Things to do new york sightseeing US > New York > New York

24 Hours In New York City - Updated 2020

24 Hours In New York City
Sheela
Sheela
Updated

Trying to explore all the must-see sights of New York City in just 24 hours is definitely a tough task, given how much there is to see and do in this eclectic city. However, if that is all the time you have, you can definitely cover a fair bit of New York. Plan your time strategically to cover as much as you can and get the flavor of the city in just one day. There is something to do for everyone in this fascinating destination, whether you’re young or old. Do not worry if 24 hours is all you’ve got, you can make every New York minute extraordinary. Here are some recommendations for what to do with just 24 hours in NYC.

1. New York: 2-Hour Harbour Lights Night Cruise (from USD 41.0)

24 hours in new york city | new york: 2-hour harbour lights night cruise

Climb aboard for a two-hour twilight cruise of New York Harbor and relax with your favorite cocktail as you enjoy the incredible sunset views of Manhattan, and listen to your expert guide’s commentary about the sights of interest. Highlights of this tour include enjoying stunning views of Lower Manhattan after dark, sailing within 100 feet of the Statue of Liberty, getting the opportunity to sail under famous bridges such as the Brooklyn Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge, and the Williamsburg Bridge. This night cruise includes a comprehensive narration, a full bar offering hot and cold drinks as well as outdoor and indoor seating.

New York: Harbor Lights Night Cruise Skip-The-Box-Office

Duration: 2 hour

791 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

2. Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Tours (from USD 59.0)

24 hours in new york city | big bus hop-on hop-off tours

This tour allows visitors to embark on a sightseeing tour of Manhattan on a hop-on-hop-off basis. There are an audio guide and headphones included with the ticket. Several languages such as Spanish, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Russian are offered. With this bus tour, get the experience to enjoy the best views of New York’s landmarks and take a trip into its history. Choose either the Classic, Premium or Deluxe tickets. The Classic Ticket is a one-day pass which is called Explore Uptown & Explore Downtown Loops. The Premium Ticket is a two-day ticket which is called Explore Uptown & Explore Downtown with a choice of Explore Brooklyn, Explore Harlem or Discover NYC by Night Loops. Finally, the Deluxe Ticket is a two-day pass which includes Explore Uptown & Downtown, a one-hour harbor cruise, Explore Brooklyn, Explore Harlem & Discover NYC at Night Loops.

New York: Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour

Duration: 24 hour

639 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

3. Top of the Rock Observation Deck (from USD 41.37)

24 hours in new york city | top of the rock observation deck

Get to the top of the Rock Observation Deck in this tour and enjoy a 360-degree panoramic view of the Big Apple. This is one sight which you will definitely appreciate and be able to take lots of pictures. From this observation deck, visit several landmarks such as Central Park and the Empire State Building. See the city at night amidst the stars or enjoy it by day with the sun rising. Arrive at 30 Rockefeller Center and check out the stunning Swarovski chandelier on the way to the mezzanine level. After that, head up to the top within less than a minute which is about 850 feet (260m) high. At the top, enjoy all the breathtaking views of the landmarks around. There is an option to book a flexible ticket which will help visitors work around the weather.

NYC: Top of the Rock Observation Deck Flexible Date Ticket

Duration: 1 hour

2365 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

4. Wall Street Insider Tour (from USD 35.0)

24 hours in new york city | wall street insider tour

Interested in finding out more about the world’s financial center? Then the Wall Street Insider Tour is the best tour for you which will give you an insight into the happenings in the district. Through this tour, visitors will see the New York Stock Exchange, the Federal Reserve, and Wall Street. What more can one ask for especially if you are a Wall Street fan? Follow your guide as he provides you with insightful stories into the area, providing personal experiences. Get to know more about where billion-dollar deals are made and the center that decides the economy of the world. This tour lasts for 75 minutes and is bound to leave you spellbound. This is a famous tour which has frequently been featured in the media. Tempted enough? Then go ahead and book this tour.

Wall Street Insider Tour

Duration: 75 minute

135 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

5. Memorial & Museum (from USD 28.0)

memorial & museum

This is a truly significant historical monument which every visitor should not miss when in New York. The monument reminds visitors of the tragic events of 9/11, and read about the personal stories of people following the terrorist attacks. There are several artifacts on display at the museum which are derived from the tragic attack on the World Trade Center. The historical exhibition contains three parts, the day of 09/11, the day before 09/11 and the day after 09/11. This exhibition goes through the background leading up to the events of 09/11 and also examines their aftermath and the consequential implications. Finally, pay your final respects at the twin reflecting pools. You can pre-book your tickets so as to skip the line. An average visit takes about two hours.

New York: 9/11 Memorial and Museum Entry Ticket

Duration: 90 minute

5900 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

6. Central Park: two-Hour Bicycle Tour (from USD 33.0)

central park: two-hour bicycle tour

When in New York only for 24 hours, try enjoying a two-hour bicycle ride in Central Park that covers a total distance of 5 km (3.1 miles). Followed by a licensed guide, cycle by popular destinations such as the Bethesda Fountain, Strawberry Fields and many more. This tour will help you cover the main attractions of Central Park. While on this tour, you can choose your own schedule and timing. There are four tours that are offered daily; 09:00 am, 10:00 am, 01:00 pm and 04:00 pm. With this booking, the cost includes the tour, a bike, a helmet and a bike lock. Make a booking now to experience one of the most rewarding tours in New York.

Central Park: Live Guided Bike Tour

Duration: 2 hour

53 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

7. SoHo, Little Italy and Chinatown tour (from USD 46.0)

Want a tour that combines the best of gastronomy and sightseeing? This SoHo, Little Italy and Chinatown lunch or dinner tour is probably the best for you? This tour allows visitors to enjoy a stroll through some of New York City’s most famous neighborhoods. Get the chance to also stop at unique restaurants and cafes which will allow you to savor delectable meals and drinks. Start at SoHo and stop by the Grandaisy Bakery’s designer thin-crust pizza as well as the best chocolate cake in the world. Head off next to Little Italy and taste some fresh cheese and authentic Italian salami. Up next is Chinatown where you can savor the city’s most delicious pan-seared pork dumplings. While making your stops, you will come across several historic cast-iron buildings and famous art galleries in SoHo. Do not miss out on the iconic Police Building Condo in Little Italy and Columbus Park in Chinatown. Do note that vegetarian options are available too. This tour will take 2 hours and leave you feeling full.

SoHo, Little Italy and Chinatown Lunch or Dinner Tour

Duration: 2 hours

30 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

8. New York City: Times Square night tour (from USD 34.0)

Times Square is a place in New York that never sleeps. Take on a night tour of this vibrant city and follow your guide through an informative visit. Get to pass through Times Square and the Broadway Theater District. During this tour, you will pass through from 42nd to 47th streets. The guide will also show you the Rockefeller Center, a prime attraction to visit when in New York. Also, take a short walk to the New York Public Library and view the two stone lions which guard the entrance. This tour starts at 6.45 pm and lasts for two hours. Since this is a walking tour, wear comfortable shoes.

New York City: Times Square Night Tour

Duration: 2 hours

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

9. Priority Statue of Liberty Ticket (from USD 27.0)

priority statue of liberty ticket

With this tour, guests will get the chance to visit the famous lady, the Statue of Liberty. This tour also includes the Ellis Island ferry tour. Visitors get the chance to skip the “General Line” and book the “Reserve Line” Priority Access to get access to the lady. The cost of this tour includes free multilingual audio guides and GetYourGuide concierge service. There is also a chance for a Pedestal Access Upgrade which gives visitors even more priority. While visitors get the chance to observe Lady Liberty from up close, they will also get the chance to visit Ellis Island, which is a prime island that saw the influx of immigrants who entered America. The tour includes a complimentary self-guided multilingual audio tour headsets for the Statue of Liberty National Monument and Ellis Island.

NYC: Statue of Liberty Priority or Standard Ticket

Duration: 4 hour

5135 reviews

See our full list of recommended Hotels in New York, New York, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in New York, New York, US

Create the best memories in New York

With only 24 hours in the city, try to do your best to create a bag of memories in New York. With the above-provided itineraries, guests will find that there is much to do in and around the city. Come and explore New York and bring home wonderful memories.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

Get Trip101 in your inbox

Unsubscribe in one click. See our privacy policy for more information on how we use your data

75
Still Need Travel Insurance?

You can buy and claim online, even after you've left home. Travel insurance from WorldNomads.com is available to people from 140 countries. It’s designed for adventurous travellers with cover for overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities.

*5% off when you book with our promo code: TRIP101

*For our Canadian and US travellers, unfortunately due to financial services laws, we cannot provide a discount. This promotional code cannot be used with any other discount offer, including World Nomads Members’ discount for travel insurance policy holders.

I'm a mother to 2 wonderful young kids and enjoy travelling with my family. Having travelled to many countries across the world, I am particularly keen on trying out new cuisine and sightseeing...Read more

Have a question? Ask fellow travellers and travel experts here.
 Want to contribute as a Local Expert?
Explore New York
Good things are meant to be shared!