New York attractions

New York attractions

Notwithstanding the First Nations, who have always lived on what is now the Manhattan Peninsula, the Dutch established a first settlement there in 1626 under the name "Nieuw Amsterdam". Over the next 400 years, New York City (NYC), the largest city in the USA, developed from this nucleus. More than 8,8 million people live within its city limits (as of April 2020). The population of the New York metropolitan area is given as approximately 19 million. NYC is also a tourist hotspot. In the pre-Corona year 2019, the "Big Apple" expected 67 million visitors.

Lower Manhattan with One World Trade CenterLower Manhattan with One World Trade Center

Rightly so, we think: New York City is one of the most exciting cities in the world. Hundreds of galleries and museums, countless theatres, thousands of restaurants and much more inspire visitors. The mega city offers a variety of sights. Below we present our favorites among the buildings, museums, districts, parks, streets and squares.

Selected buildings

When we think of New York, we involuntarily see Manhattan's high-rise backdrop in our mind's eye. Among the global cities with the most buildings over 200 meters high, New York will take third place in 2020 after Shenzhen/China and Dubai with eighty-one skyscrapers. Individual buildings have viewing platforms and are accessible to visitors for a fee. The following buildings in particular enjoy our sympathy.

One World Trade Center (1 WTC)

After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 on the two skyscrapers of the World Trade Center, in the immediate vicinity of the 9/11 Memorial built the One World Trade Center. Of all the buildings in New York, the new building is the most impressive. Based on the American Declaration of Independence of July 4, 1776, the building, including its antenna system, measures a symbolic 1.776 feet, which corresponds to a height of 541 meters. Thus, the 1 WTC is the tallest building in the USA. It currently ranks eleventh among the tallest structures in the world.

Reflections in the 1 WTC

Reflections in the 1 WTC

The viewing platforms called "Observatory" are open to visitors every day. The view is even better than from the Empire State Building. The building has 104 floors. The viewpoints are on floors 100, 101 and 102 (at 380 meters plus). The journey with the express elevators takes about 60 seconds. With excellent visibility, visitors can see up to 80 kilometers away. Three to four million visitors are expected each year.

  Location: 285 Fulton St
Admission prices vary between $44 and $74 depending on the scope of services used.

Empire State Building

The Empire State Building is the fifth tallest building in New York by absolute height. It measures 443 meters including the antenna tip.

Empire State Building
Empire State Building - Entrance
Empire State Building - Observation Deck

The building also has a viewing platform. It is said that nearly 1931 million visitors have enjoyed the spectacular view from the lower, open observation terrace since its completion in 120. This terrace is on the 86th floor at 320 meters above sea level. The view is magnificent in good weather conditions.

New York-East Village
New York - View of the Hudson River
New York - Houses on Madison Avenue
New York - Finance District

  Location: 350 Fifth Ave
Visitors currently pay from US$44 (depending on the scope of services) to visit the observation decks on the 86th and 102nd floors.

Rockefeller Center

The Rockefeller Center complex, which consists of 5 buildings, including 6 skyscrapers, stretches between 20th and 19th Avenue. The highlight of the area is the seventy-storey and 259 meter high Comcast Building, the former General Electric Building. The skyscraper was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1985. It has a viewing platform called "Top of the Rock" on its top floor. Central Park to the north as well as Lower Manhattan to the south can be viewed well from here.

Rockefeller Square

Rockefeller Square

Rockefeller Square 

The Lower Plaza also belongs to the building complex of the Rockefeller Center. In summer concerts are held there, in winter the area is transformed into an ice rink and a huge Christmas tree is set up.

Rockefeller Plaza with Jeff Koon sculpture

  Location: 30 Rockefeller Plaza
Ticket prices to visit the platform vary from $40 to $125.

Chrysler Building

A special landmark of New York is the Art Deco style designed 319 meter high Chrysler Building. It is located in Midtown Manhattan. It currently ranks 12th among the tallest buildings in the metropolis. The name already suggests it: the eye-catcher was originally built for the Chrysler Corporation in the late 1920s. The dome of the building is made of stainless steel. Unlike the aforementioned, the office building does not have a viewing platform.

The Chrysler Building

  Location: 405 Lexington Ave

Flatiron Building

Compared to the aforementioned buildings, the 91 meter high Flatiron Building hardly deserves a mention. And yet it is one of the symbols of the city because of its triangular wedge shape. It is one of the most photographed objects in New York. The building was opened in 1902. Its narrow side is just two meters wide. It was immortalized in the Spider-Man films.

 Flatiron Building 

 Flatiron Building

  Location: in the triangle of 5th Avenue, Broadway and East 23rd Street

Grand Central Station

Grand Central Station, inaugurated in 1913, is New York's main station and also the largest terminus. Every day, 500.000 commuters and travelers use one of the 44 platforms with a total of 67 tracks spread over two floors.

Grand Central Station
Grand Central Station
Grand Central Station

The terminal, which was last renovated in the 1990s, still has 65 shops, 35 restaurants, a food market based on the European model and - in an extension - the Vanderbilt Tennis Club. The ceiling of the luxurious-looking main hall is also painted with twelve golden constellations and 2.500 stars.

  Location: Corner of 42nd Street and Park Avenue
Hours of Operation: Daily 5:15 AM to 2:00 AM
Guided tours are offered regularly in the station.


Museums and galleries abound in New York City. The following are representative of the many museums.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Located halfway up Central Park, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met) is one of the largest and most well-known art museums in the world. The museum displays its art history collections behind a monumental facade. The objects on display reflect the period from Egyptian temples to modern art.

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Metropolitan Museum of Art

  Location: 1000 5th Ave

MoMa - Museum of Modern Art

The MoMa, the Museum of Modern Art, is just under three kilometers south of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. For the first time, art from a specific period, meaning modernism, was collected and exhibited. According to hearsay, the MoMa collection includes more than 1929 works of art from all genres. Artists of rank and repute have found a place at MoMa.

  Location: Between 5th and 6th Avenues at West 53rd Street

American Museum of Natural History

The museum is dedicated to the entire history of mankind, starting with the Stone Age people and ending with space travel. The visitor will find the 5-story building on the street that runs alongside the west side of Central Park. The museum has its own metro station.

  Location: 200 Central Park West

Guggenheim Museum

Founded in 1939, the Guggenheim Museum is located on the east side of Central Park at the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (water) reservoir. Art objects and works of Impressionism, Expressionism and Surrealism are on display inside the futuristic building. The works of art come from artists such as Cézanne, van Gogh, Monet and Picasso.

  Location: 1071 5th Ave

National Museum of the American Indian

In a former customs building in Lower Manhattan, the New York branch of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum is dedicated to the history of the American Indian, the Native Americans. Visitors to the exhibition see exhibits from the earliest American history to the present day. The exhibition deals with the indigenous people of North, Central and South America.

 National Museum of the American Indian

  Location: 1 Bowling Green (near Battery Park)

Some outstanding neighborhoods of New York City

New York City is divided into five districts, so-called boroughs. They are Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island. The districts are in turn divided into “neighborhoods”. If you want to get to know the districts intensively, you can book one of the special tours offered for this purpose. We limit our short stays to locations primarily in Manhattan.

Greenwich Village

Greenwich Village is one of the better-known neighborhoods in Manhattan. It is an artist and scene district with many listed buildings. Anyone who likes city life and also has the necessary income lives here. Bars, cafés and many restaurants ensure a sophisticated atmosphere. The well-known buildings include u. the Jefferson Market Courthouse built in 1877.

Apartment building in Greenwich Village


This district has nothing to do with Soho in the West End of London. Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood didn't have a good reputation in times long past. The abbreviation stands for "South of Houston Street". The area has been hip since the 1960s, and 19th-century warehouses have been transformed into chic lofts.


Today, SoHo is home to hip antique stores, galleries, museums, and trendy cafes and restaurants. Rents charged and paid in SoHo are among the highest in New York.

South street seaport

And another destination in Lower Manhattan, this time on the East River: We would like to compare the South Street Seaport with Hamburg's warehouse district. Old trading houses, cobblestone streets and historic quays. There are also chic shops, event locations, bars and restaurants, the South Street Seaport Museum and some historic ships.

South street seaport
South Street Seaport Museum - Lightship Ambrose
South street seaport museum

Brooklyn Heights

Across from the southern tip of Manhattan is the old residential neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights. The East River forms the northern border. Many buildings from the 19th century have been preserved in this part of the city. It is not without reason that the city of New York gave this region the name “Historic District”.



Streets, Squares, Bridges & Parks


With a length of more than 25 kilometers, Broadway is record-breaking. It crosses Manhattan from north to south. Its existence goes back to an Indian trail. Broadway has long been the center of New York City's "Theater District." There, popular musicals are shown in dozens of theaters, and world stars have established their careers on Broadway.

On Broadway
Macy's on Broadway
Macy's on Broadway

Times Square

You can look for and find the world-famous square on the corner of Broadway and 7th Avenue. The square became famous for its New Year's Eve celebrations, which have been taking place here since 1904. A million people gather to welcome the New Year. Times Square is part of the Theater District and the site of illuminated advertising and digital screens.

Advertising in Times Square

Advertising in Times Square

Illuminated advertising in Times Square 

5th Avenue

The flagship stores of world-famous chain stores are located on 5th Avenue, the almost eleven-kilometer-long street in the borough of Manhattan. The Flatiron Building, the Empire State Building, the New York Public Library or world-famous shops such as Tiffany & Co. or the Plaza Hotel and much more are also on 5th Avenue.

Trump Tower on 5th Ave
The Peninsula Hotel on 5th Avenue
Plaza Hotel on 5th Ave

Wall Street

Although a little over half a kilometer long, Wall Street is one of the most famous streets in the world. Wall Street is the center of New York's financial district. Numerous credit institutes lodge at the posh address.

Wall Street-New York Stock Exchange
Wall Street-New York Stock Exchange
Wall Street - the Charring Bull
Wall Street - Federal Hall

In addition, on Wall Street we find the largest stock exchange in the world, the New York Stock Exchange. Along the street are Trinity Church and Federal Hall. This building was of particular importance when New York was the capital of the USA: The first United States Congress met in the Federal Hall.

Brooklyn Bridge

New York City has a number of bridges worth seeing, including the Brooklyn Bridge, one of the most famous suspension bridges in the world. It spans the estuary of the East River and connects Brooklyn with Manhattan. The structure, completed in 1883, was the longest suspension bridge in the world at almost 500 meters when it was completed. Visitors to the city can walk or bike across the bridge and enjoy stunning views of the New York City skyline.

Brooklyn Bridge

 Brooklyn Bridge

 Brooklyn Bridge  

Battery Park H3

At the southern tip of Manhattan is a nearly ten-hectare park. From there, ferries go to Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty and Governors Island. The name "Battery" already indicates it. Where there is now a park, there used to be a gun emplacement at Castle Clinton, which served to protect the city of New York.

Battery Park - Castle Clinton
Battery Park - Korean War Veterans Memorial
Battery Park-East Coast Memorial

There are various monuments in the park. These include The Sphere and the Korean War Veterans Memorial.

Bryant Park

Bryant Park is a few hundred paces east of Times Square. The inner-city green space was created between 1823 and 1840. Lots of greenery, a beautiful fountain, several kiosks, a children's carousel and a variety of seating options make the park a soothing place. In summer, events are held on the spacious lawn. In winter, an ice rink is set up for skaters, a Christmas tree is set up and a Christmas market is organised. The southeast side of the park is adjacent to the New York Public Library.

Bryant Park - bird's eye view
Bryant Park
Bryant Park - 6th Ave South
Carousel in Bryant Park

Central Park

The largest park in Manhattan measures 340 hectares. Central Park is a landscape park that dates back to 1863. Over time it has developed into a varied and stunning park. Visitors can spend all day at the water features or in the Central Park Zoo without getting bored.

Autumn mood in Central Park
State-of-the-art living with a view of Central Park
Water surface in Central Park
The Boathouse in Central Park


Between 2006 and 2014, the former, disused West Side Freight Line railway line was converted into a public park. Between Gansevoort Street to the south and West 34th Street to the north, visitors walk a distance of 2,3 kilometers at a height of eight meters above street level. The former Meatpacking District is now considered a chic commercial area for creative professionals and a hip residential area.

Access to the High Line

Access to the High Line

Blooming High Line  

Two world famous sights

Ground Zero

The place is reminiscent of the terrible attack on the World Trade Center. On the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attack, the National September 11 Memorial & Museum was opened on the stands of the two collapsed skyscrapers. A visit to this bright and luminous memorial is difficult to endure, although it is recommended. More on this below 9/11 memorial.

Passers-by at the 9/11 Memorial
9/11 Memorial - the empty space in the water basin
9/11 Memorial - The South Basin and Museum
9/11 Memorial - Tree Planting

Statue of Liberty Memorial

Already on the way by ferry from Bayonne to Manhattan you can see the world-famous monument, the Statue of Liberty. Officially named "Liberty Enlightening the World," the statue was a gift from the French people to the American people. If you want, you can climb up the statue with a Crown Access Ticket to the crown of the goddess of freedom. Made of copper, the monument is 46 meters high. Including the platform, it reaches a total height of 93 meters.

The Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty

Access was blocked for a long time due to renovation work. A new stair system and improvements to the interior had become necessary. As of late October 2012, the statue was reopened to visitors. In November 2012, Hurricane Sandy damaged power and security systems. Access to the statue has been blocked again. Since July 4, 2013, Independence Day, the statue has been open to visitors again.

 Ellis Island

Also part of the memorial is the Monument to the History of Immigration to the United States on Ellis Island. Millions of immigrants passed through this center. The imposing historic building has served as a museum since 1990. The ferry company State Cruises provides ferry service to both monuments.

Update March 2023