This is it – the crossroads of the world. Get ready to walk fast or keep an eye open for storefronts where you and your family can duck, to get out of the flow of foot traffic. New Yorkers do not stop. Not on wheels, and not on foot. But it’s a bit of a carnival atmosphere, and most tourists don’t seem to mind. It’s a part of the New York City experience.
Interestingly, many of the Broadway theaters are actually not on Broadway at all. But their shows are something you won’t want to miss. From musicals to dramas, they are the best stories America has to offer. If you don’t buy tickets ahead of time, check out the TKTS booths in Times Square.
The Statue of Liberty & Liberty Island
“The Statue of Liberty: Enlightening the World”, this famous statue was a gift from France to the United States. It stands as a universal symbol of democracy and freedom. The giant copper statue is cared for by the US National Park Service. Many people believe that the Statue of Liberty stands on Ellis Island, where immigrants were once processed. Actually, she stands on Liberty Island, which is open every day of the year except for Christmas.
Ellis Island is known as the Island of Hope and the Island of Tears. Many people in years past would travel for weeks to get to the United States. 12 million immigrants passed through the halls – now quiet – from 1802 to 1954. Ellis Island was their chance to realize the American dream. Sadly, it was also where some immigrants were turned away – hence the name.
Empire State Building
In a city so full of landmarks, one of the most well-known is the Empire State Building. It was once the tallest building in NYC, until the 1970s, when the original World Trade Center Towers One and Two were built. It was the tallest again, after the terror attacks of 2001, but is now in second place to the new One World Trade Center building.
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
This is no ordinary museum. It’s found on a retired aircraft carrier that is an awe-inspiring sight, all by itself. You can find it at 46th Street, at Pier 86 on the western side of Manhattan. In addition to the carrier, the USS Intrepid, it also houses a submarine, an A-12 supersonic reconnaissance plane, a Concorde SST and the Space Shuttle Enterprise. It’s well worth the wait and the admission fee.
Rockefeller Center in Midtown Manhattan
Rockefeller Center is city landmark in Art Deco Style. It covers 22 acres and features 19 buildings for commercial use. Art enthusiasts also find their way to Rockefeller Center, for views of art nouveau murals and serene statues.
Central Park is among the most visited landmarks in New York City. You can ride a bike or enjoy a guided tour. There are memorable horse and carriage rides, rollerblading or you can just stroll through the trees. Bethesda Fountain is a favorite spot, and so is “Strawberry Fields” and the iconic “Imagine” mosaic.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is a must-see when you visit New York City. Their collections span over 5,000 years of art and culture from pre-history to today. 6.3 million people visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2014.
A New York City neighborhood with a wonderful amusement park, Coney Island has more than 45 rides and other attractions. It’s not like Six Flags or Disneyland, though. Rides are individually owned and operated, so the park operates differently than most modern amusement parks. If it’s warm when you visit, you’ll enjoy their beach.
The park is generally open from Easter to Halloween. Attractions and rides are usually open weekends only from Easter Day through Memorial Day, for full days until Labor Day and weekends only from Labor Day through Halloween.
This is another place you won’t want to miss. You can ride or walk the bridge 24 hours a day, and each hour has its own wonderful viewing options. Sunset is especially nice, offering views of Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Statue of Liberty. Unless it’s summertime, bring a jacket, because it gets chilly up on the bridge. It’s safe on the bridge even at night, since many commuters, joggers, cyclists and tourists use the bridge until roughly 11 pm or so.
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