Rockefeller Center in New York City

Rockefeller Center® is the quintessential NYC must-stop destination. Thousands of tourists visit this cultural landmark each year, especially during the holiday season, to glimpse one of the magnificent 70 foot tall Christmas trees.

Rockefeller Center complex comprises 19 commercial buildings and covers over 22 acres. Built by the Rockefeller family, the Center is the largest privately held complex in the world.

Between 48th and 51st Streets in the Center of Midtown Manhattan, this famous attraction spans between Fifth Avenue and Seventh Avenue. Additionally, it is a National Historic Landmark. The Center is also home to NBC's The Today Show.

Fun Fact: The Rockefeller Center elevators have a glass ceiling and travel at a speed of 366 meters per minute (1200 feet per minute) to the Top of the Rock, where you arrive only 42 seconds later.

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Besides being a cultural icon, the Center itself is an architectural feat with its amazing Art Deco design and underground concourse.

Underneath the Center is a unique underground city of retail shops, fine dining, fast food restaurants, and of course, the sunken ice rink.

Top Rockefeller Center Attractions

  • 30 Rockefeller Plaza: This iconic building, with its Art Deco form, is one of the most recognizable skyscrapers in NYC. It's the centerpiece of Rockefeller Center and the television network NBC headquarters. It is also home to Saturday Night Live and the TV show 30 Rock.

Pro Tip: Visitors are welcome to sit in on a live TV taping at NBC Studios. Check the website for details.

  • Rainbow Room: On the 65th floor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza resides one of the most famous New York City restaurants ever! With its revolving dancefloor and stunning views of the city, it's not hard to see why so many love stories have been filmed here. (Remember Sleepless in Seattle?)
  • Atlas: This famous 15-foot statue from Greek mythology is one of Rockefeller Center's greatest icons.

Photo Alert: Snap a pic with the renowned sculpture Altas-no need for a caption; this famous image will tell friends exactly where you are!

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  • Tours: A tour of Rockefeller Center takes about 65 minutes and explains the Center's art, history, and architecture. Other tours available include Rockefeller Center TV & Movie Tour, Sex and the City Hotspots Tour, the Gossip Girl Sites Tour, and the Holiday Lights & Movie Sites Tour, which all pass through this popular setting in the heart of Manhattan.

Pro Tip: We recommend booking the combo ticket. It includes a tour of the building and observation deck access to Top of the Rock for $52.

  • Top of the Rock: With three decks featuring 360-degree views of the "Capital of the World," this hotspot is a cant-miss stop! The best time to visit Top of the Rock is in the morning between 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. to avoid crowds. The next best choice is after 8:00 p.m.
  • The Skating Rink: The classic NYC ice skating experience lasts from November 6 and runs through March 6. This world-famous rink is located in the middle of Rockefeller Center.
  • Radio City Music Hall: Home of the legendary Rockettes and host to numerous live concerts and events, this historic venue, nicknamed the "Great Stage," is a must-see to tour.

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It's free to see the tree at Rockefeller Center starting December 1 through January 10. The tree is lit daily from 5:30 p.m. -12:00 a.m. Rockefeller Center is also free to enter and walk around with several shops and restaurants choices.

Fun Fact: Did you know over 8 million people live in NYC and speak over 800 languages?

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Written By Erin

Erin Poche` is a Utah-based writer and editor for Tripster and contributing writer for BeyondType1. She also writes and edits for an indie publisher of fanta ...

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