Short-but-sweet city breaks make excellent jam-packed holidays. For disabled travellers, however, navigating around a fast-moving city like New York can be daunting. Thankfully, the majority of the main tourist attractions in the Big Apple are wheelchair-friendly, making holidays for disabled tourists in New York both achievable and enjoyable.
Here is a list of the top ten accessible attractions in The City That Never Sleeps.
1. Museum of Modern Art – The Museum of Modern Art (or MOMA), one of many excellent art museums in the city, contains a world-famous collection. All entrances are accessible and there are lifts throughout. Visit the website to note the locations of accessible toilets.
2. New York Public Library – The beautiful architecture of the New York Public Library alone makes the building worth a visit. There is a wheelchair entrance to one side, just be aware that wheelchair users are required to sign-in with security; To use the accessible bathroom, you need to ask for a key.
3. American Museum of Natural History – Perfect for lovers of natural history, or fans of the film Night at the Museum. All floors can be reached by lift and the museum website has information for disabled visitors.
4. Broadway – Seeing a Broadway show is an integral part of all New York holidays. For disabled holidaymakers, it is always worth checking the website or giving the theatre a ring to confirm accessibility, although most theatres are wheelchair-friendly.
Try Something Different
5. Ripley’s Believe It or Not – A busy museum full of weird and wonderful exhibits, Ripley’s has a lift to get visitors to the first floor.
6. The M&M Store – A haven for chocolate-lovers, wheelchair-users enter this fun shop via a steep ramp. It is usually pretty busy, but it’s worth putting up with the crowds.
7. Ellen’s Stardust Diner – A musical, all-American diner experience awaits you at Ellen’s. The ground floor is fully accessible, although you must pass through two pairs of non-automatic doors to reach the restaurant.
8. Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum – If you want to get up close and personal with your favourite celebrities, head to Madame Tussaud’s. Though the entire Museum is easily accessible, some of the statues can only be reached (for photos) via a small flight of stairs.
A Breath of Fresh Air
9. Central Park – In this large, green park there are many wheelchair accessible routes. The terrain can vary, however, especially in the zoo area. You can check online before you go which sections are suitable.
10. Statue of Liberty Cruise – This cruise is the perfect way to spend your last night in New York. You’ll need assistance from crew members or fellow travellers to push your chair up the steep ramp onto the boat but once you are aboard you’ll see beautiful views from the main deck. Check before embarking whether the boat has an accessible bathroom.
Why wait any longer to set off on your adventure to New York City? Happy travelling!
Philip Scott is the owner and founder of Can be Done, a fully licensed UK tour operator specialising in worldwide holidays for disabled individuals and groups. With over 31 years’ experience organising long and short breaks for disabled travellers, Philip has built a reputation for helping his clients select hotels and accommodation that offer high standards of accessibility, to ensure that those with special needs can experience truly relaxing and carefree holidays.