Soar 800 Feet Above The Streets Of New York City At This New Attraction

You've probably come across the iconic photo from 1932 called "Lunch Atop A Skyscraper." In the snapshot, it's just an ordinary day for 11 ironworkers sitting on a makeshift bench of steel, enjoying their lunch break from high above the streets of New York City. The sight of their serene faces juxtaposed with the risky backdrop is enough to prompt a rush of adrenaline, even in those who aren't afraid of heights.

The original black and white photo was a publicity stunt to celebrate the completion of 30 Rockefeller Plaza. In those days, construction was no easy feat for the 40,000-plus workers who built NYC's iconic skyline, many of whom faced poverty during the Great Depression and discrimination as immigrants. Perhaps that's why this famed group of Irish lads has captivated viewers for decades. Times were tough and these men were brave, in more ways than one.

Now, if you dare, you can recreate this classic photo for yourself at "Top of the Rock: The Beam," a new attraction at Rockefeller Center in nearly the exact same place as the original photo. This time, though, there are seat belts.

What to know before you go

The Top of the Rock observation deck has three levels that offer panoramic views of the city. The Beam experience is located on Level 2, which is actually 69 stories up. Once you take your seat, The Beam will lift you 12 feet above the observation deck. From there, you'll rotate 180 degrees for that historic angle of the city. During this 90-second blast to the past, you'll share the beam with seven other guests, unless you purchase a VIP pass for the solo experience.

While you won't be allowed to use your own camera, you can have someone take footage from Level 3 or enjoy the digital photo included with every ticket. All guests must wear close-toed shoes and make sure accessories are secure, like hats and sunglasses. While the attraction is family-friendly, children under 4 feet and 3 inches tall must be accompanied by an adult. In the event of bad weather, The Beam will be closed and guests will receive a voucher to use at a later date.

Tickets and amenities

Tickets for The Beam are $25 per person, on top of the regular entry fee to visit the Top of the Rock, which ranges from $34-55 depending on factors like your age and the time of day. All tickets include a time and weather guarantee, sunset access, and the ability to reschedule if needed. A VIP pass includes The Beam experience and costs $160 for a guided tour, priority elevator access, and a 20% discount at the gift shop.

Once you've checked The Beam off your bucket list, round out your experience by exploring the other levels at the Top of the Rock. On Level 1 you'll find the Weather Room Cafe and Bar, which offers an array of artisanal sandwiches and scrumptious desserts. A few floors up on Level 3, you'll find unobstructed views in every direction. If you can stomach it, there's no protective glass on this outdoor deck; just you, the city, and the breeze. You'll see Central Park to the North, Midtown to the East, the Empire State Building to the South, and the Hudson River to the West, which is especially beautiful at sunset. From up here, it's a whole new way to appreciate New York City.