Empire State Building
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Empire State Building: Tours & Tickets

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Top sights in New York City

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The Best Views of the Empire State Building

Manhattan would not be Manhattan without its beloved Empire State Building standing tall above the city. We guarantee you'll fall in love with New York the moment you look up and first see it. Here are the very best vantage points.

Top of the Rock

Top of the Rock

Should you go to Top of the Rock (Rockefeller Center) or Empire State Building to get the view? At the Top of the Rock, you get to see the Empire State Building as part of the view. Simply the best.

From the Streets of the Flatiron District

From the Streets of the Flatiron District

Head to the Flatiron Building and stroll through Madison Square Park. Stand in the pedestrian island on 5th Avenue at 22nd Street, and you’ll have your picture perfect photo.

From a Cruise around Manhattan

From a Cruise around Manhattan

Book a cruise around Manhattan, and you’ll get a panoramic view, seeing just how beautifully the Empire State Building stands out among its surrounding skyline.

East River State Park, Kent Street, Williamsburg

East River State Park, Kent Street, Williamsburg

In Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the beautiful East River State Park provides some of the best skyline views of Manhattan. Bonus: the park holds food and flea markets on the weekends.

To the Top of the Empire State Building

To the Top of the Empire State Building

Head to the Empire State Building itself. Astounding views of Manhattan await you from the observation deck. It will take your breath away, we promise.

Our insider tips

How to Get There / Hours

The Empire State Building is located at 350 5th Ave, between 33rd and 34th Street. It opens at 8am and the last elevator to the top leaves at 1:15 AM; the building closes at 2:00 AM. The nearest subway is the 6 train to 33rd Street; B/D/F, Q, or 1/2/3 to 34th Street.

The Best Time to Visit the Empire State Building

The views will be astounding day or night. If you go at night, you get the romantic city lights all around you. But by day, you get to see the geography and outline of the city below. It's up to you!

Skipping the Line

The Empire State Building is known for its lines. Ticket lines, security lines, and then the line for the elevator up to the 86th Floor observatory. The best way to skip the ticket line is to buy one online in advance. You can even buy an express pass and fast track your way up on the elevator. Keep in mind you will need to go through security. No glass, bottles, or cans are allowed.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Rain or shine, everyday, from 8:00 AM to 2:00 AM. Last elevator ride at 1:15 AM.
  • Is it expensive?
    Between $30-40.
  • Will I need a guide?
  • How to get there
    The nearest subway station is 33rd Street - keep walking until you get to 5th Avenue.
  • Additional information

    • No glass, bottles, or cans are allowed through security.

    • Don't forget your camera - you'll want to take some of the best photographs ever!

What people are saying about Empire State Building

This was excellent particularly on the way down.

This was great. Make sure that you tell the first member of staff you see when you arrive that you have the VIP ticket (they call it the Express ticket). They will then give you a wrist band and direct you around all the queues. We got sent the wrong way first ended up in a short queue but it was fine once we got our wrist bands. It was very good being able to skip a huge line on the way down. Our tired children were very grateful.

Definitely, I reccommend it. We saved plenty of time.

We visited ESB in mid July evening. Suprisingly, there was no ticket line BUT there were very very long lines at the lifts- we were happy we had skip-all-lines tickets. We appreciated them on both lifts up ( to 80 and 86 floor) and of course on the lift down ( here the line was even longer). No waiting we saved minimum 1 hour . I think it is really worth buying especially if you want to see evening/night NY and if you want to enjoy it instead of being stressed.

Well worth the price to get to top of ESB

We bought the "skip all lines" tickets for the Empire State Building. I had the vouchers on my phone. When we got there, we were told the line was at least 1.5 hours. Not for us!! From the time we got there to the time we were actually on the 86th floor observation deck was ONLY 10 MINUTES!! Amazing! And on the way down, same thing - NO WAITING! Could not believe it! I would easily do this again! Because I cannot stand lines! Thanks so much GetYourGuide!

Jumped ahead of the queues to see spectacular views

Visited at 8.30pm at night when long queues were formed. The tickets allowed us to enter the building directly. There is still a lengthy process of accessing the elevators and going through security however the process was fairly smooth. There is also opportunities to take stairs rather the elevators between the top observation floors which saves time queuing The views from the both observation decks are spectacular particularly at night.

Amazing experience & superb VIP treatment

VIP is definitely recommended. Warm welcome by all the staff. No queues, straight to the top. Beautiful building & an amazing view of New York. Loved the whole experience.

Things to do near Empire State Building