23 Best Things To Do In NYC – Attractions, Tours & Sights

(Last Updated On: January 19, 2023)

New York City is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.

There are countless things to see and do in the city, making it a perfect place for a vacation.

NYC has a population of over 8 million people and is the most densely populated city in the United States.

The city is also home to some of the world’s most famous landmarks, such as the Empire State Building, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Statue of Liberty.

Many people describe NYC as the “city that never sleeps” because there is always fun things to do, no matter what time of day or night it is, from central park west all the way to east village.

Whether you’re interested in exploring the city’s history, checking out its world class museums, or simply taking in the sights and sounds of Times Square, there’s something for everyone in New York City.

Things To Do In New York City

1. Empire State Building

Empire State Building

The Empire State Building is one of the most famous landmarks in NYC. It was completed in 1931 and is 1,454 feet tall.

Visitors can take the elevator to the 86th floor observation deck for stunning views of the city.

It offers a 360 degree view and on a clear day, you can see up to 80 miles away.

Inside you’ll also find a brand new museum on the second floor that chronicles the history of the building and its place in pop culture.

The 34th street lobby entrance is also worth a visit. It was completely renovated in 2009 and now features a beautiful Art Deco interior and grand staircase.

The Empire State Building also offers a unique experience called the “Dawn at the Top” tour.

Visitors can watch the sun rise over the city from the 86th floor observation deck.

The tour includes a light breakfast and coffee, making it the perfect way to start your day in NYC.

A visit to the Empire State Building is definitely one of the fun things for families to do in the city.

Address: Empire State Building, 20 West 34th Street, New York City, NY 10001

2. Central Park

Central Park

Central Park is one of the most famous parks in the world. It’s also one of the largest, at 843 acres.

The park first opened in 1857 and has since become a beloved NYC landmark.

It’s a great place to relax, take a stroll, or go for a run. The park is also home to many events and performances throughout the year.

In the winter, you can go ice skating at the Wollman Rink.

And in the summer, you can catch a free Shakespeare play at the Delacorte Theater.

There are also several museums located within Central Park, including art museums and the American Museum of Natural History.

No matter what time of year you visit, there’s always something to do in Central Park.

The maintenance and operations of Central Park is managed by The Central Park Conservancy.

Address: Central Park, New York City, NY 10023

3. Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty is one of America’s most iconic landmarks. It was a gift from the people of France and was completed in 1886.

The statue stands 305 feet tall and is located on Liberty Island in New York Harbor.

Visitors can take a ferry to the island for stunning views of the statue up close.

Inside the statue, there is a museum that chronicles its history and construction.

You can also take an elevator to the crown, which offers breathtaking views of Manhattan and Staten Island.

The free Staten Island ferry takes you right past Lady Liberty.

The Statue of Liberty is one of the best things to do in NYC.

Address: Liberty Island, New York City, NY 10004

4. Times Square

Times Square

Times Square is one of the most popular tourist destinations in NYC. It’s also one of the busiest, as it’s always crowded with New Yorkers and visitors.

With its neon lights and billboards, Times Square is New York most famous landmark and is the liveliest area in the city,

The square is home to many famous attractions, including the Broadway Theater District and the New Year’s Eve Ball Drop.

In Times Square you will find bars, restaurants, theatres, museums and a great atmosphere.

It’s also a great place to shop and people watch.

If you’re visiting NYC for the first time, Times Square is a must-see.

Address: Times Square, New York City, NY 10036

5. Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge

The Brooklyn Bridge is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States.

It was completed in 1883 and spans 1,595 feet.

The Brooklyn Bridge is a hybrid cable-stayed/suspension bridge, spanning the East River between the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

The bridge is a popular spot for walking, biking, and taking in the views.

There is also a pedestrian walkway over the Brooklyn Bridge that offers stunning views of the Manhattan skyline.

Brooklyn Bridge Park is stationed under the Brooklyn Bridge and is a waterfront park along the East River, it’s free to all and open 365 days a year.

Address: Brooklyn Bridge, New York City, NY 11201

6. 9/11 Memorial & Museum

9/11 Memorial & Museum

The 9/11 Memorial & Museum is a sombre but moving tribute to the victims of the September 11th terrorist attacks.

The museum exhibits chronicle the events of that fateful day through artefacts, photos, and first-person accounts.

It’s a powerful and emotional experience that is not to be missed.

Photography is permitted at the memorial, but visitors are asked to respect the space as it is a memorial commemorating the victims of the attacks.

The 9/11 Memorial is free and open to the public seven days a week, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Museum tickets can be purchased up to six months in advance and include entry to all available exhibitions.

Address: 180 Greenwich Street, New York City, NY 10007

7. Rockefeller Center

Rockefeller Center

The Rockefeller Center is a complex of 19 commercial buildings in Midtown west Manhattan.

It’s home to a network of businesses, television studios, shopping and dining choices as well as stunning artwork and architecture.

The complex is noted for the large quantities of art present in almost all of its buildings.

There is a varied public art collection of murals, amazing street art, modern art, reliefs, sculptures and carvings.

The Rockefeller Center is also famous for its annual lighting of the Rockefeller Christmas Tree.

And in the winter, you can go ice skating at the rink at Rockefeller Center.

Address: 45 Rockefeller Plaza, New York City, NY 10111

8. Grand Central Station

Grand Central Station

Grand Central Station is a historic train station in Midtown Manhattan. It first opened in 1871 and is now a National Historic Landmark.

The terminal is famous for its grandiose architecture and for its iconic clock.

Grand Central Terminal is a train station as well as a shopping, dining, and cultural destination, with over 60 shops, 35 places to eat, and a full calendar of events.

It’s also a great place to people watch and observe city life.

If you’re looking for interesting things to do in NYC, Grand Central Terminal is a great option.

Address: Grand Central Station, 89 E 42nd St, New York City, NY 10017

9. The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the largest and most famous museums in the world.

It’s home to more than two million works of art, making it one of the most comprehensive collections in existence.

The museum is located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and spans over two million square feet.

Visitors can expect to spend at least a few hours exploring all that the Museum has to offer.

There is also a great museum store that stocks hundreds of unique museum gifts and reproductions, including jewellery, apparel, exhibition catalogues, wall art, stationery, and more.

Address: 1000 5th Ave, New York City, NY 10028

10. Little Italy

Little Italy

Little Italy is a neighborhood in Lower Manhattan in New York City, once known for its large Italian population.

Little Italy is worth visiting for the opportunity to enjoy delicious imported Italian specialties and to see the Old St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

In warm weather, Little Italy blocks off Mulberry Street, and restaurants bring out the tables, chairs, and music.

Lined with restaurants and cafes with outdoor dining, this is the place to relax and enjoy great food.

Address: Little Italy, 263 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012

11. The Met Cloisters

The Met Cloisters

The Met Cloisters is a branch of the Museum of Art that has gallery space devoted to medieval art.

It’s located in Fort Tryon Park in Upper Manhattan and is surrounded by gardens inspired by medieval horticulture.

The museum houses over 5,000 works of art, making it one of the most comprehensive collections of medieval art in the world.

They’re entirely worth visiting if you enjoy peaceful, beautiful, and a meditative space of the kind this museum provides.

Address: 99 Margaret Corbin Dr, New York City, NY 10040

12. Battery Park

Battery Park

Battery Park, is a 25-acre public park located at the southern tip of Manhattan Island in New York City facing New York Harbor.

It is bounded by the Hudson River on the west, the Hudson River shoreline on the north and south.

Battery Park is the gateway to two of New York City’s most iconic landmarks, the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

The esplanade on the Hudson River might be Battery Park City’s best feature.

Stretching from Battery Park to the edge of Tribeca, the path is perfect for strolling, running, roller skating and biking.

Address: Battery Park, New York, NY 10004

13. New York Public Library

New York Public Library

One of the best things to do in NYC is visit the New York Public Library, which ranks as one of the most famous book places in the world.

The New York Public Library is one of the largest libraries in the world.

It has more than 50 million items in its collections, including books, manuscripts, and maps.

The library is located on Fifth Avenue, midtown west and is a National Historic Landmark.

Visitors can access free admission, one-hour guided tours of the library, or simply enjoy browsing the books.

Address: New York Public Library, 476 5th Ave, New York City, NY 10018

14. Staten Island Ferry

Staten Island Ferry

The Staten Island Ferry is a free ferry that runs between Manhattan and Staten Island.

Today, the Staten Island Ferry is the single busiest ferry route in the United States of America.

The ferry ride takes about 25 minutes and offers stunning views of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the New York Harbor.

The ferry runs 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, making it a great option for those looking for things to do in NYC at night.

Address: Staten Island Ferry, 4 Whitehall St, New York City, NY 10004

15. St. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York

St. Patrick's Cathedral, New York

St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a Roman Catholic cathedral located in Midtown Manhattan.

It’s one of the largest cathedrals in the world and is a major tourist attraction in NYC.

Featuring 19th-century Gothic Revival construction, this landmark Roman Catholic church takes up a whole city block and can accommodate 2,200 people.

Even if you’re not religious this is a must see Church.

The side Chapels, the ceilings, the stained glass windows and the alter are all magnificent.

The cathedral is open to the public daily and visitors can explore the interior, attend mass, or simply admire the architecture from the outside.

Address: 5th Ave & 50th St, New York City, NY 10022

16. Broadway


Broadway is one of the most famous streets in the world.

It’s located in midtown west with all the Broadway theaters situated between 41st Street and 54th Street and between Sixth Avenue and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan.

It’s home to dozens of theaters, which host a variety of Broadway shows.

Many people believe the theatrical productions on Broadway are the best in the world.

Visitors can purchase tickets to see a show, or simply enjoy the sights and sounds of Times Square.

Address: Broadway, New York City, NY

17. American Museum of Natural History

American Museum of Natural History

Our things to do in NYC would not be complete without a visit to the American Museum of Natural History.

The American Museum of Natural History is one of the largest museums in the world.

It’s located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan and has more than 32 million specimens in its collections.

An important exhibit at the Museum of Natural History is the Great Blue Whale.

Located in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life, the Great Blue Whale is 94 feet long and weighs 21,000 pounds.

Other must see exhibits include Dinosaur Skeletons, Lucy (an over three million years old skeleton), the Big Bang Space Show and the Unseen Oceans exhibition.

Visitors can explore the museum’s many exhibitions, or take a tour of the Hayden Planetarium.

Address: Central Park W & 79th St, New York City, NY 10024

18. Greenwich Village, New York

Greenwich Village, New York

Greenwich Village is a neighborhood in Lower Manhattan.

The neighborhood is bookended by the Hudson River to the west and Broadway to the east.

It’s known for its bohemian atmosphere and is home to a number of artists, musicians, and writers.

Greenwich Village has smaller theaters tucked away that are much more affordable than Broadway show tickets.

The village is also has a number of famous landmarks, including the Stonewall Inn, which was the site of the Stonewall Riots.

Other things to see are the Washington Square Park (named after George Washington) and the Washington Square Arch.

Address: Greenwich Village, New York City, NY

19. Madison Square Garden

Madison Square Garden

Madison Square Garden is a multi-purpose arena in Midtown Manhattan.

It is known as one of the world’s most famous arenas.

It’s home to the New York Knicks, the New York Rangers, and the New York Liberty.

Madison Square Garden hosts over 300 events a year, including sporting events, concerts, live music events, comedy shows, benefits, and seasonal spectaculars.

Tickets for events can be purchased online.

Address: Madison Square Garden, 4 Pennsylvania Plaza, New York City, NY 10001

20. One World Observatory, New York

One World Observatory, New York

The One World Trade Center is the main building of the rebuilt World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan, New York City.

The building is often referred to as the Freedom Tower as it represents the perseverance of the city and the country’s ideals of freedom and independence.

The One World Observatory is at the top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere, One World Trade Center.

The One World Observatory has three levels at 100, 101, and 102, and the highest of them is at the height of 386.5 meters.

Guests can travel up in the Sky Pod Elevator and then marvel at the 360-degree views of Manhattan, the East River and the Brooklyn Bridge.

21. Luna Park in Coney Island

Luna Park in Coney Island

One of the fun things to do in NYC is a visit to the Luna Park in Coney Island.

Luna Park in Coney Island is the largest amusement park in New York City and its most famous playground with a heritage that stretches back more than 130 years.

The New York attraction in Coney Island provides New Yorkers and tourists from around the world an unforgettable seaside experience with family-friendly attractions and entertainment, shopping and dining.

The Park in Coney Island is NYC’s most iconic destination for fun!

Complete with brand new rides, roller coasters, games, an Arcade, go-karts and restaurants.

Address: 1000 Surf Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11224

22. National Jazz Museum, New York

National Jazz Museum, New York

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem, founded in 1996, is dedicated to the preservation and celebration of the jazz history of Harlem, Manhattan, New York City.

This New York Museum is committed to keeping jazz present and exciting in the lives of a broad range of audiences, from New Yorkers to visitors from all over the world.

Each year, the Museum produces and presents more than 80 free programs in New York City, engaging hundreds of professional jazz artists.

Address: 58 W 129th St Ground Floor, 2203, New York, NY 10027

23. The Bronx Zoo, New York

The Bronx Zoo, New York

One of the fun things to do in NYC is a visit to The Bronx Zoo.

The Bronx Zoo is world-renowned for its large and diverse animal collection, and its award-winning exhibitions.

With more than 700 different species spread across 265 acres of parkland thoughtfully designed to mimic natural habitats, the Zoo is a great place to visit in New York City.

The grounds are enormous, but there’s a shuttle that loops between various points of interest.

At Tiger Mountain an open viewing shelter lets you get incredibly close to Siberian tigers.

Try to visit popular exhibits, such as Congo Gorilla Forest, early to avoid lines later in the day

In winter the outdoor exhibitions have fewer animals on view, but there’s plenty to see indoors.

The Zoo is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On weekends, the park stays open an additional half-hour.

Address: 2300 Southern Blvd, Bronx, New York 10460


Where is the Upper West Side, New York? 

The Upper West Side of Manhattan is sandwiched in between Riverside Park to the west & Central Park to the east.

There are many things to see and do such as the American Museum of Natural History, the New York Historial Society, a Banksy Work of Street Art (Hammer Boy), and Central Park.

You can also dine with NYC residents at the Upper West Side Restaurants.

Is Governors Island, New York worth visiting?

Governors Island is open to the public year-round and is currently accessible by ferries from Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Governors Island is worth a family visit. You will love its rich history, lots of family activities, and the best views of the New York City Skyline.

Things you can do are see public art installations, pedal a quadracycle and hike to the top of Outlook Hill.

What are three amazing things you can do in New York?

There are so many amazing things to do in New York City!

Three of our favorites are visiting the top of the Empire State Building, taking a walk through Central Park, and visiting Times Square.

Where is New York City Winery?

City Winery New York in Hudson River Park is one of the largest dining spaces in Manhattan with over 32,000 square feet of space.

Popular with new yorkers and visitors alike, you can enjoy stunning views from the spacious indoor dining room and waterfront outdoor patio.

Are there any Van Gogh paintings in New York?

Yes, there are a few Van Gogh paintings in New York City.

You can see them at the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.

Why is Times Square, New York so famous?

Times Square is one of the most iconic and recognizable places in the world.

It’s known for its bright lights, giant billboards, and Broadway theaters.

Times Square is also a major tourist destination, with millions of visitors each year.

Can you walk Manhattan in a day?

Manhattan is a large island, so it’s not possible to walk the entire thing in one day.

However, you can easily explore a number of neighborhoods on foot with a self guided tour or take a guided walking tour.

We recommend starting in Midtown and working your way down to the Financial District, then over to Greenwich Village and SoHo.

What is the best way to tour New York City?

There is no one “best” way to tour New York City.

It depends on your interests and how much time you have. You could take a guided tour, explore the city on your own, take a bus tour or use public transportation to get around.

If you’re short on time, we recommend taking a Hop-On Hop-Off bus tour.

Are there Free and Pay what you wish attractions in New York City?

Yes, there are many things to do in NYC that are Free and Pay what you wish attractions.

Examples are: The American Folk Art Museum (Free), The Guggenheim (Pay what you wish Saturday from 5:00 pm until 8:00 pm), The Museum of Modern Art (Free Friday nights) and The Morgan Library & Museum (Fridays, 7 pm to 9 pm, Free).


  • Tamara M

    Hey there! My name is Tamara, welcome to my little world! I’m a 20-something-year-old from Toronto, Canada (though I’m rarely there) and I’m super passionate about exploring the world, photography, and cooking delicious plant-based recipes. I created this blog to share my favorite places, adventures, restaurants, accommodations, and travel tips with all of you and keep a bit of a travel diary for myself.

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