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Skyline Faceoff - Empire State Building vs. Top of the Rock

Ned_L

Philadelphia, US
8049 posts

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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography Charter Member
Mon 22-Oct-12 04:04 PM

I'm often asked about travel in New York City by those who follow my weekly column, read my articles in corporate travel newsletters, my blog and other outlets which publish my articles.

One of the most asked questions by photographers is what's the best spot in NYC to get great skyline photos of Manhattan, from up high. While there are many great spots, to get great NYC skyline photos outside of Manhattan, on the island, to me, the two best spots are the Empire State Building and the Top of the Rock (the observation decks of 30 Rockefeller Plaza, the GE Building).

Recently, I decided to figure out which one to recommend as going to both is really expensive. To go to the two observation areas at the Empire State Building, and not wait in line for too long, which can be extremely long, especially near sunset, a family of 4 would have to shell out $258. Can you say, "Holy Moly!" Over at the Top of the Rock, that same family of 4 will spend $88 to gain access to all 3 of their observation areas with timed tickets. With the timed tickets you don't wait long to get to the observation area, once it's your time. So, if they want to go to both places, that family of 4 could spend, a whopping $346. That's just way too much.

Read my column, Skyline Faceoff — Empire State Building vs. Top of the Rock to get the details about these locations and the particulars of my recommendation, but in the meantime, here's my conclusion.

For my money, the skyline faceoff victory goes to the Top of the Rock.

The skyline view is spectacular at the Top of the Rock. It’s easy to get great photographs night and day. Plus, the Top of the Rock has the added benefit that its skyline view includes its more famous counterpart, the Empire State Building.

The photo below is one I took from the Top of the Rock, showing the Empire State Building in the middle.

Ned
A Nikonians Team Member

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Visit my Travel Photography Blog and my Galleries.

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