Synonymous with US financial markets, capitalism, and the history of early New York, Wall Street runs for eight blocks, from Broadway to South streets, through Lower Manhattan. It may be the financial heart of the city and bustling with traders most days of the week, but the area also offers plenty of historic interest to visitors.
Wall Street features many examples of grand architecture, including the New York Stock Exchange and the 18th-century Federal Hall, commemorating the site where the first US Congress convened and Washington was sworn in as president. More contemporary works include Santiago Calatrava’s World Trade Center Oculus and One World Trade Center, the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere.
With New York’s Financial District also inextricably connected to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, many walking tours of the area include visits to the National September 11 Memorial. Tours (private and group) typically also take visitors to such landmarks as the Charging Bull sculpture and New York Stock Exchange and some also include access to the One World Observatory. Fans of the hit musical Hamilton can also take a specialized walking tour to places associated with the Founding Father.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Wall Street is a must-see for history and architecture enthusiasts.
- The 9/11 Memorial is free to visit, but there is an entrance fee to the museum.
- Remember to behave in a way befitting the somber nature of the 9/11 Memorial.
- The New York Stock Exchange is no longer open to visitors, but the Federal Reserve offers free tours.
How to Get There
Wall Street, Rector Street, Fulton Street, and Broad Street subway stations are all clustered around Wall Street, making the area easily accessible from anywhere on New York’s subway system.
When to Get There
On weekends, when banks are closed and streets are near empty, it can feel like you have the whole place to yourself, allowing you the space to take in the architecture. Note, however, that Wall Street restaurants primarily serving the people who work there are usually also closed on weekends. If you want to see Wall Street in action, visit on a weekday morning.
One World Observatory
Located on the 100th to 102nd floors of the 1,776-foot -high (541 meter) One World Trade Center, the One World Observatory offers the most expansive views in the city, as well as informational, interactive exhibits. Booking priority admission gives you access to the VIP line and the VIP elevator, which takes you straight to the top without waiting in line.