10 Best Places to See the New York Skyline From

New York with Central Park in the foreground.
New York with Central Park in the foreground.

New York is a spectacular and thriving metropolis, incredibly popular with both international and local visitors. Situated in the city are many famous historical and cultural landmarks. The majestic Manhattan skyline can be viewed from the following vantage points - some of which are classic, and some of which are unique.

10. From the air

The astonishing view of New York from the sky.

Flying over New York offers unobstructed and unparalleled views of the skyline. Several companies offer helicopter tours as well as hot air balloon rides which guarantee thrilling and unforgettable experiences over the city.

9. Roosevelt Island

New York as seen from Roosevelt Island.

Roosevelt Island occupies an area of 0.23 square miles in the East River. It can be accessed by train or car, but the ultimate experience is gotten from traveling via the aerial tram. The tram offers dramatic views of the skyline. Once on the island, visitors can gawk at New York from a close distance.

8. Staten Island Ferry

Not bad for a free view of New York City.

The Staten Island Ferry carries passengers to and from Manhattan and Staten Island. Visitors enjoy spectacular views of the skyline in Manhattan as well as other iconic structures such as the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, New York City Harbor, and numerous skyscrapers. The ride is free, and it operates 24/7.

7. Governor's Island

The view from Governor's Island is crystal clear.

The 172-acre Governor's Island is situated in Upper New York Bay, where tourists engage in a number of activities such as bike riding, picnics, walks, concerts, and festivals. Located on the Island are hills which rise 70 feet above sea level offering unparalleled views of Brooklyn and Manhattan.

6. Rooftop of the Met

New York with the green rooftop of the Met in the foreground.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art stands as an attractive haven for art lovers due to its magnificent exhibitions. The building’s roof also offers beautiful views of the city’s skyline. Fifth Avenue and Central Park are particularly breathtaking when viewed from here. The rooftop features a bar as well as a revolving art exhibit.

5. One World Trade Center

Even on a cloudy day, the views from One World Trade Center are impressive.

The One World Trade Center, also known as the Freedom Tower, stands at 1,776 feet, and is the country’s tallest tower. An observatory deck is located at 1,254 feet where tourists can enjoy fantastic views through the windows. The city’s surroundings are also visible including the Atlantic Ocean making the views unrivalled from any other vantage point.

4. Top of the Rock

The vantage point at the Top of the Rock offers one of the most famous views of New York City.

Top of the Rock is a renowned observation deck on top of the Rockefeller Center. The deck offers stunning 360 degree views of the city’s skyline. The views at sunset are especially magnificent with lights gleaming from different parts of New York. There is also an exhibition inside about the building’s history.

3. The High Line

The High Line - another free way to take in New York.

This 1.45-mile long linear park is popular with tourists. It is strategically built on an elevated section of an abandoned rail line in Manhattan and has been designated as a green space. The garden is an excellent choice for a stroll, and as a bonus it offers great views of the city.

2. Empire State Building

The sprawling New York skyline from the Empire State Building.

Rising to 1,250 feet, the Empire State Building is one of the most notable features of the city. It is also home to some of the best views. There are two observation decks in the building on the 86th and 102nd floors. Tourists can enjoy 360-degree breathtaking views of New York.

1. Brooklyn Bridge

The buildings of New York peak out behind the Brooklyn Bridge.

A walk across the Brooklyn Bridge from Brooklyn to Manhattan offers some of the most scenic views of the city’s skyline. Some of the historical structures of the city such as the Statue of Liberty are visible from the bridge. However, the bridge is constantly crowded and it is advisable to stay in the pedestrian lane.


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