5 Things to Do in New York City

Over the years, I have visited Manhattan several times.  It is such an exciting, fast-paced part of New York City.  There are so many major sights to see, it can be difficult to see everything in one trip.  On my most recent trip to NYC, I went to Brooklyn and Manhattan.  So, this post provides a list of things to do in both boroughs, based on my trip in the Fall and previous visits to the Big Apple!  Here are 5 Things to Do in New York City!

1. See major sights

If this is your first trip to NYC, you should try to see some major sights.  It can be difficult to see everything if you are only here for a weekend, but it can be done with planning and booking tickets ahead as well.  Some of the major sights sell out months in advance, like the Statue of Liberty, which I learned on a previous trip.  We were still able to take a ferry around the Statue of Liberty, but if you want to walk around the base of the statue or walk up the statue, you need to book tickets in advance.  Some of the other major sights include The Empire State Building, the National September 11 Memorial and Museum, the Brooklyn Bridge, the New York Public Library, Times Square, Rockefeller Center, and The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).

2. Walk around the city

One of my favorite things to do when I travel is to simply walk around the city or place I am visiting. It can be one of the best ways to get acclimated and experience a new destination.  And in NYC, it is so easy to get to so many places by just walking. There are so many great shops, restaurants, parks, and sights to see just by walking from neighborhood to neighborhood.  And it’s also great exercise.  But make sure to have good walking shoes!  Your feet will be sore for sure, but you will be able to walk longer and further in comfortable shoes!

3. Go to the theater

Everyone knows New York City is home to some of the best shows and productions in the world.  Do some research before your trip to find out what are the best shows going on during your stay.  On my most recent trip to NYC, I experienced the production, Sleep No More.  This is an interactive film-noir based on Macbeth, by a UK production company in a 5-story 1930’s hotel.  I read a little bit about this interactive theater experience beforehand, but wow! It takes a little bit to figure out what is going on because it is like nothing I have ever experienced.  I don’t want to give too much away.  You just need to experience it for yourself.  I would go again because I think the experience would be different each time. The McKittrick Hotel is a very cool space and I love the cocktail lounge, which makes you feel as if you are back in the 1930s.  The restaurant next door, Gallow Green, is also a great place to grab delicious cocktails and dinner in a beautiful, outdoor rooftop space.

Dinner at Gallow Green restaurant in New York City
The rooftop restaurant, Gallow Green

4. Eat different cuisines

NYC is a melting pot of so many different cultures. So what better place to try different types of cuisines in one visit.  From Italian, Chinese, Middle Eastern, and Japanese, just to name a few, you can find any type of food here.  As well as New York City staples, like the New York bagel, New York-style pizza, and the Cronut (a cross between a croissant and a donut), there is something for everyone.  By the way, the cronut was invented by chef Dominique Ansel and you can get them at his bakery in New York.

5. Visit beautiful parks

New York City is also known for its beautiful, sprawling parks.  These parks are a great way to get a little bit of nature while still in the city.  The famous park in Manhattan is Central Park, which has so many attractions and things to do. In Brooklyn, there is Prospect Park, which also has great activities such as ice skating, bird watching, and nature programs.

There is also the High Line, which an elevated park, spanning 1.45 miles, created from an old railway.  It’s an amazing way to see Manhattan, with an elevated view above the streets.

By the way, Chicago also has an elevated park similar to the High Line, named the Bloomingdale Trail or the 606.  You can read about it in Best Hiking Trails Near Chicago.

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