New York, the city of dreams, where you can tour like a local and get a real experience of being in a New Yorker’s shoes. The city is a melting pot of vibrant cultures, family fun, solo travels, and a buzzing nightlife. For obvious reasons, you would not stop at visiting the Empire State Building or the Statue of liberty, as New York has much more than that to offer. Apart from the conventional shutter sessions, New York has a mélange of fascinating cultures and a diverse history to enthrall you.
Follow my guide to a streamlined exploration of the city that never sleeps.
A summer day picnic at the Central Park
Central Park, the heart of the city, is bustling with people enjoying their walks and fitness regimes and even more lively with tourists, picnicking and sightseeing. You can visit the zoo, the fountains, the monuments, the bridges, even a castle and gaze at the beautiful scenery in the park. To immerse yourself in the experience, get yourself a picnic box ordered and have your share of fun in the middle of the greens.
A footslog on The Brooklyn Bridge
The 6000-footbridge with tourists walking over it and cars conveying beneath the bridge is a perfect spot to stroll, praise the grandiose skyscrapers and a flawless city view. For party cravers, keep a check for Silent Discos that are organized regularly under the very Brooklyn Bridge.
An evening at The Times Square
Times Square, often known as “The Centre of the Universe”, or the “Great White Way” is the most energetic area in New York. Experience the true spirit of New Yorkers here. It is the fulcrum of Broadway Studio District and is the spot of the New Year’s infamous Ball drop. Get yourself a theatre show and flow away into the glitz.
An ode to 007 at the Brand new Spy Museum
A brand new spy museum, The Skyscape, provides a captivating collection of intelligence, surveillance, hacking, cyber warfare, and special ops, all for the visitors to explore. More exciting as it can get, it also demonstrates special ops tunnels and laser mazes for the tourists to test their agility.
Know the history and culture at the Museum of Natural History
A large number of the priceless specimens and cultural artifacts are put on public view. The Museum of Natural History boasts of some of the most exciting dinosaur fossils. The Hall of Ocean life and 14 other permanent exhibit halls are truly captivating. Spend a whole day knowing your world around and don’t miss the 94-foot long Blue Whale model suspended from the ceiling.
Some Opera sessions, Music festival, and Ballet at the Lincoln Centre
The Lincoln Centre of performing arts showcases the arts from organizations, which are renowned all over the globe. You can visit even without a ticket. You will be mesmerized by the gorgeous look of the halls. Also, catch some magnetizing show of your interest for free at the Philharmonic, Metropolitan Opera house or at the New York Ballet.
A walkabout to the West Village
The Western part of Greenwich Village in Lower Manhattan is the West Village. The rustic view of the apartments, shops, cafes with tables laid on the sidewalk gives a European feel. Sip your favorite coffee or an aperitif and feel the peace around.
Take a break and lunch at the City’s best rooftop bar and restaurant
Charming Terrace-garden at its best, The Gallow Green, a roof-top bar and restaurant in Mckittrick Hotel in Chelsea is the finest eating destination. Provided with a plethora of cocktails and signature punches, you can relax and have a time of your gourmet life. The ambiance and the cuisine are a no-miss.
Take a moment for the memories of 9/11 at the 9/11 Memorial
Reminding the ghastly event of 9/11, a terrorist attack on the Twin Towers that happened in September 2011, a memorial in the shape of two large poles stand where once the Twin Towers had been. Engraved on the surrounding bronze walls, are the names of the 3000 victims of the attack. It also displays the artifacts that tell every victim’s story, situated in the memorial downstairs.
A soothing walk on the High line
The high line park is a classic example of the urban rebuilding of abandoned areas. Once a railway line, this 1.45-mile stretch was re-established into a walking park in 2006. The beautiful vegetation and a joined effort by the community to make it aesthetically attractive are quite visible at the park. Take a walk of tranquility in this park for a restful day.
Cruising around the Statue of Liberty
Getting to the Statue of Liberty and posing for photographs is one option, but cruising around it is one-of-a-kind experience. Get on to the ‘free’ daily ferry to Staten Island, to capture the enchanting view of the Statue of Liberty.
Live Jazz performance in Greenwich Village
Even though you are not one of those music lovers, you will remember this truly engaging evening. Head to any destination of Live Jazz performances in any one of the dining places in Greenwich Village, the place known as the hub of artists from all around the globe.
Catch a Yankees game
If you really wish to get the most out of New York life, cheer for the New York Yankees, the city’s favorite Baseball team, even if you are not into Baseball. Feel the New Yorker’s obsession and you will know why.
Governor’s Island and more
An escape to the Governor’s Island is a heart’s desire. It is much more than old military houses with a gorgeous view. Look out for sunsets, cafes, bars, park strolling, open-air theatre films, and slurping smells of smokes to grills. It lies in the heart of New York Harbour and holds numerous cultural festivals.
Experience the cheapest shopping ever at the Chinatown
It might not be the best Chinese place you can find, well that would be in China, but certainly a dense neighborhood with souvenirs, the cheapest you can find. A delightful place to shop, eat and make merry.
Escape to the Coney Island
For a day off, get to the Coney Island. A summer escape for families with some engaging activities like roller coaster rides, baseball games, a dip into the Atlantic and a dazzling firework show, if it’s a Friday.
A World food experience at Queens night market
A gourmet experience that is worth the wait. Every Saturday from 6 pm till midnight, hog on to numerous food stalls laid out at the Queen’s Night market. Right from the Bengali stall, Jhal NYC to Ramly’s grilled burger to lined-up seafood stalls, the fare offers all. Tip: Get enough cash, as ATMs will be queued up for long hours.
Relish the wine-bar fare at Caselulla
A little wine-bar that offers a huge range of cheese-wine combinations, Caselulla, run by union square Cafe Alum. A destination for some of the most stunning inventive condiments. Truly engaging!
A show at The Carlyle
A feel of sophistication and an intimate ambiance, the live Jazz and cabaret performance at the Carlyle Hotel has a classic style to offer. Honored with amazing talents like Judy Collins and Woody Allen, look forward to a well-spent evening at Cafe Carlyle.
Green walk through the Botanical garden
Another way to find serenity among the hustle-bustle of the place is the New York Botanical gardens, that offer an immense range of plants to look at. It has myriad sections of parks for every age-group.
Shakespeare in the Park, The Central Park
Nothing so unique as an outdoor theatre in the park. It showcases a free series by the Public Theatre in the open-air. Some of the unbeatable starry talent under the starry night sky.
Enchant into the Medieval art at The Cloisters
New York has all the facets of Art and Architecture to indulge in. The Cloisters, a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art overlooking the Hudson River, is fully dedicated to European Medieval artworks pertaining to the Romanesque and Gothic periods. The Middle Ages vibes are extraordinary.
Fly, rice paper kites and feel the air around
New York has many windy spots to fly kites. Rice paper kites can be acquired from any toy shop nearby, with a range varying from different sizes upto 10-15 feet long and in varied shapes. More than a tradition, New Yorkers feel the need of breathing the air around and it is a good route for recreation.
Binge on the best food-trucks
Do you know that New York caters to an awesome range of Food-Trucks serving best of hot-dogs, burgers, fries, and brats? Get hold of any food truck to find the best treats.