If You Only See One NYC Attraction Make It One World Trade Center

There are literally thousands of things to see and do in NYC, but if you had to choose between just one attraction make it the One World Trade Center. I recently visited this amazing site and I was pleasantly surprised by the experience. I expected to feel that same type of horror and grief that plagued the world on 9/11, but what I was left with inspiration, awe and hope.

I would definitely recommend anyone who hasn’t already been to One World Trade Center to make the trip – It’s well worth it. There are a couple of tips, however, that you should know when planning your trip.

Freedom Tower and Oculus One World Trade Center New York

Credit: MISHELLA / Shutterstock

Plan Ahead

You may get away without planning ahead for many other attractions in NYC, but it is not recommended when visiting One World Trade Center. The center has time-stamped tickets, meaning that they only allow so many people in the center at a time. I highly recommended ordering tickets online before heading to the site, otherwise, you may be stuck waiting around for the time of your ticket.

If you plan to visit the nearby 9/11 Museum keep in mind that this museum also only has time-stamped tickets, so be sure to give yourself enough time to visit one before the next ticket time.

Travel Light

When entering One World Trade Center, you will need to go through security. Absolutely, no food or drinks are allowed inside. Thankfully, my friend and I got through security with no problems, but the couple in front of us brought a rather large backpack and they were not allowed in the center. To make matters worse, they were told that there were no storage lockers on site. According to the One World Trade Center website, people can only bring bags that are 25″x17″x9″ or smaller. The 9/11 Museum also doesn’t allow visitors to bring backpacks with them.

One World Observatory Entrance One World Trade Center New York

Credit:  Kev Llewellyn / Shutterstock

Where to Eat

While there are three restaurants on the 101st floor of the One World Trade Center, the food is fairly expensive. If you want to enjoy dining while overlooking NYC then the experience may be worth it to you. If not, there is a number of food vendor trucks located in the nearby Battery Park that offer great food options.

What to See

Sky Portal

I’m afraid of heights and thought I would have trouble traveling 102 stories in 47 seconds, but I didn’t have any problems at all. A nice video clip explaining how the center was built was a nice distraction.

Forever Theater

Don’t skip the movie in the Forever Theater. It provides a great overview and New York City.

Rent an iPad

Unless you know that city well, I recommend renting an iPad at the One World Trade Center. These iPads are equipped with software that will highlight all the major attractions when you point the iPad in that direction. I would have never recognized some of New York’s top attractions without the iPad.

Observation Deck

Without a doubt, the One World Trade Center offers some of the best views of the city. The best place to take pictures is on the 100th floor, which has floor-to-ceiling windows around the entire 360-degree floor.

View of One World Trade Center One World Trade Center New York

Credit: Will Rodrigues / Shutterstock

Nearby Attractions

9/11 Memorial

Don’t miss the chance to see the 9/11 memorial which is located right beside the One World Trade Center. The memorial is free of charge and is the location of the two twin towers. The two reflecting pools are so beautiful and a nice tribute to the victims. All 2,977 victims from 9/11 and the 6 victims from the 1993 attack are listed around the pools. If you notice a white flower next to any name that signifies their birthday. If you are looking for a specific name, you can use the kiosk on site to find the location.

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