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New York CityPASS is a ticket booklet that saves 42% on admission to the 6 best attractions in New York City.

Top Things To Do In New York City

New York CityPASS
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New York City is larger than life: in population, in square feet (think of the five boroughs), in culture and food, in arts and entertainment. Visitors to New York have the world at their fingertips, from Uptown to Downtown and beyond. There’s so much to do and see, no two visits will ever be quite the same. Whether it’s your first visit to Gotham or your fifteenth, these top things to do in New York capture the energy, spirit and style of the city.

  • Empire State Building Experience

    Empire State Building Experience

    No visit to New York City would be complete without a stop at this masterpiece of Art Deco design, and perhaps the most famous office building in the world. From its magnificent lobby — now sporting a re-creation of its original spectacular ceiling mural — to the 86th-floor observatory perched more than 1,000 feet (305 meters) above the city streets, this National Historic Landmark gives visitors plenty to admire.

    What to Do
    Open past midnight 365 days a year, it’s a romantic spot for a late-night kiss. Take the audio tour to learn more about everything you can see from the observation deck. The 80th floor is home to the Dare to Dream exhibit, featuring original documents, sketches, reproduction photos and other artifacts that capture the building's history.

    What to See
    On a clear day, the view encompasses five states. You'll get a clear view of many famous New York landmarks such as the Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, Statue of Liberty, The Hudson and East River, and more. It's no wonder why this is one of the top places to visit in New York.

  • Statue of Liberty

    Statue of Liberty

    A stirring symbol of freedom, the Statue of Liberty has been a beacon in New York Harbor since 1886. A gift from the people of France, the Statue was designed by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi and built by Gustave Eiffel.

    What to Do
    Once on Liberty Island, free National Park Service tours fill in the details about the copper-sheeted masterpiece. For an extra fee, upgrade to a Crown Ticket and go into the statue itself.

    What to See
    With her torch ablaze more than 300 feet (91.5 meters) above the ground, "Liberty Enlightening the World" (the statue’s official name) is only accessible via commercial ferries, which offer amazing vantage points for the perfect vacation snapshot.

  • Ellis Island Immigration Museum

    Ellis Island Immigration Museum

    Ellis Island, the portal through which millions of immigrants entered the United States, is a must-see for anyone interested in the personal stories of those who came to America in search of a new beginning.

    What to Do
    Walk in the footsteps of the nation’s newest citizens as they traveled through the baggage, registry and hearing rooms — in some cases, leaving with new, "American" names. Scan the Wall of Honor and see if you can find the name of an ancestor among the 700,000 inscribed names.

    What to See
    For those whose ancestors made the journey, the American Family History Center offers computerized genealogical records. Stop and watch the interactive American Flag of Faces™, a "living" digital exhibit featuring images submitted by individuals and families.

  • American Museum of Natural History

    American Museum of Natural History

    Dinosaur fossils? Check. Theories of evolution? Check. Planetarium space show and IMAX theater? Double-check. It's no wonder the American Museum of Natural History was voted #1 attraction in New York City by the Zagat Survey "U.S. Family Travel Guide."

    What to Do
    At the American Museum of Natural History, more than 32 million specimens and cultural artifacts await exploration. Catch a show in the Hayden Planetarium and explore the rest of the Rose Center for Earth and Space to learn more about the 13-billion-year history of the universe.

    What to See
    Thanks to its starring role in the film Night at the Museum, AMNH draws enthusiastic young fans eager to see the 94-foot (28.6 meters) blue whale, the fossilized skeleton of Tyrannosaurus rex (the dinosaur that loved to play fetch), and the gum-chewing Easter Island head.

  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art

    Known simply as "the Met," this museum offers an unparalleled view of the world, all under one roof. In total, the Met's collections include more than two million works of art that span over five thousand years of history.

    What to Do
    Enjoy its wide-ranging collection including Greek and Roman art, European and Asian paintings and sculptures, artifacts from Africa and the Americas, and more. Make time to head over to The Cloisters museum and gardens, a branch of the Met dedicated to the art of medieval Europe.

    What to See
    Of particular note are the ancient Egyptian collection — a special department for the collection was established in 1906 — and the arms and armor holdings, which include examples from both Europe and Japan. The Met's collection of Egyptian art ranges from 300,000 B.C. to the 4th century A.D.

  • Guggenheim Museum

    Guggenheim Museum

    Known as much for what’s on the outside as what’s on the inside, the Guggenheim Museum is simply stunning. Devoted to the art of the 20th century and beyond, the Guggenheim Museum is a must-see for anyone looking to see art from contemporary artists.

    What to Do
    Notice everything - architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s revolutionary mid-20th-century design resulted in one of the most recognized buildings in the world. Inside, an exemplary gathering of modern and contemporary art awaits.

    What to See
    The collection, originally conceived by business magnate Solomon R. Guggenheim, showcases works by Camille Pissarro, Vasily Kandinsky, Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning.

  • 9/11 Memorial

    9/11 Memorial

    The 9/11 Memorial honors the thousands of people killed in the attacks on September 11, 2001 and those who died in the World Trade Center bombing in 1993.

    What to Do
    Visit the twin reflecting pools sitting in the footprints of the Twin Towers that are each nearly an acre in size. Take time to wander around the 110,000-square feet of exhibition space in the museum. Some large artifacts include the "Survivor's Stairs" and help tell the story of what happened on that day.

    What to See
    Surrounding the pools are the names of every person who died in the attacks inscribed in bronze. You'll also see the "Survivor Tree," a callery pear tree that was severely damaged at Ground Zero but was rehabilitated and now stands as a symbol of resilience, survival and rebirth. Seeing this memorial for yourself can have a profound effect on your visit to New York.

  • Top of the Rock® Observation Deck <br />& Rockefeller Center

    Top of the Rock® Observation Deck
    & Rockefeller Center

    Whether it’s peeking in on NBC’s Today show, cheering for Radio City Music Hall’s dancing Rockettes, or spinning on an ice rink presided over by Prometheus himself, visitors to Rockefeller Center have plenty to do.

    What to Do
    After taking in the sights below — and exploring some of the 24 acres (9.7 hectares) of underground shops and restaurants — those wanting a different view head to the Top of the Rock® observation deck. Perched more than 800 feet (244 meters) above ground level and spanning three floors, the deck offers 360-degree views of the city.

    What to See
    With three floors of indoor and outdoor observation decks you'll have great views of many of New York's sights, especially if you use the sightseeing binoculars. On the 67th floor you can see the Radiance Wall, a wall of glass panels, blown glass, crystal clusters, and fiber-optic lighting created by Swarovski.

  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

    Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

    Space shuttles, spy planes, and submarines... all this and more can be seen and experienced at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum located right on the Hudson River inside the aircraft carrier Intrepid.

    What to Do
    Enhance your visit with a guided tour of the ship. The Intrepid fought in World War II and also served in the Cold War and the Vietnam War, so there is a lot of history to be learned within its decks.

    What to See
    See more than two dozen restored aircraft, including the world's fastest military jet and spy plane - the A-12 Blackbird. In the Space Shuttle Pavilion you can get an inside look at the space shuttle Enterprise, the prototype NASA shuttle that paved the way for the space shuttle program.

  • Central Park

    Central Park

    Thought of as the city’s playground, Central Park covers 843 acres (341 hectares) and is located in the heart of Manhattan.

    What to Do
    Visitors can walk, run, ride bicycles, play chess and checkers, ice skate, and even fish. Designated quiet zones accommodate those seeking tranquility, while the 21 playgrounds are a boon for families with children who need to move.

    What to See
    Offering a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle of the city streets that surround it on all sides, the park is a refreshing year-round sanctuary. Central Park has been featured in more than 300 different films. Can you spot the different landmarks used in various films?

  • Times Square

    Times Square

    Located in Midtown Manhattan at the intersection of Broadway and Seventh Avenue, Times Square has often been referred to as The Crossroads of the World. Full of bright lights and billboards, it also serves as the hub of the Theater District.

    What to Do
    On New Year’s Eve, a million people swarm the square, waiting hours to watch the famed ball drop. Daily, thousands come in search of half-price Broadway show tickets, to people watch, or just stand, jaws dropped, to admire the 37-foot-high (11.3 meters) NASDAQ sign — the largest LED sign in the world.

    What to See
    Neon-gazing became even safer for pedestrians in 2009, when the heart of Times Square — Broadway, between 42nd and 47th streets — was closed to vehicular traffic.

  • Theater District

    Theater District

    A trip to New York isn’t complete until you’ve taken in a Broadway Show. This famed theatrical experience is like no other, and the quality is unmatched anywhere else in the world. Experience the great talent that encompasses the Theater District of New York just once, and you’ll be hooked for life.

    What to Do
    In between dazzling performances, explore all of New York’s renowned theater district. Amazing food options line Restaurant Row when you need a bite to eat, and if you’re looking for more excitement you can check out the bright lights of Times Square.

    What to See
    You can’t experience Broadway without seeing a Broadway show. Whether you’re interested in a musical, a drama, or a comedy Broadway has something for everyone. While you’re waiting for your show to begin, you can take in the beautiful architecture of the many theatres, or marvel at the wondrous set design once the performance has started.

  • High Line

    High Line

    Running along the Hudson River on New York City’s West side, the High Line is an old New York city railroad-turned-park that is endowed with nature’s green gifts and great vibes. This beautiful elevated park helps tourists experience Manhattan at new heights.

    What to Do
    It’s not often that a billboard becomes something more than an in-your-face advertisement. At High Line Park, the giant 25-by-75 foot canvas features a new artist every month. The park is also full of ever-changing activities: from open theatre performances to the public screenings at the 14th Street Passage, there is guaranteed to be something for everyone.

    What to See
    The High Line is brimming with native plants and flora. Lying smack dab in the middle of the big city, skyscrapers provide an urban backdrop to the one-of-a-kind historic yet cutting-edge experience. Be sure to pass through Chelsea Thicket, a mini forest that’ll make you forget you are in one of the biggest cities in the world.

  • Grand Central Terminal

    Grand Central Terminal

    Grand Central Terminal is one of the oldest original pieces of architecture still standing in New York. In the early 1900s, this terminal brought mass commute to America in a beautiful way. More than a hundred years later Grand Central Terminal continues the New York dance of coming and going via subways and buses.

    What to Do
    The architectural beauty of Grand Central Terminal represents the innovative minds that emerged from the city that never sleeps. Dig deeper into the history of Grand Central Terminal with a professional quality audio tour and get an inside look at the history and secrets within.

    What to See
    The sight of men and women moving in every direction across the central lobby gives every visitor a true sense of the pace of living and working in New York. Take a peek inside Grand Central Terminal’s retail stores and dining concourse for a truly unique New York experience.

  • Yankee Stadium

    Yankee Stadium

    Even if you’re not a baseball fan, it’s hard not to know the names of the famous baseball players of the New York Yankees. Yogi Berra, Babe Ruth and Mickey Mantle, just to name a few. Fall in love with American baseball at the one and only Yankee Stadium.

    What to Do
    When you go to a museum, "Do not touch" signs are featured on most exhibits, leaving urges to feel history unfulfilled. At Yankee Stadium, however, your hands can finally get the tour they deserve with Hands On History, a tactile experience you will not forget. Hold Babe Ruth’s bat, run your hands over Derek Jeter’s jersey, and touch a World Series ring. You may never wash your hands again.

    What to See
    Babe Ruth is perhaps the Yankee’s most famous baseball player, having hit 104 home runs in 1921 alone. Babe Ruth Plaza, located right outside of Yankee Stadium depicts "The Bambino’s" exciting baseball career. This camera-friendly attraction is great for the whole family.

  • Madison Square Garden

    Madison Square Garden

    Madison Square Garden, pinned as "the world’s most famous arena," is an entertainment powerhouse. Whether you’re watching the Knicks in an NBA game, the Rangers in an NHL match, or enjoying a concert from your favorite artist, Madison Square Garden has everything you need to have a great time.

    What to Do
    If you want the full Garden experience, take a tour through the astonishing venue to get a closer look at the memorabilia of famous players and performing artists. After you see first-hand why the Garden is the world’s most famous arena, grab a cheesy slice of pizza or a juicy burger from one of the many concession vendors parked throughout the concourse.

    What to See
    The Rangers are part of the NHL’s "Original Six" franchise established in 1926. The historic love for the Rangers continues to thrive in Madison Square Garden, where the Blueshirts are always creating memorable moments. If you’re at a Knicks game, stay for halftime to check out the Knicks City Dancers. Their sophisticated dance routines will pump you up for any game.

  • Brooklyn Bridge

    Brooklyn Bridge

    Suspended over the East River, the Brooklyn Bridge connects Manhattan to Brooklyn. Designated a national historic landmark in 1964, this engineering feat is one of America’s most famous bridges and one of New Yorks greatest attractions.

    What to Do
    Walk on the elevated pedestrian path without worrying about the cars whizzing by. Enjoy the remarkable skyline view while you're there. Millions of people visit the Brooklyn Bridge every year simply to see the gleaming river beneath Manhattan skyscrapers.

    What to See
    Probably the most prominent features of the Brooklyn Bridge are the large towers to which the web of cables are attached. The magnificent Gothic arches stand tall above the heavy traffic flow. With great views of the river, the bridge’s strong architecture, and downtown Manhattan, you can't miss out on this wonderfully free opportunity.

  • St. Patrick\'s Cathedral

    St. Patrick's Cathedral

    St. Patrick’s Cathedral may very well be one of New York’s most sacred and most treasured landmarks. This Neo-Gothic-style Roman Catholic cathedral is a very popular landmark and tourist destination.

    What to Do
    St. Patrick’s Cathedral holds mass 7 times a day, every day. No matter how busy your vacation might be, visiting St. Patrick’s for mass is a unique experience and one your family will never forget. You can also peruse the gift shop for rosaries, books, and candles. All proceeds from the gift shop go to a good cause: the upkeep and maintenance of the church.

    What to See
    Like many other places in New York City, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is an architectural masterpiece. Beautifully crafted stained glass windows and religious sculptures will make you feel as though you are walking through some of the most impressive churches in Europe. Amidst Manhattan’s towering skyscrapers, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a breathtaking change of pace.

  • New York Public Library

    New York Public Library

    Now over one hundred years old, the New York Public Library was built by the city’s most prominent architects of the day. The library is guarded by two marble lions nicknamed "Patience" and "Fortitude," and the pair have guarded the library since 1911.

    What to Do
    Although it’s unlikely you’ll be heading to the New York Public Library to write a research paper, there is still a great opportunity for learning while you are there. The library gives free tours, and every guide is just as knowledgeable as the reference books they recommend.

    What to See
    Visit the stunning art collection in the Astor Hall galleries and enjoy the historic beauty of the interior architecture. The reading room, 297 feet long and 78 feet wide, features an astonishing ceiling and beautiful rows of oak tables. If art and architecture aren’t your forte, here’s a fun fact: this library was featured in the film Ghostbusters.

To visit the best attractions in New York City, use the New York CityPASS and save nearly half off combined entrance fees. CityPASS holders also breeze past most main-entrance ticket lines, which means they get where they’re going while others are still waiting in the queue. New York CityPASS includes admission to the Empire State Building, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the American Museum of Natural History, as well as three option tickets that give travelers a choice between the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island or a Circle Line Sightseeing Cruise, between the Guggenheim Museum or Top of the Rock®, and between the 9/11 Memorial & Museum or the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Some special exhibits are not included with the CityPASS and may require an extra fee.

CityPASS can be purchased online or at any of our participating New York attractions. Use New York CityPASS and discover these top places to visit and things to do in New York.

Yankee Stadium Photo Credit: Flickr
Madison Square Garden Photo Credit: Rich Mitchell
Theater District Photo Credit: Broadway Tour

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