Top 7 Things To Do Around Penn Station In New York City

Penn Station, located in the heart of New York City, is one of the busiest transportation hubs in the world. But it’s not just a place to catch a train or subway. The area surrounding Penn Station is home to some of the city’s most iconic landmarks and attractions. From the Empire State Building to Times Square, there’s no shortage of things to see and do. In this article, we’ll take a look at the top 7 things to do around Penn Station, including a visit to the New York Public Library, a stroll through Bryant Park, and a stop at Mustang Harry’s for a beer and a bite. So whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned New Yorker, come explore the sights and sounds of this bustling part of the city.

The Empire State Building

Visiting the Empire State Building is a must-do when in New York City, and it’s conveniently located just a short walk from Penn Station. The building stands 1,454 feet (443.2m) tall and was once the tallest building in the world when it opened in 1931. The Empire State Building is also an American cultural icon and it has been featured in many films and television shows. The building offers two observation decks, one on the 86th floor and one on the 102nd floor. The 86th-floor observation deck offers a 360-degree view of the city and is the most popular among visitors. The 102nd-floor observation deck is only available for VIP tickets, this floor offers a more secluded and intimate view of the city. Visitors can enjoy the view from the observation deck during the day and night, the view is different and spectacular at both times, during the day you can see the city’s skyline and landmarks from a bird-eye view, and at night the city’s lights illuminate the view. The Empire State Building also offers a variety of interactive exhibits and audio tours that provide insight into the history and architecture of the building. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned New Yorker, a visit to the Empire State Building is a must-do when in the area of Penn Station.

Times Square

Times Square, located just a short walk from Penn Station, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in New York City. Known for its bright lights, billboards, and bustling crowds, Times Square is a true symbol of the energy and excitement of the city. The square was named for the New York Times, which moved its headquarters to the area in 1904. Times Square is also known as the “Crossroads of the World” and “The Center of the Universe”, it is a major commercial intersection and tourist destination, drawing an estimated 50 million visitors annually.

One of the main draws of Times Square is the bright billboards and signs that light up the area at night. Visitors can also find a variety of shops, restaurants, and theaters in the area. The square is also the location of the New Year’s Eve ball drop, which attracts millions of visitors every year to watch the event live.

Additionally, Times Square offers a variety of street performers and entertainers, such as musicians, comedians, and performers in costumes.

In recent years, Times Square has also undergone a major transformation, with the city’s efforts to make it more pedestrian-friendly, with the closing of some streets to vehicle traffic and the addition of new seating and public spaces. These changes have made the area more comfortable for visitors and locals to walk around and enjoy the ambiance of the Square.

Overall, Times Square is a must-see destination for any traveler or New Yorker, and it’s just a short walk from Penn Station.

Bryant Park

Bryant Park is a 9.6-acre public park located just a short walk from Penn Station. The park offers a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of the city and is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.

The park is surrounded by some of New York City’s most iconic buildings, including the New York Public Library and the Empire State Building, making it the perfect spot to relax and take in the views of the city.

Bryant Park offers plenty of seating options, including chairs, benches, and tables, as well as a large lawn that is open to the public. The park also features a variety of food options, including a seasonal food hall and a number of food vendors, making it a great spot to grab a quick bite or enjoy a picnic lunch.

The park also hosts a number of events throughout the year, including free yoga classes, film screenings, and live performances. During the winter, the park’s ice-skating rink is a popular spot for locals and visitors.

Additionally, Bryant Park is home to the Bryant Park Reading Room, a free lending library of books, magazines, and newspapers. The Reading Room is open during the summer months and offers a quiet and secluded spot to enjoy a book or magazine.

Overall, Bryant Park is a great spot to relax, unwind, and enjoy the beauty of New York City. It’s easy to access from Penn Station, and it’s a great way to experience the tranquility of the city amidst the chaos.

The New York Public Library

The New York Public Library is a must-see destination for book lovers and history buffs alike. The main branch of the library, the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, is located just a short walk from Penn Station.

The library, which opened in 1911, is a National Historic Landmark and one of the most iconic buildings in New York City. The library’s main reading room is a true architectural masterpiece, with a ceiling that is over 50 feet high and a grand marble staircase that leads to the library’s stacks.

The library offers a wide variety of collections, including books, manuscripts, photographs, maps, and other materials. The library also has several exhibitions on display, showcasing a variety of historical and literary artifacts.

One of the most popular exhibitions is the Rose Main Reading Room, which is open to the public and offers a glimpse into the library’s past. The exhibition features a collection of photographs, letters, and other artifacts that tell the story of the library’s history.

The library also offers several tours, including a highlights tour and a behind-the-scenes tour, which provide an in-depth look at the library’s collections and architecture.

Additionally, the library has also an auditorium located in the basement, where they offer lectures, talks, and other events open to the public.

Overall, the New York Public Library is a true cultural treasure and a must-see destination when in the area of Penn Station. Whether you’re a book lover, a history buff, or simply looking to explore one of the city’s most iconic buildings, the library is a great place to start.


Seeing a show on Broadway is a must-do for any visitor to New York City, and Penn Station is located in the heart of the Broadway theater district. Broadway shows are a quintessential New York City experience, offering a wide range of productions, from classic musicals to contemporary plays.

When you’re near Penn Station, you have the opportunity to see some of the most iconic Broadway shows, such as Hamilton, The Lion King, Wicked, and more. These shows have become cultural touchstones and offer a unique and memorable experience that you can’t find anywhere else.

You can also find a variety of other shows playing on Broadway, including revivals of classic productions, as well as new and innovative plays. With so many options available, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Many Broadway shows also offer discounts and special deals, so be sure to check online or at the box office for the latest offers.

Additionally, near Penn Station, you will find TKTS booth, a discount ticket booth that offers same-day tickets to Broadway and Off-Broadway shows at up to 50% off the regular ticket price. This is a great option for those on a budget, or for those who want to see a show on a whim.

Overall, seeing a show on Broadway is a must-do when in the area of Penn Station. With so many options available, you’re sure to find a production that appeals to your tastes. Whether you’re a theater enthusiast or just looking for a unique and memorable experience, a Broadway show is a great way to experience the best of New York City’s cultural offerings.

Madison Square Garden

Madison Square Garden, also known as “The Garden,” is one of the most iconic sports and entertainment venues in the world. It is located just a short walk from Penn Station, making it easily accessible for visitors and locals alike.

The Garden has a rich history, having been built in 1879 and rebuilt several times since then. It is the oldest arena in the NHL and the second oldest in the NBA. It has been home to many legendary sports teams such as the New York Knicks and the New York Rangers, and it continues to host major sporting events to this day, such as basketball and hockey games, as well as boxing and wrestling matches.

In addition to sports, the Garden also hosts a wide variety of entertainment events, including concerts, comedy shows, and other live performances. Some of the world’s most famous musicians, comedians, and performers have graced the Garden’s stage over the years, making it a true entertainment destination.

Madison Square Garden also offers tours for visitors, which give you a behind-the-scenes look at the arena and its history. You will be able to see the locker rooms, and the press box, and even take a walk on the Garden’s famous floor.

Overall, Madison Square Garden is a must-see destination for anyone visiting New York City. Whether you’re a sports fan or simply looking for an exciting entertainment experience, the Garden offers something for everyone. With its rich history and an ongoing schedule of events, Madison Square Garden is a true New York City landmark and a great stop to make while you’re around Penn Station.

Mustang Harry’s

Mustang Harry’s is a classic New York City sports bar located just a short walk from Penn Station, making it a convenient spot for travelers and locals alike. The bar offers a great atmosphere for sports fans, with plenty of TVs displaying the latest games.

The menu at Mustang Harry’s features classic pub fare, including burgers, wings, and nachos, as well as a variety of sandwiches and salads. They have a great selection of beers on tap, including local and national favorites, and a good selection of signature cocktails.

The bar also features a spacious outdoor patio area, making it a great spot to enjoy a drink during the warmer months. They also have a variety of events and specials throughout the week, such as happy hour specials, making it a great spot for a casual night out.

Mustang Harry’s is also known for its friendly staff, who are always happy to help you choose the perfect drink or dish from the menu. They also offer takeout options, so you can enjoy their food and drinks from the comfort of your own home.

Overall, Mustang Harry’s is a great spot for a beer and a bite near Penn Station. With its classic sports bar atmosphere, great food, drinks, and friendly staff, it’s the perfect spot for sports fans or anyone looking for a casual night out. Whether you’re catching a game on TV or just hanging out with friends, Mustang Harry’s is a great spot to check out while you’re in the area.

These are just a few of the many things to do and see around Penn Station. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned New Yorker, there’s always something new and exciting to discover in this vibrant and historic part of the city.