It is a privilege to write about the most amazing city in the world. New York City is the ultimate destination for any traveler.
It is the ultimate city to live in, the ultimate city to be seen in, and definitely the ultimate city to know well. What a better way to get to know the city that from a local’s perspective. New York City is the city of skyscrapers, of Wall Street, of opera, art galleries, ballet, Central Park, restaurants, fashion, shopping and more. New York City offers the most diverse selection of ethnical and cultural backgrounds through its different neighborhoods.
What to see in NYC
The city is so diverse that it offers something special to every visitor. It doesn’t matter what you are looking for, you will find it in NYC.
If you are looking for art, the Chelsea neighbourhood offers some of the best galleries in the world. Or you can visit one of the many museums New York has to offer such as the: Metropolitan Museum of Art, Modern Museum of Art, Guggenheim Museum, Whitney Museum or the Museum of Natural History
(ideal to go with kids).
If you are interested in the performing arts
you can head to the world renowned Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts where you can watch a ballet, opera or catch the symphony. Or head over to Metropolitan Opera to enjoy an epic tragedy or classic love story. Or be delighted by New York Philharmonic at David Geffen Hall
. Street performers are on every corner from the violin player, to the acrobatic performers to the Statue of Liberty guy and last we checked the naked cowboy was still strumming in Times Square. Central Park has a great variety of these performances that come to live in the summer days or any other sunny day.
For anyone interested in fashion,
New York City has so much to offer. Twice a year New York City hosts the internationally renowned Fashion Week where the most notable and upcoming designers exhibit their creations. The most established designers have their flagship stores at Madison and Fifth Avenue. More alternative designers choose the Soho neighborhood, Meat Packing District or Greenwich Village. If you are in for a shopping spree you can visit the upscale department stores such as Barney’s, Sak’s Fifth Avenue or head over to the always entertaining Macy’s on the south end of the Fashion District.
If you are a history buff, take a ferry ride to Ellis Island
where you can visit the Immigrant Museum with a stopover at the Statue of Liberty. On your way back, you can visit the Financial District and take a picture with the raging bull close to Wall Street and visit the Stock Market Exchange building on Wall Street. Expect to see a lot of executives dressed in suits rushing around.
What to see in NYC: Parks
The city is filled with parks and they play a very important role in the life of the city, especially during the hot months. When travelers are in New York City they can enjoy a visit to any of its parks and this will give them a more well rounded, local perspective of the city. Central Park is a definite must to any visitor.
It is great to visit in the spring with its magnolia and cherry blossoms scattered around, or the summer when the park comes to life. The fall gives you some of the best photography opportunities with the leaves changing colours and what a better way to enjoy a snowstorm than to go to the park and make a snowman. There is no other inner city park like Central Park. It holds part of Manhattan's water at the Jackie Kennedy reservoir where joggers delight to the gorgeous views while exercising. Visitors and locals stroll around the Mall, a beautiful walkway with giant trees and benches to sit on and relax before reaching the iconic Bethesda Fountain and Boathouse Restaurant.
During the summer months travelers and locals enjoy the many activities Central Park has to offer such as: roller skate parties, tango dancing (Sundays afternoons), Movies in the Park, Summer stage, Shakespeare in the Park, Philharmonic orchestra on the Great Lawn.
Another great park to visit is Washington Square Park.
Washington Square Park is located south of Union Square and is surrounded by the New York University city campus. Washington Square Park has an “Arc du Triomphe” like entrance on the north end that gives it a European vibe. In this park you will find students commuting to class or studying for exams or having a lunch or coffee break in between classes. Street performers are regulars in this park as well as chess players. The student, artsy atmosphere at Washington Square Park is unique to the city.
If you want to have a real taste of what NYC is all about, get on the subway! This is a truly unique experience and you'll quickly find that a subway car is filled with what makes NYC so great. It is the mix of people, the mix of cultures, people from different countries, speaking different languages, that come from different backgrounds come together. You might be greeted by the street performer or by the lady taking a nap or by a boisterous dad talking to his kids, yet you will understand how the city attracts everyone and they all form part of the city.
What to see in NYC: Times Square
Times Square is the crazy hub of New York City’s entertainment district. It is an area surrounded by theaters, movie cinemas, restaurants, hotels and the huge billboards that make this area a spectacular photo spot for any visitor. There is no other place like Times Square. Times Square always seems to be in rush hour, well isn’t NYC “the city that never sleeps?”
Where to stay in NYC
Here we are recommending some of our favorite places to stay in NYC, a couple of hotels in each of the districts we think are a good option to stay in. You can book the hotels we recommend and others you might like at our booking site wander.io
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Best place to stay in Times Square NYC
- The W hotel is part of the Starwood fleet and is located in the heart of Times Square. People that are looking for a busy Times Square experience will find this the right place to be. The W Hotel has managed to keep a cool and sophisticated atmosphere, despite the rush of activity just outside its doors.
Where to stay in Bryant Park NYC
The Bryant Park Hotel
is located at the south end of Bryant Park. Its design is superb and some of its rooms overlook the park. It is a great location because it's central to theatres and restaurants. In the summer, Bryant Park hosts outdoor movies that are a very popular with locals that come out of their offices to spend a hot summer night catching a flick in the park.
Where to stay in Greenwich Village NYC
Crosby Hotel – The Crosby Hotel is located on Crosby Street on Greenwich Village. Its design is gorgeous. Even though rooms are small, like in any other hotel in the city, you feel pampered by the little details in every room. It has a nice little movie theater on the basement of the hotel where movies are played for guests and outsiders.
Where to stay in Meatpacking District NYC
The Standard Hotel
- This is a great hotel located right on top of the Highline bridge. It is a great neighborhood any time of the day for shops, clubs, food or a stroll along the Hudson River. The rooms facing the Hudson River have amazing views and sunsets are the best. This area is well known for trendy bars and restaurants. If you are looking for nightlife and a spot to see people and be seen, this is the place to stay. The hotel has a restaurant serving spectacular brunches on their sidewalk terrace.
Where to stay in Soho NYC
Mercer Hotel – Is a luxury boutique hotel ideally located right in the heart of the Soho neighbourhood and set in a landmark brick Romanesque building. It’s restaurant, the Mercer Kitchen, offers the great spot for dinner before a night out in town. You can stroll out of the hotel to the best trendy, vintage, hipster shops in the city.
The GEM Hotel
- this boutique hotel has an excellent location and decent prices.
Where to stay in Midtown East NYC
One UN New York
Hotel is a modern and luxury hotel close to the East River. The thing we love the most about One UN New York is the view! The hotel has a fantastic panoramic view for its guests.
Where to stay in Upper East Side NYC
The Mark Hotel
is a five star hotel located on Madison Avenue near Central Park in the Upper East Side. This hotel offers a trendy upscale retreat in a neighborhood where tradition prevails. This luxury hotel in Manhattan boasts lavish rooms and suites and a fantastic restaurant called The Mark as well. Expect to pay for the location and luxury.
Where to stay in Upper West Side NYC
Mandarin Oriental Hotel
- This upscale hotel is located across the street from Central Park, a short walk to the Modern Art Museum and Lincoln Center. It has far too many rooms to be considered a boutique hotel, but it definitely has all the fine details that make boutique hotels popular. Its rooms offer magnificent views of Central Park. Its location is unbeatable with the Shops at Columbus Circle right on the ground floor of the hotel and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts a quick stroll away, not to mention the park.
Best restaurants in NYC
New York City has an incredible selection of upscale restaurants, diners, delis, cafeterias, street food, food trucks. Sometimes it is hard to decide what or where to eat. The selection of food is so diverse you can have Mexican for breakfast, Japanese for lunch and Hindu for dinner all within a short distance from each other.
Best upscale restaurants in NYC
Eleven Madison: Located across Madison Square Park this restaurant offers some of the best cuisines in the city and probably around the world. The food is magnificent and the experience is one of a kind. Patrons enjoy 7 to 11 set course dinners in a setting like no other. It is worth the visit. You're taste buds will thank you, even if your wallet won't!
Gramercy Tavern: this is a classic restaurant in NYC, the food is delicious and great decor with a vibrant atmosphere. You can choose from a fixed prix menu (dinning only) or enjoy your choice in the more informal front tavern.
Best restaurants in NYC
Caracas- This restaurant is the locals best kept secret. Caracas serves arepas
, a traditional Venezuelan dish that works kind of like an english muffin burger with different types of filling. The sauce, oh the sauce! Go heavy on the sauce! Do not forget to order the tostones mochimeros
as an appetizer. Expect to wait for a table! You will not be disappointed! This amazing restaurant is located on the East Village on First Avenue and Seventh Street. After enjoying a fantastic dinner, stroll around the East Village and be part of one of the most diverse and entertaining areas in the city.
Menchanko-Tei: Because Japanese cuisine is much more than sushi, we recommend this little restaurant for a delicious Ramen soup, Gyozas are also a knock-out!
Best Food Trucks in NYC
The Halal Guys - Located on Sixth Avenue and 54th
Street, these guys know what they are doing. You know you have the right guys when you see the big line up waiting. But they are worth the wait.
The serve tasty, filling dishes for some of the cheapest prices you'll find anywhere in the city. Ask for the white sauce and go easy on the spicy sauce. It is very spicy!
Best restaurants for dessert in NYC
Cafeteria – The cafeteria is located across from Union Square Park. I recommending this place because they serve the best banana cream pie out there!
And trust me I have been conducting a thorough research. It is a trendy local spot where you can see celebrities and hang out with the cool crowd. However, for the purpose of this post our focus is the banana cream pie!
– Although some might consider it a tourist trap there desserts are amazing! The portion for each cheesecake or chocolate cake is enough for a family of 4 with leftovers. My favorite is the cheesecake with blueberry sauce or maybe the pecan pie….. Yummy!
Let's not forget the meat sandwiches, they'll charge you extra to share but I've only met a few people who could finish one by themselves.
will be available for booking your hotels in NYC in fall 2016.