Brooklyn Bridge at night, things to do in DUMBO - Best places to take pictures in NYC

15 Best Places to Take Pictures in NYC

If you’re looking to capture photos in NYC, you should check out some of the prime locations that offer the best panoramic views of the City That Never Sleeps. 

New York is an exceptionally photogenic city, featuring plenty of beautiful spots and tourist attractions that, when viewed from the right vantage points, create stunning postcard-worthy images. We have visited New York many times, as we lived just two hours away by car. This gave us a chance to explore it extensively and discover the top photo spots in NYC.

For those planning a trip to the Big Apple and don’t know about the best places to take pictures in New York City, I’m going to offer you my top recommendations. So, let’s begin.

1. Top of the Rock at sunset, one of the best photos of New York

One of the best New York photo spots is the Top of the Rock observation deck at Rockefeller Center, which is one of the most popular and impressive viewpoints in New York.

Top of the Rock, best place to take pictures in NYC

1. Top of the Rock at sunset, one of the best photos of New York

From here, you can capture some of the best photos in New York since it is located in Midtown, the most important neighborhood in Manhattan. The observation platform spans the 68th and 69th floors, offering 360° views of Manhattan, including iconic landmarks like the Empire State Building and Central Park.

To access Top of the Rock, I recommend reserving your ticket in advance through this link. However, if you have the New York Pass, you can enjoy free admission. A visit to this location is definitely worth it if you want to take the most stunning photos in NYC.

2. Brooklyn Bridge, the best place to take pictures in New York

The Brooklyn Bridge is a place where you can take some of the most iconic pictures of New York. And let’s not forget that it is one of the most photographed bridges in the world.

One of the best places to take pictures in Brooklyn is the Brooklyn Heights Promenade. This picturesque walkway also serves as an ideal viewpoint, where you can enjoy the most beautiful views of the bridge and the Manhattan skyline. Undoubtedly, it is one of the best places to photograph in NYC, especially during sunset as the city lights begin to illuminate.

Brooklyn Bridge, best photo spots in New York

2. Brooklyn Bridge, the best place to take pictures in New York

Another spot to take the best photos in New York is Brooklyn Bridge Park, one of the best attractions in Brooklyn. This beautiful park provides fantastic vantage points for capturing the bridge and taking captivating photographs.

Additionally, while standing in the middle of the bridge itself, you can also snap unique pictures of New York City, with the skyline peering through the Brooklyn Bridge’s architectural structure.

3. Old Pier 1, the best place to take pictures in NYC at night

Old Pier 1, located within Brooklyn Bridge Park, is an excellent spot for taking photos of New York at night. From here, you can glimpse the illuminated city of Manhattan framed by the pier supports, creating spectacular images of New York.

Old Pier 1, best place to take pictures New York

3. Old Pier 1, the best place to take pictures in NYC at night

While this location is stunning at night, many photographers also visit during dawn, when the first rays of the sun filter through the buildings. After exploring the park, you’ll have the opportunity to photograph the Brooklyn Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge, two of the most iconic New York landmarks.

4. Manhattan Bridge from DUMBO, one of the most original photos of New York

One of the best photos of New York is the Manhattan Bridge viewed from DUMBO, one of the best neighborhoods in Brooklyn.

Manhattan Bridge, best places to take pictures in Brooklyn

4. Manhattan Bridge from DUMBO, the most original photos of New York

While there are numerous vantage points for photographing this bridge, one of the most legendary compositions includes the Manhattan Bridge framed by red brick buildings, with the Empire State Building gracing the skyline below. To arrange this magnificent New York photoshoot, you should cross the Brooklyn Bridge and head to the intersection of Washington Street and Water Street in DUMBO.

This particular view has become one of the most famous images of New York, especially since it appeared on the poster for the film “Once Upon a Time in America,” starring Robert De Niro.

5. Helicopter tour, the best way to take aerial photos of New York

For truly original photos in New York, there’s nothing quite like a helicopter tour. 

Flying over the city provides a one-of-a-kind perspective that allows you to capture stunning aerial photos of New York. We chose this doors-off helicopter tour, which is even more impressive, as it allowed us to get the best aerial photos of New York.

Helicopter tour, best places to take pictures in New York City

5. Helicopter tour, the best way to take aerial photos of New York

You can also check out our comprehensive guide on New York helicopter tours to find the perfect option that aligns with your interests and budget.

6. Ferry to Staten Island, a place to take free photos of NYC’s Statue of Liberty

Taking the ferry to Staten Island offers an opportunity to capture stunning photos of the New York skyline.

This free ferry connects Staten Island with Manhattan and passes right in front of the Statue of Liberty, making it one of the best places to take pictures in New York. Keep in mind that the ferry doesn’t stop at Liberty Island and you will only be able to take photos from the ferry. This means your views of the statue may be somewhat distant, so, if you want a better close-up photo, you should use a telephoto lens.

Ferry to Staten Island, New York City best pictures

6. Ferry to Staten Island, a place to take free photos of NYC’s Statue of Liberty

If you wish to visit the Statue of Liberty up close, you can book a round-trip ferry excursion from Battery Park or Liberty State Park through this link. This gives you a chance to get even more images of NYC skyline.

7. Flatiron Building, one of the best places to take pictures in New York City

The Flatiron Building, one of the most famous buildings in New York, is among the best places to take pictures in NYC. This building is renowned for its distinctive triangular shape, which measures just 6.5 ft at its narrowest point and creates a 25° angle. The building stands tall at 285 ft, which makes it even more impressive.

Flatiron Building, best photo spots New York

7. Flatiron Building, best places to take pictures in New York

To shoot a New York city image with the Flatiron Building as the centerpiece, position yourself in the median just in front of the building or beneath the clock on the left side. This vantage point allows you to fully appreciate its unique Beaux Arts-style architecture.

Undoubtedly, this is one of the best images of New York that you shouldn’t miss, as it embodies the city’s iconic charm.

8. Central Park, one of the most photogenic spots in NYC

Central Park, often regarded as the “lungs” of New York City, is a park full of trails, lakes, and open spaces, perfect for relaxation, leisurely strolls, and a wide range of outdoor activities. It is also among the perfect places to take photos in New York, as it has several beautiful corners and places to shoot.

If you want to take good photographs of Central Park, you can go to The Rock, a rock that offers beautiful views of the park with skyscrapers in the background. Another option is The Pond, one of the best places to take pictures in Central Park, as it showcases a picturesque scene with a stone bridge going across the water.

Best places to take pictures in Central Park, NY

8. Central Park, one of the most photogenic spots in NYC

The Lake is also a very popular site among photographers. It’s a place where you often see boats with families and couples enjoying the outdoors against the backdrop of the Upper West Side. Other places within Central Park that are great for photography include the Bow Bridge, Belvedere Castle, and Bethesda Fountain.

If you, like us, want to take some original photos of New York, consider hiring a helicopter tour, as it provides a unique aerial perspective of Central Park.

9. Times Square, an ideal spot to take images of New York at night

Times Square is one of the best places for taking pictures in New York. It’s a lively area both day and night, full of street performers, shops, restaurants, theaters, and much more. In fact, after walking through this area, you can understand why New York is known as the City That Never Sleeps.

Times Square, NYC pictures at night

9. Times Square, an ideal spot to take images of New York at night

For mesmerizing nighttime images of New York City, I highly recommend exploring the streets surrounding Times Square, especially when the marquees of the city’s most prestigious theaters light up alongside massive neon signs and digital billboards.

For the perfect panoramic shot of Times Square, position yourself on the iconic Red Stairs at TKTS Pavilion. It’s definitely one of the best places for a photoshoot in New York.

10. St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Atlas, one of the top places for a photoshoot in New York

Visiting St. Patrick’s Cathedral is one of the best things to do in Manhattan. This place has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places in New York and is one of the most famous cathedrals in the state, as well as the largest Neo-Gothic style church in North America. Beyond its historical and artistic significance, what makes it one of the best places to photograph in NYC is the intriguing contrast it presents in the middle of towering skyscrapers.

St. Patrick's Cathedral, photos in NYC

10. St. Patrick’s Cathedral, top places for a photoshoot in NY

To capture this impressive cathedral, you’ll need to step back and create some distance. You can also stand right behind the sculpture of the Greek titan Atlas at the entrance to Rockefeller Center. From this vantage point, you can frame one of the best images of New York City: the sculpture from behind, with St. Patrick’s Cathedral in the background.

11. Pebble Beach, the perfect place to take pictures of the New York skyline

Pebble Beach offers a distinctive setting for taking cool pictures of New York City. Situated near Main Street in DUMBO, it’s a small stone beach located in a green area next to the Manhattan Bridge. Swimming isn’t permitted here, but you can shoot magnificent pictures of the New York skyline, and even catch a glimpse of Jane’s Carousel from this spot.

Pebble Beach, photos in NYC

11. Pebble Beach, the perfect place to take pictures of the New York skyline

Photographs taken at Pebble Beach are equally beautiful both day and night. If you choose to visit during sunset and wait for the city lights to illuminate, you can capture one of those magical moments when the city comes alive. It’s undoubtedly among the best things to do in New York at night since it is usually quite peaceful.

12. The High Line, one of the best New York photo spots

The High Line is not only one of the best New York photo spots but also one of the city’s most beautiful locations. This elevated park is constructed on old train tracks and stretches from the Meatpacking District in Chelsea to Harlem, passing through iconic spots like Chelsea Market, Hudson Yards, and The Vessel.

High Line, photo spots in NYC

12. The High Line, one of the best New York photo spots

It’s undeniably a great place to take incredible images of New York City, as its elevated vantage point offers a unique and original perspective. Additionally, it’s a place where you can appreciate and photograph public art. And the best part, it’s one of the best free things to do in New York.

13. The EDGE, one of the best photo spots in New York

The EDGE is one of the most impressive viewpoints in the Big Apple and is among the top places to take pictures in NYC. This observation platform is 1,131 ft high, which will allow you to enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the entire city.

The EDGE, NYC photo spots

13. The EDGE, one of the best photo spots in New York

I can assure you that it’s worth every moment, as the views from The EDGE are nothing short of incredible. In fact, it is the tallest observation deck in New York and the entire Western Hemisphere, making it an absolute must for anyone planning a one-of-a-kind photoshoot in New York

To access it, you’ll need to book a ticket through this link, but if you have the New York Pass, you can enter for free.

14. Dyker Heights, the best place to take pictures in New York City at Christmas

Dyker Heights is the best place to take pictures in New York City at Christmas, a time of year when you can witness a beautiful tradition as neighbors adorn their houses and gardens with dazzling lights and decorations.

I must tell you in advance that you’ll witness an array of display, from simple to extravagant, complete with music that synchronizes with the lights and large inflatables. But this is precisely what makes it a good place to take pics in NYC.

Dyker Heights, pictures of New York City at Christmas

14. Dyker Heights, the best place to take pictures in New York City at Christmas

Dyker Heights Boulevard spans from 83rd to 86th Street in Brooklyn. To reach this magical neighborhood, I recommend taking this tour from Manhattan. Keep in mind that most residents turn off their lights around 9 p.m., so it’s better to be here as early as possible to capture the illuminated streets and decorations in all their glory. It’s undoubtedly one of the best things to do in New York during Christmastime, as it creates a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

15. Manhattanhenge (Tudor City Overpass), one of the most photogenic spots in NYC

During Manhattanhenge, you have the opportunity to capture unforgettable and exceptional photos in New York. This phenomenon, also known as the Manhattan Solstice, occurs twice a year when the sun aligns perfectly with Manhattan’s streets during sunset. The exact dates may vary from year to year, depending on the summer solstice, but typically fall between May 28-30 and between July 11-13.

Manhattanhenge Tudor City Overpass, New York photo spots

15. Manhattanhenge (Tudor City Overpass), the most photogenic spots in NYC

While you can witness this natural phenomenon on several streets, the best viewing locations include 34th Street near the Empire State Building, and 42nd Street from the Tudor City Overpass, near the Chrysler Building. Undoubtedly, it ranks among the most popular images of New York. When Manhattanhenge occurs, both locals and tourists come here to marvel at this magical moment, so, if you want to secure a good spot, make sure to get there early.

There you go! Now you know where to take the best pictures of New York, so, I hope your camera is ready to capture these extraordinary moments during your trip. Here is a map so you can locate these amazing places to take pictures in NYC easily.

If you happen to know of other beautiful photo spots in New York, please feel free to share them in the comments below. I’d love to discover new gems during my next visit!

Wishing you a fantastic time in New York!

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CHIEF ADVENTURER, TRAVEL GURU, AND MASTER PLANNER AT CAPTURE THE ATLAS
Hey there, I'm Ascen, your personal trip planner on a mission to help you craft the most incredible adventure of your life. While I'm based in Las Vegas, you won't find me there often. As a full-time traveler, I'm always on the go, exploring new destinations and capturing the world through my lens. From the enchanting shores of Almeria, Spain, where I grew up, to the far reaches of the globe, I'm here to provide you with detailed travel guides and practical tips to make your trip planning a breeze. Find out more about me here.
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