Visit this iconic square with its dazzling surroundings and vibrant mix of people, and see what makes New York tick.
Times Square is the lively and hectic heartbeat of the city, a noisy and frenetic open space which is also one of the most-visited squares on the planet. It is found on Seventh Avenue, sitting between West 42nd Street and West 47th Street.
This area was named for the famous New York Times newspaper, which moved here in 1904 (it’s now located on nearby Eighth Avenue). While it would have had a down-at-heel reputation in the past, Times Square has been spruced up and has long shed its negative associations. These days it offers an authentic view into the chaotic but exciting way of life in “the city that never sleeps”.
Lit up day and night, with ever-changing news headlines, information from Wall Street and garish advertising, the square is an assault on the senses, and has an atmosphere all of its own. Live street entertainment is all around, from jugglers, acrobats and African drummers to the famous Naked Cowboy – a busker who has become a permanent and popular feature here, playing his guitar in his underpants. If you’re lucky there might be a flash mob or a passionate speaker while you’re in town, or you may even get to meet Mickey Mouse!
If you want to escape all the hubbub for a little while, visit the relaxed Madame Tussauds® and enjoy the lifelike sculptures of famous contemporary stars and figures from history, all fashioned from wax.
Take in an evening show on adjoining Broadway. One top tip is to visit the TKTS ticket kiosk for knock-down prices on tickets for the evening’s shows in one of the 40 different theatres. If you’d prefer to catch the latest Hollywood release, or a classic of the silver screen, visit one of the many cinemas in the area.
Lovers of sweet things will adore the enormous M&M and Hershey’s chocolate shops found here, while you can also find a seat in the pedestrian centre of the square and watch the world go by.
There are masses of souvenir shops in the area, catering for all tastes and budgets. Pick up a classic “I Heart NY” t-shirt or a New York Yankees cap. There are also a range of eateries to choose from, from fast food to giant portions of Matzo ball soup and sandwiches in one of the city’s famous delis.
Times Square is in the centre of New York, on the west side. A lot of bus routes and subway line stop at the square, and Grand Central Terminal train station is also nearby.