OK, this finally is off from my bucket list. Here is the tip I would give to myself - buy "skip the lines" tickets to avoid long hours waiting in the lanes.  it started to remind me my dear Georgia after the second hour of waiting in the lanes and hugging with Italian family to sing Bella Ciao. Amazing. Paid a visit to the Empire State Building, January 5, 2017

The Empire State Building is a 102-story skyscraper located on Fifth Avenue between West 33rd and 34th Streets in Midtown, Manhattan, New York City. It has a roof height of 1,250 feet (381 m), and with its antenna included, it stands a total of 1,454 feet (443.2 m) tall. Its name is derived from the nickname for New York, the Empire State.

It stood as the world's tallest building for nearly 40 years, from its completion in early 1931 until the topping out of the original World Trade Center's North Tower in late 1970. Following the September 11 attacks in 2001, the Empire State Building was again the tallest building in New York, until One World Trade Center reached a greater height in April 2012. The Empire State Building is currently the fifth-tallest completed skyscraper in the United States and the 34th-tallest in the world. It is also the fifth-tallest freestanding structure in the Americas. When measured by pinnacle height, it is the fourth-tallest building in the United States.

Waiting lines at the Empire State building to the observation deck

Waiting lines at the Empire State building to the observation deck

For a single ticket we paid about USD 60, and decided to save on additional skip the lines some extra USD 30, that cost us about 2 hours waiting in the lanes.

View to New York from Empire State building observation deck

View to New York from Empire State building observation deck

The Empire State Building has one of the most popular outdoor observatories in the world, having been visited by over 110 million people. The 86th-floor observation deck offers impressive 360-degree views of the city. There is a second observation deck on the 102nd floor that is open to the public. It was closed in 1999, but reopened in November 2005. It is completely enclosed and much smaller than the first one; it may be closed on high-traffic days. Tourists may pay to visit the observation deck on the 86th floor and an additional amount for the 102nd floor. The lines to enter the observation decks, according to Concierge.com, are "as legendary as the building itself:" there are five of them: the sidewalk line, the lobby elevator line, the ticket purchase line, the second elevator line, and the line to get off the elevator and onto the observation deck. For an extra fee tourists can skip to the front of the line. The Empire State Building makes more money from tickets sales for its observation decks than it does from renting office space.

Photo exhibit at Empire State building

Photo exhibit at Empire State building

A lot of cool and interesting photography is displayed here from the start of construction. As visitors are more interested visiting outside obsevration desk some can find a lovely loneliness at this place and learn a lot about history of Empire State building.

Excavation of the site began on January 22, 1930, and construction on the building itself started on March 17—St. Patrick's Day—per Al Smith's influence as Empire State, Inc. president. The project involved 3,400 workers, mostly immigrants from Europe, along with hundreds of Mohawk iron workers, many from the Kahnawake reserve near Montreal. According to official accounts, five workers died during the construction. Governor Smith's grandchildren cut the ribbon on May 1, 1931. Lewis Wickes Hine's photography of the construction provides not only invaluable documentation of the construction, but also a glimpse into common day life of workers in that era.

View to Manhattan from outer observation deck at the Empire State Building

View to Manhattan from outer observation deck at the Empire State Building

Now, that said - The Empire State Building should be on every travelers bucket list.