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The Best Places to See Incredible Views of New York City

The best views of the best city.
ny-skyline

The New York City skyline is one of the most iconic images in American history. Whether you’re looking at it from the top of the Statue of Liberty or on the front of a postcard, the land of skyscrapers is stunning from all angles. But aside from the Statue of Liberty, there are a multitude of great locations from which to catch the incredible view.

Rather than have you hit up all of the most popular and, as a direct result, cliche spots on your next visit, we decided to compile a slideshow of our favorite places to catch the best views of New York City. Enjoy the list, and upon your next trip to NYC… enjoy the views.

Top of The Rock

70 floors above Rockefeller Center you can take in the remarkable 360-degree city view offered from the Top of The Rock Observation Deck at Rockefeller Center. With three indoor and outdoor viewing decks, the fluctuating perspectives are all part of John D. Rockefeller’s original vision. To this day Rockefeller Center and the Top of The Rock Observation Deck are recognized as “his gifts to Manhattan – a place for locals and visitors to marvel at the city he loved.” Tickets range between $26 and $32.

Top of The Rock
30 Rockefeller Center
New York City, NY 10112
Tel. (212) 698-2000
Website

One WTC Observatory

As the main building of the rebuilt World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan, One World Trade Center is “1NSPIRED by the world.” One WTC is Manhattan’s newest site for “everyday visionaries [to come] together at the top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere to SEE FOREVER.” All the way at the skyscraper’s 100th floor you’ll find the One WTC Observatory, also known as the Discovery Level. At the observatory guests will witness the building’s 360-degree views of the entire city. Ticket prices are $32 for adults, $30 for seniors, and $26 for children.

One WTC Observatory
285 Fulton Street
New York, NY 10006
Tel. (800) 416-7192
Website

New Jersey's Hudson Waterfront

Sometimes the best views of places are from the other side of the water. While the view of New Jersey from New York’s Hudson Waterfront might not be very stunning, the reverse certainly is. New Jersey’s Hudson Waterfront has great views of the NYC skyline at all times of the day, specifically at sunset. Check it out next time you’re stuck in Jersey.

Penthouse 808

Located at the top of Long Island City’s Ravel Hotel you’ll find Penthouse 808, “a 9,500 square-foot indoor/outdoor rooftop restaurant, lounge and events space that offers breathtaking views of the Manhattan skyline and Queensboro Bridge.” Serving up delicious Asian Pacific bistro and tasty cocktails along with its stunning sites, Penthouse 808 is available year-round for any occasion.

Penthouse 808
8-08 Queens Plaza S
Long Island City, NY 11101
Tel. (718) 289-6118
Website

Manhattan by Sail

For the past 30 years the folks at Manhattan by Sail have been taking people sailing around New York Harbor. Known as Manhattan by Sail since 2000, the boat adventure offers two ships — the Clipper City Tall Ship and Shearwater Classic Schooner — and an array of sailing activities. Whether you want to drink and relax aboard the sailboat, or actually be a laboring member of the crew, Manhattan by Sail offers it all. And I literally mean it ALL as they also “cater to whiskey connoisseurs, beer enthusiasts, host unique burlesque events, offer onboard brunch, nights filled with jazz and everything in between.”

Manhattan by Sail
Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel
New York, NY 10004
Tel. (212) 619-6900
Website

Helicopter Tour of the City

It doesn’t get more iconic than a helicopter tour of New York City. Familiar from the thousands of movies you’ve watched in which birds-eye helicopter views were used, nothing can truly compare to the real thing. While this tour will obviously cost you more than the Rockefeller Center tour or even sailing around the Hudson or New York Harbor, it’s certainly worth it. Cough up the dough, strap in to your seat, and enjoy the ride. Now everyone… GET TO THE CHOPPER!

Brooklyn Bridge / Promenande / Park

Always an oldie, but a goodie — take a walk down one of the oldest cable-stayed/suspension bridges in the United States, the 132-year-old Brooklyn Bridge. Witness some of the oldest views on Manhattan from the historic bridge. Also around the classic bridge you can visit the Brooklyn Bridge Park, where alternate views are available and various free events are held each year.

Brooklyn Bridge Park
2 Old Fulton Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Tel. (718) 222-9939
Website

The Metropolitan Museum of Art Roof Garden Café and Martini Bar

Located on the fifth floor of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in the European Sculpture and Decorative Arts galleries you’ll find The Met’s Roof Garden Café and Martini Bar. Here visitors can enjoy casual fare and drinks atop the Met with views of Central Park and the Manhattan skyline.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art Roof Garden Café and Martini Bar
1000 5th Avenue #5
New York, NY 10028
Tel. (212) 535-7710
Website

230 FIFTH Rooftop Bar

Midtown Manhattan’s 230 FIFTH is “New York’s largest outdoor Rooftop Garden and Fully enclosed Penthouse Lounge.” While one of the bar’s floors is fully-enclosed, the second floor serves as 230 FIFTH’s open-air rooftop garden. Apart from the Empire State Building, 230 FIFTH is known to have some of the city’s best views of Midtown Manhattan. And don’t be worried about the weather. The rooftop features a number of large umbrellas to shade guests from the sun or rain, depending on the time of the year.

230 FIFTH
230 5th Avenue
New York, NY 10001
Tel. (212) 725-4300
Website

Le Bain Rooftop

Situated at the top floor of The Standard High Line in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District is the penthouse discothèque and rooftop bar, Le Bain. Known around the city for its world-renowned DJs, state-of-the-art sound system, and unparalleled views of the city — Le Bain is as cool as it sounds. Which is why it tends to be quite difficult to get in (admission is determined at entrance, and not guaranteed to hotel guests). A great time to try and go is during the summer when they feature a plunge pool on the dance floor and a crêperie for late night snacking.

Le Bain
848 Washington Street
New York, NY 10014
Tel. (212) 645-7600
Website

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