Home Adventure All About Empire State Building- Complete Tourist’s Guide For 2023

All About Empire State Building- Complete Tourist’s Guide For 2023

by Tayebah Malik
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Ever wonder what it would be like to be really high and look down upon the entirety of New York City? Hold on tight as we set out on a thrilling tour within the magnificent Empire State Building.  From the breathtaking views to the interesting and intriguing facts, I am here to highlight all the fascinating aspects of it. Therefore, if you’re up for an amazing journey, keep reading, and let’s tour the Empire State Building together! I will share my firsthand experience visiting this famous wonder in this complete tour so it is going to be a blast!

Empire State Building History And Overview 

I believe it is crucial for you to learn about the comprehensive overview of the Empire State Building before getting into the specifics. I will now give you a brief overview of this remarkable structure’s history.  

Iconic Structure And Height 

The Empire State Building has a particular place in the hearts of millions of people and is frequently referred to as the jewel of the New York City skyline. It represents aspiration, determination, and the resilient spirit of the city; it is more than just a skyscraper. One of the tallest structures in the world, this architectural marvel stands an astonishing 1,454 feet tall. Its construction during the Great Depression in under one year and 45 days is a monument to the inventiveness and perseverance of people.

The Empire State Building has seen quite a few changes since it was first created as a mooring tower for airships. Today, it serves as a guidepost for tourists coming from all over the world, giving them an opportunity to see New York City unlike ever before. 

Some Unknown Facts About The Empire State Building

The Empire State Building is not just an architectural marvel but also a representation of tenacity, creativity, and cultural relevance. It is all because of these intriguing and little-known facts that lend another dimension of interest to its fascinating past.

  • Lightning Strikes: The Empire State Building gets struck by lightning about 20-25 times per year. Thanks to its lightning rod, it safely channels the electricity to the ground, preventing damage.
  • Construction Speed: Surprisingly, this iconic skyscraper was constructed in just 410 days during the Great Depression. It was completed ahead of schedule and under budget, a remarkable feat for its time.
  • King Kong Connection: The building’s fame skyrocketed after the release of the 1933 film “King Kong,” in which the giant ape famously climbs the Empire State Building. This movie contributed significantly to its popularity.


  • Airship Dock: The 103rd floor was initially designed as a mooring mast for airships. However, this idea was never put into practice. Only a select few, including celebrities like Taylor Swift, have had the privilege of visiting this hidden floor.
  • Nightly Light Shows: The Empire State Building’s LED lighting system can produce over 16 million colors. It displays various colors to celebrate holidays, events, and special occasions, making it a vibrant part of the New York skyline.


  • Movie Cameos: The Empire State Building, in addition to “King Kong,” has appeared in a large number of other films, such as “Sleepless in Seattle,” “An Affair to Remember,” and “Independence Day,” reinforcing its reputation as a cultural landmark.
  • Saxophone Serenades: If you visit the 86th floor of the Empire State Building after 10 p.m. on Thursdays through Saturdays, you can enjoy live saxophone music. The talented saxophonist takes special requests and sets the mood perfectly for a romantic evening.
  • Valentine’s Day Weddings: While private wedding ceremonies aren’t allowed, each year, a special Valentine’s Day wedding contest selects one lucky couple to get married at the Empire State Building on February 14th, adding a touch of romance to this iconic location.
  • Ever-Changing Colors: The building’s lighting display reflects various holidays and events. Look out for red, white, and blue on Independence Day, rainbow lights during NYC Pride, or festive colors for Christmas. The Empire State Building always shines bright.

Getting Empire State Building Tickets

When it comes to visiting the Empire State Building, securing your tickets in advance is a savvy move. There are various ticket options available to accommodate various tastes and spending limits. There is a ticket that is ideal for you, whether you’re planning a family vacation, a romantic getaway, or a single adventure. Here’s what you need to know:

Online Ticket Purchase

Long lines at the ticket counter? By getting your tickets online before you go, you can avoid them. This not only saves you time but also guarantees that you won’t have to wait to see those amazing sights. This is the choice I went with as well, and it really did save me a load of time.

Express Ticket

Can’t stand the thought of waiting in lines? Consider the Express Ticket option. For a bit extra, you can bypass the front three lines and reach the 86th-floor observatory in just 20 minutes. It’s the express lane to awe-inspiring heights.

Admission Costs

Ticket prices for the Empire State Building typically range from $31 to $38, with free admission for children under six. Keep in mind that prices may vary depending on the type of ticket and any special offers available.

Best Time To Visit The Empire State Building 

Now, that you have gone through all about the history and ticket options, it is mandatory for you to uncover a suitable season to visit. So, when’s the best time to experience the Empire State Building in all its glory? Let’s find out:

Daytime Delight

If you’re all about seeing the city’s layout and admiring the intricate details of the buildings and city geography, daytime hours are perfect. While visiting the Empire State Building during the daytime offers spectacular views, it’s also an ideal opportunity to plan your exploration of other exciting things to do in New York. I personally found this time ideal for capturing some stunning photos of the cityscape.


Nighttime Magic

For a touch of enchantment, consider a nighttime visit. As the sun sets and the city lights up, you’ll witness the shimmering beauty of thousands of lights from thousands of feet above ground. It’s a sight that’s truly magical.


Beating The Crowds

Patience is key when visiting the Empire State Building. To minimize wait times, plan your visit during the less crowded hours. Typically, weekdays and early mornings offer shorter lines, allowing you to ascend to the top more swiftly.

Winter Wonder

If you don’t mind the cold, winter (except right around Christmas) is your secret weapon. It’s when the Empire State Building sees fewer visitors throughout the day, meaning shorter lines and a cozier experience.

The Best Dining Option-Where To Eat 

After an exciting visit to the Empire State Building, it’s time to savor some delicious meals. Luckily, there are great dining options just a short stroll away:

Sushi Yasuda

If you appreciate the art of sushi, start your culinary journey at Sushi Yasuda. This bamboo-adorned space offers a front-row seat to watch skilled sushi masters at work. Sit at the counter for the best experience. It’s a sushi lover’s paradise, and I must say, my personal favorite for its authenticity and sublime flavors. The first time I visited, I was amazed at how the chefs’ precision and attention to detail elevated each bite into a work of art.


State Grill And Bar

For a touch of luxury and a modern twist on classic dishes, head to the State Grill And Bar. Located in the Four Seasons Hotel, this restaurant is a collaboration between Rich Torrisi, Mario Carbone, and Jeff Zalaznick’s Major Food Group. Delight in dishes like Filet Peconic and lobster Newburg, each reimagined to perfection. Don’t miss their prime rib, sliced to order and served with grated horseradish. It’s a memorable culinary experience.


Accommodations Near The Empire State Building

When visiting the iconic Empire State Building, it’s essential to find a comfortable place to stay nearby. Fortunately, there are several accommodation options within walking distance. Here are some excellent choices:

Avalon Hotel

Location: 16 East 32nd Street, New York, NY 10016

Distance to Empire State Building: A mere 0.1 miles away

If proximity is your priority, the Avalon Hotel is the closest option. You may immediately get back to your comfortable hotel after admiring the amazing views from the Empire State Building. I discovered this hotel to be a wonderful gem throughout my stay. My journey was enhanced by its comfort and convenience. The hotel provides a cozy and practical hideaway in the middle of Manhattan.


The Langham, New York, Fifth Avenue

Location: 400 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10018

Distance to Empire State Building: Approximately 0.5 miles

The Langham, New York, Fifth Avenue, combines luxury and convenience. You’ll be just a short stroll away from the Empire State Building and other famous landmarks. A memorable stay is guaranteed with the exquisite accommodations and first-rate service.


The NoMad Hotel

Location: 1170 Broadway, New York, NY 10001

Distance to Empire State Building: Around 0.9 miles

The NoMad Hotel offers a unique blend of history and modernity. It is housed in a Beaux-Arts structure and features opulent rooms and a rooftop bar with breathtaking city views. Visit this fashionable institution to unwind in style after viewing the Empire State Building.

Hotel Giraffe

Location: 365 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016

Distance to Empire State Building: Just 0.6 miles away

Hotel Giraffe provides a boutique hotel experience that combines comfort and sophistication. It is the ideal option for travelers looking for a cozy setting close to the Empire State Building thanks to its Art Deco-inspired style and welcoming welcome.

Wrap Up

I’ve had the most amazing time exploring the Empire State Building, and I hope my guide has sparked your interest in this famous New York City monument. Discovering the city’s fascinating history while perched high above it is an experience unlike any other. I was completely enthralled by the majesty of this architectural wonder throughout my visit. The Empire State Building has something to offer everyone, whether you love history, admire architecture, or are just looking for an adventure. Don’t miss the opportunity to feel like you’re on top of the world when you’re in New York City because I guarantee those memories will last a lifetime.

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