Broadway is called the “Great White Way” for the dazzling lights surrounding the popular Times Square portion of this avenue. Take a moment to look in all directions from your spot at the center of Times Square. Every December 31, about 1 million people crowd into this space to watch the 12-foot (3.6-meter) ball drop from One Times Square in celebration of the New Year.
Starting in 2009, the city closed the Times Square area and other parts of Broadway to car traffic and installed street furniture to provide safe and enjoyable pedestrian use. At Father Duffy Square at the north end of Times Square find a seat on the wide, red-glass bleachers facing south for people-watching in this busy spot. From the top enjoy surprisingly good views of the city. Street entertainers frequently perform here, including the Naked Cowboy, costumed Star Wars Spacetroopers, country singers and break-dancers.
Below the bleachers is the TKTS booth. Stop here to purchase same-day reduced-price tickets to many popular Broadway and off-Broadway musicals, plays and other performances. Credit cards are accepted. Look down at the sidewalk where the Spotlight on Broadway steel-and-granite art installation highlights 40 theaters of Broadway.
Times Square is actually a triangle. Gaze up at the neon lights and giant billboards rising from the sidewalks multiple stories in the air, advertising the current shows in the theater district. Several theaters border Times Square and about 40 are within easy walking distance of a block or two. Along the south end of Times Square are other family attractions including Madame Tussauds wax museum, Ripley’s Believe It or Not! and movie theaters.
Plan your New York trip with information and concierge help at the Official NYC Information Center - Times Square. To get a good sense of this central part of Manhattan, walk north along Broadway from Herald Square to Times Square and stop at retail shops, coffeehouses, delis and famous restaurants. Many spots stay open until late in the evening.