Holding her torch aloft like a beacon, the Statue of Liberty is an iconic image of America. As the first impression of the United States for millions of immigrants arriving by boat, this national monument is still an awe-inspiring sight from New York Harbor.
With the official title of 'Liberty Enlightening the World', the 93-metre statue was a gift of friendship from France to the US in 1886 which has evolved into an international symbol for freedom and democracy. Now a World Heritage Site, the statue cuts an imposing figure with her distinctive green patina a result of the natural weathering of the statue's copper coating. During the 1986 restoration, the torch was covered with thin sheets of 24k gold. The famous 'The New Colossus' poem by Emma Lazarus: 'Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses…', is inscribed on a bronze plaque at the base of the statue pedestal.
Access to Liberty Island and Ellis Island is free however you will need to pay for a return ferry trip which takes in these two sites. Inside the statue's pedestal is a museum housing the original flame, full-scale replicas of the statue's face, alternate statue designs by the sculptor, Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi, and a model of Gustave Eiffel's iron skeleton engineered for the statue. You can also wander the grounds and enjoy the view from the 16-storey observation deck with a glass ceiling for an insight into the statue's structure. You can also ascend into the crown for US$3 by reservation only.
Various tickets are available to visit The Statue of Liberty including the crown, pedastal and the grounds. You can also purchase tickets for the Statue of Liberty Harbor Tour departing from Battery Park. The adult round-ticket fare is US$17, children aged four to 12 years travel for US$9 and under-fours for free. To get to Battery Park, take the 4 or 5 subway line to Bowling Green, the R train to Whitehall Street or the 1 train to South Ferry station.