If there is one icon that represents New York above any other, it is the Statue of Liberty. Visiting or circling it by boat is an experience not to be missed, if only for the postcard views of Manhattan from Liberty Island.
Buying your tickets in advance will let you skip two lines: the one for the ferry to Liberty Island and the one to access the statue. Here are the best ways to visit the Statue of Liberty:
Access to the Statue's pedestal with guided tour
Perfect if you want to visit the Statue of Liberty without having to worry about transportation and waiting at the ticket office. An expert guide will accompany you during your visit to the Statue's pedestal. You will also visit Ellis Island. Ferry and entrance fees included
Something I want to highlight (and that is as good for this option as for any other that takes you to the Statue of Liberty) is that the views of the Manhattan skyline from the ferry and from Liberty Island are simply spectacular. Once you arrive at the statue, inside, you can visit the impressive museum dedicated to the history of the construction of this iconic monument, and look out from the observation deck from which you will see Manhattan in the distance as if you were seeing a postcard.
The first thing you should know is that the Statue of Liberty is on a small island south of Manhattan and the only way to get there is by boat. So, what I like most about this Statue of Liberty pedestal ticket is that, in addition to access to the pedestal and the Immigration Museum, transportation is included.
You will then take the ferry to Ellis Island and visit the Immigration Museum. One of the highlights of this tour, in addition to the historical context that your local guide will provide throughout the tour, is that you will not have to wait in line at the ferries as you will have priority access.
Why I like this option: this is the best value for money option I have found. Being a complete experience, with access to the pedestal, the price is very economical.
Recommended if... the Statue of Liberty is among the top visits of your itinerary and you want to enjoy this experience without having to break the bank, but with the convenience of having transportation included and being accompanied by an expert guide.
Take a ferry ride to see the Statue up close
If you want to see the most famous lady in town without having to spend a lot of time and money, take a boat ride to the Statue to get the best pictures. The views of Manhattan from the ferry will make the excursion worthwhile
This may be your best option if you are visiting New York for only a few days with little time or if you have been there before and just want to take a relaxing cruise around the Statue of Liberty to reminisce about your previous visit and enjoy the views.
Although this tour doesn't include access to the Statue itself, for me the advantages of this experience are obvious: you won't wait in line, you won't have to spend extra time getting in and out of the boat, and you can enjoy the best views of Manhattan while taking a nice boat ride. If you go during the cold season, don't forget to dress in warm clothes so that the low temperatures don't ruin your experience and you can take great pictures from the deck of the boat.
Why I like this option: this is the cheapest tour to get close to the Statue without having to pay the entrance fee.
Recommended if... you don't want to give up the chance to see the Statue of Liberty up close even if you don't have much spare time.
We compare the options
Access to the Statue's pedestal with guided tour
Perfect if you want to visit the Statue of Liberty without having to worry about transportation and waiting at the ticket office. An expert guide will accompany you during your visit to the Statue's pedestal. Ferry and entrance fees are included.From £0 at Hellotickets
Take a ferry ride to see the Statue up close
If you want to see the city's most famous lady without spending a lot of time and a lot of money, take a boat ride to the Statue for the best photos. The views of Manhattan from the ferry will make the excursion definitely worthwhileFrom £23 at Hellotickets
Buy tickets to the Statue of Liberty at the box office
The big disadvantage of getting your tickets on the spot is that you will have to wait in line and you may also have to wait for the next ferry if there is a large crowd of tourists.
Access to the Statue of Liberty with the New York Pass and other New York City sightseeing passes
The fame of the Statue of Liberty also makes it a must-see attraction on the city's main tourist passes. If you still don't know what they are, how to use them, or how they fit in your travel plans, don't hesitate to read my article about New York Pass and other passes.
Anyway, I'll get to the point and tell you what passes include the entrance to the Statue of Liberty. Here's a list of what they are and incidentally, here are the links to the practical guides I have prepared on each of them. I'm sure this will help you decide which one is the one that best suits your trip!
How can I go up the Crown of the Statue?
You can climb the crown of the Statue of Liberty by paying a supplement or purchasing a specific ticket. The experience of climbing to the crown of the Statue of Liberty is more to see the actual monument built from the inside, as the views from the top are not as spectacular. If you choose this option, I recommend you book your tickets well in advance, as they are the first to sell out.
The ferry to the Statue of Liberty
If you're thinking of getting to Liberty Island on your own, you should know that there is only one company that operates ferries to the Statue of Liberty, and that's Statue Cruises.
- Battery Park, which is located south of Manhattan. As the main pier, it is the most crowded with visitors, so again, try to go early in the morning. To get there, it is best to take the subway to Bowling Street or South Ferry.
- Liberty State Park, which is in New Jersey. If you don't want to wait in a long line for the ferry, or are staying nearby, this is a good alternative option.
A ferry departs to the Statue of Liberty every 25 minutes. When you arrive at the Battery Park pier, if you already have your ticket purchased, you simply walk through the security checkpoint and directly onto the ferry. The ferry will take you directly to Liberty Island in about 15 minutes, and you will gradually see the Statue of Liberty closer and closer.
At the end of your visit, you can take the ferry to Ellis Island (where you can visit the Immigration Museum) or return directly to Manhattan. Visiting Liberty Island, the Statue of Liberty, and Ellis Island will take you about 5 hours. This will seem obvious, but try not to miss the return ferry! The Liberty Island guards will have to order a special pick-up service for you, and guess who they'll make pay for it?
Useful information for visiting the Statue of Liberty
If you already have everything set and are looking forward to the day of your excursion, take note of some tips that will come in handy when getting organized for your visit.
When to go to the Statue of Liberty
As you might expect, the Statue of Liberty is one of New York's most popular attractions, so it's hard not to run into a good number of tourists. That said, try to go as early as possible in the morning. If you manage to get to Liberty Island before 10.00 a.m., you'll save yourself from having to put up with big crowds.
Logically, most visitors go to the Statue of Liberty on weekends, so if you can, try to go Monday through Friday. If going on a weekend is the only possibility for you, Sundays are the best day for beating tourist crowds.
Can I bring a backpack or luggage?
When you arrive at the Liberty Island pier, you will walk a short distance to the foot of the Statue of Liberty. Before accessing the statue's pedestal, you will be required to leave your belongings in a locker (except for your cell phone, camera, and wallet) at the lockers at the base of the statue. They cost 25¢ per locker, so remember to bring spare change (or bills for the change machines).
Since to climb the crown of the Statue of Liberty, you will need to leave all your belongings at the ticket booths except for the ticket and your camera, I recommend that you take only your essentials on this visit.
As I mentioned before, once you are done visiting the Statue of Liberty, you can go back to the Liberty Island pier and, if you manage to resist the charm of the beautiful views of Manhattan, you can get on the ferry that takes you to Ellis Island.
There, you can visit the Immigration Museum, with more than thirty rooms with exhibits that tell the story of how New York received immigrants from all over the world. Something I found quite interesting about this museum is that it has an ancestor search service where you can see if anyone from your most distant family ever lived in New York.
Where to eat when you visit the Statue of Liberty
:::image|size|medium|url=https://res.cloudinary.com/hello-tickets/image/upload/v1610622319/post_images/new-york-1/Inatteso-pizzabar.jpg|caption=Italian menu at Inatteso Pizzabar | ©Inattesopizzabar.com:::
When it comes to planning where to eat on your visit to the Statue of Liberty, you have two options: eat before or after your visit, or go to the cafeteria at Liberty Island or Ellis Island, where a menu usually costs between $ 12 and $ 15, with options such as salads, burgers, and sandwiches.
If you heed my recommendation and visit the Statue of Liberty early in the morning, you'll get back to Battery Park just in time for lunch and that's why I recommend a few restaurants that serve mouthwatering food:
- Inatteso Pizzabar - a popular pizza place in the financial district where you can find salads, meatball dishes, pasta, and pizza, all looking delicious and authentic.
- Toro Loco NYC - a Mexican-inspired restaurant with a menu of tacos, nachos, quesadillas and burritos. Perfect for a quick bite to eat in or to take away and continue exploring New York.
- Café 11 - here you will find sushi, wraps, and vegetarian options, mainly to take away, if you prefer to have a light and healthy meal. The downside is that they are not open on weekends, so you should keep that in mind before you go.
- Luke's Lobster - the lobster roll, one of the essentials of the American sandwich repertoire, is the specialty of this restaurant. Basically, it is a brioche sandwich filled with lobster meat and sauce. It's not for all tastes, but if you can't help salivating while reading this, don't think twice and try it!
Alex's Traveller Tip
Beware of the scammers you'll find around Battery Park trying to sell you tickets: most of them are fake!
Other interesting activities in New York
If you feel like seeing the Statue of Liberty from another point of view, you should know that it is possible to fly over Manhattan by helicopter: a flight of about 15 to 20 minutes over the Hudson would bring you closer to see, not only the Statue but also the most imposing skyscrapers of Manhattan. Sounds good, right? If you want to read more about this activity, I recommend you check out my article about how to take a helicopter ride over Manhattan.
Whether this is your first time in New York or you are already a frequent visitor, you will know that the city is huge and the offer of attractions, things to do, and points of interest is enormous. Taking a guided tour is essential to get to know the most important things and understand the history and customs of the city. Here's a chronicle about these two tours, which for me are the most complete: Upper and Lower Manhattan Tour and New York Contrasts Tour.
If on the other hand, you have plenty of time and you feel like leaving the city to discover its surroundings, here's an article about Day Trips from New York so you can explore all the options.