Add dates

New York Public Library

New York Public Library: Our most recommended tours and activities

NYC: Guided Bus and Walking Tour with Staten Island Ferry

1. NYC: Guided Bus and Walking Tour with Staten Island Ferry

See the best of New York City on sightseeing tours by bus and boat. In addition, enjoy a walk through the Financial Center to Wall Street and The New York Stock Exchange. A live tour guide will enhance your experience with commentary on this 6-hour program. The Staten Island ferry ensures breathtaking views of the New York City and New Jersey skylines. Take in views of world-famous landmarks, including the Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty, One World Trade Center, Brooklyn Bridge, Governors Island, and more. This tour gives you two options for tour buses - a luxury climate-controlled closed-top bus or a unique small-capacity glass-top or open-top convertible bus that can open when the weather is nice or retract and turn into a glass-top to protect you from the weather elements.

NYC: The Superhero Walking Tour of New York

2. NYC: The Superhero Walking Tour of New York

Discover New York City from the perspective of a superhero and find famous film locales from major blockbusters. Get a firsthand look at the prime hangouts of radioactive latex-loving spide heroes, vigilante bat-people, and delve deep into the benefits of wearing spandex briefs. Meet your guide and learn all about comic books and superheroes since their onset in New York in the 1930s. Explore how the city continues to cast its influence over the genre to this day in both comics and films. In the DC Universe, New York is the inspiration for both Gotham City and Metropolis. In Marvel, characters such as Spider-Man, the Avengers, Ironman, and the Fantastic Four inhabit the real New York. See it all on the Superhero Tour of New York. There's nowhere else in the world you can get more cape for your buck!

NYC: Downtown Tour & Optional One World Observatory Ticket

3. NYC: Downtown Tour & Optional One World Observatory Ticket

Welcome to New York, the city that never sleeps! Get a real feel for the city as you take to its streets and subways with a local guide and experience what Manhattan has to offer. Your full-day tour begins when you meet your guide in Times Square, at the statue of renowned lyricist and composer George M. Cohan. Hear about the history of Times Square and learn how a horse trading market became the most famous intersection in the world. Head out along New York’s Theater District, which for a hundred years has been the center of the world for actors, playwrights, and artists from around the globe. Visit 30 Rockefeller Center and continue east to Fifth Avenue, the world's most expensive street, lined with elegant storefronts such as Saks and Bergdorf Goodman. Stop to admire Patrick’s Cathedral, the New York Public Library, and the Chrysler Building before stepping beneath the arching dome of Grand Central, where there’s a stop to buy lunch with choices for most dietary restrictions.  After lunch you’ll hop on the subway like a true New Yorker and head downtown to Wall Street, where you can rub the nose of the Wall Street Bull for good luck! Walk through the financial capital of the world and head to Battery Park, where the ferry awaits to show you the Statue of Liberty. The Staten Island ferry will not stop on Liberty Island, but will sail past it for a view of Lady Liberty and the Manhattan Skyline. Upon returning, your guide will take you to visit the 9/11 Memorial. At the conclusion of your tour you will be admitted to The Observatory at the One World Trade Center Tower (also know as "Freedom Tower"). This panoramic observation deck is a marvel of engineering and architecture. The program begins in the lobby of the Freedom Tower with "Voices" - a film dedicated to the men and women of the World Trade Towers and the new One World Trade Center. You will then take the "Sky Pod" elevator, which rises 1,250 feet in the air in 60 seconds. The Observation Deck begins on the 102nd floor with the See Forever Theater and moves down to the 100th floor, where the main observation deck is situated. Immersive LED displays, interactive touch screen video, and dining options mean there's plenty to do, but the true draw is the view - hundreds of feet above even the impressive New York Skyline stretching across all of Manhattan. The Itinerary Times Square Broadway Theater District Rockefeller Center St. Patrick’s Cathedral Fifth Ave Shops New York Public Library Chrysler Building Grand Central Terminal New York City Subway Charging Bull Alexander Hamilton Customs House Canyon of Heroes/Ticker Tape Parade Route Brooklyn Bridge Statue of Liberty and NYC Skyline via Staten Island Ferry Trinity Church National 9/11 Memorial Wall Street New York Stock Exchange Federal Hall One World Observatory (ticket included)

Lower Manhattan + Midtown Manhattan Tour - Guided Combo Tour

4. Lower Manhattan + Midtown Manhattan Tour - Guided Combo Tour

Your  guide will start by showing you the historical sites that most visitors overlook in Lower Manhattan, including Bowling Green and Castile Clinton in Battery Park. Learn about Alexander Hamilton at Trinity Church before fast-forwarding to the last century, when the Charging Bull took up residence among the NYSE and Federal Hall. Modern architecture soars overhead, once in the shadows of the World Trade Center. Discuss the tragedy of 9/11 while visiting the official memorial as well as the firefighters’ memorial. Then learn how Lower Manhattan has evolved since, including the Occupy Wall Street movement that took over Zuccotti Park. By the end of the tour, you’ll understand more clearly how New York City has become one of the most important and inspiring metropolises in the world. Then after a break for lunch, travel north to Midtown and learn why it's the "City That Never Sleeps". Find out about the 19th and 20th century additions to Manhattan that helped shape the urban landscape. Explore the lesser-known Marble Collegiate Church and then visit icons like the New York Public Library and the Morgan Library. From Madison Square Park to the quirky Flatiron building, you’ll discover the earlier innovations that helped build New York up, quite literally. Your guide will discuss the skyscraper boom of the early 1900s, including the Met Life Tower and the New York Life Building. You’ll walk by the world-famous Empire State Building to learn about the last of the early 20th century giants. It doesn’t get much more beautiful than the main terminal of Grand Central Station, where you’ll learn about the landmark laws that preserve many of these historic buildings for generations to come.

New York City: Statue of Liberty and Top Sights Walking Tour

5. New York City: Statue of Liberty and Top Sights Walking Tour

Start your 5-hour walking bright and early, heading down to Wall Street, the oldest part of Manhattan. Admire the iconic buildings, from modern skyscrapers to Arc Deco towers. Pass Ground Zero, and see the famous Charging Bull statue outside the New York Stock Exchange. Continue to Greenwich Village through Five Points, Chinatown, and Little Italy, all the while picking up history and local insight from your expert guide. Head to the Rockefeller Center, past The Flatiron Building, Madison Square Garden, the Empire State Building, 5th Avenue, Times Square, New York Public Library, and the Chrysler Building. The urban oasis of Central Park is your next destination. Sights along the way include the NBC Studios, Radio City Music Hall, St Patrick’s Cathedral, Grand Central Station, Carnegie Hall, and more. Stroll through the most famous park in America, then finish your tour at the Guggenheim.  Then, visit the Statue of Liberty on your schedule — with your voucher, feel free to go before or after the tour.

New York Best Kept Secrets

6. New York Best Kept Secrets

Stroll past the iconic sites, to off the beaten path hidden gems by foot and by subway the way real New Yorkers do every day. This tour will lead you past some of New York's most famous sites: the NY Stock Exchange, the Brooklyn Bridge, the 9/11 memorial and more. Explore some of the city's oldest neighborhoods, like the financial district (including Wall Street), East Village, Little Italy, Chinatown, and Midtown Manhattan. Revel in the rooftop views of New York's famous landmarks. See world-famous works of art. Stroll through a miniature rain forest inside an office building. Learn where the largest concentration of gold in the world is hidden. Visit a hidden tennis court inside a subway terminal. There's more but it's a secret. This is the perfect tour for people who like to walk, be outdoors, and want a ‘local’s look’ of the city.

NYC: Midtown Manhattan Self-Guided Walking Tour

7. NYC: Midtown Manhattan Self-Guided Walking Tour

Explore New York City’s Midtown Manhattan on a self-guided walking tour via an app that functions as a guide, narrator, and GPS map. See New York’s most iconic landmarks and learn their history, from the Empire State Building to Times Square. Enjoy animated videos to visualize parts of the tour. Start by downloading the Action Tour Guide app that will function as your personal guide, audio tour, and map all in one. Begin your tour at Columbus Circle, then head to Carnegie Hall, where music legends have performed for over a century. Get the story behind the hall and its founder before moving on to the ornate Russian Tea Room, a Manhattan staple since 1927. Next, visit the city’s most famous hotels, the Ritz and the Plaza. These five-star digs aren’t just landmarks, they’re also packed with Manhattan history that you’ll get to uncover. After that, get a chance to see the famous Pulitzer Fountain. Snap a few photos to save the memory before heading down Fifth Avenue, where New Yorkers come to get their high-end apparel from stores like Saks, Bergdorf, and Louis Vuitton. Then, head to the Saint Regis hotel and learn of the fierce legal dueling between the Astors and the Vanderbilts surrounding this gorgeous landmark. The route continues to the iconic Rockefeller Center. From the ice rink to the NBC studios seen in “30 Rock,” this is a must-see New York landmark. Afterward, it’s time to say hello to Broadway and get a glimpse at the city’s thriving theater scene. A tour of New York City wouldn’t be complete without Times Square, so that’s up next. Explore this memorable square and learn about its transformation from a criminal haven to a tourism hub. If you’re ready to take a break from walking, enjoy a stop at Bryant Park, a perfect oasis that has also seen plenty of Hollywood magic over the years. When you’re ready, head to the city’s most astonishing architectural marvels: the Chrysler Building and Grand Central Terminal. Take in the stunning designs while learning about how they both came to be. Then it’s on to the vast New York Public Library, which houses a staggering 125 miles of shelving and is used to transport books from floor to floor using pneumatic tubes! Finish off your tour learning the full, fascinating history behind the Empire State Building as you walk to New York’s most iconic skyscraper.

New York: Midtown Manhattan City Exploration Game

8. New York: Midtown Manhattan City Exploration Game

Imagine you’re a young reporter who has just moved to New York City in hopes to make your “big break.” You’ve recently received a lead that suggests magic is here in Midtown! Your lead instructs you to meet him in Grand Central, where he’ll provide you with everything you need to discover a Secret Society of Magical Persons. As you solve challenges, the story unfolds and exact directions on your phone will guide you to the next location. Ready for an adventure? The city game starts at the Grand Central Station. It will take you around 1.5 hours to complete and you can also explore at your own pace: pause the game and resume anytime from the location where you paused it. You will finish at The Plaza Hotel. After your booking. you will receive an email on how to download the game to your phone. You can play on your own, in a large group or in several smaller groups that compete against each other and meet at the final stop of the game. For larger groups, one person can purchase access for the entire group by selecting the number of people in the group. All group members will be able to download and play the city game on their phones. Alternatively, each person can make their own purchase.

Other Sightseeing Options in New York Public Library

Want to discover all there is to do in New York Public Library? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about New York Public Library

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 280 reviews

Steve was wonderful! He was so knowledgeable about New York City and its history. He made such good use of our time. He fit so many locations into the time we had. We really appreciate the experience you provided Steve. Thank you again!

Great tour learned a lot about New York City our tour guide Rachel was great she made sure we got the best out of our trip even gave advice on saving money everywhere we went in New York

Louis was a fantastic tour guide. We learned a lot of information and hit all of the highlights during our short stay. This is definitely a stress free way to see the city.

Fabulous day! Would definitely recommend. Our tour guide Don was extremely knowledgeable and the tour bus was clean and comfortable

Kevin was fantastic. Very knowledgeable and made a great effort to make the tour enjoyable