Cleopatra's Needle in New York City is one of three similarly named Egyptian obelisks. It was erected in Central Park, west of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan, on January 22, 1881. It was secured in May 1877 by judge Elbert E. Farman, the United States Consul General at Cairo, as a gift from the Khedive for the United States remaining a friendly neutral as the European powers – France and Britain – maneuvered to secure political control of the Egyptian government.Take a look at our New York City tour planning app to schedule your visit to Cleopatra's Needle and learn about what else to see and do during your holiday.
Made of red granite, the obelisk stands about 21 metres (69 ft) high, weighs about 200 tons, and is inscribed with Egyptian hieroglyphs. It was originally erected in the Egyptian city of Heliopolis on the orders of Thutmose III, in 1475 BC. The granite was brought from the quarries of Aswan, near the first cataract of the Nile. The inscriptions were added about 200 years later by Ramesses II to commemorate his military victories. The obelisks were moved to Alexandria and set up in the Caesareum – a temple built by Cleopatra in honor of Mark Antony or Julius Caesar – by the Romans in 12 BC, during the reign of Augustus, but were toppled some time later. This had the fortuitous effect of burying their faces and so preserving most of the hieroglyphs from the effects of weathering.
Create an itinerary including Cleopatra's Needle
Tours To Cleopatra's Needle
Inside Central Park Bike Tour BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $49
Duration: 2 hours
Central Park Highlights Small-Group Bike Tour BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $49
Duration: 2 hours
Electric Bike Tour of Central Park and Waterfront Greenway BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $97
Duration: 210 to 240 minutes
Cleopatra's Needle Reviews
While visiting central Park, we casually incurred into cleopatra's needle, which is an Egyptian obelisk located in Central Park. The piece of art was given by Egypt to the United States, and there... more »
Taking a jog around the park unveils many interesting things - including this Egyptian monument to Cleopatra! Interesting to day the least! more »
Plan your trip to New York City
Get a personalized planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your plan. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Book itChoose from the best hotels
and activities. Up to 50% off
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
See all ›
Hidden gems in New York City
See all ›
Side trips from New York City
Parks in New York City
Nearby attractions in New York City
Plans to Cleopatra's Needle by other users
60 days in New York City BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM January, popular sights Preferences: January Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 60 days in New York City & New Orleans BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, hidden gems Preferences: June Attraction style: Hidden gems Pace: Medium 29 days in San Jose & New York City BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, relaxing, historic sites, hidden gems Preferences: June, relaxing, historic sites Attraction style: Hidden gems Pace: Medium 46 days in New York State BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES March, teens, popular sights Preferences: March, teens Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 12 days in New York City BY A USER FROM THAILAND December, popular sights Preferences: December Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium 14 days in East Coast of USA BY A USER FROM INDIA October, popular sights Preferences: October Attraction style: Popular sights Pace: Medium