Explore New York City

New York City's Top Skyscraper Views

If you're in search of the best views in NYC, we have several fantastic options for you.

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New York City is known for its iconic skyline. With a total of almost 300 skyscrapers, it can be overwhelming trying to decide which ones to visit (and figure out which ones have the best views). Here we compiled a few that are sure to have views that will leave you breathless (and ensure your selfies will be fantastic). 

SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

Located high above the city atop an iconic skyscraper, you’ll find SUMMIT One Vanderbilt. Perch over a thousand feet above the city with the glass ledges of “Levitation.” Those searching for a thrill can visit “Ascent” and take the exterior elevators to the top of Summit One Vanderbilt—the floors are made of glass. From here, visitors are rewarded with panoramic views of New York City. The newly opened attraction also features “Air” by Kenzo Digital, an art installation designed to make visitors feel as though they are suspended midair. “Air” is one of the world’s largest art installations. Enjoy a meal at Après with stunning panoramic views of the city below.

Terrace at SUMMIT One Vanderbilt New York | WhereTraveler
Terrace at SUMMIT One Vanderbilt (Courtesy SUMMIT One Vanderbilt)

Edge at Hudson Yards

For those who aren't afraid of heights, the Edge sky deck is an absolute must-see. The Edge is currently the highest observation deck in the entire Western Hemisphere and fifth-highest globally, standing at 100 stories tall. Its unique design allows for a 360° view of Manhattan. Part of the deck is glass, which will enable you to look straight down to get an even crazier look at the city. If you're in the mood for a drink while you're there, you'll be able to grab one at the champagne bar. Tickets for adults start at $36. 

The Edge New York | WhereTraveler
The Edge (©Fred Moon)

One World Observatory 

One World Observatory is located at the top of the One World Trade Center, the tallest building in the city and the United States. It currently ranks as the sixth-tallest in the world. To get to the top of the building, you'll ride on the SkyPod Elevators, which will take approximately 47 seconds. The ride isn't just any ordinary ride; it's an audiovisual experience that will teach you how New York became the city it is today. Once up there, you can try some fine dining at One DINE, which serves cocktails and gourmet meals. General admission for adults is priced at $43, but if you purchase the tickets online, you can buy them for a discounted price of $38. 

One World Observatory (©Tagger Yancey IV/NYC & Company) New York | WhereTraveler
One World Observatory (©Tagger Yancey IV/NYC & Company) 

Empire State Building

Arguably New York's most recognizable attraction, the Empire State Building has an open-air observation deck on the 86th floor that offers an unforgettable view. However, that's not all because if you desire, you can take the elevator all the way to the enclosed observatory on the 102nd floor. If you're lucky and it's a clear day, you can see across six states: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Delaware. There is a price difference; adult tickets to the 86th floor cost $42, while tickets allowing access to the 102nd floor cost $72. 

Empire State Building (©Julienne Schaer/NYC & Company) New York | WhereTraveler
Empire State Building (©Julienne Schaer/NYC & Company) 

Top of the Rock

One of the best views in New York City (and easily the world) can be found at Top of the Rock. You’ll spot the red carpet entry to the observation deck right away, and you won’t want to miss a single moment of the journey. Stop by the Mezzanine Exhibit to learn all about the history of Rockefeller Center and, of course, Top of the Rock. Stop and get your photo taken at the Beam Walk next, on your way to the Theatre. The Sky Shuttle is next and whisks you up 850 feet in under 60 seconds. Make sure to enjoy all three observation levels—the first stop is the 67th floor, with a viewing area and the Swarovski Radiance Wall. Your next stop will be the 69th floor which is home to viewing areas and the Breezeway. Top of the Rock saves the best for last with the 70th-floor rooftop viewing, which offers 360° views with no obstructions (this is the spot to get your picture-perfect NYC selfies). General Admission tickets cost #38 for adults, $36 for seniors and $32 for children. Express and VIP ticket options are available as well. 

View From Top of the Rock New York | WhereTraveler
View From Top of the Rock (©Matthew Jones)