Visiting Ellis Island

Visting Ellis Island

Ellis island is a national treasure and rewarding destination. For many, Ellis Island is one of the most meaningful historic sites in New York. Visitors can easily spend hours here learning about America’s immigration history and the varied roles the island has played since the nation’s early years.

The Immigration Museum tells the stories of why so many people chose to come to America and what became of them after they arrived. To experience the complete history of Ellis Island visit the Abandoned Hospital Complex on the South Side by taking a Hard Hat Tour. You’ll discover buildings over 100-years-old (which have not been occupied since 1954), explore the laundry building, autopsy room and infectious disease wards, and see an exhibition installed by the world-renowned artist JR, who has placed life-sized historic photographs of Ellis Island immigrants on interior walls of the hospital buildings.

To take a Public Hard Hat Tour of Ellis Island’s Abandoned Hospital Buildings featuring the exhibit Unframed—Ellis Island, purchase Hard Hat Reserve Tickets from Statue Cruises.

If you are interested in scheduling a Private Group Hard Hat Tour please email us at tours@saveellisisland.org or call 201-332-8485 x1.

Ferry Service

Visitors arrive and depart Ellis and Liberty Islands, located in New York Harbor, via ferries operated by Statue Cruises.

These ferries leave from two locations: Battery Park at the southernmost tip of Manhattan, and Liberty State Park in Jersey City, New Jersey. If you’re already visiting Liberty Island, the ferry ticket includes transportation to both Liberty and Ellis Island as well as a return trip back to your original departure point. You can elect to make your final return trip back to the opposite departure point from where you started. There is no need to purchase a second ticket! Be sure to purchase your tickets in advance to guarantee your chance to experience this national treasure.

Ferry Map Visit


Statue Cruises Hours of Operation

First ferry from mainland 9:30 am
Last ferry from mainland 3 pm
Closing Ferry – from Liberty Island 5 pm
*Visitors on last mainland ferry will only be able to visit one island.
**Liberty Island closes 15 minutes prior to final departure of 5:00pm.

For New Jersey

Liberty State Park in Jersey City, New Jersey:

NJmap Statue Crusies

View the interactive map.
Those who board the ferry at Liberty State Park can not only visit Liberty and Ellis Islands, but can also visit lower Manhattan as well. Take the New Jersey Turnpike Extension to Exit 14B. Follow the signs to Liberty State Park/Ferry to Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Ample parking is available at Liberty State Park for a fee. GPS Address: 1 Audrey Zapp Drive, Jersey City, NJ 07305 Wheelchair/Handicapped-Accessible Parking to get to the ferry: Designated spots for those with official placards are available. There are level walkways to the ferry boarding area. Handicapped-accessible rest rooms are located within the Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal at Liberty State Park.

For New York

Battery Park, New York City:

NYmap Statue Cruises

View the interactive map.
Take the East Side Drive (FDR Drive) south to Battery Park and State Streetor the West Side Highway/West Street/Route 9A South to Battery Park Place. Designated parking is not available. Privately operated parking lots are located along West Street and South Street (beneath the FDR Drive) and may be used for a fee. Because parking is limited, it is best to arrive early or, better yet, to take public transportation. GPS Address: 1 Battery Place, New York, NY 10004 Wheelchair/Handicapped-Accessible Parking to get to the ferry: Official placards are required in order to park in designated public parking spaces available in New York City. The closest metered parking spaces to Battery Park are on Battery Place. Private parking lots are available as well. Handicapped-accessible rest rooms are available in Castle Clinton National Monument and ferry ticket counters are handicapped accessible.

Today the Ellis Island Immigration Museum is part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument and is under the care of the National Park Service.

Visit Save Ellis Island Volunteers at the Information Desk in the Immigration Museum for information on our tours and education programs. To learn more or to reserve a tour email tours@saveellisisland.org or call 201-332-8485 x1.


Buy Hard Hat Reserve Tickets

Tour Ellis Islandwalking on Ellisstatue crusiessouthsidestatuesignfireplaceJRvisitsspathwindowJRvisittour walking toward visitshipKitchenvisittourgroup8

“The Hard Hat Tour was fantastic! We went with less than 10 people, so it was also really intimate. Our guide, John McInnes was a wealth of knowledge and really made this tour for me. He was incredibly helpful with the logistics of my last minute reservation. He shared really interesting facts and anecdotes about the abandoned buildings we were able to tour. I would highly recommend this tour for both the creepy fascinating rooms and ruins as well as the highly informational tour.” ~ Jessica W.