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“Go at 4pm on a clear day and you can avoid the queues and see NYC.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Empire State Building

Empire State Building
350 Fifth Avenue, Between 33rd and 34th Streets, New York City, NY 10118 (Midtown)
+1 212-736-3100
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$32*
and up
Ranked #29 of 1,633 things to do in New York City
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The world-famous Empire State Building offers unobstructed panoramic views of New York City and beyond from 8 a.M. Until 2 a.M. Daily. Our 86th and 102nd floor Observation Decks offer the two highest vantage points in New York City. Soaring 1,454 feet above Midtown Manhattan from base to antenna, the Empire State Building is the World's Most Famous Office Building. Named America's favorite building in a poll conducted by the American Institute of Architects, the Empire State Building is one of New York City's top tourist destinations. On a clear day, you can see up to five states from our Observation Decks - New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Massachusetts. Guests can enjoy our outdoor viewing area on our open-air 86th floor Observatory, or our indoor climate-controlled viewing areas on the 86th and 102nd floors. We recently launched our new Multimedia Experience as well, which guides visitors through the extraordinary exhibits and breathtaking views with additional depth on the building's history in eight languages - including English, Spanish, French, Italian, Mandarin, Portuguese, Japanese and Korean. The Empire State Building aims to provide entertainment for guests of all ages. Bringing children? Have their picture taken with King Kong himself on our 80th floor from Thursdays through Mondays (12 p.M. Until 9 p.M.). Celebrating a first date or an anniversary? Enjoy romantic tunes from our saxophone player from 9 p.M. Until midnight every Thursday through Saturday night. Tickets can be purchased through our website. Our celebrated tower lights are often illuminated to commemorate holidays, events and special causes. In the Fall of 2012, we upgraded our tower lighting system from floodlights to one-of-a-kind LED tower lights. The state-of-the-art system allows customized lighting capabilities from a palette of over 16 million colors! To watch some of our recent light shows, visit our YouTube page. Reigning as the world's tallest building from 1931 to 1970, the Empire State Building is known for its distinct Art Deco style. Construction of the renowned icon only took one year and 45 days, and logged more than 7 million man hours. This is the fastest construction to date for a project of its scale. Additionally, from classics like An Affair to Remember and Sleepless in Seattle to recent hits such as Oblivion and Elf, our place in pop culture has been solidified since our early days. In fact, over 200 movies and TV shows have featured the Empire State Building in them!
Top Contributor
121 reviews 121 reviews
56 attraction reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
“Go at 4pm on a clear day and you can avoid the queues and see NYC.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2012 via mobile

We avoided queues by visiting at 4 pm and were on the top in about 20 minutes. Great views, bring a coat , nice and breezy up there.

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Empire_State_Bldg, Empire State Building at Empire State Building, responded to this review, October 11, 2012
Hi Dingerb- We are delighted to hear you enjoyed the views and were able to take advantage of the shorter lines during one of our off-peak times. Our off-peak hours are 8-10 a.m., 2-4 p.m. and 9 p.m.-2 a.m. Thank you for coming. - Empire State Building
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RYDAL
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 attraction reviews
“Very crowded!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2012 via mobile

We bought our tickets online prior to arriving in New York. We didn't realize that there would still be a long wait to get through security. After the wait, we arrived to the observation deck and we greeted by wall to wall people. There were so many people on the observation deck that we felt like sardines. The crowd lessened the experience. We arrived at the building when it was still light outside but after the security wait, we didn't get to the observation deck until it was already dark. I ever go back, it would definitely be during the day. I felt that I couldn't distinguish the buildings due it being dark.

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Empire_State_Bldg, Empire State Building at Empire State Building, responded to this review, October 11, 2012
Hi Tiffany H- We are sorry to hear that your experience fell short of your expectations. We hope you will visit again during the daytime; our lines tend to be shorter during the following daytime off-peak hours: 8-10 a.m. and 2-4 p.m. Thank you for coming. - Empire State Building
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Miami, Florida
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114 reviews 114 reviews
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Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Awesome on a clear day”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2012

Be prepared to wait and wait and wait in line. Arrived at 930 am and it took sm hour to get to the 86th floor with regular tickets. You wonder around in line like you're at Disney only nothing to look at most of the time. The view from the 86th floor was amazing. Pay the extra money for the audio tour. It was well worry it. Skip the map they sell you in line. There were occasional restrooms along the way.

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Empire_State_Bldg, Empire State Building at Empire State Building, responded to this review, October 11, 2012
Hi businesstraveler05- We're glad you enjoyed the views and felt the iView audiovisual tour enhanced your experience. As one of the most popular destinations in NYC, our staff does their best to keep the lines moving. Thank you for your visit. - Empire State Building
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Chicago IL
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Must see in NY”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2012 via mobile

Been here twice...once during the day and once at night...it's so beautiful! Yes the lines are long but it's a tourist spot! You should expect it!! I am from Chicago and compared to the Sears tower the Empire State Building, in my opinion, is way nicer...beautiful architecture and you actually get to go outside! I love it...have patience and visit while you are in NY

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Empire_State_Bldg, Empire State Building at Empire State Building, responded to this review, October 9, 2012
Hi Server1127- We are delighted that you enjoyed the building and the views during both your visits. We do have off-peak hours when our lines tend to be shorter: 8-10 a.m., 2-4 p.m. and 9 p.m.-2 a.m. Thank you for coming and for writing a review; we look forward to seeing you again. - Empire State Building
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Western Australia
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72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
“Express Pass!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2012 via mobile

We visited the ESB at about 10am October 5. We purchased express passes for about $67 each and that included the pass to the 102nd floor. Thankfully we did because the lines were horrendous. They started down the block, through the lobby, and continued for about the next 4 levels. The express pass rushed us straight past these lines all the way to the top. If we joined the line I cant see how we could have gotten up in less that 3 hours. With express we were up in about 15 minutes including security.

If you can afford the express pass it is the only way to go. The small extra cost is worth it. I look at it like this. Time is valuable and I want to maximise my time on holiday. I dont want to spend 3 hours in a line. We were up, down and on our way to the next attraction before some people made it to security.

The view is awesome, The Rock is better but the Empire State is iconic. To me that matters, loved the view and loved standing in such an iconic building.

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Empire_State_Bldg, Empire State Building at Empire State Building, responded to this review, October 9, 2012
Hi Redaussie8- We're glad you enjoyed your experience and that the Express Pass helped you make the most of your time. For those with flexible schedules, the lines tend to be shorter during the following off-peak hours: 8-10 a.m., 2-4 p.m. and 9 p.m.-2 a.m. Thank you for your visit. - Empire State Building
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