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Ways to Experience The National 9/11 Memorial & Museum
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Reviewed July 22, 2013

I would like to ask those who might be put off by complaints of the wait, the security, and the hassles of visiting the 9/11 Memorial to not be deterred. It was impressive that there were so many of us lined up the morning we visited - and on the others days too based on other reviewers remarks - and that our fellow visitors hailed from all over the globe. We have lined up for attractions all over the world, from the Eiffel Tower to Disneyland rides, and sometimes wondered if the long waits were worth it. Not only is the wait worth it at this memorial but consider it a miniscule sacrifice on our part: after all, we visit to pay our respect and to remember the victims and heroes of that terrible day.

That is not to say that you should not try to plan for your visit. It is estimated that there are 10,000 visitors each day which is why you cannot simply walk up to Ground Zero and expect to get in. Furthermore, given the symbolism of the site and the sheer number of people, it is no surprise that security is tight. Here are some thoughts on visiting the memorial, many of which have been mentioned before.

1. Get your ticket either on-line or at the 9/11 Memorial office (and gift store) on Vesey Street a couple of blocks north of the site. You CAN show up without one, though, and go through a separate line for ticket-less visitors. The tickets are free but donations are requested. The tickets are for a specific hour. I do not know if you will be turned away if you show up late. I could not get tickets through my smartphone so we ended up going to the office; if you are unsure as to the exact hour of your visit this may be the better way to go about obtaining the ticket.
2. Be prepared for long waits. We made sure to be there for the 10 AM opening but still had a 30-minute wait including security which was not bad at all. It was a hot day so bring water if visiting in the summer
3. Be patient with security. They will scan your ticket 3 times. Try not to bring too much with you; the security check point is not unlike that at the airport though you can keep your shoes on and bring in drinks.
4. Be patient with other visitors. The crowds were 2 to 3 deep at the reflecting pool/waterfall representing the south tower which is the first one you see as you enter. If you wait somebody will move on and you will have your chance to stand at the edge. Most visitors seem appropriately respectful of the place.
5. Visit the North Tower reflecting pool. There were fewer visitors there
6. Visit the Survivor Tree located between the two pools. This pear tree was the sole surviving tree found amidst the rubble and it was successfully nurtured back to health.
7. Remember that this is still a construction site; the Museum is still under construction, for example, as are other office buildings around the memorial. It can get noisy due to the machinery as well as dusty.
8. Consider getting your souvenirs at the Vesey Street office instead of the gift shop you pass through on your way out. This place was much too crowded for comfortable browsing.

4  Thank ImmerWandern
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

The soon-to-be public park is incredibly beautiful. The huge waterfalls are breathtaking and let you remember all the men, women and children how lost their lives in this terrible event.
Book your ticket prior to your visit on the official website. It cost nothing but a voluntary donation to the memorial. Only down side is the amount of security you have to go through to get to the memorial, it is quite exaggerated.

Thank Caroline D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

This was a touching tribute. While I was disappointed that there were not pictures or relics at the site, we were not sorry we went. Be ready to stand in line and walk a good bit. We had our passes in hand that we had printed at home and that helped ALOT! It was worth the subway ride from Grand Central even though that was all we did in that area. We walked around the fountains and the survivors tree. The emotion we felt was profound. We went to the little shop nearby and there were some interesting tributes in there also. We spent 30-45 minutes there ( inside) and that was adequate. There are computers available to help you find where names are located and offer information on the victims. It felt important to go there and pay tribute, honor, and reflect!

***********NO BATHROOMS AVAILABLE***********

Thank Mommyof4greatkids
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2013

A day we all remember. A fitting memorial. So beautiful. Such a nice tribute to our fellow Americans who died there. So touching. The fountains reminded me of all the tears we all shed when this tragedy happened. Never to be forgotten.

Thank Raylandridge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2013

It is a hard attraction to review because it is so sad. It is something everyone who is in the area should see because it is the right thing to do to honor those who paid the ultimate price for the freedom we enjoy everyday. We got our tickets which are free on-line and paid the $2 fee just to make it easier. With the area still under construction it is a bit difficult to figure where the entrance is. We had the last ticket time of the day, 7:00 pm in an effort not to melt in the heat wave. By this time of day there were no lines and we got through security very quickly. It is a lovely memorial. Glad we went.

Thank Marcia M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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