5 Things in New York City You Must Visit
From the Empire State Building to the iconic Fifth Avenue and the unforgettable Statue of Liberty, here are the 10 New York City attractions you need to see at least once.The Empire State Building is the tallest and most famous skyscraper in New York City. More than 120 million visitors, including the rock group Kiss and Queen Elizabeth II, have gazed down on the city from the Observatory since it opened in 1931.
1. Fifth Avenue
Midtown Fifth Avenue is New York City’s best-known boulevard and home to three of its most famous buildings. In the late 1800s, it was lined with mansions belonging to prominent families, but as retailers moved north in the 1900s, society fled uptown. One of the former mansions that remains is the Cartier building, reputedly acquired from banker Morton F. Plant in 1917 in exchange for a string of pearls. Although commercial enterprises now share the avenue, it has remained a mecca for luxury goods. Fifth Avenue is at its best on Easter Sunday when traffic is barred and the street is filled with New Yorkers in elaborate hats.
2. Rockefeller Center
A city within a city and a National Historical Landmark, soemthing you must do in the Big Apple is visit the largest privately owned complex in the world. Begun in the 1930s, it was the first commercial project to integrate gardens, dinning, and shopping with office space. Rockefeller Center is the hub of midtown New York, alive with activity day and night. The number of building has grown to 19, through the newer buildings do not match the Art Deco elegance of the original 14 structures. Over 100 works of art lie within the complex, including a major mural in each building. Still growing, this site contains one of the more outstanding public art collections in America.
3. Statue of Liberty
The figure presiding over New York harbor, officially titled “Liberty Enlightening the World,” has been a harbinger of freedom for millions since her inauguration by President Grover Cleveland in 1886. No visit to New York is complete without seeing the statue, a gift of friendship from the French to mark the U.S.’s 100th birthday in 1876, was designed by the French sculptor Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi, who devoted 21 years to the project. Slow fundraising on both sides of the Atlantic delayed the unveiling by 10 years, but no problem was encountered financing the $100 million restoration for the statue’s 100th birthday. Her unveiling on July 3, 1986, was the occasion for one of the largest firework displays ever seen in the U.S.
4. Ellis Island Immigration Museum
Ellis Island is the symbol of America’s immigrant heritage, and a top-ten landmark for first time New York City travellers. From 1892 to 1954, it was the arrival point for over 12 million people fleeing religious persecution, poverty, or unrest in their homelands. Their descendants, more than 100 million people, comprise almost 40 per cent of today’s population. First and second class passengers were processed for immigration on board the ship, but the poor travelling in steerage were ferried to the crowded island for medical and legal examinations. It was a frightening prospect after an exhausting journey to a land where few newcomers could speak the language. As many as 5,000 passed through in a day. The museum not only retraces their experience here, but is a picture of the total immigrant experience in America.
5. Central Park
When looking for something to do in New York City, the city’s “backyard,” an 843-acre swatch of green, provides recreation and beauty for over two million visitors each year. Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux in 1858, the park took 16 years to create and involved the planting of 500,000 trees and shrubs, the hauling in of vast amounts of stone and earth to form hills, lakes and meadows, and the building of more than 30 bridges to arches.