NYC has arguably the most famous city skyline in the world, and plenty of well-known places to appreciate that skyline. You may have gazed at Midtown from the top of the Empire State Building, or admired the Hudson River from the High Line. But, as with all things NYC, some of the best spots to see the city’s views are also some of the least well-known. In the spirit of always learning more about our beloved city, we’ve rounded up some surprising spots where you’ll find truly remarkable views of NYC.
55 Water Street between Coenties and Old Slips, New York, NY 10041
Open Daily 8 AM-9 PM
Built in the 1970s, this acre-sized elevated public plaza has remained one of the city’s best-kept and most beautiful secrets. After a redesign in 2005, this plaza is more aesthetically pleasing than ever, featuring a luxurious garden that offers panoramic views of the Financial District, the East River, and all three of the Downtown NY-Brooklyn bridges. The Elevated Acre is equally suited as a wedding location or a place for a quiet afternoon lunch, and it’s simultaneously a respite from the chaos, as well as a place to take in and admire the city’s beauty.
4-09 47th Road at Center Boulevard, Long Island City, NY 11101
Open Daily 8 AM-10 PM
This 12-acre Hunter’s Point riverside park may get less attention than its more popular siblings like Brooklyn Bridge Park, but Queens residents know that it offers the best unobstructed view of the Midtown skyline you can find. Once you’ve enjoyed the view, the park itself is worth exploring as well. A former industrial site repurposed into a beloved green public space, the park retains some relics of its past. Note the original Pepsi-Cola factory sign, which now adorns a local apartment building (4610 Center Boulevard), and was recently declared an official New York City landmark.
99 Gansevoort Street between 10th Avenue & Washington Street, New York, NY 10014
Open Sunday through Thursday 10:30 AM-6 PM; Friday and Saturday 10:30 AM-10 PM
The new Whitney is a pride of New York City. You may know it for the unparalleled exhibits of modern and contemporary American art, but that’s not the only thing you can see there. Take the elevator up to the eighth-floor terrace, where you can enjoy 13,000 square-feet of outdoor art, and a picturesque view of the High Line.
480-500 Van Brunt Street at Beard Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231
Open Daily 8 AM-10 PM
Head to the rear patio of this Red Hook grocery store for one of the best unobstructed views around of the Statue of Liberty. Then do some historically meaningful grocery shopping in the building, a brick storage warehouse built in 1869 by Red Hook’s original developer, William Beard.
Sinatra Drive between 4th & 5th Streets, Hoboken, NJ 07030
Open Daily 6 AM-11 PM
True to form, some of the most stunning NYC skyline views are to be found at a comfortable distance, like this one in New Jersey. Hoboken provides a jaw-dropping view of the Midtown skyline, far away from the Midtown traffic. Accessible by the PATH train, Sinatra Park also offers plenty in the way of daytime entertainment, from a kayaking launch pad to a sprawling soccer field.
You never know what you might find in the most unexpected of places. So, plan a day trip, and have fun marveling at the sheer size and majesty of our city. On the flip side, if you want some close-ups mixed in with those panoramics, check out some of NYC’s most remarkable wedding photo spots, where you don’t have to be engaged to be inspired.