My experience with a New York Pass

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Many visitors ask me about the tourist cards and if it is easy to use it in the different tourist attractions of New York. For this, I'm going to be a novice tourist for a few days and in this article I'm going to tell you my experience using a New York Pass for three days through the main tourist attractions of the city.

If you are looking for information on the different existing tourist cards, I recommend you read our article first with a comparison to help you choose the best tourist card for your trip to New York, and for those who are hesitating between buying this card and the CityPASS, you also have an article available in which I count my experience with a New York CityPASS.

Why do I choose a New York Pass?

For me, it has a great advantage, and that is that it gives you access to practically any tourist attraction you want to go to in New York, more than 100 in total, although you have to plan your visit very well to get the most out of it. days that you have available. The only notable exception is the One World Trade Center observatory, the One World Observatory, which is not available on this tourist card at the moment.

For more information about this tourist card and buy it, visit the official website of New York Pass.

What do you get with the card?

When we open the package where the New York Pass comes, we find a book that tells us all the tourist attractions we can go to, and where they show us a map with their location and tell us how to access the different tourist attractions , and a chip card, which will be the one we use on all sides to access tourist attractions.

New York Pass envelope content
New York Pass envelope content

Planning its use

As indicated above, it is necessary to plan your visit to New York very well in the days that you have the New York Pass, to get the most out of it you should use it at least in 2-3 tourist attractions per day.

In our case, we have decided to carry out the following planning example:

  • First day: Guggenheim Museum, Met Museum, MoMA and we end the day climbing the Top of the Rock.

  • Second day: Museum of Natural History, Whitney Museum, a walk along the High Line, which is free, visit the Intrepid and end the day with a cruise with Circle Line.

  • Third day: Brooklyn Botanical Garden, Brooklyn Museum and we take the Water Taxi to go to see the Statue of Liberty from up close and enjoy a beautiful walk along the Hudson River, ending the day at the Empire State Building.

What is it that we have left out and can you also consider using?

  • Tourist bus Big Bus Tours: If you buy a New York Pass for more than one day, you get two days of use of the City Bus Tours tourist bus, which can help you move from one tourist attraction to another, or get an idea of ​​all of New York. If you want more information read our article about City Bus Tours.

  • Guided tours at Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall, Carnegie Hall, Yankee Stadium or Lincoln Center.

  • The Memorial and the 11-S Museum, the square is already public but if you want to visit the museum you must access with your New York Pass.

  • Rental of bikes by Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge or the Hudson Park, a different way of discovering the city.

  • Access to Ellis Island and the Island of the Statue of Liberty, although I always recommend going better in the ferry to Staten Island to avoid the queues and the wait, or in the Water Taxi, as I comment later.

  • Sailing boat cruises, instead of doing the Circle Line cruise or as a complement to it, especially if you are going with children.

First day: Museum Mile and Top of the Rock

Our goal is to visit the mile of the museums, enjoy the visit of two of its main museums (el Guggenheim Museum New York and Metropolitan Museum of Art (Met)) and then end the day by visiting the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) to finish enjoying magnificent views of New York from Top of the Rock.

The access to both the Guggenheim and the Met is similar: we introduce ourselves at the registration desk, Membership Desk, and we give our New York Pass to give us access to the museum. With the entrance to the Met we also have access on the same day to the Met Breuer, which is mainly dedicated to temporary exhibitions of modern art, and which is located quite close to the Met, since The Cloisters, a spectacular exhibition of medieval art that is quite far away, so we recommend you not to visit it this day and instead approach any other day in which you do not have New York Pass if you are interested.

In the case of MoMA, we must make the queue to access the museum, which is quite fast if we avoid peak hours: first thing in the morning or on Friday afternoons, that access to the museum is free.

Entry to MoMA
Entry to MoMA

Before or after the MoMA we can approach the Top of the Rock ticket offices, and in the row exclusively for tourist cards request our entry for it at the time that interests us the most, I recommend you take the ticket to go up between three quarters of an hour or an hour before nightfall.

View from Top of the Rock
Sunset from Top of the Rock

After a beautiful but exhausting day we just have to go to the hotel to get a well deserved shower and go out to dinner before resting to gather strength for the next day.

Second day: Museum of Natural History, Chelsea, the Intrepid and the Circle Line cruise

On this day we are going to visit the western part of Manhattan, starting with the American Museum of Natural History, in which I recommend you especially visit his exhibition of dinosaurs and dioramas. To access you have to make the normal queue of the museum, so try to avoid the rush hours that tend to be early in the morning.

After this visit, we will go to meet Meatpacking District, starting with the Whitney Museum of American Art, which has, in addition to an interesting exhibition of modern American art, a spectacular terrace overlooking all of Manhattan on its upper floors. As in the previous museum, we must take the entrance to the normal queue of the museum but it is a very fast process, because they have enough lockers.

At the end, just next to the entrance to the museum begins the Highline, so I recommend you make all this ride. If we do the entire High Line we end up at 34th Street, at 6 streets of our next destination, the Intrepid Air and Space Museum.

Just before arriving at the museum we will find the Circle Line ticket offices, where we can get tickets in advance to the night cruise, which is what I recommend you do after the visit to Intrepid.

Midtown from the cruise
Midtown from the cruise

Located on an old aircraft carrier, the Intrepid It allows us to see a good collection of aircraft, for those who are fans of aviation, visit the aircraft carrier and an old submarine. By taking out our entrance we are also given access to visit the Space Shuttle Enterprise, which is in a hangar on top of the aircraft carrier.

The Intrepid aircraft carrier seen from the dock
The Intrepid aircraft carrier seen from the dock

Third day: Brooklyn and the Empire State Building

This third day we will dedicate it to Brooklyn visiting two tourist attractions that are very close to each other: Brooklyn Botanical Garden, a beautiful botanical garden that is a haven of peace in the middle of Brooklyn and the Brooklyn Museum, which contains a spectacular collection of Egyptian and ancient art.

At the end of our visit to the Brooklyn Museum we will take the subway and we will go to DUMBO and Brooklyn Bridge Park, where we will enjoy spectacular views of Manhattan and we can eat a pizza in one of the mythical pizzerias of Brooklyn: Grimaldi's Pizzeria o Juliana's pizza, the one that offers you the best pizza in the United States according to Trip Advisor visitors.

Right on the jetty that is next to the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory we can exchange our ticket to use the Water Taxi for a whole day, which has a stop right there.

The next stop for those boats is Red Hook, a neighborhood in Brooklyn, and the next stop, after having a good time hanging around the Statue of Liberty to get some good pictures with it, is 39th Street, just next to where we were the day before at the Intrepid.

Views from the Water Taxi of Lower Manhattan
Views from the Water Taxi of Lower Manhattan

To end this day we can approach the Empire State Building and enjoy its famous sunset views of New York.

New York at night from the viewpoint of the Empire State Building
New York at night from the viewpoint of the Empire State Building

Yes, a tip: The security control is quite strict and it takes something to happen, so although we avoid the queue for tickets, because when crossing the security area we show our New York Pass and we can go to the entrance, I advise you to go with a little advance before sunset, because they usually form large queues at that time.

Advice and conclusions

You have so many things you can enjoy, more than 80, that you will have a hard time choosing between all of them. I recommend you to plan well at home before making your trip, to be able to take advantage of all the options that they offer you, and in any case to have foreseen two or three improvisations in case you spare time.

As I said above, In order to be able to amortize the New York Pass card the days that we own it, it is best to visit at least 2-3 tourist attractions per day. If you want to go at a quieter pace, I recommend you take a Sightseeing Pass (Flex Pass) or a Go New York, which gives you access to a similar number of tourist attractions and you choose the number of tickets you want to buy, or a CityPASS , but you will not have access to so many tourist attractions. Here you have a comparison of all tourist cards available in New York.

To maximize the time I recommend you to divide New York into areas, as I have done in this proposal to see New York in 3 days, so that the things of interest nearby you visit in a single day.

Unless you handle yourself wonderfully in English, I do not recommend doing the tours that offer guided tours, unless there is one in which you specifically have a lot of interest in knowing the building or they indicate that it is done in Spanish at certain times of the day.

What is the savings we have obtained?

Adding the price of the tickets of the sites that we have visited in these three days (rates of the year 2017) we get the following:

  • Guggenheim Museum: $ 25

  • Met Museum: $ 25

  • MoMA: $ 25

  • Top of the Rock: $ 34

  • Natural History Museum: $ 22

  • Whitney Museum: $ 25

  • Intrepid Air and Space Museum: $ 33

  • Cruise with Circle Line: $ 35

  • Brooklyn Botanical Garden: $ 20

  • Brooklyn Museum: $ 25

  • Water Taxi: $ 31

  • Empire State: $ 34

In total, we would have spent $ 334 when the New York Pass of 3 days leaves us for $ 199, therefore taking the tourist card we have saved us a good money that we can take advantage of for our purchases, lunches or dinners in New York . For more information and to buy this card, I recommend you go to the official website of New York Pass.

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