Epic ideas how to enjoy New York City
Each corner in New York City is really photogenic. Nobody is going to argue about this one. Wherever you look, there’s something worthy to be captured. While there is far much more than just 10 things to see in NYC, here is a list of our top 10 iconic things you should not miss in NYC. If you are heading to New York and want to know what your bucket list should include, save these spots as an inspiration for your next trip.
1. Stroll through Central Park
Located right in the heart of Manhattan, Central Park is 4 km long and almost 1 km wide, and covers an area of 340 hectares.
There’s no wonder why is it one of the top most-used filming locations in the world.
To discover all the hidden gems of, the lungs of Manhattan, you would need a week. If you’re interested in What to do in Central Park, we’ve collected the list of things for you.
We’ve experienced Central Park in each season of the year, but it seems to be the most spectacular in the Fall for us.
Usually, the foliage in Central Park is most astonishing from the end of October until the beginning of November. Sometimes you’re lucky enough and find a musician which can make the mood even more special.
The fifth-largest park in New York City is also gorgeous during winter, especially if there is snow. Then, Central Park is dressed in white and decorated with lights of all kinds. And it became a small fairytale.
There are so many ways how to enjoy Central Park for free which means it really should be on your NYC bucket list.
2. Inhale the vibe from Times Square
With over 39 million visitors annually, Times Square is the world’s most visited tourist attraction.
We remember the time walking around on January 1st at 8 am. After the new year’s celebrations, it was all empty and in that way, it didn’t even feel like the same place.
If you’re a first-time NYC visitor we think you shouldn’t skip at least walking through this commercial intersection of Seventh Avenue, 42nd Street, and Broadway. Times Square becomes even brighter in the dark of night when all the billboards display thousands of advertisements.
Just please be aware of tourist traps and scams, as you are entering the busiest spot in Manhattan.
3. Walk the Brooklyn Bridge
The Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1883 and it was the first bridge connecting Brooklyn with Manhattan. In fact, at that time it was the longest suspension bridge in the world.
The most convenient way how to get to the skyline viewpoint from Brooklyn Bridge is the nearest subway station “Brooklyn Bridge – City Hall”. After getting to the street you find yourself a three-minutes walk from the viewpoint. Getting to the bridge on foot is possible up in the middle of the bridge. There are no stairs, it’s just a ramp that slowly ascends.
After passing the first pillar, you can turn around and will see the Manhattan skyline. It’s magically glowing both during sunrise and sunset. More people gather around during the day. The Sun rises from the Brooklyn part.
4. Visit the 11/9 Memorial
The National September 11 Memorial & Museum was created in memory of the victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks. It is located right in the footprints of the two original towers.
There are basically two parts of the Memorial- outside one and inside one.
Inside the Museum, there are powerful photographs and exhibits open to the public. It is an important part of the city’s history and something to learn about whether you are a tourist or a citizen.
The outdoor 11/9 Memorial consists of two reflecting pools made of black granite with waterfalls in the middle. On the walls, you can read the names of all the victims who have lost their lives due to this tragedy. This scene gets even more emotional when visiting at twilight or night when the pools are illuminated.
Between the pools, you will find a single Callery pear tree known as the Survivor Tree. It was found buried in debris at the WTC nearly a month after 9/11. Burned and damaged, the tree still showed signs of life and was taken to a nursery to be tended to and cared for. In 2010, the tree returned to the World Trade Center site. Full of scars but with signs of new growth and healing today it stands as a living reminder of resilience, survival, and rebirth.
5. Explore the New York Public Library
The NYPL is the second-largest public library in the United States and the fourth-largest in the world.
It is located on 5th Avenue in Manhattan and the main entrance is flanked by its recognizable lion statues named Patience and Fortitude.
New York Public Library was developed in the 19th century and it’s open to the general public, with a collection of nearly 56 million items.
Visiting this majestic landmark is an unforgettable experience. To make your time even more special grab your coffee and enjoy the atmosphere of Bryant Park right next to the NYPL. There are various eateries within the park and small chairs and tables to enjoy lunch outdoors. You will find yourself in the incredible oasis in the middle of the craziness and busy life.
6. Grab a slice of Pizza or a tasty Bagel
Are they really better in NYC? Well, as we are living in Italy now, it is hard to say so!
But there is definitely a reason why New York City is known for its famous bagels and pizza. We don’t know the secret behind this polemic but there is something for sure, in having a slice of pizza next to Washington Arch.
7. Walk The High Line
Built on an abandoned elevated railroad, The High Line is a public park on Manhattan’s West Side. It has been redesigned as a living system including landscape architecture, contemporary art, and ecology. It’s home to more than 100,000 different plants.
The High Line park stretches from 14th Street in the Meatpacking District, through Chelsea into the northern edge of the West Side Yard on 34th Street. The 2km long alleys provide views to admire the city from many angles. Including the views of the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, and the Chrysler Building. Our favourite viewpoint is the Box overlooking the 10th Av below, located on the 17th St.
8. Visit The Grand Central
Grand Central is the largest train station in the world in terms of area occupied and the number of platforms. The Terminal is spread over 49 acres and has 44 platforms, all under the ground. The rail terminal is located at 42nd Street and Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan.
Grand Central Terminal contains a variety of stores, food vendors, libraries, tennis courts, and much more. If you walk downstairs from the Main Concourse you find the Oyster Bar with a Whispering Gallery next to it. When two people stand at diagonal arches and whisper into the wall at each other, their voices can be heard as clearly as if they were standing right next to each other.
The architecture and interior design are incredibly majestic and there’s no wonder The terminal’s Main Concourse is often featured in movies. When you walk through don’t forget to look up to the ceiling to get a glimpse of the Mediterranean sky with 2,500 stars.
9. Admire St.Patrick’s Cathedral
A list of awesome things to visit in New York City would not be complete without this majestic landmark.
St.Patrick’s Cathedral, located on 5th Avenue stands as an incredible contrast to the modern buildings around. This church is the largest Gothic-style Catholic Cathedral in the United States. It is made of brick and white marble, and the construction took over 20 years to be completed. The Cathedral of St. Patrick was opened in 1879 and is still seating catholic services.
10. Jump on a Ferry ride from Manhattan
To encounter some unique views of the Manhattan skyline you can take the ferry and admire the city from the water.
We would love to mention our favorite one which offers you the ultimate experience of visiting Governor’s Island, New York City’s hidden gem!
Governor’s Island Ferry
The Governor’s Island was originally known as a “nut island” because of the area’s rich collection of chestnut and oak trees. The Island can only be accessed by ferries from Brooklyn and Manhattan.
You can walk around the whole Island in around an hour. It’s a perfect place to escape from an urban area and enjoy wonderful views of New Jersey, the Statue of Liberty, and Downtown Manhattan.
During wartime, Governor’s Island used to be a strategic defense point for United States Army. In 2005 It was open to the public and has become a popular NYC spot for arts and cultural events, as well as recreational activities.
It has well-preserved paths, parks, and picnic areas, and it offers numerous activities for visitors to enjoy. There are available public restrooms, city bikes, and Glamping houses as well.
You can take a ferry to Governor’s Island from Manhattan or Brooklyn; both trips are only about 10 minutes long one-way.
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