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29 Amazing Places to Visit in Manhattan

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There are plenty of amazing places to visit in Manhattan but it’s hard to know which ones are worth your time.

No matter how long you spend in New York City, you won’t be able to do everything there, that is unless you’re planning to stay for a good few months.

With this in mind, we decided to create a guide of the best things to do in Manhattan so that you can narrow down your choices. Manhattan is one of the five boroughs of New York City and has lots to offer for both tourists and locals alike.

Manhattan is the heart of New York City and there is definitely valid reasons for that. Below you will find 29 different places that you need to visit in Manhattan on your next trip to NYC.

Places to Visit in Manhattan

1. Central Park

A trip to New York isn’t complete without visiting Central Park. No matter how many times you visit this beautiful park, it is still astounding at how large it is.

You absolutely could not walk through the whole of this park in one go. We were going to do a Gossip Girl tour but decided we would self-guide instead. A lot of the self-guided tour was walking through Central Park and it was truly a sight to behold.

Central park is one of the places you need to visit whilst you're in Manhattan. This image shows walking down the steps towards Central Park with a saxophonist playing and large skyscrapers in the background.

During the winter, this is a perfect place to visit. The frosty tips on the grass, wandering with a coffee in hand and enjoying the sights.

In the winter, you will also find the Wollman Rink where you can go ice skating? Make sure that you get there early though as the queues can get a little bit extreme.

Did you know that Central Park has its own zoo?! Yep, that is really how large the park is.

Enjoy beautiful monuments such as Alice in Wonderland sculptures, Bethesda Fountain and Pulitzer Fountain. Not to mention following the literary trail or visiting the infamous Strawberry fields.

There is something for everyone at Central Park. If you’re travelling as a couple then why not head to the park with a picnic and truly enjoy the beauty of it all?

Central Park Opening Times: 06:00am – 01:00am

Liam standing next to the large map of Central Park

2. Grand Central Station

Being the backdrop in a lot of major movies, Grand Central is one of the most known places to visit in Manhattan.

Films that have been shot at Grand Central Station include Superman, The Avengers, Godzilla and John Wick 3; just to name a few… Not to mention that it was also featured in the first episode of the hit TV series; Gossip Girl.

When you walk into the station, it will take your breath away from the history, architecture and grandeur.

Busy Grand Central Station as travellers make their way to where they need to be.

It is home to one of the most famous clocks in New York City so it is definitely worth a visit to admire the beauty of the station.

Whilst we were there, we got to see a couple that was just married having their wedding photoshoot here. What a perfect backdrop for your wedding photos!

Grand Central Opening Times: 05:15am – 02:00am

3. Top of the Rock

With 5 different observation decks in Manhattan, you should try to visit as many of them as possible.

Top of the Rock is an awesome observation deck to visit with beautiful views across the city. Head up 70 floors to the top of the rock and enjoy 360 degree views of the city.

They have recently introduced a new attraction at Top of the Rock which will take you back in time. During the construction of the Rockerfeller Centre, there is an iconic photo of workers sitting on a beam with New York City in the background.

You guessed it! The new attraction is The Beam where visitors will be able to recreate this iconic photo and get a little higher.

Top of the Rock is one of the best places to visit in Manhattan for beautiful views across the city.

The panoramic views from Top of the Rock are incredible and one of the best ways to breathe in the city.

Top of the Rock Opening Times: 09:00 – 00:00 (last entry at 23:10)

Prices: Adults ($40) Children aged 6-12 ($34) Senior aged 62+ ($38)

4. 9/11 Memorial Site

One of the biggest disasters to hit the USA was 9/11 and it was a tragedy that shook through the world.

Visiting this memorial is a heart-breaking and eye-opening experience that will educate you on the impact that this terrorist attack had on the nation.

9/11 Memorial Plaza

You can visit ground zero in the memorial plaza where you can pay your respects to those that were sadly lost in this tragedy. The plaza is free to enter but please remember to be respectful whilst walking through the plaza to those that have lost their loved ones.

If you would like to learn more about what happened on that tragic day then you can also enter the 9/11 memorial museum.

Within the museum, you will hear narratives of those affected and materials that were taken from the attack.

Walking through the museum is an emotional experience but it is important to appreciate and respect those that lost their lives on September 11th.

Memorial Plaza Opening Times: 8am – 8pm 

9/11 Museum Opening Times: 9am – 7pm

5. Times Square

What is a trip to New York City without heading to Times Square? This iconic square in Manhattan is a must visit for any first timers to New York City.

Times Square is the ultimate hub for commercial and entertainment purposes. One thing is for certain is that you will never have a boring moment whilst visiting Times Square.

Times Square is an amazing place to visit in Manhattan with so much going on all the time. It is easy to get lost in the crowd here and watch the hustle and bustle of a day in NYC.

There is always something happening in the square especially with how much busy it is at all times. You will be swept up in the hustle and bustle without a shadow of a doubt and that is not necessarily a bad thing.

Not to mention that on the top of most people’s bucket lists is to see the ball drop on New Year’s Eve in NYC. Times Square gets a little crazy on New Year’s Eve but the atmosphere is unreal.

Watch the entertainers perform in Times Square and let yourself enjoy the booming atmosphere as you wander through.

6. Empire State Building

Another iconic place to visit in Manhattan is of course the Empire State Building. Standing 1,454 feet tall (including the spire and antenna), it is a building to be reckoned with.

Believe it or not, it is only the 43rd tallest tower in the world. It has been featured in a wide variety of films and TV. shows making it one of the most filmed buildings in the world.

We would suggest planning your trip to the Empire State Building in advance. When we visited, we did not plan at all and it was foggy to say the least!

Opening Times for Empire State Building: 9am – midnight

It is mind blowing how large the Empire State Building is and yet it is only the 43rd tallest tower in the world. This image shows Amy standing in front of the Empire State Building so you can see the size comparison.

7. Madame Tussauds

What is fun about walking around a bunch of wax work figures? Everything!

We never thought that Madame Tussauds would be something that we would enjoy. Nothing personal, just who we are as people! Wow, were we wrong!

Liam enjoying the waxwork of E.T at Madame Tussauds.

We had such a laugh wandering around the different wax works taking photos. It is impressive the amount of work that goes into these figures.

There are 25 Madame Tussauds throughout the world and New York City is absolutely incredible. Personally, we really loved the horror section of the museum.

In the NYC Madame Tussauds, you can also view the Marvel Universe 4D which was really awesome to watch. You can also upgrade your tickets to include their Clown Chaos 7D.

Opening Times for NYC Madame Tussauds: 10am – 8pm

8. One World Observatory

Another one of New York’s popular viewpoints is the One World Observatory. It is a close 2nd of the highest viewpoints within New York City.

You will go up 102 floors to the viewpoint (all in 47 seconds) and get to enjoy the beautiful 360 degree view.

On the 101st floor, you will be able to enjoy some drinks and food with a spectacular view of the city skyline. If you’re planning to eat at One World Observatory then make a reservation in advance as it can get pretty busy!

Opening Times for One World Observatory: 10am – 7pm

9. NYC Catacombs

Explore Manhattan in a unique light by heading underground into lower Manhattan’s catacombs.

You’ll head into St. Patrick’s Cathedral and learn about the history of the cathedral whilst seeing areas that are off-limits to general visitors.

You’ll head into the walled cemetery and learn about the final resting place of some of the most influential figures in New York City.

Opening Times for New York City Catacombs: 10:30am – 16:15pm

10. Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (otherwise known as the MET) is a great space for art lovers and creatives alike.

Some people may recognise this iconic building from the hit TV show Gossip Girl where they often meet on the steps. As a result of this, you will find plenty of tourists taking a photo on the steps and living their Gossip Girl best life!

However, this shouldn’t be the only reason that you visit the museum. The MET hosts a collection of over 490,000 pieces of work! To browse all of the work at the museum would take you a very long time so we would recommend spending between 3-5 hours here to be able to see as much as you can.

The Metropolitan Museum of art (the MET) is one of the best places for any art lovers. It holds a large collection but it is also extremely busy. When we were visiting, as you can see from this photo, the steps are filled with tourists.

Not only is it astonishing by how many pieces of work are on display at the museum but some of it dates back to 5,000 years old.

Head through the museum learning more about African, Egyptian, European, Asian and American art. There are so many pieces to admire that you certainly won’t be bored!

Opening Times of the MET: 10am – 5pm on Sunday – Thursday and 10am – 9pm on Friday and Saturday.

11. St. Patrick’s Cathedral

If visiting the catacombs isn’t really your thing, you should still head to St. Patrick’s Cathedral to admire the beauty within.

St. Patrick's Cathedral has such a beautiful interior and it was fascinating to learn more about the stained glasses like in this photo.

As we are not religious ourselves, we were pleasantly surprised by how interesting the audio tour was of the cathedral. We got to learn more about the aura of the cathedral and the architecture itself.

One of the things we loved the most was how welcoming and open the Cathedral is to visitors and what they stand for. St. Patrick’s Cathedral is truly beautiful and worth taking the time to marvel at whilst you’re in New York City.

See hours of mass here

When planning your visit, please bear in mind the times of mass and if you’re visiting during mass, please be respectful and quiet.

Opening Times for St. Patrick’s Cathedral: 06:45am – 20:45pm

12. American Museum of Natural History

If you’ve never been to one of these museums before then the one thing we will say is that it is a great way to learn more about the world we live in.

The Museum of Natural History is incredibly interactive and a great place to take the kids too. Exploring NYC can be exhausting for children so this is a great way for them to open their minds and get excited about learning.

Explore more about the animal kingdom and step into the butterfly vivarium. One area that we loved in particular was the Big Bang theatre to learn more about how the universe came to be.

This is a really fun place to spend a few hours whether you’re looking to learn more about the world, get some great Instagram shots or escape the NYC rain. Spend your time in Manhattan educating yourself and growing.

Opening Times for American Museum of Natural History: 10:00am – 17:30pm

13. Chelsea Market

Fancy some retail therapy to take a break from the sightseeing? How about trying some really great fresh and unique food? Chelsea Market is where you need to go!

Located in the meatpacking district of Manhattan, you will find it bustling with tourists and locals alike going about their day.

Within the market, you will find plenty of choices on whatever type of food you fancy. From donuts, candy, baked goods and lots of yummy savoury bites, you will be spoilt for choice.

Even if you’re not looking to spend money and you’re having a budget trip to New York, it is still worth heading to Chelsea Market.

All the different aromas will envelop you and it is incredible to enjoy a drink by people watching.

If you have time, take part in a food tasting walking tour so that you can try some of the best bits. It’s a perfect place for foodie lovers!

Opening Times for Chelsea Market: 07:00am – 22:00pm

14. Wall Street

We all hear about Wall Street but how many of us knows what it actually means other than when we think about Leonardo Dicaprio.

Wall Street is located in lower Manhattan and was the ground-breaking area for stock and the financial market. Nowadays, you no longer need to be placed on Wall Street to be significantly important in the financial world.

However, it is still an important part of American history especially when it comes to the Wall Street Crash. Before visiting the street, take some time to brush up on the significance of Wall Street and the impact on American culture.

The subway at Wall Street.

Whilst you’re visiting here, you will also come across a huge queue of people all waiting to touch the Bull of Wall Street. It is a statue of a bull and it is thought that if you rub the bull that it will bring you good luck.

15. Chinatown

We absolutely loved visiting Chinatown in Manhattan and seeing the lanterns light up the streets.

You will find that the Chinatown in New York City is quite similar to the one in London so if you enjoyed it in London then you will enjoy it in NYC.

Whilst you’re visiting, head through the streets soaking in the atmosphere and trying some of the incredible food spots here. Especially make sure that you give some dumplings a try whilst you’re in Chinatown.

To enjoy some beautiful views of the city, make sure to visit the Crown Rooftop Bar and watch the sun set. It is truly such a beautiful sight to behold and an incredibly romantic spot for couples in New York City.

There are so many great places to visit in Chinatown so make sure you explore the streets whilst you’re in Manhattan.

16. SoHo

Not far from Chinatown, you will find the trendy area of SoHo in lower Manhattan.

This is a trendy area of Manhattan where you will get to enjoy plenty of great food, shopping and art galleries.

From here, you can visit the LGBTQ+ museum to support and learn more about the community. You will find plenty of exhibits and events so it’s always worth checking before you visit.

Another highlight of visiting SoHo is to go to the Colour Factory which is an interactive colourful art exhibit that pays homage to New York City itself. Not just that but it’s also a great spot to get those gorgeous Instagram photos!

In SoHo you will find plenty of unique places to enjoy quirky cocktails too. Top it all off with a visit to the Ice Cream Museum where you will also be able to enjoy unlimited ice cream throughout your visit to the museum!

SoHo is easily one of our favourite destinations purely because it is such a unique and trendy area of Manhattan to visit.

17. Little Italy

Sign for Little Italy with some Italian restaurants in view.

Close to Chinatown and SoHo you will find the wonderful Little Italy neighbourhood of Manhattan. This is one of the most romantic spots within NYC so it’s perfect for any couples travelling together.

Unsurprisingly, you will find some of the best Italian restaurants in this neighbourhood. You will find plenty of Italian treats that will be difficult to find elsewhere too.

The infamous Audrey Hepburn graffiti.

September is one of the best times to visit Little Italy where there is a huge festival that takes place. The Feast of San Gennaro lasts around 11 days where tourists and locals will get to enjoy plenty of entertainment and of course great Italian food.

One of the most popular attractions in Little Italy is the Audrey Hepburn graffiti which is absolutely breath-taking.

There are plenty of walking tours that will take you through the neighbourhood. Alternatively, you can join a combined walking tour of Little Italy, SoHo and Chinatown which we would highly recommend.

18. Rockefeller Centre

During Christmas, the Rockefeller centre is one of the best places to visit. You will get to see the Christmas lights strung up and the people enjoying the ice skating rink. It is a magical area of Manhattan during Christmas time.

This is where you will also find the Top of the Rock observation deck so make sure to plan your visit accordingly so you can explore both around the same time.

In the middle of the centre you will also find popular attractions such as the NBC studios and Radio City Music Hall.

The Rockefeller Centre is one of the most incredible places to visit in Manhattan during the festive period. You will get to enjoy the stunning Christmas tree and head on the ice for some skating.

19. Rooftop Cinema Club

This cinema club is not like any other cinema that you will have been too. Firstly, it’s on an open rooftop so that is a little bit different than your standard cinema. We would highly recommend planning this advance for a warm day.

One thing that really sets it apart is that phones are allowed in this cinema. All that is asked is that you are respectful to other cinema-goers.

You will be given headphones when you arrive so that there isn’t any noise from the city disturbing your film.

The movies range between cult films, new releases and our ever favourite classics. This cinema makes for a fun experience set with gorgeous views of Manhattan.

This is a really unique way to spend an evening in New York especially if you’re travelling as a couple. It is complete with an on-site bar for you to enjoy your favourite drinks with the movie too! What more can you want?!

Tickets are issued based on a first-come first-served basis so make sure that you arrive early to avoid disappointment.

Prices: Depending on the seat type you choose, tickets can range between $19.50 and $28.50

20. Cruise on the Hudson

The Hudson River is a great way to see the sights of New York City in a unique way. If you’re lucky, on a clear day, you may also be able to see the statue of Liberty in the distance.

Cruising on the Hudson is one of our favourite things to do in New York. We got to enjoy cruising on the most beautiful boat in Great Gatsby themed attire for New Year's Eve.

Depending on the type of cruise that you choose will determine the amenities that you get to enjoy.

We were lucky enough to cruise on the Hudson for New Year’s Eve in NYC. This was one of the most amazing experiences where we enjoyed a buffet dinner with a Great Gatsby themed dress code.

During certain times of the year, you will be able to find different variations of the Hudson River cruise. Unless you’re visiting on New Year’s, we would recommend trying to just go when the weather is nice!

One of the best ways to cruise the Hudson River is at sunset. As this can be quite a popular thing to do in Manhattan (especially for couples), try to book in advance as much as possible.

21. Museum of Sex

The Museum of Sex is in our opinion a great hidden gem in New York City. If you’re travelling as a couple, head to the museum and have a bit of fun.

It is not all raunchy, there is a museum element which is really interesting to learn about how sex has changed over the years.

Our favourite part was the Super Funland where you play a series of mini games to win prizes. It was really good fun and as a couple we had a really good laugh together.

We don’t want to leave too many spoilers for this incredible museum so we will leave you to make your own mind up.

The Museum of Sex was not something we planned to do when visiting Manhattan but it was such a hidden gem. We didn't take too many photos but this one shows us posing together at one of the attractions inside the museum.

Opening Times for Museum of Sex: 1pm – 10pm on weekdays and 1pm – midnight on weekends.

22. See a show on Broadway

What trip to New York is complete without seeing a show on Broadway? This is another thing that you will be able to tick off your bucket list for NYC.

When we visited New York, we were lucky enough to get tickets for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child on Broadway and it was absolutely incredible.

Our tickets for seeing Harry Potter and the Cursed Child on Broadway.

Whether a musical takes your fancy or just a simple play, there are plenty of options for everyone on Broadway. The things that surprised us the most was that the tickets were much cheaper than we expected they would be.

We would recommend heading to the box office of the show that you would like to see and enquiring on their times. We ended up getting our own private booth at a good price.

However, some of the shows are much busier than others so it is always worth trying to book your tickets well in advance to ensure that you don’t miss out.

23. Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

You will get to explore this museum marvelling at the most incredible forms of crafts that have been created. In particular, you will get to view the world’s first ever space shuttle and military aircrafts.

One of the favourite attractions within the museum is a supersonic spy plane. If you’re travelling with children or any transport or mechanical enthusiasts then this is definitely the place to go.

This museum is so much more than just sampling different modes of transport. It is an educational journey where you will walk away with plenty more knowledge than you walked in with.

For those that are more hands-on, you can put yourself in the pilot’s shoes in the flight simulator. There are also multiple 4D and VR experiences for you to enjoy.

If you don’t have much knowledge of transportation prior to visiting the museum then you may find it more interesting to have a guided tour of the museum.

Opening Times for Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum: 10am – 17:00pm

24. Guggenheim Museum

This beautifully designed art museum contains pieces that are both modern and classic artwork. You will find that there are over 600 pieces of artwork inside the museum for you to browse.

It is actually considered one of the most significant designed buildings of the 21st century. After its completion in 1956, visitors flocked from all over the world to view some of the magnificent artwork inside.

The Guggenheim Museum was built in Manhattan to host Solomon Guggenheim’s collection and it has become a popular attraction with tourists.

We don’t want to spoil too much so we guess you will just have to see it for yourself…

Opening Times for the Guggenheim Museum: 11am – 18:00pm

25. The Edge

This is one of our favourite observation decks within New York City as The Edge is much more unique than the other viewpoints.

It can get very busy at The Edge so make sure that you either book fast-track tickets or head there outside of peak times so that you don’t spend all your time in New York queueing.

Located in Hudson Yard, you will walk through an exhibition which explains more about why The Edge was created and the movements they are making to aid global warming.

Even if you are queuing to enter the observation deck, they have ensured to provide plenty of information and thought provoking exhibits along the way.

Like all of the observation decks in Manhattan, The Edge was just as busy. Liam decided to take a break and have a seat on the floor with a spectacular view of the city behind him.

The Edge is actually the highest outdoor sky deck within New York City and boasts some of our favourite views of the skyline.

If you’re visiting a few of the observation decks then we would recommend visiting each of them at different times of the day so that you can see the city in a unique way each time.

If you’re feeling brave enough then you can also arrange a city climb up The Edge. This is a perfect adventure for any adrenaline junkies planning to visit New York City.

Opening Times for The Edge: 10am – 10pm.

26. Comedy Club

We had so much fun at the Broadway Comedy club so we would recommend you paying it a visit too.

If you’re not sure what to do in the evening whilst you’re visiting New York then the Broadway Comedy Club is definitely the best way to do that!

We had an incredible time visiting the club and loved that some of the greatest comedians began here themselves.

One of the things that we loved the most is that some of the staff that work there go up to do their own set.

There is no guarantee who will be performing on the night you visit so it is worth checking before you go.

27. Fotografiska Museum

This museum displays collections of photography, art and celebration of culture. You will find world-class photography on display here for you to appreciate.

You will even get to view some beautiful glass art whilst you’re there. We would recommend spending a couple hours here to peruse the collection on display.

Considering that it is New York’s newest museum, it has still begun to build it’s own reputation. It has even been featured in the Netflix programmes Inventing Anna and Anna Delvey’s life.

Opening Times for the Fotografiska Museum: 10:00am – 21:00pm

28. Radio City Music Hall

Known as the largest indoor theatre in the world, you need to make sure that you pay a visit to Radio City Music Hall.

To learn more about the hall, you can arrange a guided tour which we would highly recommend due to the invaluable information that the tour guide can provide you.

Sign for Radio City Music Hall

Located in Rockefeller centre, it is incredibly hard to miss Radio City Music Hall with its bright neon lights illuminating the area. The building itself is absolutely huge and has a humongous capacity of 6,013! You wouldn’t be able to stand out from the crowd here!

You will find a multitude of shows here from concerts, comedians and films. Built in 1932, it has become one of the most popular attractions to visit within Manhattan.

Opening Times for Radio City Music Hall: Mon – Sat 10am – 20:00pm, Sunday 10am – 18:00pm.

29. The High Line

This is a must-visit sight for anyone visiting Manhattan especially as it has recycled the train line to create it into a park.

It will take you around 30 minutes to walk across the High Line. However, that is without stopping to enjoy all of the views and the artwork along the way.

In particular, you will be able to view the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty from here. Not to mention that it is also not too far from the Edge so if you plan your day right, you will be able to enjoy both of them whilst you’re in the area.

It really is a beautiful destination to visit and you can’t deny the impact that it has made on the environment which you learn more about at The Edge skydeck.

For anyone that is interested to learn more about the construction and the efforts to improve the environment, we would highly recommend booking onto the free guided tour.

Opening Times of the High Line: 7am – 10pm

Explore Manhattan Now!

Manhattan is one of the best areas to visit within New York City as it is absolutely bursting with things to do.

No matter how long you spend in New York City, it never seems to be enough so we would recommend finding a place to stay in Manhattan because this is where you will spend most of your time.

If your time in New York City is short then head over to our Top 7 Attractions in New York City article so that you can ensure that you visit the main sights during your time there!

Streets near Times Square surprisingly quiet.

FAQs

Is Manhattan in New York?

Yes, Manhattan is one of the five boroughs of New York City which can be separated by lower and upper Manhattan.

What is Manhattan best known for?

There are so many attractions within Manhattan that it is difficult to pick just one thing that it is known for. Offering itself as the backdrop to many TV shows and movies alone it is an influential place to visit.

Can you walk around Manhattan at night?

Yes, you can walk around Manhattan at night. As with any destination that you visit, ensure that you take safety precautions if you’re walking around alone at night.

How many days do you need in Manhattan New York?

We would recommend spending a minimum of 5 days exploring Manhattan. There are a lot of things to do whilst you’re in New York City and whilst Manhattan is one of the smallest boroughs, it still has a lot of things to do.

What is the most famous part of Manhattan?

The Empire State Building is easily the most famous part of Manhattan. After it’s been featured in lots of movies and TV shows, The Empire State Building is on most people’s bucket lists for visiting New York City.

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