Photograph of Top of the Rock by Alex Nichol

Top of the Rock

The Top of the Rock observation deck was one of the highlights of our trip to New York. There are plenty of tall buildings that offer amazing 360° views of Manhattan, but none that come close to the 69th floor of the Rockefeller Centre at sunset.

Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR
Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF23mm f/1.4 R LM WR

We booked our tickets for golden hour (the hour before sunset), and stayed a while at the top of the building to watch the sun go down. It was such a lovely experience, and a moment of tranquility in what is probably one of the most claustrophobic cities on earth.

Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR
Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF23mm f/1.4 R LM WR

There are higher observation decks in New York for sure, but there's something about being in amongst the buildings that gives the Rockefeller Centre the edge over all of them. You're not quite as high as many of the other skyscrapers, which makes you feel part of the city, in a way that none of the other observation decks can.

Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR
Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF23mm f/1.4 R LM WR

We were also treated to a wonderful view over Central Park, which toward the end of October, was starting to turn a lush shade of Autumn orange. It's also worth mentioning that the 69th floor is the only observation deck in New York that offers a full, unencumbered view of the city without glass walls or bars.

Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR
Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR

This was such a beautiful way to end the day, and the perfect way to see the city. If you're a photographer, I'd advise taking a telephoto lens along with you, as some of the buildings surrounding the Rockefeller Centre are works of art in their own right.

Photograph of the view from Top of the Rock, New York by Alex Nichol
Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR

These photographs were taken with the Fujifilm X-T5 , the incredible Fujinon XF 90mm f2 R LM WR and my trusty Fujinon XF23mm f/1.4 R LM WR . And of course, I'd never be without my Kase Wolverine Magnetic circular polariser.

Alex Nichol

About the photographer

Alex Nichol is an amateur photographer based in the UK dabbling with landscape, travel and documentary. Alex has shot with pretty much everything, from classic 35mm and medium format film cameras from Zenit, Leica, Hasselblad and Rolleiflex, to digital SLR and mirrorless systems from Leica, Sony, Canon, Panasonic and Olympus. He is currently shooting with the Fujifilm X System.


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