Top 5 Best Observation Decks in New York City

Observation Decks
·
8
min read

There are many sights to visit on a trip to New York—Broadway, the Financial District, and the Statue of Liberty. While most of New York’s premier locations will give you a great chance to observe the local culture, few offer a better chance to observe than the many scenic observation decks in NYC.

Visiting an observatory is a great opportunity to see the expansive streets of New York and its remarkable skyline from a bird’s eye view. When visiting an observatory, NYC travelers and locals can step away from the bustling streets and see New York for what it really is—rich culture, breathtaking architecture, and the place that has inspired the world since it was founded in 1624.

There are several incredible observation decks NYC offers, but some are a cut above the rest. The top New York observation decks should be considered based on the experience they bring and the sights they offer. 

Let’s take a closer look at the top observation decks for visitors in New York.

Central Park Bike Rentals

5. Empire State Building

The best observation decks in NYC are ones that offer a bit of history, and few are more well-known than the Empire State Building observation deck. Reaching a staggering height of 1,454 feet, this iconic building that was featured in famous King Kong movie, offers views of New York City from the top of one of its most famous locations. 

The top of the Empire State Building includes two options for visitors—a deck on floor 86 and one on 102nd floor. Once you are done viewing the highly-engaging Empire State Building Museum, you can head up to see a completely open view of New York City. 

From this views of the city, the wonder and size of New York will surround you. Since the building is open both day and night, you can enjoy two completely different views—one of the staggering skylines and another with the twinkling lights of New York City nightlife below. 

Empire State Building tickets can be purchased for $47.

Learn More
Central Park Bike Rentals

4. Top of the Rock

Top of the Rock—NYC’s scenic 360-degree view observation deck—is known for its multi-level viewing opportunities. At this beautiful location, you can explore New York City from all sides thanks to their completely unobstructed 360-degree views that allow you to take in as much of NYC as possible.

This observation deck even comes with an incredible view of Central Park, which has several great tour options for travelers too! 

Offering both indoor and outdoor viewing locations, the Top of the Rock observation deck is perfect for those who want a captivating experience as well as those who prefer to view the sights from more of a distance. Seated at the top of 70 floors over 30 Rockefeller Plaza, this top attraction is a must-visit for anyone looking to get the complete NYC experience. 

Top of the Rock Tickets can be purchased for $44.

Learn More
Central Park Walking Tours

3. One World Observatory

One World Observatory is another observation deck that offers stunning 360-degree views of New York City, allowing you to spotlight your favorite attractions from a distance. Located 102 stories from the city below, with One World Observatory, you can look down on New York City from a comfortable, temperature-controlled environment. They offer three spaces, with access to floors 100, 101, and 102.

They offer three spaces, with access to floors 100, 101, and 102.

Although this observatory is known for its shocking height, you hardly feel the difference as you step into the SkyPod, which allows you to travel to the top in less than one minute. Also known as the One World Trade Center Observatory or simply the World Trade Observatory, this building holds a historical relevance and offers a beautiful addition to the NYC skyline, which can be seen from other observation decks.

Tickets for the One World Observatory can be purchased for $48.

Learn More
Central Park Walking Tours

2. The Edge

Proudly highlighted as the highest observation deck in New York City, The Edge New York observation deck is an experience unlike any other located on the 100th floor of 30 Hudson Yards. When you visit The Edge, NYC can be seen from a distance of over 1,100 feet.

The viewing area is actually a balcony with a glass floor that allows you to look straight down! Located on the western end of Manhattan, this 360-degree observation deck gives you the ability to see New York from the farthest vertical distance available. 

When you explore this 7,500-square-foot observation deck, you are given a direct view down covering 100 stories. Offering picturesque views of the surrounding area, there is always something new to see every time you visit. With The Edge, New York travelers can experience a variety of exciting opportunities—including a nice glass of champagne at the top. Locals can even receive discount tickets to this attraction!

The Edge NYC tickets can be purchased for $44.

Learn More
Central Park Walking Tours

1. The SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

Bringing thrilling views of New York to travelers and locals alike, this incredible observation deck offers several different tailored experiences for you to enjoy. With beautiful sights and art installations, the SUMMIT One Vanderbilt observation deck provides a fully interactive experience that goes well beyond the great views of New York City.

From atop the Vanderbilt Observatory, visitors can enjoy heart-racing thrills and a true New York City cultural experience.

Offering glass ledges that place you roughly 1,100 feet above Madison Avenue, this thrilling experience atop the 93rd floor of One Vanderbilt is perfect for those who are seeking adventure in New York City. With The SUMMIT, NYC’s exciting and art-based culture is clear—and you are right at the center of it!

SUMMIT One Vanderbilt tickets can be purchased for $43.

Learn More
Central Park Walking Tours
Learn More
Central Park Walking Tours
Learn More

There are many opportunities to explore New York from different angles, and each of these observation decks can offer you breathtaking sights unlike anywhere in the world. As you find your perfect spot above the bustling city below, remember to marvel over the engineering that made it possible. With every tour of New York, there is something new to learn—but NYC observation decks make it easy for you to see a whole new side of this landmark area.

To learn more about making the most of your trip to New York, check out the countless tours available before you go!

Read More:

March 7, 2023

Top Things to Do in New York

1. Statue of the Liberty
2. Times Square
3. Brooklyn Bridge
4. Central Park
5. Empire State
6. Dumbo
7. Hudson Yards
8. 9/11 Memorial and Museum
9. The MET
10. Grand Central Station

Top Experiences in New York

Top Activities in New York

Top Things to Do in New York

1. Statue of the Liberty
2. Times Square
3. Brooklyn Bridge
4. Central Park
5. Empire State
6. Dumbo
7. Hudson Yards
8. 9/11 Memorial and Museum
9. The MET
10. Grand Central Station

Top 2023 Experiences in New York

1. Manhattan Helicopter Tour
2. Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off
3. Central Park Pedicab Tour
4. Full Day Sightseeing Tour
5. NYC's "Must See" Guided Tour
6. NYC Harbor Lights Cruise
7. Celebrity and Movie Spots Tour

Top Activities in New York

1. The Summit One Vanderbilt
2. Go City Explorer Pass
3. The Edge
4. Empire State
5. Metropolitan Museum
6. Top of the Rock
7. MoMA
8. One World Observatory