Ellis Island

Landmarks: Ellis Island

Landmarks: Ellis Island

After you have taken thousands of photos of America’s most famous statue, you will be ready to hop on the boat to Ellis Island. Not everyone knows the importance of this place: in 1892, on this islet located in the New York bay, the offices of the Immigration Station were opened for the first time, the last obstacle to overcome for all those who wanted to enter the city ​​that never sleeps. 

After checking documents, financial resources, health conditions and criminal records… a whole tortuous whole bureaucratic process! This was a passage that guaranteed a gateway to paradise…or so the immigrants thought!

A visit to Ellis Island allows you to relive these very significant moments in the lives of millions of people, thanks to the presence of the Ellis Island Immigration Museum. The rest of the island can only be explored on a guided tour. Also in this case, calculate the timing of the visit well, especially if you want to stop at the Statue for a long time.

Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island: how to visit them?

Let’s start by saying that these two attractions are to be considered as part of a single tour. Why? The reason is not only connected to historical and cultural affinity, but it is of a logistical nature: in fact, to reach these two independent islands it is possible (indeed, it is necessary!) to take a single boat that will take you, with the timing that you like best, to both the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Ferry timetables and departure point

The ferry to reach these two destinations leaves the harbor close to Battery Park and it involves the crossing of the bay to the Statue of Liberty. From the statue, you will hop on the same boat that goes to Ellis Island (and drops off new visitors to the Statue). Finally you can go back to Manhattan (in this precise order). It is good to know that there is another pier from which the boats depart: it is located in New Jersey, at Liberty State Park (1 Audrey Zapp Dr, Jersey City ). When purchasing the ticket online, you will be asked to specify whether you are leaving from one or the other pier.

If you would like to visit only one of the two monuments, have no fear. It is not compulsory to get off the boat on both islands. If you don’t want to go to Ellis Island or the Statue of Liberty, just sit in your seat and wait for the boat to leave again. However, the ticket price remains unchanged.

The first ride departs at 9:30am from Battery Park. The last depart at 3:30pm. As for the return, the last boat leaving Liberty Island leaves at 3:50 pm. Schedules may vary according to seasons: our advice is to check the website buy the ticket.

We emphasize once again the importance of calculating the visiting times thoroughly: if you want to visit both monuments in depth, it is not advisable to leave Battery Park later than 3pm, otherwise you risk rushing through everything. This visit takes time, it’s very touching and we suggest you take a full day to breathe in the history of immigrants that made up today’s United State of America.

Cost of tickets

Prices range from approximately $ 25 to $ 68 per person, but they may vary over time. If you don’t want to queue at the box office, you can buy them online.

How to save? Is there a way to save on the cost of the ticket? Yes, the most common way to save is to buy one of the New York passes. To find out which ones include the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Panoramic cruises

If you are satisfied with seeing the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island from afar, on a panoramic cruise, meaning without getting off and visiting the respective islands, there are a couple of interesting useful resources you may want to look into:

From the pier called South Ferry, near Whitehall Circle and Battery Park itself, a ferry leaves from Manhattan to Staten Island. The ferry is free, the ride is approximately 3 miles (25 minutes) and it goes by the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. You will see them from the boat, but you won’t spend a dime. 

While scouting for the most interesting activities, we found that this, which has no cost whatsoever, gives you the possibility of taking a pleasant cruise on a real ship, where you’ll be enjoying not only the view of the two monuments in question, but also the breathtaking New York skyline.

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