25 of the Best Tourist Attractions in New York City

25 of the Best Tourist Attractions in New York City25 of the Best Tourist Attractions in New York City.

Kurt Vonnegut’s 1976 Novel, “Slapstick or Lonesome No More!” has dubbed New York as the “Skyscraper National Park.” It is true, with innumerable tall structures – many of them beautiful- calling this city home. However, there are a lot of buildings that don’t pierce the skies but are worthy of a visit. The Big Apple has structures and gardens which are easily recognizable, while others are a tucked-away treasure trove. There are overwhelming activities, tourist attractions, and experiences that grab your attention in NYC. Here are a few you should not miss in the hustle and bustle of city life.

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Jane’s Carousel.

Via Getty Images/Pawel Gaul.

This structure was originally built in 1922. Jane’s Carousel is located on the banks of the East River. One of Brooklyn’s must-see-sights, this is a very popular destination. Reopened in 2011, with numerous additions including a Jean Nouvel designed jewel-like glass exterior, this destination attracts tourists and architecture lovers.

The World Trade Center Transportation Hub.

Via Getty Images/Dennis K. Johnson.

The World Trade Center Transportation Hub opened in 2016. The Santiago Calatrava designed project is known for its symbolism, the massive scale (with respect to commuters it would accommodate) and for its complexity. The Westfield World Trade Center mall opened at Oculus (as it is known) and the 365,000 square feet will accommodate 113 tenants.

Ellis Island.

Via Getty Images/Westend61.

Once the gateway for over 12 million immigrants; Ellis Island was built in 1900 by Edward Lippincott Tilton and William A. Boring. Today it is part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument.

Queensboro Bridge.

Via Getty Images/Urs Gubser.

Located in the shadows of the legendary Brooklyn Bridge, The Queensboro Bridge was opened in 1909. The 3,724-foot long bridge connects Manhattan to Queens. This structure was designed by Henry Hornbostel, and its recent fame from movies like The Dark Knight Rises and The Great Gatsby has brought it in the list of NYC tourist attractions.

Metropolitan Life Tower.

Via Getty Images/Tony Shi Photography.

Designed by Napoleon LeBrun & Sons, this was once the world’s tallest building (from 1909 till 1913). It is the located on the corner of East 23rd Street and Madison Avenue.

Seagram Building.

Via Wikimedia Commons/Noroton.

Designed by Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson, the iconic Seagram Building was completed in 1958. This became the model for future skyscrapers. Worried about the aesthetics of the building, Mies implemented a system to ensure that the blinds could only be positioned as up, halfway-down or as completely down. This building, designed to be the headquarters for the Canadian distillers Joseph E. Seagram & Sons, is now one of NYC’s architectural and tourist attractions.

Waldorf-Astoria.

Via Getty Images/Spencer Platt.

The Waldorf Astoria was the tallest and largest hotel in the world when it opened in 1931. The building’s Art Deco style has entertained many patrons including Marilyn Monroe. To make things more interesting, while visiting New York, every sitting U.S. president since Herbert Hoover has stayed at the hotel.

Lincoln Center for Performing Arts.

Photography: Brian Stanton.

In 1959, President Dwight D Eisenhower attended the groundbreaking ceremony of the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts. It opened in 1962 and is located on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. It’s decade-long renovation – by architects and firms like Frank Gehry, Cooper, Robertson & Partners, and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill started in 1999.

The Cloisters.

Photography: Virginia Rollison.

This branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art opened to the public in 1938. It is devoted to the art and architecture of medieval Europe. Located on a four-acre plot overlooking the Hudson, this museum and its garden are situated at the northern tip of Manhatten.

Empire State Building.

The Empire State Building opened in 1931, and at 1454 feet, it was the world’s tallest skyscraper for over 40 years. A less known fact of this structure is that when it opened in a symbolic gesture, the then US president Herbert Hoover pressed a button to turn on the tower’s lights. If it wasn’t famous before, movies like King Kong and Sleepless in Seattle made this one of New York’s tourist attractions.

Chrysler Building.

Via Getty Images/Jon Arnold.

One of the most recognizable examples of Art Deco architecture, the Chrysler Building was completed in 1930. It held the title for world’s tallest building (for just one year though. This structure has gargoyles on the corners of its 61st floor, and floors above 71st provide access to the spire.

Statue of Liberty.

Via Getty Images.

The Statue of Liberty was a gift from France, designed by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi. It was erected in 1886, just off the southern tip of Manhattan. It has a crown of 7 rays, which represent 7 seas and continents and a tablet celebrating the date of US independence from Britain. This is one of the most well-known tourist attractions and landmarks of NYC.

Woolworth Building.

Via Wikimedia Commons.

Opening in 1913, the Woolworth Building stood at 792 feet. Designed by Cass Gilbert, this skyscraper held the title of World’s Tallest Skyscraper for almost 20 years.

Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Via Getty Images/Rudi Von Briel.

This museum was designed by Richard Morris Hunt and opened to the public in late 1902. This Beaux Arts structure was the first public institution to get a work by Henry Matisse. Today there are over tens of thousands of artworks and sculptures to view at this museum.

One World Trade Center.

Via Getty Images/Spencer Platt.

The One World Trade Center was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and opened to the public in 2014. It stands at a symbolic height of 1776 feet and is the tallest in the Western Hemisphere.

Grand Central Terminal.

Via Getty Images/Matteo Colombo.

Opened in 1891, the Grand Central Terminal is one of the most famous structures in NYC. This Beaux Arts Building has a ceiling which depicts the zodiac signs. Outside the station on its facade, are famous statues designed in France but built in Queens.

The High Line.

This is a 1.45-mile-long park, constructed on an elevated stretch of the former (operated between 1831 and 1968) New York Central Railroad.

New York Public Library.

Photography: Max Touhey.

One of the most famous architectural and tourist attractions, the New York Public Library was built in 1911.

VIA 57 West.

Via Getty Images/Hufton and Crow/VIEW.

This beautiful residential building is designed by the star Architect Bjarke Ingels. With an open-air garden in the middle, this structure has a pyramid-like design.

Brooklyn Museum.

Via Getty Images/Michael Marquand.

This famous tourist attraction contains almost 1.5 million works of art. Designed by the architecture firm of McKim, Mead & White, this Beaux-Arts structure is the third largest museum.

Trinity Church.

Via Getty Images/Henglein and Steets.

This church is located at the intersection of two of the most famous streets of NYC – Broadway and Wall Street. This Gothic Revival structure stands at 281 feet tall and was completed in 1846. It was the tallest building in New York at the time.

Brooklyn Bridge.

Via Getty Images/Tim Robberts.

When Brooklyn Bridge was opened in 1883, thousands of New Yorkers came to the opening ceremony. The city’s authorities had to get a circus entertainer to walk 21 elephants over the bridge to prove its safety to the city’s residents. Now, it is one of the world’s most famous tourist attractions.

Washington Square Park.

Via Getty Images/Lorenzo Bianchi.

This is one of the smallest parks in New York, at just about 10 acres. However, it is located in the middle of the trendy Greenwich Village, and also has the beautiful Washington Square Arch.

Asonia Hotel.

Photography: Michael Minn.

The Asonia Hotel is a Beaux Arts hotel which was completed in 1904. In 1972, the hotel became a designated New York City Landmark. Moreover, officials called its effect as one of “joyous exuberance profiled against the sky.”

Central Park.

This is NYC’s most famous and most documented tourist attraction. With people – tourists and New Yorkers, flocking to the park at all seasons; this is something that should definitely be there in your itinerary.

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