Planning Your Vacation in New York City
We know you're excited about your upcoming trip to the Big Apple ...
Here's some information to help make sure you get the most out of your vacation in New York City

Must See

Must Do

Dining

Other Info

 

Must See

If this is your first visit to New York City, or your first visit in several years, you'll want to give some thought to your personal itinerary. There's too much to see and do, so plan your visit carefully to maximize your time. We strongly advise purchasing as much as you can in advance, particularly sightseeing tours and admissions, as ticket-purchase lines can be long and tiresome.


Statue of Liberty The most recognized symbol of freedom in the world, Lady Liberty stands proudly in New York Harbor. There are several ways to see the Statue of Liberty up close:

  • Take the Statue of Liberty Ferry, operating on a loop, stopping first at Liberty Island and then at Ellis Island before returning to Battery Park, New York. Daily (except Christmas Day) approximately 9:30am-4:30pm. This option will not allow you a visit inside the Statue.


  • Take one of several sightseeing cruises operated by New York Water Taxi. Not only will you see the Statue of Liberty close enough for a great photograph, youll also get great views of the Manhattan skyline.

 


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Top of the Rock Observation Deck at Rockefeller Center Top of the RockTM is an experience in history and scenery that culminates with the best views of New York City from the newly renovated, 3-tiered observation deck on the 67th, 69th and 70th floors of 30 Rockefeller Plaza. Visit during the day to see the splendor of the city unfold beneath you or visit at night and see the city sparkle. The view itself is unique and astonishing. Unobstructed for 360 degrees from the 70th floor, the breathtaking landscape stretches for miles in every direction. It includes a panorama of Central Park and the northern half of Manhattan that cannot be found anywhere else.

Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum Strike a pose and dazzle the paparazzi. Sing live at the American Idol Experience. Forecast the weather with Al Roker. Or make Jennifer Lopez blush! In a city with millions of things to see and do, there is only one place where over 200 of the world's top celebrities provide you with an interactive experience of a lifetime. Located on 42nd Street in Times Square, this new $50 million attraction showcases life-like, three dimensional wax figures of celebrities from the worlds of entertainment, music, sports, politics and history.

Empire State Building New York's famous Empire State Building, one of the most famous buildings in the world, soars more than a quarter of a mile into the atmosphere above the heart of Manhattan. The 86th floor Observatory offers panoramic views from within a glass enclosed pavilion and from the surrounding open-air promenade. At, 1,050 feet (320 meters), reached by high speed, automatic elevators, it has both a glass-enclosed area, which is heated in winter and cooled in summer, and spacious outdoor promenades on all four sides of the Building. The observatory is open daily 8am - midnight (except during certain holidays when special hours may apply). Last elevator ascends 45 minutes before closing time. Admission to the Empire State Building Observatory is included as a choice in most NYCVP vacations.
Additional admissions may be purchased here.

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Metropolitan Museum of Art The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the worlds finest museums and a must-see on your visit to NYC. The Museum's comprehensive collection contains more than two million works of art from ancient through modern times. With Egyptian mummies, Islamic carvings, Renaissance paintings, historic and modern costumes, Native American masks and 20th century decorative arts, theres something for everyone.
Schedule: Open 9:30am - 5:30pm (Saturday and Sunday until 9pm) daily except Monday; closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day.
Admission to the Museum is included as a choice in most NYCVP vacations.
Additional admissions may be purchased here.

American Museum of Natural History The American Museum of Natural History is one of the largest and most innovative natural history museums, housing the greatest natural science collection and largest dinosaur fossil collection in the world. Offering hundreds of exhibits, including the famous dinosaur halls, the Hall of Biodiversity, the Akeley Hall of African Mammals, and the Hall of Planet Earth, this museum is a must see for all. The Rose Center for Earth and Space features hands-on, interactive exhibits exploring the galaxies, stars, and planets.The Museum is open daily, 10am - 5:45pm. The Rose Center remains open on Fridays until 8:45pm. The Museum is closed Thanksgiving and Christmas. Admission to the Museum is included as a choice in most NYCVP vacations.
Additional admissions may be purchased here.

Rockefeller Center Discover the stories behind the creation of Rockefeller Center! A Rockefeller Center Historian will be your guide as you travel through the buildings, gardens and spaces that make up this wondrous "city within a city." Join us as we unveil the treasured, historical, and inspiring stories that only the world-renowned Rockefeller Center has to offer-from John D. Rockefeller's true vision of what the center should be, to what it is today.

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Must Do

There's no place in the world like New York City. NYCVP has hand picked a variety of tours and activities to satisfy every type of visitor - from the sightseer to the foodie, the history buff to the diehard shopper. Get a taste of the many diverse aspects of NYC entertainment, culture, dining, and history by purchasing tickets in advance to popular attractions, sightseeing and restaurants in the Big Apple.

WTC Memorial  Tour of Lower Manhattan including 911 Memorial Visit the National 9/11 Memorial, then tour Ground Zero - the 16-acre site of unparalleled heroism. This moving and educational 3-hour NYC walking tour continues through Lower Manhattan where you will also see such icons as Wall Street, the Woolworth Building, Trinity Church and a virtual museum of historical skyscrapers.


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Gray Line All Loops Tour 48 hours of double decker fun! The All Loops Tour includes four separate double decker tour loops that allow you to enjoy the best of Manhattan and Brooklyn with unlimited hop-on, hop-off opportunities at over 50 stops. Includes the Uptown Loop, Downtown Loop, Brooklyn Loop, and Night Tour. Narration in English. All Loops Tour is valid for 48-hours between 9am and 5pm. Tours operate daily except Christmas and New Year's Day.

Gray Line All Loops Tour and Statue of Liberty 48 hours of double decker fun! The All Loops Tour includes four separate double decker tour loops that allow you to enjoy the best of Manhattan and Brooklyn with unlimited hop-on, hop-off opportunities at over 50 stops. Also includes a Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island ferry ticket. Valid for 48-hours between 9am and 5pm. Includes the Uptown Loop, Downtown Loop, Brooklyn Loop, and Night Tour. Narration in English.
 

Gray Line Manhattan Experience Motorcoach Tour Full day 8.5 hour guided motorcoach tour including the United Nations Tour. Accompanied by a professional tour guide, see all of Manhattan from Uptown to Downtown - the new Times Square, Madison Square Garden, the Flatiron building, Greenwich Village, SoHo, Little Italy and Battery Park, where you will board a ferry on a one-hour cruise with close-up views of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and the Brooklyn Bridge. Resume tour at Battery Park driving up to Central Park, the Cathedral St. John the Divine, Grant's Tomb, Harlem, the Museum Mile, Fifth Avenue, Rockefeller Center and more. Includes buffet lunch, Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island Cruise, and admission to the United Nations Tour (Empire State Building admission instead of United Nations Tour on Saturday and Sunday in January and February).
9am - 5:30pm daily, except Christmas and New Year's Day


Harlem Gospel Tour (Sunday) Explore legendary Harlem and its current Renaissance with tour guides intimately familiar with this splendid neighborhood. Travel through a rich and diverse Harlem, from grand row houses of Striver's Row to the cobblestone streets of Sylvan Terrace. View the historic Morris-Jumel Mansion from 1785, the Apollo Theater, and Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Attend an authentic church service and enjoy the sounds of soul-stirring gospel music and choirs. Proper attire is required at church service (no shorts, halter-tops or T-shirts). 
Schedule: Sunday 9:30am in English narration

Harlem Gospel Tour with Brunch (Sunday) Explore legendary Harlem and its current Renaissance with tour guides intimately familiar with this splendid neighborhood. Travel through a rich and diverse Harlem, from grand row houses of Striver's Row to the cobblestone streets of Sylvan Terrace. View the historic Morris-Jumel Mansion from 1785, the Apollo Theater, and Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Attend an authentic church service and enjoy the sounds of soul-stirring gospel music and choirs. Afterwards, enjoy a delicious soul food brunch. Proper attire is required at church service (no shorts, halter-tops or T-shirts).
Schedule: Sunday 9:30am in English narration

Circle Line Best of NYC Full Island Cruise Enjoy a relaxed and refreshing 3-hour cruise as you discover the secrets of the city. You'll circumnavigate Manhattan Island and see it all - 3 rivers, 7 major bridges, 5 boroughs, over 25 world renowned landmarks and, of course, a magnificent close-up of the Statue of Liberty. Beverages, food and souvenirs are available on board.

Circle Line Landmark Semi-Circle Cruise Experience the grandeur of New York on our 2-hour city highlights tour. You'll enjoy magnificent views of the world's premier skyline and a close-up view of Lady Liberty. Sail down the Hudson, cruise around the Battery, up the East River, and under the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg Bridges to the United Nations and back. Beverages, food and souvenirs are available on board.

Harbor Lights Cruise This dramatic 2-hour cruise sails down the Hudson, around the Battery, up the East River, and under the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg Bridges. Bask in the glow of the setting sun and be dazzled by millions of glistening city lights. Enjoy soft music and light commentary as you sip your favorite cocktail and watch the sun set ... or the moon rise. Beverages, food and souvenirs are available on board.

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SoHo and NoLita Shopping Adventure Shop quaint NoLita and bustling SoHo, NYC's hottest shopping neighborhoods, where celebrities like Julia Roberts and Scarlett Johansson get their style. Highlights include trendy shopping, the architecture of the Cast Iron Historic District, unique boutiques, neighborhood trivia and celebrity gossip. This guided tour is recommended for visitors of all ages who want to experience NYC like a native, get exclusive discounts and taste local treats. Great shopping and window-shopping in New Yorks hippest neighborhoods! Highlights of this two hour tour include: the hidden gems of both SoHo and NoLita, boutiques frequented by celebs, stylists and fashion insiders, NYs secret trend-launching stores, a one-of-a-kind food shop, and photo opportunities of Cast Iron Architecture.
Schedule: Thursday thru Sunday at 11am, 1pm, and 2pm. 2-hours


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Holiday Lights Motorcoach Sightseeing Tour "It's a Christmas spectacle you don't want to miss!" The color, the pageantry and the lights of Christmas in New York City ... you'll see it all on this deluxe motorcoach tour hosted by a licensed tour guide that will surely be the highlight of your Christmas vacation in the Big Apple.

Christmas Holiday Walking Tour A Christmas Walking Tour of Rockefeller Center and 5th Avenue will light up your holiday season! On this 75-minute tour, hosted by a team of Christmas historians and architects, learn about Christmas history, decorations, Gotham legends, and the role New York has played in shaping today's Christmas culture. Guides will delight you as they show you hidden holiday treasures. Stroll through the streets of midtown Manhattan and learn about the rich history of the famed Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree and festive 5th Avenue windows. Drink in the holiday lore of midtown Manhattan. Photo ops abound.

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Weather
January February March April May June July August September October November December
Average High:  38F 41F 49F 61F 71F 79F 84F 83F 75F 64F 53F 43F
Average Low:  26F 28F 35F 44F 54F 63F 69F 68F 61F 50F 41F 32F
Precipitation amount is fairly evenly distributed throughout the year

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Maps

Greater New York City CLICK HERE

Manhattan Neighborhoods CLICK HERE

Midtown Manhattan CLICK HERE

New York City Subway System CLICK HERE

Gray Line All Loops Tour Map CLICK HERE


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Dining Take a bite out of the Big Apple and buy your meals in advance! Tax and gratuity are included in the price.
From delis to 5-Star dining, NYC has a restaurant for every appetite. With 17,000 restaurants, you'll need us to guide you to the best. We'll make hard-to-get pre-theater reservations so you won't have to rush to your Broadway show. Our professional NYC travel experts will recommend restaurants that will suit your tastes perfectly. Our restaurants are conveniently located in midtown Manhattan's famed Theater District and consistently provide excellent meals at very affordable prices -- with tax and gratuity included! Restaurants have pre-set menus and all rates are per person. At most restaurants, we'll make your dining reservations at the time of your choice -- saving you time and worry.

Hurley's Dinner Located in the heart of the Theatre District, this traditionally styled New York City restaurant has been a landmark since 1892. Dinner includes appetizer, entre, dessert and coffee or tea. Tax and gratuity is included. Until 11:30pm Monday - Saturday, until 10pm Sunday.
Tax and gratuity is included.

 

Langan's Restaurant Dinner Situated close to Broadway, Langan's is an ideal location for dining before or after a show -- many Broadway cast members certainly think so! Langan's offers its guests dining in a style of casual elegance wrapped in the warmth of Irish hospitality. This eatery offers American food served in the surroundings and charm of an Irish Pub. Dinner includes a choice of appetizer, entre and dessert. Tax and gratuity is included. Open daily for dinner.

World Yacht Dinner Cruise Imagine yourself on a beautiful yacht, indulging in sumptuous cuisine and fine wines, dancing to delightful live music, enjoying gracious and attentive service against the dramatic, ever-changing panorama of the world's premier skyline. That's World Yacht!

The View

Patsy's Italian Restaurant

Hard Rock Cafe

Call your NYCVP Personal Vacation Planer

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Geography

New York City is composed of 5 boroughs

  • Times SquareManhattan Some people think that Manhattan and New York City are synonymous, but they are not. Manhattan is, however, where most of the action is. It's the home to the famed Theater District, Central Park, Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center and the hop-off point for ferries visiting the Statue of Liberty and Ellis island. The City's smallest borough, Manhattan is made up of neighborhoods and districts from Lower Manhattan and the Financial District 13 1/2 miles uptown to Harlem and Washington Heights. Midtown Manhattan, the heart of the City's tourist area, is generally thought of as between 34th and 59th Streets. Manhattan is easy to navigate on foot and by public transportation. Click here for a map of Manhattan neighborhoods. Click here to go to the subway system map.


  • Brooklyn BridgeBrooklyn Brooklyn visitors now have a great place to start a tour: The Brooklyn Tourism & Visitors Center, which opened February 2004 in beautiful Borough Hall, showcasing all the fabulous things to do and see in this great borough, from taking a rollercoaster ride, sunning on the beach, and seeing a dolphin show in Coney Island to exploring one of the world's best Egyptian collections at the Brooklyn Museum of Art.  A fun way to get to Brooklyn is to walk across the iconic Brooklyn Bridge (take the 4, 5, or 6 subway to Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall; the bridge will be on your left). Finished in 1883, this engineering milestone ranks among the world's greatest suspension bridges. Day or night, the view is spectacular. Stroll past the stately mansions of Brooklyn Heights, the city's first designated historic district. This 50-block architectural treasure has been in many movies including Norman Jewison's Moonstruck, with locations on Cranberry Street, and John Huston's Prizzi's Honor, with locations on Pierrepont Street.


  • Unisphere at Flushing Meadows Corona ParkQueens Queens is the most ethnically diverse 115 square miles on earth. The 7 subway line has been dubbed The International Express and has been designated a National Millennium Trail for its representation of the immigrant experience. In addition to Greek Astoria, Jackson Heights has a fantastic Little India, with great restaurants, food markets, and shopping, and Peruvians swear this is where you can get the only decent grilled chicken outside of Lima. Flushing has a large Chinese and Korean population and is home to the 1862 Romanesque Revival Flushing Town Hall, where Flushing Council on Culture and the Arts organizes a variety of art exhibits and jazz and classical music performances throughout the year. In Sunnyside you can spend an evening at a Spanish theater or a Romanian night club; in Woodside, rent a Thai video or hear traditional music at an Irish pub. Italians, Japanese, Colombians, Asian Indians, Puerto Ricans, Israelis, Maltese, and many other groups add diversity and flavor to Queens.


  • Yankee StadiumThe Bronx This borough at the northernmost tip of the city and the only one attached to the mainland (Manhattan and Staten Island are each islands and Queens and Brooklyn are part of Long Island) has more parkland than any of the other boroughs, a renowned botanical garden, a world-famous zoo, stately mansions, Yankee Stadium (right), historic sites, a Little Italy, beaches, even an island reminiscent of a New England fishing village (City Island). During its golden age in the 1920s, the building of the elevated subway line increased population, Yankee Stadium was built, and the mile-long Grand Concourse was fashioned as New Yorks Champs Elysees, lined with elaborate Art Deco buildings.


  • Staten Island FerryStaten Island This 13.9-by-7.5 mile island feels more suburban than the other boroughs. Among the hilly streets of the Hamilton Park neighborhood, with its rows of gingerbread-trimmed Victorian mansions and shingle-style homes erected during the Civil War era, are two huge Tudoresque homes that appeared on screen as Casa Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola's 1971 classic, The Godfather (look for Longfellow Street). On the other side of the island is Todt Hill, at 409 feet, the highest point along the Atlantic seaboard south of Maine.
     


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Map of Greater New York City
courtesy of NYC & Co.

 

Map of Manhattan Neighborhoods

Map of Manhattan Neighborhoods
courtesy of NYC & Co.


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