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Witness the Magic of NYC from the Empire State Building Observation Decks

New York City’s Empire State Building is one of the most distinguished symbols of the city. Taking in the sweeping views from its observation deck is the best way to admire the magnificence of the 'Big Apple'. Stay on this page to find out more about the Empire State Building observation decks and what to expect on your visit!

Why Visit the Empire State Building Observation Decks?

Empire State Building Observation Decks



Book Tickets to the Empire State Building Observation Decks

Empire State Building: 86th Floor Skip-the-Box-Office Tickets
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Empire State Building: 86th Floor Express Tickets
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Empire State Building: 86th & 102nd Floor Skip-the-Box-Office Tickets
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Empire State Building: 86th & 102nd Floor Express Tickets
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Combo (Save 5%): Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) + Skip-the-Line Empire State Building 86th & 102nd Floor Tickets
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Combo (Save 5%): Edge Observation Deck + Skip-the-Line Empire State Building 86th & 102nd Floor Tickets
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VIP Sunrise Experience: 86th Floor with Starbucks Reserve
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New York Explorer Pass by Go City: Choose 2 to 10 Attractions
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Where are the Empire State Building Observation Decks?

The famous Empire State Building boasts two observation decks: the 86th-floor observatory and the 102nd-floor observatory. You can jump in one of the many elevators on the 2nd floor and make your way to the 86th floor. From there, a short ride in a special glass elevator will take you to the 102nd floor in less than a minute!

Empire State Building Observation Decks

Empire State Building Observation Decks

86th Floor Observatory

The 86th-floor viewing platform, also known as the main deck, is synonymous with the building itself! It is situated at a height of 1,050 feet or 320 meters above the Manhattan streets. The open-air observatory deck encircles the building’s spire and serves the most enchanting 360-degree views of New York and beyond. You can also step inside the indoor gallery whenever you need respite from the chilly winds.

Furthermore, make sure to peer through the binoculars placed throughout the deck for an up-close-and-personal view of the magnificent Manhattan skyline.

Empire State Building Observation Decks

102nd Floor Observation Deck

You can set your sights even higher, 16 floors higher exactly, and relish the views from the observation deck located on the 102nd floor. A one-of-a-kind glass elevator will take you 200 feet above the 86th floor observatory. This deck is the highest vantage point for visitors of the building as you will be standing 1,250 feet or 381 meters above ground level.

It is noticeably less spacious than the 86th-floor and is enclosed on all sides. However, it makes up for the indoor setting with massive floor-to-ceiling windows and lets visitors enjoy unobstructed views of the sprawling city below.

How Do I Visit the Empire State Building Observation Decks?

Empire State Building Observation Decks

The Empire State Building ranks among the top tourist landmarks not just in New York City, but the entire country. It's no surprise that the place attracts more than 4 million visitors yearly! Therefore, a better alternative to standing in long ticket queues is to book your tickets online in advance. 

Moreover, the building is open throughout the year without exception. However, the opening timings vary slightly from season to season. Lastly, make sure to plan your visit during the summer and autumn months i.e., from June to November as the weather is just perfect at this time.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Empire State Building Observation Decks

How many observation decks does the Empire State Building have?

The Empire State Building features two observation decks - one on the 86th floor and one on the 102nd floor.

Can I visit the Empire State Building observation decks?

Yes, the Empire State Building observation decks are open to visitors all year round.

How much is a ticket to visit the Empire State Building observation decks?

Your Empire State Building tickets start from $44.

What can I see from the Empire State Building observation decks?

The Empire State Building observation decks offer panoramic views of the New York landscape from the height of 1,050 feet and 1,250 feet.

Is visiting the Empire State Building observation decks worth it?

Yes, visiting the Empire State Building observation decks promises to be a worthwhile and memorable experience. 

Are the Empire State Building observation decks crowded?

Yes, the Empire State Building observation decks are renowned for attracting huge crowds, especially during sunsets.

What is the best time to visit the Empire State Building observation decks?

The best time to visit the Empire State Building observation decks is during sunsets as the sky looks nothing short of dreamy. You will also be privy to the most Instagram-worthy pictures at this time.

What floors are the Empire State Building observation decks on?

The Empire State Building observation decks are located on the 86th and 102nd floors of the building.

What are the opening hours of the Empire State Building observation decks?

The Empire State Building observation decks are accessible between 9 AM and 11 PM.

Am I allowed to take pictures at the Empire State Building observation decks?

Visitors are free to take as many pictures as they like for personal use at the Empire State Building observation decks.

Can I visit both observation decks at the Empire State Building with one ticket?

Your Empire State Building tickets only give your access to the 86th floor observatory. You will need a separate ticket to visit the observation deck on the 102nd floor.

What is the best time to visit if you want to avoid crowds at the Empire State Building observation decks?

In order to avoid tourist crowds, the best times to visit are the early morning hours after the attraction opens, in the afternoons between 12 to 2 PM, and late in the evening before closing time.