Whether you're in Manhattan for business or pleasure, the bustling city has plenty of must-see attractions. As the most densely populated of New York City's five boroughs, Manhattan consists mainly of Manhattan Island. It's considered the heart of the Big Apple as well as the world's commercial, cultural, and financial centers. The next time you find yourself in this area, make sure you check out any of the following locations.
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A hybrid cable suspension bridge, the iconic Brooklyn Bridge spans the East River and connects Lower Manhattan with Brooklyn Heights. This architecturally stunning bridge is one of the oldest in the country, with construction completed in 1883. When it was completed, the bridge was the longest suspension bridge in the world. According to New York City's Department of Transportation, as of 2018, about 116,000 vehicles, 30,000 pedestrians, and 3,000 cyclists travel across this bridge daily.
If you cross the bridge on foot, the entire walk should take between 30 to 60 minutes, depending on how many stops you make along the way to take photographs or how large the crowd is. The entire trek is about one mile, with the pedestrian walkway beginning at City Hall Park along Park Row and Centre Street. In 2021, a two-way protected bike lane opened to accommodate the increase in cycling to New York City.
Welcoming more than 42 million people annually, Central Park is one of the most-visited parks in the world. With an impressive 843 acres, this park sits in the heart of Manhattan and provides a respite for just about anyone. Inside its grounds, you'll find the Central Park Zoo, Shakespeare Garden, Belvedere Castle, and the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir.
Explore Central Park on a guided tour of your choosing. You can sign up for walking, running, horse and carriage, bike, sightseeing, photo, or pedicab tours. Depending on the time of year, the park has ample outdoor activities. Summer brings concerts, boating opportunities, picnicking, as well as film and theater events. When the weather gets colder, enjoy ice skating, sledding, and ice sculpture festivals.
Ellis Island served as a gateway for more than 12 million immigrants to the United States between 1892 and 1954. Today, more than three million people visit this island each year to learn all about immigration to the area during that time. The National Immigration Museum sits in the former processing station and serves as a living monument about American immigration. Stepping foot outside the museum, look on a commemorative plaque to see if you recognize the names of any ancestors who might have come through this spot.
You can also visit the American Family Immigration History Center, which is home to an archive of the immigrant experience. It consists of more than 65 million searchable records, giving you access to a renowned database of immigration documents so you can learn more about your ancestry and heritage.
Empire State Building
This 102-story skyscraper is located on Fifth Avenue between West 33rd and 34th streets. As of 2021, the Empire State Building is the fourth tallest building in New York City and the sixth tallest in the United States. Each year more than four million visitors gather at this famous building, which has had its fair share of movie appearances. Learn about the history of this building through exhibits found on the 2nd and 80th floors. Download the free self-guided audio tour to enhance your experience.
The building offers two observation decks, both of which give you stunning views. The main deck is the 86th-floor observatory, and this famous open-air spot gives you a chance to see Central Park, the Statue of Liberty, and the Brooklyn Bridge. Head up to the top deck on the 102nd floor to experience floor-to-ceiling views. During a clear day, you can see up to 80 miles and six states, including Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Also referred to as the Met, the Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in 1870 to establish and maintain art for all patrons to enjoy. The building sits on 17 acres, making it the largest art museum in the United States. The museum houses more than two million objects, and visitors can see artwork that dates back more than 5,000 years. Its permanent collection contains works from ancient Egypt, sculptures from European masters, and American abstract paintings.
9/11 Memorial Museum
Opened in 2014, the 9/11 Memorial Museum pays tribute to those who lost their lives during the 1993 and 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center. The grounds feature reflecting pools that sit on the ground where the buildings stood. One of the historic remanents known as the Survivors' Stairs lies at the end of the ramp inside the museum. This staircase provided an unobstructed exit for people fleeing the site on September 11, 2001. The memorial is free to visit and open daily from 7:30 a.m. until 9 p.m. Tickets for the museum must be purchased.
Statue of Liberty
As one of the most visited landmarks in New York City, the Statue of Liberty was a gift to the United States. France sent it in 1886 as a symbol of freedom and democracy. She beckons visitors to cross the waters via a ferry to Liberty Island so they can learn more about her. The vessels depart from locations in lower Manhattan and New Jersey.
Once you arrive on the island, explore the Statue of Liberty Museum, where you can learn all about the statue's history and see her original torch. You can also take several tours of the statue, including on the grounds of Liberty Island and inside the statue. You might also be able to combine tours with one at Ellis Island if you plan to stop at both locations during your trip.
No matter where you plan to spend your day in Manhattan, this energetic city has you covered. What are some of your favorite spots to visit in the area? Contact us at Martin Busch Jewelers, and let us know where you like to go in Manhattan.