One of the iconic architectural edifices in America, this 1911 Beaux Arts masterwork the houses the main branch of the New York Public Library should be a requirement for every tourist to see. Within are an astounding 2,800,000 pictures, 6,000,000 books, and 12,000,000 manuscripts. Moreover, the library is one of the few truly quiet niches in New York City, so time spent in the library can be even more time treasured.
Walking through the bronze doors into Astor Hall, or taking in special exhibitions and the breathtaking periodical room, one cannot help but be moved by the experience. Be sure to bring a good read to the Rose Main Reading Room, whose length spans nearly two full city blocks. Missing the unique and historic New York Public Library would be a shame, so stop by, even if only to get out of the hustle of the city for a bit.
New York Public Library (NYPL) Information
- Public Transportation: Excellent (via subway lines 7 at 5th Avenue/Bryant Park; B, D, F, and M at 42nd Street/Bryant Park; 4, 5, and 6 at Grand Central/42nd Street; N, Q, R, 1, 2, and 3 at Times Square/42nd Street; and buses M1–M5, M7, M42, and Q32)
- Handicapped Accessibility: Good
- Hours: Sunday 1–5 p.m., Monday, Thursday–Saturday 11 a.m.–6 p.m.; Tuesday and Wednesday 11 a.m.– 8:00 p.m.
- Admission: Free
- Basic Tour: Free one-hour tours are offered Tuesday–Saturday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. (departing from Astor Hall)
- Membership: Associate membership ($25) includes a 10% discount at the Library Shop at Fifth Avenue & 42nd Street or online, 10% off prints from the NYPL Digital Gallery, and a personalized membership card. At the Friend level ($40), members receive additional benefits, including preferred shopping times at the Library Shop with an additional discount, an invitation for two to attend the gala holiday open house in December, a year’s subscription to the Library’s magazine, Bookmark, invitations to Friends-only exhibition previews and lectures, a 33% savings and waived service charge on LIVE from the NYPL tickets.