What’s the problem? Time, that’s the problem. Where can you find time to do it all?

First, let’s talk about the things that make New York City a student travel planner’s ideal. It’s a well-known name. There are educational and cultural opportunities sprinkled thickly throughout the city. And it is used to tourism; in 2012 alone, 52 million visitors spent about $36 billion in the city. Add in three major airports – JFK and LaGuardia in Queens and Newark Liberty International across the border in New Jersey – and travel should not be a problem.

Now, suppose you only have a day or two in New York.  What should your list include?  Well, that will depend on your group.  Culinary students, for example, would love the food scene; music and performing arts students could happily spend the whole time oscillating between venues.  But there are a few top sights that almost every New York tourist has on his or her list.

Six Must-See New York Sights To Build A Tour Around

There are only about 300 square miles of New York City, and only about 23 miles of that is Manhattan.  Yet, this densely-packed island is home to most of the iconic sights, including:

  • Times Square.  See it by night to appreciate the lights or by day to get the high-octane energy.  Either way, this five-block section of Broadway and Seventh Avenue between West 45th and West 47th Streets is the world’s most visited tourist attraction.
  • Broadway’s Theatre District itself is worth seeing, especially for performing arts junkies.  Lincoln Center, which hosts classical musical performances at the Metropolitan Opera, Alice Tully Hall, and Avery Fisher Hall, also has plenty of room for jazz lovers, film buffs and dance enthusiasts.
  • Central Park.  It’s not just 800-plus acres of open space in the country’s most-populated metropolis.  It’s also a place to enjoy museums and concerts, as well as monuments and sculptures.
  • Fifth Avenue.  You don’t have to have a group full of shopaholics and fashionistas to appreciate this Midtown Manhattan thoroughfare.  It’s also home to landmarks like the Empire State Building and Metropolitan Museum of Art.  And, of course, all those stores – from designer clothing labels to the world’s largest Build-a-Bear workshop.
  • National September 11 Museum and Memorial.  Site of the Twin Towers attack of 2001, this somber museum and memorial invites visitors to view artifacts and installations and to contemplate this tragedy and its influence on the world.
  • Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Visitors take a ferry from Lower Manhattan to New York Harbor’s Liberty Island, the home of the Statue of Liberty. They can tour the grounds and go inside the statue. (Advance ticket reservations are required for the crown and are recommended for the pedestal.)  Liberty Island ferry tickets include Ellis Island, one mile to the north, and its immigration museum

Right about now travel planners might be thinking about the logistics of travel.  And the traffic. And the lightning-fast pace. And getting lost while trying to go from point A to point B. So for many, the solution for a quick trip to New York includes utilizing a tour service.

Picking The Right New Your City Tour Provider

A good tour provider should make your life easier.  And we don’t just mean the basics of a comfortable and safe journey around the town.  A good tour provider should offer customized service, perhaps with hop-on hop-off tours.  A shuttle to and from the airport would be a major bonus.  A range of transport options (from large SUVs or cars to full-size buses) and licensed tour guides would also be great.  Add in professional support in planning your New York City tour, and you’ve got a valuable asset.  City Sights NY, for example, can provide groups with a range of vehicles that start with a six-seater and go all the way up to an 82-seat double-decker bus.  They also offer the other services mentioned above.

It’s been said that New York is a city of neighborhoods, but it’s also a city of landmarks that are familiar to most Americans.  If your student travel group only has a day or two, centering your time around the island of Manhattan is a good introduction to the best-known sights of the Big Apple.

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Have you booked a student travel group to NYC recently, or been there yourself?  Share your story in the comments section.  Thank you!