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Tours Of The 9/11 Memorial

A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the 9/11 Memorial Museum | The New York Times

There are several options for guided tours and some include admission to the National September 11th Museum and/or One World Observatory as well.

Even if you cant manage to book a trip with us, there are quite a few affordable options out there, including our anytime audio tour.

Every 9/11 Memorial tour on this list is highly rated and well-received by guests. Most tours are offered daily.

Although these excursions typically include some sensitive historical information, some families really enjoy the experience of visiting this important monument of American history.

Below is a handy calendar of tour availability.

Helicopter Rides To See The One World Trade Center

The view from One World Observatory is incredible. But in order to actually have a good view of the One World Trade Center, we recommend hopping on a helicopter and enjoy the breathtaking moments from up there.

Every helicopter tour in New York City will offer you a close-up view of One World Trade Center.

If a helicopter tour in New York City is not for you, there are several sightseeing cruises that take you along the One World Trade Center on the Hudson River to give you amazing views as well.

How To Get Here

Use this map for specific directions to the 9/11 Memorial.

The easiest way to get here is via the subway. The following lines will get you within walking distance of the memorial:

A, C, 1, 2, 3 to Chambers Street A, C, J, Z, 2, 3, 4, or 5 trains to Fulton Street 2 or 3 trains to Park Place E train to World Trade Center R or 1 train to Rector Street R train to Cortlandt Street

Be sure to read our guides on navigating the subway and how to purchase a subway MetroCard.

Visitors who plan on using a hop-on-hop-off bus will be happy to know that most services offer stops very close to the 9/11 Memorial.

Alternatively, you can also take a public bus to get here.

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How To Visit Ground Zero And 9/11 Memorial Museum: Tickets Hours Tours And More

Carissa ChesanekLast Updated: March 15, 2022

Ground Zero and The National September 11 Memorial Museum are significant sites in New York Citys history. The historic landmarks honor those who died in the September 11, 2001 terror attacks and the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. But theres a lot to see and it can be confusing to decide how to plan your trip to these must-see memorials. Heres how to visit Ground Zero and 9/11 Memorial Museum, with information on tickets, hours, tours, and more

One World Observatory At One World Trade Center

World Trade Center Site

We are not only impressed and amazed by the tower of One World Trade Center itself, but also about what is inside. One World Observatory is one of the three observation decks in New York City.

The observatory is located on floors 100-102 of One World Trade Center, with exhibits & restaurants. Enjoy 360° views of the city, Hudson River, Brooklyn Bridge, New Jersey, and Central Park.

Everything you need to know about One World Observatory

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How Much Time Do You Need

Although a quick trip can take anywhere from 15-30 minutes, some guests may want to set aside a little more time to experience the memorial.

There are also several additional monuments nearby that are directly related to the events of 9/11, so you may want to ensure that you have at least 1 hour to see everything.

This is the exact time it will take you to complete our audio walking tour of the memorial and surrounding area.

The 9/11 Museum is located right between the two monuments and you will require tickets for entry.

This location includes several exhibits covering the history before, during, and after the events of September 11th.

For more information, make sure to read our post about visiting the 9/11 Museum.

If you want to take things a step further, you should also consider visiting One World Trade Center.

Located right across the street from the 9/11 Memorial, this is one of the tallest buildings in the world and it has observation decks providing some of the best views in New York City.

Read our post about the Freedom Tower for more details.

Anyone who is considering a trip to the memorial, the museum, and the One World Observatory should set aside at least 5-6 hours for the entire trip.

Youll also want to purchase tickets in advance to make sure that you can get in when you want and avoid having to wait in line.

If youre planning on spending the day in this area, consider dropping into Brookfield Place to grab a bite to eat.

Swamp White Oaks And The Survivor Tree

Throughout the memorial are several hundred swamp white oak trees, which, according to the 911 Memorial website, were chosen for their durability as well as their variety of heights and leaf colors.

However, there is one particular tree that stands out. Among the rubble of the fallen towers, an 8 foot Callery pear tree was found alive, but just barely.

Removed from the rubble, the tree was nursed back to health and replanted in the plaza. It has since flourished and has grown to 30 feet in height.

The tree embodies the story of survival and resilience important to the history of the World Trade Center and 9/11.

From the Survivor Tree, walk towards the glass atrium of the museum where you can view the Tridents.

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Security And Safety Measures Were A Top Priority

The most important aspect of the building was its safety: a specialty steel composite that has excellent fire resistance properties and will withstand extreme temperatures was chosen for the construction. All windows of the lower floors are made from specially hardened glass that will not shatter in an explosion.

Independent ventilation systems prevent the dissemination of possible hazardous gasses, and emergency exits were designed to be extra wide. All the vulnerabilities that came to light in the terrorist attacks of 2001 have been addressed in the new building. The trauma of the collapse of the Twin Towers is not forgotten and is not to be repeated.

What To See And Do

View from the One World Trade Center observation deck

Theres a lot to explore and visit around the 9/11 Memorials, and you dont want to miss anything. Here are the important things to see at each location.

One World Trade Center

  • Take a ride on the SkyPod elevator where youll experience the New York City skyline through video and illusion.
  • One World Explorer interactive iPad guide that lets you learn the history of New York Citys most iconic buildings with a tap of a finger.

9/11 Memorial

  • The two Memorial Pools are at the site of the former North and South Towers. Both have two of the largest man-made waterfalls that descend 50 feet. The name of the victims from both 1993 and 2001 are etched in the bronze wall found alongside the pools.
  • The Memorial Glade represents rescue workers and others who were exposed to toxins after the attack and during the long months of cleanup.
  • There is also the Callery pear tree that survived the attacks. It was later replanted at the Memorial and named the Survivor Tree.
  • The bronze FDNY Memorial Wall, which honors the firefighters who lost their lives on 9/11. It is not in the Memorial but just a short two-minute walk away.

9/11 Memorial Museum

  • The FDNY Ladder 3 firetruck that was recovered from the World Trade Center site.
  • The memorial exhibition featuring a floor-to-ceiling photo showcase of the victims.
  • Artifacts from victims that help shed light on their lives before the bombings.

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Tours At The One World Trade Center

One World Trade Center also makes a striking impression from the water: the building is truly beautiful, and its grandeur and presence in the New York skyline are simply phenomenal. There are many tours you should consider if you are further interested in One World Trade Center or the One World Observatory. There are our favorites:

/11 Memorial Tour With Skip

  • Learn more
  • Instant confirmation
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
  • Visit landmarks often missed by visitors in Lower Manhattan
  • Small group size ensures a more intimate experience
  • Guaranteed admission to the National 9/11 Memorial Museum
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
  • Visit landmarks often missed by visitors in Lower Manhattan
  • Small group size ensures a more intimate experience
  • Guaranteed admission to the National 9/11 Memorial Museum

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Controversies Surrounding The Museum

Little Syria

A neighborhood that was once called Little Syria, a center of Christian Arab immigrant life in the United States beginning in the 1880s, once existed just south of the site of the World Trade Center. The cornerstone of St. Joseph’s Lebanese was found under the rubble, next to St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church at 157 Cedar Street. Both congregations were founded by Christians who had fled Ottoman oppression in the Middle East. Activists lobbied for the Museum to include a permanent exhibit about the neighborhood to “help the thousands of tourists who visit the site to understand that immigrants from Ottoman lands have played a patriotic role in the country’s history,” arguing that it was important to memorialize the multiethnic character of “Little Syria.” The old Christian Syrian neighborhood was demolished in the 1940s due to the construction of the BrooklynBattery Tunnel.

Never Forget

General admission tickets to the museum are $24, a price which has raised concerns. Michael Bloomberg agreed, encouraging people to “write your congressman” for more federal funding.

Placement of unidentified remains

The National September 11th Memorial Museum

World Trade Center Site

Unlike the 911 Memorial, you must purchase tickets to enter the Museum.

Through interactive technology, archives, narratives, and a collection of artifacts, the Museum recounts the events of 9/11.

To see a preview of what your visit will be like, here is a virtual tour of the museum.

Hours: Daily from 9 am to 8 pm. The last entry time is at 7 pm.

Tickets: Tickets are “timed-entry” meaning you must select a specific date and time when you make your purchase. Tickets can be purchased up to three months in advance.

You can purchase tickets by clicking here.

Several tour companies combine a walking tour of the 9/11 Memorial and Ground Zero with tickets to the 9/11 Museum. Learn more.

TIP: Admission to the museum is included for free with the purchase of either the New York Pass, the Explorer Pass or the CityPass booklet. Read our post comparing the different tourist attractions passes in NYC.

Prices:

  • $28 | Adults
  • $22 | Seniors
  • $22 | Students
  • $20 | Young Adult
  • $17 | Youth
  • Free Children
  • $18 | U.S. Veterans

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Why Book 9/11 Memorial And Museum Tickets Online

  • Gain direct entry to the 9/11 Museum
  • Gaze at the 11,000 artefacts collected from the site
  • Get personal by learning about the people as you know their names and see their faces who lost their lives on an unfortunate day
  • Spend time by the pools reflection as you reflect on your thoughts about the event and the people lost.

Who Designed The One World Trade Center

Designed by David Childs, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, 1 World Trade Center is the tallest building in the western hemisphere. It achieved the LEED Gold certification in 2016. It rises 1,776 feet to the top of the New York City skyline. There is another name that youll keep hearing in regards to who is the architect of the One World Trade Center.

His name is Daniel Libeskind. His original plans were transformed by David Childs, and Libeskind has been cut almost entirely out of the process. The beautifully designed 104-story structure opened in spring 2014 with its first tenant, Condé Nast, which moved in later in the year.

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Harry Meghan Visit Nyc Sites Including Sept 11 Memorial

Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, got a hawks-eye view of New York City with a visit to the rebuilt World Trade Centers signature tower

NEW YORK — Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, got a hawk’s-eye view of New York City on Thursday with a visit to the rebuilt World Trade Center’s signature tower.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, and their son, Dante de Blasio, posed for photos with Harry and Meghan at the 1,268-foot observatory at One World Trade Center, where clouds partially obscured the panoramic view.

In answer to a question about how she was enjoying her trip to New York, Meghan responded, It’s wonderful to be back, thank you.” Harry, asked the same question, said, It’s wonderful, thank you.

The royals did not make further remarks.

After enjoying the view from the 102nd floor, they made their way back down and outside.

Hochul chatted with Meghan while de Blasio and Harry spoke before posing for photos in front of the building, which stands near where the center’s former twin towers were destroyed by terrorists on Sept. 11, 2001.

Harry and Meghan then visited the neighboring Sept. 11 memorial plaza. The couple looked out over a reflecting pool where one of the towers stood and then visited the Sept. 11 museum.

The duke and duchess are in New York for a Global Citizen Live event to call for vaccine equity.

On The Surrounding Community

Development, Memorial, Museum Emerging at World Trade Center Site

The original World Trade Center created a superblock that cut through the area’s street grid, isolating the complex from the rest of the community. The Port Authority had demolished several streets to make way for the towers within the World Trade Center. The project involved combining the 12 block area bounded by Vesey, Church, Liberty, and West Streets on the north, east, south, and west, respectively. 7 World Trade Center was built on the superblock’s north side in the late 1980s, over another block of Greenwich Street. The building acted as a physical barrier separating Tribeca to the north and the Financial District to the south. The underground mall at the World Trade Center also drew shoppers away from surrounding streets.

The project was seen as being monolithic and overambitious, with the design having had no public input. By contrast, the rebuilding plans had significant public input. The public supported rebuilding a street grid through the World Trade Center site. One of the rebuilding proposals included building an enclosed shopping street along the path of Cortlandt Street, one of the streets demolished to make room for the original World Trade Center. However, the Port Authority ultimately decided to rebuild Cortlandt, Fulton, and Greenwich Streets, which were destroyed during the original World Trade Center’s construction.

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The National September 11th Museum

Read more about the museum here.

Placed inside the Museum, but visible from the Memorial Plaza, are two 70-foot high, 50 ton steel beams that were part of the base of the North Tower.

These beams, salvaged from the wreckage of the fallen towers, are known as tridents because of their three-pronged tops .

Buildings At The World Trade Center Site

The same area where you could once find the World Trade Center with a total of seven buildings you will today also find a complex of buildings that is called the World Trade Center site formerly referred to as Ground Zero or the Pile immediately after the September 11 attacks. Over 18 years have passed since New York started to rebuild was destroyed on September 11, 2001.

Check out all the building on Ground Zero in New York City

  • One World Trade Center The centerpiece of the new WTC stands 104 stories and 1,776 feet tall. On top, you find One World Observatory, which opened in May 2015.

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/11 Memorial Museum Admission Ticket

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Establishment Of The World Trade Center

The National September 11 Memorial Museum at the World Trade Center ...

The idea of establishing a World Trade Center in New York City was first proposed in 1943. The New York State Legislature passed a bill authorizing New York Governor Thomas E. Dewey to begin developing plans for the project, but the plans were put on hold in 1949. During the late 1940s and 1950s, economic growth in New York City was concentrated in Midtown Manhattan. To help stimulate urban renewal in Lower Manhattan, David Rockefeller suggested that the Port Authority build a World Trade Center there.

Plans for the use of eminent domain to remove the shops in Radio Row bounded by Vesey, Church, Liberty, and West Streets began in 1961 when the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey was deciding to build the world’s first world trade center. They had two choices: the east side of Lower Manhattan, near the South Street Seaport or the west side, near the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad station, Hudson Terminal. Initial plans, made public in 1961, identified a site along the East River for the World Trade Center. As a bi-state agency, the Port Authority required approval for new projects from the governors of both New York and New Jersey. New Jersey Governor Robert B. Meyner objected to New York getting a $335 million project. Toward the end of 1961, negotiations with outgoing New Jersey Governor Meyner reached a stalemate.

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