A, C, E at 42nd St.-Port Authority Bus Terminal
$35, $32 seniors, $28 children 3-12, free for children under 2
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Though New Yorkers pride themselves on ignoring (or at least appearing to ignore) the famous among us, there’s no rule against ogling famous faces at Madame Tussauds. Here we can stop feigning indifference, and start shamelessly celebrating our obsession with celebrities, 200 of whom are given the Tussauds treatment with eerily lifelike wax replicas. Though admittedly hokey, the elaborate decorations and clever interactive features help make this midtown museum feel more like a guilty pleasure than a slimy tourist trap. A live-action horror house legitimately gets the heart pumping; an American Idol stage lets visitors karaoke for Simon Cowell; and Britney Spears, clutching a pole and arching backward, stops visitors dead in their tracks when they notice her chest is heaving. The attraction opened in 2000, nearly two centuries after Tussauds first traveled the world with her wax likenesses. The New York outpost gets crowded, especially on weekends, but you'll likely leave here more anxious to show off your celebrity mug shots than concerned with the dent in your wallet.Freak Show
The Chamber of Horrors offers a nice break from sculpture hopping. It is a bit spooky with actors popping out of corners and doorways, so children might get a little scared.
American Idol Stage
The bold jump onstage for a karaoke session while the timid hang back and watch. Whatever you decide to do, stick around to hear the American Idol judges “comments.” Simon Cowell’s eyes even shift around as he “watches” contestants.
The wax museum is divided into three main spaces, each with a distinct theme. “Opening Night Party” features stars of the silver screen (seats 220); the “Gallery” is filled with historical figures (seats 180); and “Popular Culture” features stars of music, TV, and sports (seats 300).