A visit to the Statue of Liberty with kids is simply not complete without climbing inside the statue itself and peering out the windows of the crown. Seeing this magnificent structure from the inside is a privilege that shouldn’t be ignored. As long as your kids meet the height guidelines and tickets are available, purchase crown access tickets without hesitation!
Seeing Lady Liberty’s sculpted face from the inside, enjoying the majestic view of New York Harbor from up high, and seeing her arm and torch up close to the ground below from a unique vantage point are highlights that photos alone can’t properly convey. Providing this experience for my kids was priceless. From now on, whenever they see the Statue of Liberty in a photo or movie, they can remember that they were there, and not just to SEE it, but to experience it all from the inside out!
Follow these tips for visiting the Statue of Liberty crown with kids to have an unforgettable experience they’ll remember for years to come!
Statue of Liberty Height Restriction
Crown climbers must be at least 48” tall so your first task when planning your Statue of Liberty visit is to make sure your kiddos are tall enough to make the climb. If not, visiting the pedestal or just the grounds and museum are alternative options.
There are 377 total steps from the lobby, through the pedestal, and to the crown.
The double helix staircase inside the statue itself consists of 146 narrow, winding steps from the top of the pedestal to the crown platform.
The steps are very steep and merely 18 inches wide, but we felt very safe. Our kids, one of whom was just an inch over the limit, had far less trouble with the climb that we expected. It’s the adults who tend to get more out of breath!
Plan Four or More Months in Advance
Statue of Liberty crown access tickets go on sale six months in advance. Some days, particularly weekends, will start selling out as soon as four months ahead of time.
We purchased tickets for a November 4th to the Statue of Liberty five months earlier on June 15th. By July 19th, with 3 ½ months left to go, all crown tickets for November 4th were sold out.
Your ticket will be purchased for a specific time and day from opening time to several hours before closing time – typically 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM on the hour. Three different tickets are offered – grounds, pedestal, and crown – so make sure you’re purchasing the crown access tickets.
Use the New Jersey Departure Location
This might not be practical advice for everyone fitting a Statue of Liberty visit into a New York City trip, but accessing the Statue of Liberty from New Jersey will be much easier and less crowded.
Ferries depart from Battery Park in New York City and Liberty State Park in New Jersey. Battery Park will be far more crowded.
Only Statue Cruises is authorized to dock at Liberty Island so buy your crown tickets directly from Statue Cruises.
This is a general rule for pretty much any popular tourist destination. Beat the crowds by reserving an early 9:00 AM ticket.
We had a 9:00 AM departure ticket, but arrived at the departure security checkpoint several minutes early, breezed right through, and were on the ferry bound for the Statue of Liberty at 8:53 AM.
Just an hour later, we had docked, climbed all the way to the top, and were viewing New York Harbor from the crown. There was no wait and we were among the first to climb that morning. This allowed us to climb at our own pace and have a leisurely visit at the top before the next group arrived.
Bring Cash for a Locker
You will not be allowed to take large bags up to the crown so lockers are provided at the monument entrance on Liberty Island. These lockers are small, so pack light.
Check the the latest list of permitted items. You will typically ONLY be allowed to carry a camera (but not a camera bag), mobile phone, and clear water bottle. Always be sure to check the latest security guidelines.
Have several dollars in cash with you to store everything else in a locker during your climb.
Prepare for Heat
There is no climate control inside Lady Liberty, so prepare for warmth at the top.
This is another great reason to get there early before the heat of the day sets in, particularly in the summertime.
What To Expect
Upon arrival at your departure point on the day of your Statue of Liberty visit, pick up your tickets at will call and then proceed to the security screening area. You won’t be able to print your crown tickets at home and you must show a photo ID for each ticketholder.
The time on your reserved ticket represents the time you should arrive at this security area. Once through security, the ferries depart about every half hour.
Your crown access ticket will give you a round-trip ride on the ferry, access to the Statue of Liberty grounds, pedestal and museum; and the Ellis Island Immigration Museum. The ferry will make continuous rounds between the departure location, Liberty Island, and Ellis Island.
Will you be visiting the new museum of at the Statue of Liberty with your family? Are you adding a trip to the crown to that visit?