Ellis Island
Ellis Island
4.5
Historic SitesPoints of Interest & LandmarksHistory Museums
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Visitors can retrace the steps of their ancestors at this famous landing point that welcomed millions of immigrants to the United States.
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  • Lonnie G
    44 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Worth the stop!
    Nice place to visit and hang out. Spent time int he facility and exhibits but also enjoyed having a bite to eat and resting in the park like setting. Facility should get 5 stars. Excellent. Prepare to spend alot of time waiting on the ferries. Not enough running and you will spend much of your day in line. Ferries get 1 star.
    Visited June 2023
    Written July 23, 2023
  • Siena
    44 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Our history and today’s issue
    Great experience, very educational. 2 hours just fly by. So much to observe. As We are facing immigration issues today, we can all revisit here Ellis island to see how our country was formed and know what your great grand parents experienced. Be educated, be smart and compassionate. My 18 years old daughter spend much time just learning how USA formed by immigrants from all over the world. She says what she learned in school finally connected, and able to deepen her understanding of this country. After visit here, you can go back to Manhattan with fresh pair of eyes to see everyone’s life and being. Wished cafeteria offers different types of food, commemorate different ethnic foods.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 30, 2023
  • A Midlife Adventure
    Dursley, United Kingdom2,660 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are a must do experience but allow the best part of 4-6 hrs to do it justice
    We caught the ferry across from The Statue of Liberty at about 11 am. It wasn’t too crowded and you basically off load straight into the museum We picked up an audio guide to ensure we learnt everything we could and didn’t miss anything. For us this was the end of a longer journey having visited the Red Star Line Museum in Antwerp where a lot of the European immigrants bought passage to the New World. We didn’t really learn anything new and to be honest found the museum in Antwerp far more informative. Every American should visit to understand that the Native Americans are the only true real Americans. Everyone else is descended from an immigrant and as such should perhaps have more compassion for those seeking a better life in the current age. We were there for several hours and finished our day by taking the ferry back to Battery Park.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written October 13, 2023
  • SylviaTourstein
    1,321 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    NPS - Ellis Island Museum ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Sylvia 4-star = amazing
    Stepping into the Ellis Island Museum is a step into history. This is a very emotionally engaging place to visit. The pictures are not always joyous and neither are the tales. Be prepared with an open mind and open heart. Kids also may get bored of all the walking as there are lots of words and explanations. There are some interactive places where kids can pull back windows to learn facts. Our favorite was the music wall and to see how much American music has been influenced by the songs and instruments of other countries. Look out the windows. The museum provides curious views of the Statue of Liberty and the Manhattan skyline. Take a moment to enjoy the scenery and reflect on the historical significance of the place. Take your time. There is a lot of historical information.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written November 1, 2023
  • Kdawg282
    Doylestown, Pennsylvania1,589 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Stop by once!
    Stop by a see it once after visiting the Statue of Liberty. A quick visit to scroll through some of the grounds and info is all you need unless you have history here from your family that you want to look into yourself. I enjoyed the visit but most of my family came other means, no need to spend a ton of time here.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written November 3, 2023
  • Megan
    New Zealand15 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Hard hat tour - totally worth it!
    Would highly recommend the hard hat tour! We got to see the hospital where people were cared for on the island. Irwin was our guide and he was really great. Had so much passion and a personal connection to the island. His knowledge was awesome, he gave us a great overall rundown of the island and afterwards we did a tour of the museum but Irwin had covered most of it in the tour!
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written November 4, 2023
  • joseph w
    Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom107 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A must visit.
    Regular ferry service with snack bar on boat. Great way to see New York City skyline. Staff were very nice . The museum well laid out and informative. Nice Cafe on site. Very Interesting place well done.
    Visited December 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written December 14, 2023
  • Kevin B
    Mount Juliet, Tennessee3,586 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    What a great experience
    Visiting here was an amazing and humbling experience. As a descendent of immigrants (some of who came through here), my wife and I loved touring every aspect of Ellis Island, from seeing just how the evaluation process occurred once they got here to learning more about the people who risked everything on the American Dream. The facility is quite large and it has numerous exhibits to view. We came here after touring The Statue of Liberty and it was an amazing day filled with American History. It takes more guts than you can ever imagine to leave everything you know and hope things will work out in a distance and unfamiliar land. We are both so grateful to our ancestors and this place for helping them accomplish that dream.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written January 26, 2024
  • F G
    8 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Absolutely AMAZING
    I’ve always wanted to visit Ellis Island and walk the floors my grandfather walked when he came to the US from Poland. This was very heartwarming and very meaningful and memorable. This museum is extremely immaculate, and so much to see and learn. I could’ve spent hours and hours here. The self guided audio tour was amazing and very informative. I hope someday I can go back again. I highly recommend Ellis Island, especially if you have a family history there.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written February 8, 2024
  • Irene Eng
    2,316 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    a good research place
    This island is a stone throw away from Liberty Island. Actually we get there from Liberty, on the same ticket from CityExperiences. The Island is pleasant to walk around, a cafe to take a break and a museum and library to visit.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written April 25, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles7,331 reviews
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4,288
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2,096
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709
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730Tom
Falls Church, VA13 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2021
We booked the 90 minute "Hard Hat" tour on Ellis Island in October 2021. Basically, you get access to the non-renovated hospital buildings on the island. It's mildly interesting but not worth the cost nor do you need to spend 90 minutes taking this tour. Other than the shells of the buildings, there's little to nothing to actually see and our tour guide offered very little in the way of commentary to spice the experience up. I'd recommend staying in the developed buildings taking the free audio tours available. Much better value and use of time.
Written October 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AnAnthropologist
Florida1,285 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2021 • Family
I had expected more from visiting Ellis Island. The signage within the museum isn’t very good and there isn’t much one can see or learn there that one can’t do from afar. Maybe the issue is that sections are still closed because of COVID. It is worth stopping by if you are going to or from the statute of liberty but that is about it. Also, if you want to do research be aware that you need to make an appointment in advance and there is a fee.
Written November 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jen Travels
Detroit, MI6,822 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021 • Family
This is a must-do while visiting Statue of Liberty.

A lot of people recommend to visit this before Statue of Liberty, and I did not do it first, but I would definitely agree. That is if you want pictures with less strangers in them.

But it was never super crowded in there or outside.

We paid for the middle tour, which did not grant us access to the other buildings. That is called the Hard Hat tour and you get to see things that the lower tours do not let you see.

I would still say it was a very good time as it was phenomenal to be able to see exactly what the immigrants saw when they first got here. And it's crazy to learn about all the other buildings and what they were used for.

It's hard to understand exactly what it must have been like for people coming here for a better future until you're actually in a place where they came for that better future.

The immigration museum is full of beauty from the architecture to the layout on the inside, to the landscaping.

Very easy to get around.

Definitely think that you should pay for the tour that includes Ellis Island, even if you don't pay for the most expensive tour.

Written August 14, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AnnMayTravelling
Baden-Württemberg, Germany442 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019 • Friends
I enjoyed my visit to Ellis Island and the museum a lot! I think it is very well done and especially the details about the people who entered the US through Ellis Island all these years ago were amazing. This is a great historical site and I think they did a great job bringing history back to life for all the visitors of the museum.
A tip from my side: make sure to bring enough time to visit the museum, as it is quite big and the exhibitions are all very interesting. It would be a pity to come all the way and not see most of it (all of it most likely is not possible...)
A definite recommendation from my side!
Written February 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Hannah
9 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2022
We can here as part of trip to Liberty and Ellis Islands, from Battery Park in Manhattan but opted to return to Liberty State Park so we could explore New Jersey.
Self-guided audio tour contained a lot of information and supported the exhibits on display in the rooms explaining process immigrants had to follow on arrival. For 10 dollars you’d the option to book a slot to check records and find entries for ancestors arriving here in the past. Don’t miss the full list of immigrant names printed in alphabetical order on long curved panels behind the building, accessed through the cafe.
Written November 5, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

08lj
Charleston, SC192 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
So glad we took time to see all Ellis Island had to offer. There are many exhibits, though I most enjoyed the one that took you through what it would have been like to immigrate through the island.

There’s a cafe here that had a decent variety in food options and wasn’t way over priced, like I thought it may be.
Written March 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jill
4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2022 • Couples
I can definitely recommend the guided ranger tour which lasts about 30 mins and leaves on the hour. I think the lady was called Danielle and her grandparents came through Ellis Island from Italy. Really authentic and informative walk around the museum through the eyes of the immigrants that made the journey through the Island.
Written May 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

The Swiss Nomad
Lugano, Switzerland3,519 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020 • Couples
We decided to visit Ellis Island by purchasing tickets through state cruises, which offered a fair deal for both the statue of liberty and Ellis Island.
After visiting the first landmark, we headed by boat to Ellis Island, where millions of immigrants came upon arriving to the New world a century ago.
The buildings were restored and looked really stunning, the grounds are beautifully kept and there are lots of reading to do inside, movies to see and pictures to look at.
I did not use the audio guide as I found it quite boring.
We spent nearly 3 hours there and could have stayed even more, then my belly was rumbling and we left for Manhattan.
It was inspiring reading what immigrants went through, how they lived and what they thought of this new world, we both really enjoyed our time and whenever we will visit NY again this will be one of the first attractions we want to go back to.
Simply wonderful, touching and inspiring.
Written March 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jane a
London, UK497 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
Great place to visit even if you don’t have relatives who have passed through.
I liked the way they linked the people working there to their ancestors.
I liked the objects exhibition on the top floor.
I liked the way you walked through the rooms the people landing on Ellis island would have and what would have happened in each one . Highly recommended. Same ticket for liberty island and Ellis island
Written February 29, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Windy0309
Cannock, UK763 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
Visited here and was a little unsure what to expect. I had seen programmes that had featured the museum and thought it looked very interesting, however until you have been there you can not describe how amazing it is.

100% take your own earphones for the audio tour as they are not provided... just the audio machines which would be used like a phone.

A must visit!
Written March 8, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Ellis Island - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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