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Rockefeller Center

One of Manhattan’s most iconic developments, this hub of business and entertainment was considered a remarkable feat when it was completed in the late 1930s.

An ode to 1930s New York, Rockefeller Center in Midtown Manhattan fuses the old and the new, and is at the heart of the city’s annual holiday celebrations.

Built between 1930 and 1939, the sprawling Rockefeller Center was seen as a revolutionary symbol of innovation and progress amid the depression-era slump. A “city within a city”, the center has a sleek, modern design and has housed some of the most progressive companies in America’s history. Today, it’s still a hub of Manhattan with 19 commercial and historic buildings that cover several blocks. 

A benchmark for Art Deco architecture, Rockefeller Center boasts many attractions. Take a tour of the famous NBC studios. Get tickets to see the famous Rockettes or a concert at Radio City Music Hall. During the holiday season, check out the enormous 100-foot Christmas tree. The glistening ice-skating rink is open daily October through April.

At any time of year, a trip to the center should start with a visit to the Top of the Rock observation deck for a 360-degree view of the city. Before zooming to the observation decks in the Sky Shuttle elevator, make sure you explore the permanent exhibition of photographs and artifacts on the mezzanine level. (Once you’re at the top, you can’t return to the exhibit.) The 70-story-high viewing platform is open from daily offering postcard-perfect views of the Empire State Building and Statue of Liberty to the south and Central Park to the north.

Over at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, the centerpiece of the complex, television aficionados can join behind-the-scenes NBC studios tours, which run every 15 minutes, to catch a glimpse into what makes shows like “NBC Nightly News” and “Saturday Night Live” tick. Check the Rockefeller Center website for ticket information. For history buffs, ticketed tours through the General Electric building also run regularly every day, with knowledgeable guides sharing insights into the history and artistry of the center.

After your tour, head downstairs to refuel at one of the many cafes and restaurants in the Concourse level or wander outside onto Fifth Avenue

Rockefeller Plaza is located in Midtown, and is on a number of bus routes and subway lines.

Popular Activities at Rockefeller Center

You'll find it hard to believe how many activities there are at Rockefeller Center. Here are some suggestions to get you going:

If you're chasing even more options, examine our New York things to do page.

Guide to Exploring around Rockefeller Center

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Lodging Near Rockefeller Center

See all 2,132 Properties near Rockefeller Center
The Roosevelt Hotel, New York City $112
The Roosevelt Hotel, New York City

The Roosevelt Hotel, New York City

45 E 45th Street, New York
    of 5, from 24,722 reviews
    4.0 out of 5.0

    Located at the corner of East 45th Street and Madison Avenue, the Roosevelt Hotel, New York City, provides ready access to shopping, as well as Broadway theaters, 3 blocks away.

    YOTEL New York $89
    YOTEL New York

    YOTEL New York

    570 Tenth Avenue, New York
      of 5, from 12,080 reviews
      4.0 out of 5.0

      This Manhattan hotel is in the Midtown West neighborhood, 0.8 mile from Times Square and within one-half mile of the New Amsterdam Theater and Madame Tussauds Wax Museum.

      Park Central Hotel New York $99
      Park Central Hotel New York

      Park Central Hotel New York

      870 7th Ave, New York
        of 5, from 7,312 reviews
        4.0 out of 5.0

        This Midtown New York hotel, renovated October, 2013, offers a desirable location diagonally across from Carnegie Hall, 1 block from Broadway, 2 blocks from Fifth Avenue shopping, and 2 blocks from Central Park. The Theater District and Times Square are within 1 mile.

        Salisbury Hotel $98
        Salisbury Hotel

        Salisbury Hotel

        123 W 57th St, New York
          of 5, from 17,982 reviews
          3.0 out of 5.0

          The budget-friendly Salisbury Hotel hotel offers a prime Midtown location just 2 blocks from Central Park and within walking distance of Times Square and Broadway theaters. Opened in 1931, this Neo-Gothic-style hotel is next door to the famed Russian Tea Room, a half-block from Carnegie Hall, and 7 blocks from Radio City Music Hall.

          Pod 51 $79
          Pod 51

          Pod 51

          230 E 51st St, New York
            of 5, from 14,855 reviews
            3.0 out of 5.0

            The innovative Pod Hotel offers compact, cleverly designed rooms and a prime location 4 blocks from Manhattan's Fifth Avenue, less than 6 blocks from the Theater District, and 2 blocks from subways.

            Paramount Times Square $99
            Paramount Times Square

            Paramount Times Square

            235 West 46th Street, New York
              of 5, from 12,646 reviews
              4.0 out of 5.0

              Set amid Broadway theaters, this stylish New York hotel is a half-block from Times Square and half a block from Restaurant Row. Bryant Park, Minskoff Theater, Gershwin Theater, and Radio City Music Hall are also nearby. Head to nearby Central Park, 5th Avenue, Rockfeller Center, and the Museum of Modern Art.

              The Belvedere Hotel $103
              The Belvedere Hotel

              The Belvedere Hotel

              319 W 48th St, New York
                of 5, from 20,173 reviews
                3.5 out of 5.0

                This New York hotel is in the center of all the action, located in the cluster of Broadway theaters. The center of Times Square is 2 blocks away, and Rockefeller Center is a 3-block walk.

                Pod Times Square $89
                Pod Times Square

                Pod Times Square

                400 W 42nd Street, New York
                  of 5, from 1,502 reviews
                  3.0 out of 5.0

                  This hotel is located in New York (Midtown), close to American Lyric Theater, Times Square, and Broadway. Also nearby are Macy's and New York Public Library.