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New York City Attractions

Overview
Restaurants
Attractions
Events
  • Tarrytown

    Tarrytown

    Forty miles (64km) north of New York City is Tarrytown, known to Washington Irving fans as Sleepy Hollow, setting for the . The town is packed with historic homes including the impressive Rockefeller residence; Irving's home can also be visited. Over of the east bank of the river is Hyde Park, where President Franklin D Roosevelt was born and spent much of his adult life. The Franklin D Roosevelt Home and Library contains hundreds of photos and artefacts, including the specially made car he drove after being struck with polio in 1921, and the letter from Einstein that led to the development of the atomic bomb. Two miles (3km) outside Hyde Park is the Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site - a spectacular Beaux Arts mansion.

  • The Statue of Liberty

    The Statue of Liberty

    The universal symbol of freedom and democracy, the Statue of Liberty was the first sight to be seen by the 12 million immigrants who passed through the Ellis Island Immigration Centre. Sculpted by Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi and modelled on the Colossus of Rhodes, the statue was donated by the people of France in 1886 to commemorate the alliance between the two countries during the American Revolution. The interior of the statue itself is closed for renovation. The ferry calls at both Liberty and Ellis Islands, and tourists can visit Ellis Island Museum, which documents the experiences of the immigrants.

  • World Trade Center - Ground Zero

    World Trade Center - Ground Zero

    The six-hectare (16-acre) work site that has emerged from the rubble of the twin towers has come to symbolise the dreadful events of September 11, 2001 when almost 3,000 people lost their lives. The 1,350ft (411m) World Trade Centre towers were the tallest buildings in New York and symbols of the city's skyline. Millions now come to pay tribute at the site and witness the devastation from one of the viewing sites. In April 2003, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation launched a worldwide competition to design a memorial at the World Trade Center site to honour the victims of September 11. The LMDC received 5,201 memorial design submissions from 63 nations and 49 states making this the largest design competition in history. In January 2004 ' by Michael Arad and Peter Walker was unveiled as the design for the World Trade Center Memorial, and will feature a landscaped civic plaza with two massive voids aligned with the footprints where the twin towers once stood. Currently the perimeter of Ground Zero is accessible to the public. The Tribute Center, across from Ground Zero, offers tours around the perimeter, and provides visitors with an accurate account of what the community endured during the attacks. The Memorial and Museum are scheduled to open to visitors in September 2012.

  • Radio City Music Hall

    Radio City Music Hall

    Located in Rockefeller Center, Radio City Music Hall is one of the most famous theatres in the world. The home of the Rockettes chorus line, the theatre's interior was declared a New York landmark in 1978. The Hall's beautiful cinema, while not in regular use anymore, still hosts premieres and shows selected feature films. The Hall's most popular event is the annual Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular, which attracts more than a million people and has been running since 1933. Tours of Radio City Music Hall run daily.

  • Empire State Building

    Empire State Building

    One of the enduring symbols of New York, and once again the city's tallest structure, the Empire State Building stands 436 feet (145m) tall. Completed in 1931, this Art Deco behemoth remains one of the most impressive engineering feats of all time; it was built in just 410 days and remains the fastest rising major skyscraper ever built. The building has been immortalised in many films - most famously the classics King Kong and Sleepless in Seattle. The observation decks on the 86th and 102nd floors offer magnificent views of the city.

  • Central Park

    Central Park

    With great foresight, the founders of New York set aside 340 hectares (840 acres) of central Manhattan as a public space. Central Park was officially opened in 1873 and today provides an essential 'green lung' within the concrete jungle that is New York. Originally designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, the park contains themed gardens, tennis courts, lakes and even a small zoo. Much of the park is infused by the city's bustle and on nice days swarms with joggers, skaters, buskers and tourists, but there are areas beyond the range of baseballs and frisbees where tranquillity can be found in this beautifully landscaped park. It also hosts performances of everything from rock music to Shakespeare. During winter, two ice-skating rinks open up in Central Park, the Wollman Rink (mid-Park at 62nd St) is one of the most picturesque in the world, set among the trees and rolling hills and against the backdrop of Manhattan's skyscrapers.

  • Museum of Modern Art

    Museum of Modern Art

    The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), founded in 1929, owns the most important collection of modern art in the USA including works by Monet, Van Gogh, Matisse, Picasso, Max Beckman, Ansel Adams, and Kiki Smith. What started as a gift of eight prints and one drawing has developed to a vast and varied collection of 150,000 paintings, prints, sculptures, photographs and other media, and the Musuem's Library and Archives boast an impressive collection of books, historical documents and photographs. Priding itself as an educational institution, the Museum of Modern Art offers various activities and programs for the general public, as well as special segments thereof, in order to broaden the community's knowledge of, and approach to, the exciting and puzzling world of modern art.

  • The Guggenheim Museum

    The Guggenheim Museum

    The Solomon R Guggenheim Museum was designed by US architect Frank Lloyd Wright and was completed shortly after his death in 1959. It is well worth a visit just to see this icon of Modernist architecture, which was designed specifically to showcase the modern art within. Inside, it features a highly commended collection of late 19th- and 20th-century art works, as well as touring exhibitions. From beneath the huge glass dome, a quarter-of-a-mile-long ramp spirals down the inside of the building, past the collection of art, including works by Pissarro, Kandinsky, Klee, Picasso, Toulouse-Lautrec, Cézanne, Mapplethorpe and Gober.

  • Metropolitan Museum of Art

    Metropolitan Museum of Art

    The Metropolitan Museum possesses one of the greatest, and largest, collections of art in the world; it is a cherished New York institution and a must see for any visitor. Banners above the Met's Fifth Avenue entrance herald the current attractions; there are always a few exhibitions on-the-go displaying masterpieces from around the world alongside the Metropolitan's own collection. The highlights of the permanent collection are numerous, American collectors having had the foresight, and cash, to buy up a large number of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist masterpieces from Europeans at the end of the 19th century. The Metropolitan Museum's collection now contains more than two million works of art from all points of the compass, from ancient through modern times, including great works by Van Gogh, Renoir, Monet and Cézanne to rival any gallery in the world.

  • American Museum of Natural History

    American Museum of Natural History

    Possibly with the exception of its counterpart in London, the American Museum of Natural History is the largest and most important museum of its kind in the world. More than 30 million artefacts are packed into 42 exhibition halls - quite enough to keep anyone busy over a rainy afternoon. The most popular exhibit is a 50ft (15m) tall skeleton of a barosaurus in the Theodore Roosevelt Rotunda, and there are three more spectacular dinosaur halls on the fourth floor. Other halls include the Hall of Biodiversity, the Hall of Ocean Life, the Hall of Human Biology and Evolution and the fabulous Hayden Planetarium: a 90ft (27m) wide aluminium sphere that seems to float inside a massive glass cube, which in turn is home to the Rose Center for Earth and Space. Those tired of walking can check out the Museum of Television and Radio.

  • Finger Lakes

    Finger Lakes

    The 11 narrow lakes that stretch north to south below Lake Ontario are known as the Finger Lakes. The lakes are popular for boating and fishing, and the rolling hills in-between are interspersed with waterfalls, gorges and parks ideal for hiking, cycling and cross-country skiing. The Native Americans believed the Finger Lakes were formed when one of their Gods reached out to bless their region and left behind an imprint of his hand; but it is more likely that they were formed by glaciers during the Ice Age. The Finger Lakes are one of the most important wine growing regions in the United States; most of the vineyards are located on the rolling hills of the Cayuga Wine Trail, overlooking the Cayuga Lake, and many offer tours and tastings.

  • Broadway

    Broadway

    Going to the theatre is one of the most popular tourist events in New York and the shows on Broadway are world famous, boasting some of the best productions in the world from blockbuster musicals to intense and intimate dramas. There are ongoing shows that have been running for years, such as The , , and . Newer, edgier shows play off-Broadway, and may provide just as much entertainment at slightly lower prices. This is one way to experience part of the American dream, even if only on vacation.

  • Times Square

    Times Square

    Though it's just an intersection at the corner of Broadway and 42nd Street, Times Square has achieved iconic status, representing, in a single frame, the hive of activity that is New York City. Flashing advertisements and huge billboards produce a headache-inducing but memorable sight. Times Square has been used in countless films, television and literature. It is the base for ABC's Good Morning America programs and MTV's popular Total Request Live. Annually hundreds of thousands gather on New Year's Eve in the square to revel and see the infamous ball-dropping ceremony. In 2009 Times Square was closed to traffic, and visitors can now enjoy strolling and sitting at their leisure, without worrying about getting hit by New York City's notorious taxis.

  • Rockefeller Centre

    Rockefeller Centre

    Named for the man who developed the space, the world's first dollar billionaire, John D Rockefeller, this 22 acre (8ha) land houses a plethora of iconic New York City attractions. Radio City Music Hall used to be the most popular tourist venue in the city and still ranks highly among visitors. Radio City has hosted multiple awards shows such as the Grammies, Emmies and MTV Music Awards. It is also a concert venue frequented by today's popular performers. The GE Building, the address for which the popular TV series is named, is the home to and the site from which the eerie 'Lunchtime atop a skyscraper' photograph was taken. At the base of the GE building is the Rockefeller Ice Rink with the golden statue of Prometheus at its head. Underneath Rockefeller Plaza is the Concourse, an underground pedestrian mall boasting designer brands and food outlets.

  • Brooklyn Bridge

    Brooklyn Bridge

    The sheer scope of New York City is hard to understand until your traversed the Brooklyn Bridge, inaugurated in 1883, which crosses 5,989 feet (1,825 m) of the East River and connects two of New York's biggest metropoles, Manhattan and Brooklyn. At the time the construction of the bridge was a feat of engineering ingenuity, the longest suspension bridge at the time. Today it is a treasured landmark of the city, colourfully illuminated at night to highlight the architectural towers and hangings. There is a pedestrian walkway from which visitors can savour vistas of both Manhattan and Brooklyn.

  • St Patrick's Cathedral

    St Patrick's Cathedral

    St Patrick's Cathedral is a magnificent example of the geometric style of Gothic architecture that was popular in Europe in the 13th century. It is the seat of the Roman Catholic archbishop of New York and the largest Catholic cathedral in the United States. With its spires soaring 330 feet (100m) into the air, and the ornately detailed entrance, this is undoubtedly one of the city's most spectacular buildings. St Patrick's was built between 1850 and 1878; its giant organ has over 7,300 pipes. To most New Yorkers and harried tourists, St Patrick's is most valued for its peace and tranquility - rare qualities indeed in this most frenetic of cities.

  • Grand Central Station

    Grand Central Station

    One of New York's most famous and best loved landmarks, Grand Central was opened in 1913 opposite Rockefeller Center. It is the world's largest train station with 44 platforms, but true distinction, however, is its magnificent architecture and striking ambiance, anchored by enormous windows and the refurbished ceiling, covered by a detailed astronomical fresco. The Terminal houses five good restaurants, twenty value and lunch time eateries, and about fifty specialty shops. The 12,000 sq ft Vanderbilt Hall regularly houses public events. Don't miss the one-hour guided tour; book several weeks ahead in peak season to avoid disappointment. Grand Central sees around 250,000 commuters per day, but over 500,000 visitors.

  • Central Park Zoo

    Central Park Zoo

    Home to some exotic and beautiful animals the Central Park Zoo is a must for all children and animal lovers visiting the city. Residents at the zoo include the elusive red pandas, polar pears, snow leopards and snow monkeys to name a few. The Tisch Children's Zoo is a great place for young kids, where goats and peacocks can be viewed and children can even pet the goats, sheep, alpacas, potbellied pigs and other barnyard animals on display.

  • Toys 'R Us, Times Square

    Toys 'R Us, Times Square

    Kids love nothing more than a toy shop, and Toys 'R Us in Times Square just happens to be the centre of the toy universe with an indoor 60-foot (18 metre) tall Ferris wheel, life-size Barbie's Dollhouse filled with Barbie dolls and other Barbie paraphernalia, and a 5-ton, 20-foot tall (7 metre), 34-foot-long (10 metre) T-Rex animatronic to thrill and terrify children. With so much to see and so many toys to choose from, kids will love Toys 'R Us in Times Square, but parents should be advised to bring their wallets!

  • New York Aquarium

    New York Aquarium

    The New York Aquarium is located on Coney Island and boasts over 350 species of marine life. Children will love learning about the aquatic life here, with predators such as reef sharks, nurse sharks, and sand tiger sharks, or fuzzier creatures, such as sea otters, sea lions, penguins and walruses. The New York Aquarium makes a great day out for the whole family.

  • Trump Wollman Rink

    Trump Wollman Rink

    This public ice rink located in Central Park, and made famous by many movies, is a fantastic place to take the kids for the day during the winter months in New York City. The setting is beautiful, surrounded by trees with the New York City skyline above them. Children can even attend skating school or host a party or event here, guaranteeing an unforgettable experience. The rink is not just for adults however, and is a popular spot for dates in New York City.

  • Brooklyn Children's Museum

    Brooklyn Children's Museum

    The Brooklyn Children's Museum is a great place to take the little ones while o holiday in New York City. It was founded in 1899 and was the first museum in the United States. Its collections and exhibits include hand-on activities, role-playing opportunities, resident animals and thousands of artefacts to teach children about science, the environment, culture, and the arts. There are no 'Do Not Touch' signs here!

  • The Frick Collection

    The Frick Collection

    The Frick is quite possibly New York's most underrated art gallery, a collection of exceptional paintings featuring important works from Vermeer, Manet, Rembrandt, Whistler, Goya and Van Dyk. A highlight of the collection is the renowned pair of Holbein paintings of Thomas More and Thomas Cromwell, and the group of small bronze sculptures, rated the finest in the world. This was the New York residence of Henry Clay Frick who transformed a fortune made in the coal business into this sublime building, facing onto Central Park. The interior courtyard is a tranquil retreat from the busy world outside.

  • Staten Island Ferry

    Staten Island Ferry

    A must-see attraction that doesn't cost a dime? The ferry from Battery Park to Staten Island and back is a great way to see the Lower Manhattan skyline and Hudson river life while resting your feet. The ferry also skirts the Statue of Liberty affording decent views of this iconic structure. Most tourists stay onboard for the return leg, but it's worth hoping off and exploring a bit of Staten Island while you're there. The ferry leaves every 30 minutes and takes 25 minutes each way.

  • Top of the Rock

    Top of the Rock

    Best views of New York City? The Rockefeller Center's eight level viewing platform and the pinnacle of the Empire State building duke it out for top honours in this contest. The winner might be the Rock because it alone offers great views of the iconic Empire State building among its 360 degree vistas of the city below! There are both indoor and outdoor viewing areas, so it's suitable to visit in all weather. The best and most popular time to visit is half an hour before sunset when one can experience both the day and night time views. Book ahead online and skip the queue for your slot.

  • Greenwich Village

    Greenwich Village

    Greenwich Village (affectionately referred to as 'The Village') started out as an industrial park, but was taken over by artists, poets, beatniks, radicals, and other bohemians that founded a vibrant arts community. These days the area has been gentrified and rents are sky-high. You'll see more yuppies than squatters. The area was also the setting for the popular sitcom Friends. Greenwich Village is home to New York University, and the famous Washington Square Park. It has retained a bit of artistic flair though, and contains a number of great off-Broadway theatres and historic music clubs like Bitter End, Village Vanguard, Small's, and the Blue Note. You'll also find an eclectic mixture of international restaurants and cafes.

  • Wall Street

    Wall Street

    Home to the New York Stock Exchange, Wall Street has attained near-mythical status at the financial heart of the world. The narrow street runs from Broadway to the East River, and is home to landmarks like Federal Hall, where George Washington was inaugurated as the first US President; and 23 Wall Street, which still has shrapnel holes in its limestone facade from the 1920 Wall Street Bombing. One of the iconic symbols of Wall Street is the Wall Street Bull (or Charging Bull) a 7,100 pound (3,200kg) bronze sculpture by Arturo Di Modica in Bowling Green Park. The sculpture is a popular photo opportunity in New York, symbolising financial optimism and prosperity.

  • Coney Island

    Coney Island

    Coney Island has been a tourist attraction in New York City since the 1830s, when New Yorkers would flock to the beaches. Its movie theatres, amusement parks, museums, circus, aquarium and restaurants still attract crowds each summer, and each Friday there is a fireworks show at 9:30pm. Coney Island claims to be the birthplace of the hot dog, and no visit is complete without sampling the street cart fare along the boardwalk. The activities and amusements at Coney Island are in full swing from May to September. There is no accommodation in Coney Island, but it makes a great day out for the whole family.

  • Live TV Show Tapings

    Live TV Show Tapings

    Many popular television shows are recorded in New York City, including morning programmes like Live with Regis and Kelly, the Today Show, and Good Morning America; as well as late night programmes like David Letterman, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Daily Show and the Colbert Report, and Saturday Night Live. Attending these shows as an audience member is a popular New York City activity, and while the tickets are free, getting your hands on them can be difficult. Many of the shows allow you to request tickets via their official website, while some allow you to queue for standby tickets. The easiest shows to get into are The Today Show and The Early Show, whose audiences simply gather in the plazas next to the studios.

  • Ellis Island

    Ellis Island

    From 1892 to 1924, nearly every immigrant (totaling more than 20 million) moving to the US was funneled through the crowded halls of Ellis Island, just off the coast of New York. No longer in use as an immigration port, today the island draws millions of people each year as one of the most popular tourist attractions in New York City. The Ellis Island Immigration Museum offers multimedia exhibits showcasing the island's crucial role in the history of the US through the stories of various immigrants that passed through. An interesting exhibit is the American Family Immigration Center, which allows visitors to access passenger records to find relatives. A 45-minute audio tour (available in nine languages) offers visitors the chance to experience the island as an immigrant, and is a good option for those with limited time, while special children's tours are also available. Getting to Ellis Island involves a crowded ferry ride (be sure to bring a jacket) from Battery Park. The ferry also stops at Liberty Island (home of the Statue of Liberty), making it a convenient way to see two of New York City's most popular attractions in a single morning. It is best to buy tickets ahead of time, as ferry queues can take several hours.

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