The Statue of Liberty is one of the most famous sights one could see when visiting NYC. In a city full of popular attractions, Lady Liberty stands alone in her prominence in our nation’s history, as well as on the New York City skyline.
A Quick History of the Statue of Liberty
The Statue of Liberty is a colossal neoclassical sculpture that was gifted to the United States by France in 1886. The statue was designed by French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi and its metal framework was built by Gustave Eiffel (who also designed the Eiffel Tower).
The statue was intended to celebrate the centennial of American independence and to symbolize the friendship between France and the United States. It depicts a woman holding a torch in one hand and a tablet inscribed with the date of the American Declaration of Independence in the other.
The statue was shipped to New York City in 1885 and was assembled on a pedestal on what is now called Liberty Island, right where the Hudson River empties into the New York Harbor. The pedestal was designed by American architect Richard Morris Hunt.
Since its dedication in 1886, the Statue of Liberty has become an iconic symbol of freedom and democracy, not only in the United States but around the world. It has been featured in countless movies, TV shows, and other forms of media, and has become one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world.
Recently, the statue has undergone extensive renovations and improvements to preserve it for future generations. Today, millions of visitors from around the world visit the statue every year to admire its beauty and learn about its history and significance.
Map of Statue of Liberty View Points
These are the best places to see the Statue of Liberty from. Most are in New York, with one of the best in New Jersey. Within NY, Brooklyn has the most spots on our list, with just about half of our entries.
1. Ellis Island
Ellis Island is located about a half mile from Liberty Island and offers a great view of the statue. It’s a great option if you’re interested in learning about the history of immigration to the United States and want to see the statue at the same time.
Ellis Island is managed by the National Park Service, which is part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument.
Tickets on the Ellis Island Ferry are $25 per adult, with senior and child discounts available. A ticket on this ferry gets you access to both Ellis Island, and Liberty Island, which is where the statue resides. The ferry price also includes the ability to visit the grounds around the Statue of Liberty. There are additional charges for those that want hard-hat tours inside the museum, and for those wanting to get a view from atop her crown.
2. Staten Island Ferry
The Staten Island Ferry is a popular way to get a close-up view of the Statue of Liberty. At its closest, it gets about half a mile away from the statue. The ferry runs between Manhattan and Staten Island, and passengers can get a great view of the statue from the ferry. It’s a great option if you want to see the statue up close but don’t want to pay for a ticket to Liberty Island.
The Staten Island Ferry is a free service provided by the City of New York, and you can view its schedule here. The NYC terminal for the ferry is located in Battery Park, and is called the Whitehall Ferry Terminal.
3. Liberty State Park
Liberty State Park is probably the closest spot to view the statue from that is not an island, but most views are from behind the statue. It is also in New Jersey, while most others on this list are in NYC. At the park’s closest, it is only about half of a mile away from the statue and offers a great view of the statue and the Manhattan skyline. It’s less crowded than Battery Park and offers a great opportunity to take some stunning photographs.
There is no fee to enter this park. Liberty State Park also has a terminal for the Ellis Island Ferry.
4. Governor’s Island
Governors Island is located about 1 mile away from the statue and offers a great view of the statue and surrounding harbor. It’s a great option if you want to get away from the crowds and enjoy a peaceful atmosphere.
Ferry tickets to the island cost around $5 per person. The ferry’s schedule can be found here. There is a Wall Street terminal in Manhattan, as well as a handful of others in Brooklyn.
All sites from this point forward offer OK views of the statue, but don’t expect to see any of her details without binoculars. Once you get over a mile away, the statue gets quite small in your field of view, not to mention, weather conditions can really hamper your experience as well. A cloudy, foggy or rainy day can make her sometimes impossible to see from this distance as well.
5. Louis Valentino Jr. Park & Pier
The Louis Valentino Jr. Park & Pier is located about 1.5 miles away from the statue and offers a great view of the statue and the harbor. It’s a popular spot for locals and offers a great place to relax and enjoy the view. This is a free park to visit.
6. Battery Park
Located at the southern tip of Manhattan, Battery Park is one of the most popular and crowded spots to view the Statue of Liberty from. It isn’t the best place, but it’s the most popular because of its easily accessible location, and free price tag. At the closest point, Battery Park is located about 1.7 miles away from the statue and offers a great view of the statue and the surrounding harbor. It’s a popular spot for tourists and locals alike.
A great spot within the park would be the Museum of Jewish Heritage, which is located on the western shore, about 2 miles away from the statue. It offers a unique perspective on the statue and its history. It’s a great option if you’re interested in learning about the history of the Statue of Liberty and its significance.
7. One World Observatory
One World Observatory is a unique and popular spot for tourists and offers stunning views of the city and the harbor. It is located about 2.25 miles away from the statue and offers a perspective of the statue and the surrounding area from 102 floors in the New York City skyline. Tickets are around $50 per person, and can be purchased online.
8. Brooklyn Heights Promenade
This promenade is located about 2.5 miles away from the statue and offers a great view of the statue and the Manhattan skyline. It’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike and offers a great place to take in the view. The park is free to enter.
9. Brooklyn Bridge Park
This is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike. It is located about 2.5 miles away from the statue and offers a great view of the statue and the Manhattan skyline. As an added benefit, you get to get up close with one of the most famous bridges in the United States.
This park is usually less crowded than Battery Park and offers a much more peaceful atmosphere. Brooklyn Bridge Park is free to enter.
10. Green-Wood Cemetery
This cemetery is located about 3.5 miles away from the statue, which provides a distant view of the statue and harbor. The cemetery is home to many historic grave sites and offers a peaceful atmosphere to take in the view.
While it may seem odd that a Cemetery is on this list, it is actually an attraction here. The cemetery sits on Brooklyn’s highest point, and at the designated Liberty viewpoint sits a bronze statue of Minerva, the Roman goddess of wisdom and war.
11. Sunset Park
This park is located about 3.5 miles away from the statue and also offers a distant view of the statue and surrounding harbor. It’s a popular spot for locals and offers a great place to relax and enjoy the park.
12. Bay Ridge Brooklyn
This neighborhood is located about 5.5 miles away from the statue and offers a very distant view of the Statue of Liberty. It’s a great option if you’re looking to explore a different part of Brooklyn while still catching a view of Lady Liberty. You will only be able to see the statue on a clear and sunny day.
This is the farthest away from the Statue of Liberty I’ve decided to include. While you can still catch a glimpse of her from even longer distances away, she becomes virtually indistinguishable from the surrounding buildings and sights.