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New York Landmarks

 

Like most of the great world cities, New York has an abundance of great attractions and some of these are detailed below: 

Statue of Liberty: the ferry ($10) leaves every 25 minutes from Battery Park and stops at Liberty Island and Ellis Island. You must (in advance) reserve a time slot to enter the museum at the base of the statue, and then undergo cumbersome security procedures to actually enter the museum in the statue's pedestal (visitors are no longer allowed in the crown, much less the torch). The Immigration Museum at Ellis Island is worth a visit.

Brooklyn Bridge: you may walk across this historic bridge in either direction (takes about 30 minutes each way), or bike across it for no toll. The view is quite nice going into Manhattan. On the Brooklyn side, you can get pizza, or dine by the waterfront in the DUMBO (Down Under Manhattan Bridge) area, which is gentrifying with lofts and cool dining places. You can also take the F train to York St, hang out in the DUMBO area and then walk across the bridge back into Manhattan.

Central Park with its lawns, trees and lakes is popular for recreation and concerts and is home to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Central Park Zoo.

Times Square: centered on 42nd Street and Broadway - a place filled with video screens and LED signs. A world wonder or a tourist nightmare depending on your perspective, the "New" Times Square is a family-friendly theme park of themed restaurants, theaters and hotels, as well as a developing business district. Those looking for the seedy Times Square of old will find it around the Port Authority Bus Terminal, and around Broadway several blocks to the south.

Cathedral St. John The Divine: Amsterdam Avenue between 110-112th Streets - the world's largest Gothic cathedral...a work in progress for over a century!

Columbia University: Broadway at 116th Street; One of the most selective, rigorous, and prestigious institutions of higher education in the world, Columbia is also worth a visit for architecture fans, who will be impressed by the beautiful McKim, Mead, and White campus.

Lincoln Center: Broadway at 64th Street; The world's largest cultural complex. See theater, symphonies, ballet, opera, movies, art exhibits or just wander the architecturally beautiful buildings. Subway: 1 or 9 to 66th St. or walk able from A, C, and E trains at 59th St. The buildings are modern, and even have modern chandeliers. There are two opera companies, and the famous Julliard School of Music is also here. Across the street are a large Tower Records, a large Barnes and Noble Bookstore and a Loews movie theater.

The Cloisters: located on four acres overlooking the Hudson River in northern Manhattan's Fort Tryon Park, the building incorporates elements from five medieval French cloisters--quadrangles enclosed by a roofed or vaulted passageway, or arcade--and from other monastic sites in southern France. Its gardens are a great way to spend a nice afternoon. Pay for the Cloisters or the Metropolitan Museum, and see both for one price.

Carnegie Hall 154 West 57th Street

Rockefeller Plaza 630 5th Avenue; The Christmas Tree, the Skating Rink, the shops and hubbub - you can't miss it. The Christmas Tree and the Skating Rink are not year round. You may take skating lessons. There are several dining establishments overlooking this area. The art deco buildings of Rockefeller Center are quite cool. Saks Fifth Avenue is across the street, and there are many other stores throughout the complex.

St. Patrick's Cathedral: Fifth Ave between 50/51st Streets. The largest Catholic cathedral in the United States. A big, grand Episcopal church is in this area as well. These churches are close to the reopened MOMA, now expanded and renovated after several years of being closed.

The United Nations: 1st Avenue at 46th Street offers a park overlooking the East River and tours of the general assembly and secretariat.

SONY Wonder Technology Lab 550 Madison Avenue (212) 833- 8100. An interactive hands-on experience of cutting edge technology, sponsored by Sony.

Radio City Music Hall 1260 Avenue of the Americas (212) 632- 3975 See the Rockettes, another show or just tour the famous Art Deco masterpiece.

Empire State Building Fifth Avenue at 34th Street

Flatiron Building Fifth Avenue at 23rd Street. Reportedly the most photographed building in the world, the Flatiron perches over the intersection of Fifth, Broadway, and 23rd, necessitating its unusual shape. Stop in nearby Madison Square Park for a lovely rest.

Washington Square Park and the famous arch is located in the heart of the Village. Though located in the middle of an affluent neighborhood, the Park attracts a hodgepodge of people.

World Financial Center: next to the former Twin Towers; Shopping, dining, events and the Winter Garden all open to the public.

World Trade Center Site Trinity Place and Fulton Street. For better or worse, the site of the September 11th terrorist attacks has become popular with visitors. Various plaques are on display documenting the history of the WTC.

Chelsea Market: the original Oreo cookie factory now a block-sized market selling gourmet foods, flowers, knick-knacks and offering restaurants, bars, art space and special shows. Has free wireless Internet access throughout and smells like a slice of heaven.

AOL Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle has the Mandarin Oriental Hotel for dining, drinks, and Chihuly chandeliers. It also has a small, ultra-high end mall with a big Borders Bookstore and Botero sculptures. In the basement is a large Whole Foods Market, and there is seating for eating their salad bar and prepared food items (cheaper than eating in a restaurant). Subway: A, C, 1, 9 , B, D trains to Columbus Circle. This is also at one corner of Central Park if you want to explore that.

New York Stock Exchange 20 Broad Sreet (at Wall Street). The most important stock exchange in the world, the NYSE is the most watched indicator of economic performance in the global economy. The activity on the trading floor is astonishing. Visitors should beware, however, that security is tight, and sudden closures are a possibility.

General Post Office: 421 8th Avenue (at 34th Street). This enormous post office is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Designed by McKim, Mead, and White, it is a great example of Beaux Arts architecture.

New York Public Library: corner of Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street. After the Library of Congress, this is the largest non-academic library in the United States. It is housed in a beautiful building by Carrer and Hastings, which is seen as the greatest example of Beaux Arts architecture. The main reading room is magnificent, and the library contains numerous important rare items, like Jefferson's handwritten copy of the Declaration of Independence.

Chrysler Building 405 Lexington Avenue (at 42nd Street). One of the most beautiful and beloved buildings in the world, the Chrysler Building is the epitome of Art Deco architecture. Though you can't go up inside it unless you have business there, you can visit the gorgeous lobby

Grand Central Terminal 42nd Street and Park Avenue. One of the busiest train stations in the world, Grand Central is also a must for architecture lovers. Its vaulted ceiling, covered with a medieval zodiac design, is staggering.

 


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