Having been obsessed with American tv shows growing up, I’ve always loved New York City. A cultural wonderland, it’s filled with stunning architecture, fantastic restaurants and beautiful stores. It has a buzzing city life and this amazing atmosphere – one unrivalled by most places I’ve visited! Everywhere you look, you’ll find gorgeous NYC Instagram spots. My New York-flooded feed is definitely proof of that.

I visited last year, and managed to cram an awful lot of sights into a short 3-day itinerary. My feet killed, but the experience (and the photos!) were definitely worth it. I’m looking forward to returning; I still have a long list of places I’d love to visit. This post details the places, restaurants and views that I recommend visiting for the best Instagram spots in NYC.

Looking to travel to NYC and aren’t sure what you want to see? Click here for my perfect 3-day itinerary and find out how to see the city’s best sights in just 72 hours!

Upper West Side

Quite possibly one of the most instagrammable streets ever, there’s no missing the houses on the Upper West Side. For total Gossip Girl vibes, and great backgrounds for outfit photos, this is the place to go.

Location: West 96th St, New York, NY 10025

NYC Instagram Spots: A view of the beautiful period houses lining the streets of Upper West Manhattan, NYC. I love how the houses are framed with lush green trees - so vibey!

Upper East Side

Sprinkles Cupcakes ATM

One of the ultimate NYC Instagram spots – look how ridiculously cute this is! Delicious cupcakes on tap, 24 hours a day? Yes, please. Not all Sprinkles Cupcakes’ stores have an ATM so, if you make the trip, make sure you go to one that does.

Location: 780 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10065

Midtown

Central Park

Did you even make it to New York City if you don’t come here? It’s such a beautiful area, as expected when it’s been in basically every romantic movie ever, plus there are loads of street artists and musicians for you to enjoy. There are three places that I recommend you visit:

  • The Mall: Framed by trees, this street will make you feel like you’re straight out of a rom com! Location: The Mall, New York
  • The Ravine: Escape the concrete jungle and feel like you’re on a tropical holiday. The city skyline is hidden, and a stunning waterfall drowns the bustle of the city – perfect for those who want some nature in their city breaks! Location: 103rd St, New York, NY 10025
  • Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir: It’s quite far into the park, but definitely worth the trip. It offers stunning views of the city across the reservoir – beautiful all year round. Location: Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir, New York, NY 10128
  • Bow Bridge: If you’re looking for NYC Instagram spots that don’t make you feel like you’re in a concrete jungle, you’ve found it! Ridiculously beautiful and beautifully romantic, this bridge is a must-visit spot. Location: Bow Bridge, New York, NY 10024

Rockefeller Centre & the Top of the Rock

How can I make a travel guide of the most Instagrammable places in NYC, and not include the stunning skyline view you’ll have seen all over Instagram? In the purpose of full disclosure, there are two amazing ones in NYC: The Empire State Building and the TOTR. The latter is $20 cheaper, and you get skyline views of the city that include the beautiful Empire State Building – easy choice! I recommend coming a little before sunset so you can see the city in daylight, as the sun sets, and at night.

Location: Rockefeller Center, 45 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10111

Times Square

Surrounded by energetic, buzzing crowds and the bright lights of digital billboards, there’s no beating the atmosphere of Times Square. Head there at night for some truly Insta-worthy photos.

Location: Theatre District, New York, NY

Manhattanhenge

Twice a year, the setting sun aligns perfectly with the city’s grid streets. It creates a sunset framed by concrete and glass skyscrapers – possibly one of the most magical you’ve ever seen. The crowds can be intense, but the experience and the photos are undoubtedly worth it. And don’t forget: although the sun only sets directly in the middle of the street twice a year, you can still get a gorgeous photo of a centred setting sun at a few days either side of Manhattenhenge.

Location: Tudor City Place, New York, NY 10017

Apparently, the best cross-streets for an Instagrammable view are 14th, 34th, 42nd and 57th. They’re wide streets framed with architecturally beautiful buildings. Get as far east of New York as you can for the best photo. 

Mandarin Oriental

Head to the top floor of the Mandarin Oriental (or stay there, if you’re really invested in the perfect Instagram feed), for a stunning view of the city. See the point where the concrete jungle meets Central Park, and get some gorgeous long exposure shots as the taxis drive by. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail (or two!), or you could visit their Asiate restaurant for brunch with a view!

Location: Mandarin Oriental, 80 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10023

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Bryant Park

One of the most beautiful places in Midtown to get a great shot of the sunset or sunrise. Check out this website to time your entrance well. In the summer, you can take some stunning shots if you sit at the fountain, or the statue, looking west.

Location: Bryant Park, New York, NY 10018

The High Line

Is there any better way to spend an afternoon than in an elevated park with stunning views? I didn’t think so. Check out NYC’s infamous High Line for a fun and instagrammable afternoon. I recommend staying until late to catch some stunning sunset views and gorgeous golden hour shots. This guide is great for inspiration on things to do, where to eat and places to go.

Location: The High Line, New York, NY 10011

Lower Manhattan / Greenwich Village

Flatiron Building

The Flatiron building has become such an iconic landmark of Lower Manhattan, the entire area is now referred to as the Flatiron District. It’s one of the best Instagram spots in NYC because the entire area in front of the building is blocked out – you can take as much time as you need to get the perfect photo! I recommend framing it with flowers (if it’s the right season) for a stunning Insta-worthy shot. And, if that makes you hungry, I recommend stopping by Eataly for some brilliant Italian food!

Location: 175 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10010

NYC Instagram Spots: Flatiron building

Barneys (7th Ave)

Barneys itself, and almost certainly everything inside it, is gorgeous. But a great Instagram spot in NYC is inside the store, on the third floor – a view looking down the white spiral staircase. It’s worth browsing and taking some cute photos with the gold displays and blush pink velvet armchairs. Let’s be honest: the whole store seems like it was made with Instagram in mind.

Location: 101 7th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

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The Friends building

If you’re a fan of the hit US-sitcom, Friends (which you totally should be – it’s hilarious), then this is a must-visit location for you! It’s not where they actually filmed each episode, but instead is the outside of the building that they frequently showed on the show. It’s iconic, and makes for such an Instagrammable photo!

Location: 90 Bedford St, New York, NY 10014

NYC Instagram Spots: The Friends building on the corner of Bedford St & Grove St, New York City.

NoMo Soho

Possibly one of the most beautiful hotel entrances I’ve ever seen, I can’t even begin to imagine what this place looks like from the inside! Alongside a gorgeous seating area, they have a stunning vine-laced archway entrance which lends itself to some ridiculously beautiful photos. Don’t be embarrassed about taking photos here: I think most of the stayers have already done it themselves..

Location: 9 Crosby St, New York, NY 10013

NYC Instagram Spots: The entrance of the Nomo Soho

Bar Hugo / Hotel Hugo

For beautiful views over the Hudson River, Freedom Tower and Statue of Liberty, check out the 20th floor of Hotel Hugo in Soho. They have an incredible rooftop bar which is just has to make my list of the most instagrammable places in NYC! Stay for sunset to capture some stunning views.

Location: 525 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013

Sézane L’Appartement

Possibly the most instagram-worthy clothing store I’ve ever seen, check out this Parisian flower-embellished shop front. Not only is it ridiculously gorgeous, but doesn’t it just scream “spring” to you?

Location: 254 Elizabeth Street, New York, NY 10012

#FlowerFriday, New York edition. 💐 | photo: @heydavina

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Downtown 

Statue of Liberty

Naturally, this had to make the list. Did you even go to New York City if you didn’t Instagram a photo of this picturesque statue?! My favourite view is from the Staten Island Ferry – the journey is free (don’t get tricked into joining one of those travel guide boats!), and you can see the statue as it was meant to be seen. I actually made the trip twice: once during the day, and again at sunset / night. It was stunning, and I have no regrets!

Location: Staten Island Ferry, 4 Whitehall Street, New York, NY 10004

NYC Instagram Spots: A view of the Statue of Liberty, as seen from the Staten Island Ferry in New York City

Wall Street

Home to the financial district of NYC, you’ll find world-famous landmarks and beautiful architecture. Don’t miss the New York Stock Exchange, or the charging bull and fearless girl statues. The latter two tend to get incredibly busy during the day, so go early if you want a good photo!

Location: Wall Street, New York, NY

The Oculus

One of the most insane and architecturally-amazing train stations I’ve ever seen, the Oculus is a definite Instagram location in New York. It’s apparently designed to look like a winged dove but, standing inside of it, it feels more like the inside of a whale. Pretty cool, nonetheless. Head up to the top floor and take a picture of the stunning skylight for your Insta feed!

Location: The Oculus, Church Street, New York, NY 10006

NYC Instagram Spots: A view of the inside of the Oculus Mall in New York

Brooklyn

Brooklyn Bridge

Easily one of the most Instagrammable places in NYC, it wouldn’t be a true travel guide unless I included this world-famous bridge. It links Brooklyn and Manhattan and, if you’re into architecture, you’ll love it. You’ll get the best photos if you take the time to walk across it, but do be warned that it’s ridiculously crowded. I recommend going as early in the morning as you can bear to wake up, or there’s no chance you can take photos without crowds in the background.

Location: Brooklyn Bridge Promenade, New York, NY 10013

This links to the location where you can start walking across the pedestrian part of the bridge. If your itinerary is too tight to do a full trip across, I recommend going part-way across, taking the photos and then walking back – this will probably take you about 35 minutes (if it’s busy).

NYC Instagram Spots: A symmetric view of the Brooklyn Bridge in summer, New York City

DUMBO

It stands for ‘Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass’ and refers to a whole area of Brooklyn rather than just one specific place. There are a few streets where you can take stunning photos, but Washington St is a photographer’s dream and arguably one of the best instagram spots in NYC. You can see the bridge framed by two streets and, if you get the angle just right, you can capture the Empire State Building right beneath the bridge.

Location: DUMBO, Brooklyn, NY 11201

NYC Instagram Spots: A view of DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass). You can see the Manhattan Bridge framing the Empire State Building in New York City

The Bushwick Collective

Everyone loves a good Instagram photo posing in front of a gorgeously painted walls. LA’s angel wings are a great example of this. Head to the Bushwick Collective to find amazing street art and ridiculously instagrammable walls.

Location: The Bushwick Collective, St Nicholas Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11237

Brooklyn Heights

Head to the promenade for Insta-worthy views of Lower Manhattan’s skyline and the New York harbour. This would be a great place to watch the sunset or catch an entirely new view of the city.

Location: Brooklyn Heights Promenade, Brooklyn, NY 11201

 

And that’s it! The ultimate guide to the most instagrammable places in NYC. If you’re heading to New York, and looking to get some Insta-worthy shots, then hopefully you’ll find this guide useful. I’ll be working on keeping it updated whenever I see or hear of anything new, but make sure to comment below if you have any suggestions. I love to hear them!

P.S. Don’t forget to pin this guide to save for later!

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12 Comments

  1. May 5, 2018 / 10:10 am

    Now this is my kind of guide! Photo spots…hooray! I had no idea about Manhattenhenge, so beautiful! I hardly covered anything on my first time in NYC, really need to get back to explore longer!

    • Malvika
      Author
      May 19, 2018 / 3:08 pm

      Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it. And yes – I was the same. I managed to fit a lot in for just having had three days there, but it wasn’t nearly enough!

  2. May 5, 2018 / 10:32 am

    What a great post Malvika! I am always on the lookout for cool places to take photos and these just hit the spot.
    Some of which I have never heard about before. Next time I am in New York I will make sure to check these. Thanks!

    • Malvika
      Author
      May 19, 2018 / 3:09 pm

      Aah thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed it and I hope you found it useful!

  3. Chloe's Travelogue
    May 5, 2018 / 12:47 pm

    Great post! I’ve been to many of these places you mentioned. I should visit the ones I missed! 🙂

    • Malvika
      Author
      May 19, 2018 / 3:11 pm

      Thank you!! I’ve missed a few on the list too – I’m looking forward to my next NYC trip so I can go and take photos there 🙂

  4. May 5, 2018 / 1:33 pm

    Love this! Wish I had this during my visit in January. However, I’m glad to say I managed to get a good majority while there, will just have to hit the rest during my next visit! (especially the Barneys one, omg)

    • Malvika
      Author
      May 19, 2018 / 3:13 pm

      Thank you! I can’t wait to see them all when I next visit too! I did the majority when I went last year in July, but there are so many more to see yet haha

  5. May 5, 2018 / 10:14 pm

    I am so ready to visit NYC again! I went for Christmas last year and have been dying to go again. Your list has so much I need to see and capture. Thanks for the guide.

    • Malvika
      Author
      May 19, 2018 / 3:16 pm

      Oohhh I would love to go at Christmas; I imagine that would be magical. I went in July when I last went and it was wonderful, but I’m so looking forward to revisiting so I can witness a snowy NYC.

  6. May 6, 2018 / 2:11 am

    Some great ideas for photos. There are so many great shots of NYC.

    • Malvika
      Author
      May 19, 2018 / 3:16 pm

      Thank you! 🙂

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