If you’re planning on visiting New York City soon (or sometime in the future), we just found out about two exclusive must-see sightseeing tours that you may want to check out. Be one of the lucky people to experience the Statue of Liberty up close (only a limited number of visitors are permitted per day). Feel like a VIP – get early access to the top of the Empire State Building before the tourists arrive. No need to wait in line at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum to see the Space Shuttle Enterprise – skip-the-line and get into the exhibit before the crowds. Visit the 9/11 Memorial and spend time at the twin reflecting pools that sit exactly where the Twin Towers once stood.
Find out more about these two exclusive sightseeing tours that you won’t want to miss.
1. Statue of Liberty Monument Access and 9/11 Memorial Tour
Experience two of New York City’s must-see attractions – the Statue of Liberty and the 9/11 Memorial. The guided portion of this tour is approximately 2 hours; self-guided 3 1/2 hours.
Begin your morning with a guided walking tour of Wall Street (NYC’s financial hub), before arriving at the World Trade Center site, home of the 9/11 Memorial. The Memorial is a tribute to the nearly 3,000 victims of the 2001 terrorist attacks. Get an up-close view of the massive reflecting pools and fountains as you listen to moving stories from your tour guide of that infamous September day. Inscribed in bronze around the twin memorial pools you’ll see the names of people who perished in the attacks on February 26, 1993 and September 11, 2001. The twin pools feature the largest manmade waterfalls in Northern America. LED lights at the base of the pools illuminate the water at night.
Your tour continues with priority boarding for the ferry to Liberty Island – yes, you get to bypass all those long lines! Before you start your cruise, your tour guide will fill you in on everything you always wanted to know about the Statue of Liberty. Take in breathtaking views of the NYC skyline as you cruise along the harbor before approaching Lady Liberty – get your iPhones and cameras ready to snap those pics! Once you arrive at Liberty Island, pick up your handheld audio guide (available in 9 different languages) and go inside – you have reserved access to the Statue of Liberty’s stone pedestal. The top of the pedestal is about half the height of the entire monument and it offers stunning views of Ellis Island, New York, New Jersey and New York Harbor. Note: Only a limited number of visitors are permitted per day – on this tour, you’ll be one of the fortunate ones to experience the Statue of Liberty up-close. Your ticket also includes access to the Liberty Island Museum.
Your tour ends here, however feel free to stay on the island and visit the museum at your leisure. On the return ferry, you can disembark onto Ellis Island (gateway for 12 million immigrants) and search for your relative’s arrival in their database of 51 million+ passenger records. The museum receives almost 2 million visitors every year. End your day on the ferry back to Lower Manhattan and enjoy stunning views of the NYC skyline.
Note: This tour does NOT include admission to the 9/11 Museum and the Statue of Liberty Crown admission.
2. Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty and 9/11 Memorial Tour
Enjoy an action-packed and exclusive 5 1/2 hour guided Viator VIP Tour that includes:
- Early access to the Empire State Building
- Skip-the-Line entry to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
- An Open-Top Bus Tour
- Hop-On Hop-Off Cruise and Photo Ops of the Statue of Liberty
- Visit the 9/11 Memorial
- Upgrade to afternoon timed-entry admission to the 9/11 Museum
Get Early Access to the Empire State Building
Start your day early and beat the crowds – get first access into the world-famous Empire State Building. Feel like a VIP as you ride up the elevator to the 86th floor and see some of the most stunning views of Manhattan. If you’re thinking of proposing, this could be the place to do it!
Open-Top Bus Tour and “Skip-the-Line” Entry to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Next stop, join your tour guide on an open-top bus tour of Midtown before arriving at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, home to NASA’s Space Shuttle Enterprise. No need to wait in long lines to see this popular exhibit that went on display in July 2012 – this tour includes a ‘skip-the-line” ticket so you can see it before the dynamic exhibition opens. Get an up-close view of the orbiter – you can walk directly underneath it and also view it from an elevated platform. The exhibit also features original artifacts, photographs, audio and films. While at the museum, you’ll also get to explore the aircraft carrier USS Intrepid.
Hop-On Hop-Off Cruise (Statue of Liberty Photo Ops) and 9/11 Memorial
Continue your guided tour aboard a Hop-On, Hop-Off Cruise at Pier 79. Get off at Battery Park, where you’ll take a walking tour through Wall Street (NYC’s famous financial district) on your way to the 9/11 Memorial. Visit the twin reflecting pools that sit exactly where the Twin Towers once stood. The names of the victims from the September 11, 2001 and 1993 terrorist attacks are inscribed on bronze panels that outline the pools. The guided portion of your tour ends inside the Memorial, at approximately 1pm.
Option to Upgrade Ticket for Timed-Entry Admission to the 9/11 Museum
Note: You have the option to upgrade for a 2pm admission to the National September 11 Memorial Museum (9/11 Museum) when you book your ticket. If you choose the Museum Option, your cruise ticket is valid for the rest of the afternoon and the entire next day.
If you stay with the Tour-Only Option, you can continue on the cruise at your leisure – the ticket is valid for the rest of the day.
Cruise to South Street Seaport and Fulton Ferry Landing in Brooklyn
The Hop-On Hop-Off Cruise makes two more stops – South Street Seaport (fun for shopping, dining and people-watching) and the Fulton Ferry Landing in Brooklyn. If you have time, be sure to visit the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory (located in the fireboat house of the Fulton Ferry Pier) and indulge in one of their delicious ice creams, sundaes or milkshakes. Take pictures of the Statue of Liberty and the stunning NYC skyline as you enjoy the rest of your cruise.
Whatever you do in NYC, have FUN!