Home to numerous museums and some of New Yorks oldest buildings, the Financial District is far more than a collection of office towers.
On the southern tip of Manhattan, the Financial District is home to the offices and headquarters of many of the world's financial institutions, including the New York Stock Exchange and the New York Federal Reserve Bank. Development of Manhattan began in the Financial District in the 17th century because it provided a convenient location for seafaring settlers. Some of the oldest buildings in New York City are here, including Federal Hall, where George Washington was inaugurated as the first president and the First Congress met.
The Financial District is also home to the World Trade Center where the Twin Towers were destroyed and the New York skyline was altered forever in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. New York resolved to rebuild and Ground Zero is currently being transformed into a bustling commerce centre. The Tribute World Trade Center on Liberty Street, run by the September 11th Families Association, offers walking and audio tours of the World Trade Center and several exhibits to memorialise the darkest day in New York's history.
The Downtown Alliance offers a 90 minute tour of the Financial District every Thursday and Sunday which includes the US Customs House, Wall Street, the New York Stock Exchange and other points of interest. The Financial District also has a number of museums including the NYPD Museum, Museum of American Finance, Museum of Jewish Heritage, Museum of the American Indian, Sports Museum of America and the Skyscraper Museum. Other tourist destinations include St Paul's Chapel, Trinity Church, City Hall Park, Vietnam Veteran's Plaza, Titanic Memorial Park and Fraunces Tavern. While you are sightseeing, be sure to stop at one of the restaurants on Stone Street, a cobblestone pedestrian thoroughfare for an alfresco lunch. For an extravagant New York dining experience, Delmonico's has been voted one of the best restaurants in the country and is pricey, but worth every penny.
Cost: Free, Fees may apply for activities. Please see websites for details.
Hours: Despite being one of New York's busiest business and tourist destinations, it can be a bit of a ghost town on weekends
Website: Downtown New York
Address: South of City Hall Park, excluding Battery Park and Battery Park City.