or hop aboard one of their horse and carriage tours for an intimate tour through the park with one of their entertaining coachmen!
Rockefeller Center is on most tourists’ “must-see” lists for good reason: this massive entertainment and shopping complex houses NBC-TV as well as boasting spectacular views from its Top of the Rock Observation Deck over Manhattan. After taking in these sights, visit its gift shops or try your luck at shuffleboard; enjoy lunch in one of its restaurants; it’s sure to make for a fantastic day trip!