Tips for Visiting NYC Attractions
NYC Attractions Tips
Nothing irritates NYC locals more than someone stopping right in the middle of the sidewalk. It’s an inconsiderate behavior that will get you a lot of eye rolls.
To avoid long lines at top NYC attractions, purchase skip-the-line tickets in advance. This will save you a ton of time and money.
1. Buy Your Tickets in Advance
One of the best things you can do to save money and time when visiting NYC is to buy your tickets in advance. Many popular attractions, like the Top of the Rock, have long lines and buying a skip the line ticket in advance will save you monumental amounts of time.
If you’re planning on seeing a Broadway show, consider getting a TKTS membership in advance for a small fee which pays for itself after just a few shows!
2. Take the Staten Island Ferry
The Staten Island Ferry is free and allows you to get within a quarter mile of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and Governor’s Island. You’ll also have a great view of the Manhattan skyline.
The best time to take the ferry is during off-peak hours on weekdays. Make sure to sit on the left side for the best views. The ferry also passes by Fort Wadsworth and a huge outlet mall.
3. Visit the Statue of Liberty
The Statue of Liberty is one of the most famous attractions in the world, so you’ll want to make sure to visit. However, if you’re not a fan of boats or have limited time, the Staten Island Ferry is a great alternative!
Be sure to buy your tickets in advance and try to go on a weekday before a holiday to avoid long lines. If you can, climb the crown for a view you won’t find anywhere else.
4. Visit the Empire State Building
You can’t visit NYC without visiting the Empire State Building. It’s one of the most iconic buildings in the world, and it’s a must-see for first-time visitors.
To avoid long lines, visit the Empire State Building early in the morning or late at night. The views are spectacular and the crowds are much thinner at these times. Plus, you’ll have more time to explore the observation decks!
5. Visit the Guggenheim Museum
The Guggenheim Museum is a must-visit when in NYC. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, the nautilus-shaped museum is famous for its world-class collections and iconic rotunda.
To avoid long lines, try to visit the museum in the morning before it gets too busy. This is also when you can take photos without crowds in the background. You can easily get to the Guggenheim Museum by taking the subway line 4, 5, or 6 or by bus.
6. Visit the Museum of the City of New York
New York City is a world class museum destination. The Metropolitan Museum of Art is the largest in the United States and should be visited by all art lovers.
If you’re not a museum person, try visiting the museum during their free hours or on days when they have no entry fee. It will save you money and avoid crowds. Be sure to book ahead!
7. Visit the Museum of Modern Art
A trip to MoMa should be a must on your NYC to-do list. But if you want to avoid the long ticket lines and crowded galleries, make sure to visit outside of peak times.
Early mornings on the weekends are great for sightseeing and getting pictures without all the crowds! This is also a great time to check out Times Square.
8. Visit the Whitney Museum
If you’re a lover of modern art, it is well worth visiting the Whitney Museum. This museum is dedicated to American art, and the new building designed by Renzo Piano has spectacular views of Manhattan’s Hudson River and High Line.
It is best to visit this museum during the week, when the crowds are a lot less. You can also take advantage of their pay-what-you-wish program on Friday nights between 7 and 10 PM.
9. Visit the American Museum of Natural History
The American Museum of Natural History is one of the world’s most popular museums. It has 45 exhibit halls that cover everything from dinosaur fossils to interplanetary exploration.
It would take you days to explore all of the amazing displays here so it’s best to pick and choose your favorites. One highlight is the tree round where you can read age rings on real trees!
10. Visit the Museum of the City of New York
A trip to NYC isn’t complete without a visit to one of the city’s many museums. The Museum of the City of New York (MCNY) is a particularly good choice as it focuses on all things New York and how it became what it is today.
Its three first-floor galleries explore 400 years of history through paintings, furniture, and drawings. Also don’t miss Stanley Tucci’s narrated documentary Timescapes!