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Sights, New York

Immerse yourself in New York’s diverse history on sightseeing adventures, ranging from Strawberry Fields – a memorial to The Beatles’ star John Lennon, to the classic skyscrapers and famed museums. Jump right in and take a trip to Bryant Park, view unforgettable scenes at the top of the Empire State Building, or educate yourself on the former World Trade Centre at the life-changing 9/11 Memorial & Museum.

9/11 Memorial

History and culture buffs should certainly book a 9/11 Memorial Ground Zero tour on their trip over to New York, to learn more about the history of this day and how it has shaped America. Despite the sad events which took place on September 11th 2001, the 9/11 Memorial is an important historical site, providing informative facts, stories and video footage to remember the day that changed America forever; honouring those who lost their lives.

Image source: Flickr. Copyright Dave Z

The memorial features the remains artefacts, lecture rooms, a picture gallery and even one of the actual fire engines sent to save the lives of those involved in the Twin Towers. It features a display of the events which occurred in chronological order, allowing tourists to learn more about the events which transpired.

Make sure you visit the Ground Zero fountain, where names are scrolled in alphabetical order to pay respect to the victims involved. This museum is remarkable and educational. So, if you’re looking to learn more about America’s history and the events which occurred, this is the place to come.

American Museum Of Natural History

The American Museum of Natural History is the perfect New York sightseeing spot for avid history and culture buffs, who are looking to immerse themselves fully into America’s past and present artefacts, astronomy, animals, wildlife and more.

Private IMAX films, tailor-made exhibits and planetarium shows are just a few of the many sights on offer here, making your trip not only educational but wildly exciting and active.

Image source: Flickr. Copyright: Phil Roeder

A range of fascinating events are also hosted at the American Museum of Natural History. Embark on walks, tours and drop-ins like the ‘Swim with Giants in 360’ experience, or enjoy astounding and fascinating planetarium programs. Not forgetting EarthFest, a family-friendly festival featuring walks by the Hall of Birds of the World, Yoga and of course, music, all amongst spectacular settings dotted across the museum.

Entry is free for both adults and children, making this an affordable day out for the whole family. However, if you wish to, you can pay an ‘admission fee’ which actually counts for a donation to fund the research and staff working at the museum.

Battery Park

If you’re looking to take a break from the bustling, busy crowds and city skyline, and swap it for a completely green and peaceful space, Battery Park will be the sightseeing adventure of your dreams.

Battery Park is a startling 25-acre public park located in New York, being one of many popular parks where travellers can enjoy some fantastic sights. The name of this park derives from its history; artillery batteries were once positioned here in New York City’s earlier years, placed to protect the settlement located behind them.

There’s plenty to do on your trip over to Battery Park; enjoy a ride on the beautiful Seaglass Carousel, whether you’re a tot, a teen or a fully-fledged adult, or simply go for a wander amongst the greenery.

The Hope Garden located here is a moving sight to see and is certainly worth visiting; it pays respect to those who have lost their lives to AIDS, consisting of a beautiful flower display.

Brooklyn Bridge

The Brooklyn Bridge offers tourists the full New York City experience, especially those fascinated with sightseeing adventures. It is a focal point for those travelling to New York, thanks to the remarkable history attached to it, being the bridge which connects the two amazing New York boroughs of Brooklyn and Manhattan together.

Walk across the famous bridge’s elevated pedestrian walkway to admire New York City from a whole new perspective, and take in the breathtaking views of this city’s impressionable skyline. You’re likely to recognise this proud monumental structure, which has featured in so many popular films and television programmes, worldwide – and now you can see it for yourself, on New York holidays.

This charming bridge is loved by travellers and locals alike, perfect for an afternoon stroll while eating a corndog or pretzel from a nearby street food stall. It still provides great transport connections past the bridge, too, with subway entrances surrounding different exits of the bridge, offering sightseers the chance to discover.

Empire State Building

The Empire State Building offers travellers perfect panoramic views of New York’s glittering skyline from its mesmerising Observation Deck. Not forgetting its lavish interiors, presenting a truly exquisite, all-round experience.

This popular skyscraper was designed by Shreve, Lamb and Harman, with the building being completed in 1931. The Empire State Building stands 1,454 feet proud amongst Manhattan’s thriving district, with a roof height of an astounding 1,250 feet.

Visitors’ expectations are exceeded when reaching the famed observation deck on the 102nd floor, reaching this height by hopping in a fast-speed lift – which is an experience in itself. Queues here are expected, but that little wait is totally worth it when you embark on this once-in-a-lifetime experience. Why not people watch and admire the bustling New York streets while you wait?

Tickets for this superb sight are available online and on the day, but it’s usually best to book in advance so you can enjoy shorter waiting times – something worth factoring in on your New York trip since there are so many fascinating sights to explore and discover.

Grand Central Station

If stripped back, Grand Central Station could be seen as merely a commuter rail terminal, connecting the people of New York city to different locations both inside and outside of Manhattan. However, in reality, this popular New York station is so much more than that.

Grand Central Station is jam-packed with fascinating sights, astounding architecture, tasty dining spots and not forgetting the popular shops which line the station – all homed within one powerful building.

The Whispering Gallery located here is a must-see, featuring low ceramic architectural arches and impressive Guastavino tiles to create echoing acoustics, enabling you and your friends/family to communicate, from one edge of this space to the other.

The likes of world-famous TV programmes and films have incorporated the deluxe and famous setting of Grand Central Station into their work, with scenes featuring the station on shows like Gossip Girl and many widespread films, including The Avengers, Superman and The Fisher King.

Liberty Island

Liberty Island is world-famous, homing the impressive and colossal Statue of Liberty, which stands proud amongst the majestic surrounding waters of the Upper New York Bay.

The Statue of Liberty was built to commemorate the alliance of the United States and France, joining two separate worlds together and symbolising this through a tall statue of a powerful woman – 305 feet, in fact. Lady Liberty holds a torch in one hand, and a tablet in the other, carrying the adoption date of the Declaration of Independence.

Tourists sail over by ferry to the adjoining waters to reach Liberty Island and then wander around the island’s luscious Sculpture Gardens, which surround the famous lady Liberty.

Visitors can also take a peruse at the souvenirs and memorabilia available from the museum shop, and purchase anything from a miniature Statue of Liberty and branded sweets, to bookmarks. Either enjoy as a keepsake to remember your trip over to Liberty Island, or take them home as gifts for your friends and family back home.

Lower East Side

The Lower East Side of Manhattan is brimming with history and culture, bustling bars and a chic, cosmopolitan atmosphere. Winding alleyways lead to upscale New York apartments, lavish buildings and some of Manhattan’s finest cafes and restaurants, making a trip to Lower East Side not only a sightseeing experience but a cultural adventure.

Fantastic coffee shops line this neighbourhood, and since New York is a prime spot for coffee, it’s certainly worth stopping off at one of many independent cafes for a freshly-ground ‘cup of joe’, after strolling through the intricate alleyways of this borough.

Head over to the famous Tictail Market for a range of fashion must-haves, from Nordic jumpers to intricate handmade jewellery, and funky art prints, all homed in a concept store on the corner of Orchard Street.

Tenement Museum also sits amongst this thriving neighbourhood, hosting a collection of immigrant stories and experiences, all showcased within the museum through guided tours, programmes and educational content.

New York Botanical Garden

Admire the luscious fauna and flora at the wondrous spot that is, New York Botanical Garden. This marvellous botanical garden sits in the Southern Boulevard – The Bronx, and features over one million plants, across 250 acres of luscious land. The garden neighbours the famous Bronx Zoo, so you can explore both plants and American wildlife on your trip over.

As well as exploration, admiration and enchantment, New York Botanical Garden is also a place for education and research, making this the perfect sightseeing spot during your New York holiday.

A traveller’s favourite here is the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory – which acts as a striking example of Victorian-style glasshouse creativity, home to a ‘World of Plants’ and acting as a prime New York City landmark.

If you get a little peckish during your time exploring the gardens, there is an on-site restaurant for your whole party to enjoy. Not forgetting the neighbouring gift and souvenir shop, offering an array of trinkets for you to remember your trip by.

One World Trade Center

In 2014, the One World Trade Centre opened its doors again, being rebuilt after it was destroyed back in 2001 amidst the events of 9/11, only taking five years in total to complete, which is pretty impressive in itself.

Image source: Flickr. Copyright Michael Vadon

The One World Trade Centre is a stark tower which rises above Ground Zero, located in bustling downtown Manhattan, offering a 360-degree viewing platform for travellers to enjoy this thriving city’s skyline and scenery. Some even coin this sight as ‘The Skyscraper Centre’, because it is exactly what it says on the tin.

Allot a good length of time to spend here, since there is so much to explore, from the sights it provides to the food it offers at the on-site restaurant, sitting high in the skies. Not forgetting the important history behind the rebuilding of this monumental sight in NYC.

Make sure you check out the amazing Sky Portal – a completely transparent glass floor looking down at the streets below you; providing incredible views of the streets, 100 stories beneath your feet.

The High Line

The High Line, located in the west of Manhattan is a 1.45-mile-long park which was built atop a historic cargo rail line, saved from demolition by the City of New York, as well as local neighbourhood residents. It then re-opened in 2009 as an elevated public park and green space, hence its name.

The High Line runs from Gansevoort Street to West 34th Street, and features views of the inventive planting design, shrubs, trees, flora and fauna, all which grow around what was once the High Line’s rail track.

If you’re an avid walker, this New York sight is the perfect spot for a leisurely stroll, where travellers can actually walk on the abandoned railway line, or sit down and people watch as others stroll by. So, if you’re looking for a day away from the madness in central Manhattan and instead seek a more natural, peaceful setting, as well as beautiful greenery and historic surroundings, this is the place to visit.

The Metropolitan Museum Of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, also coined as “The Met” is the most visited museum and sightseeing attraction in New York, thanks to the abundance of art featured here, from across the globe.

Image source: Flickr. Copyright Phil Roeder

Large pieces of some of the world’s finest art feature on the walls, allowing you to browse each room in absolute admiration. Many holidaymakers travel here to find their muse; the museum acts as a beacon of inspiration.

There is so much to see here, it will simply astound you. In fact, tourists can spend a whole day exploring this magnificent art museum, thanks to the wide range of sights and activities available to admire and partake in. Ensure you venture over here nice and early, so you can wander around this magical museum at your own leisurely pace.

Even better, “The Met” is an educational experience as well as a grand opportunity, offering workshops and events within the museum, where you can learn so much more about the beauty of the art itself.

The New York Hall of Science

The New York Hall of Science (also known as NYSCI), is a world-famous science museum located in Corona Park. NYSCI isn’t like most other science museums; it’s full of fun, filled with interactive exhibits that kids love to play and engage with. Better yet, everything is educational and informative, so you can enjoy a day at NYSCI with the family, leaving with extra knowledge under your belt.

The vast range of fascinating exhibits at NYSCI includes, ‘Bionic Me’, ‘Rocket Park Mini Golf’ and ‘Connected Worlds’ – an interactive and animated world, where visitors see how their actions, movements and decisions have an impact on our environment. There are also creative spaces where families can design, create and solve problems together using science.

Outside, there is also a science playground for kids to play, run around and stretch their legs. One of NYSCI’s biggest attractions is its 3D theatre, presenting visually stunning documentaries in an unforgettable way – to allow visitors to learn about the world’s wildest wonders.

Times Square

Times Square is the pinnacle of a New York holiday. Technically, Times Square doesn’t actually form into a square. Instead, it is comprised of four fantastic quarters, starting at 7th Avenue, then leading onto where Broadway crosses in Midtown Manhattan.

Tourists flock to Times Square simply for a picture, since this site is so famously recognised worldwide, thanks to its surrounding shops with impactful televised displays and proud billboards showcasing the latest Broadway shows and advertisements.

Sightseeing at Times Square is quite different to anywhere else in the world. Many holidaymakers simply venture here to people watch, since there is an abundance of street performers sprinkled across different locations of the square, as well as the passing buzz of the everyday locals and travellers rushing past.

Many tourists opt for hop-on, hop-off bus tours around Times Square, to avoid bustling crowds and see this central point of New York from a new perspective. Head to Times Square at night to experience the Midnight Moment, which takes place every night for three minutes, from 11:57 to midnight.

Washington Square Park

Washington Square Park, in New York, is a spacious, 9.75-acre public park which sits in the neighbourhood of Greenwich Village – being one (out of an astounding 1,900) of the prime public park spots in New York City.

This luscious public park is a famous NYC landmark, used as a meeting place for many locals and tourists, as well as being a hub for cultural and educational activity. Even better, this park offers a host of different sights and activities, from a battleground for avid chess lovers, a historic cemetery, a fantastic space for local parades and not forgetting, its location being famed for New York ‘park walks’.

Culture, history and adventure buffs will certainly revel in this prime sightseeing spot. Of course, this park honours the late George Washington, who shaped America’s history in many ways. An impressive arch stands proud amongst the greenery of this idyllic park, honouring Washington and the peaceful fountain located here is also another tourist favourite.