Empire State Building

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Lonely Planet New York (Travel Guide)

The Empire State Building: The History of New York City

Empire State Building: Tours & Tickets

Insider tips

How to Get There / Hours

The Empire State Building is located at 350 5th Ave, between 33rd and 34th Street. It opens at 8am and the last elevator to the top leaves at 1:15 AM; the building closes at 2:00 AM. The nearest subway is the 6 train to 33rd Street; B/D/F, Q, or 1/2/3 to 34th Street.

The Best Time to Visit the Empire State Building

The views will be astounding day or night. If you go at night, you get the romantic city lights all around you. But by day, you get to see the geography and outline of the city below. It’s up to you!

Skipping the Line

The Empire State Building is known for its lines. Ticket lines, security lines, and then the line for the elevator up to the 86th Floor observatory. The best way to skip the ticket line is to buy one online in advance. You can even buy an express pass and fast track your way up on the elevator. Keep in mind you will need to go through security. No glass, bottles, or cans are allowed.

Good to know

When should I visit?

Rain or shine, everyday, from 8:00 AM to 2:00 AM. Last elevator ride at 1:15 AM.

How to get there

The nearest subway station is 33rd Street – keep walking until you get to 5th Avenue.

Is it expensive?

Between $30-40.

Will I need a guide?


What people are saying about Empire State Building

★★★★★ Amazing experience & superb VIP treatment

VIP is definitely recommended. Warm welcome by all the staff. No queues, straight to the top. Beautiful building & an amazing view of New York. Loved the whole experience.

★★★★★ Well worth the price to get to top of ESB

We bought the "skip all lines" tickets for the Empire State Building. I had the vouchers on my phone. When we got there, we were told the line was at least 1.5 hours. Not for us!! From the time we got there to the time we were actually on the 86th floor observation deck was ONLY 10 MINUTES!! Amazing! And on the way down, same thing - NO WAITING! Could not believe it! I would easily do this again! Because I cannot stand lines! Thanks so much GetYourGuide!

★★★★★ Jumped ahead of the queues to see spectacular views

Visited at 8.30pm at night when long queues were formed. The tickets allowed us to enter the building directly. There is still a lengthy process of accessing the elevators and going through security however the process was fairly smooth. There is also opportunities to take stairs rather the elevators between the top observation floors which saves time queuing The views from the both observation decks are spectacular particularly at night.

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