“Autumn in New York, why does it seem so inviting?” ~ Vernon Duke
As a New Yorker I don’t really do the touristy things. In fact I don’t really go outside my neighborhood bubble. The Concrete Jungle is so vast and we as people are so busy, that the only chance to explore is when people come to visit me. I wish it wasn’t so and every year, multiple times a year I make the pledge that I will explore more. Alas it never happens.
Thankfully I have some pretty amazing friends who love visiting me and we make the most of it incorporating the touristy with the local.
The two biggest complaints that I hear, are that it is crazy crowded. Which is only true depending on where you stay and visit. And that it is expensive. Again another misnomer, You can do New York on the cheap. And if you search high and low you will find little adventures that are no to little money and some of them are even with the touristy things to do!
Central Park and Carl Shurz Park:
I am blessed that I live smack dab between the two. In fact the East River connecting Carl Shurz is my choice of running with only the hustle and bustle of locals and no tourists. The views are gorgeous and you can literally stop and smell the roses. Central Park is a little bit more touristy but with miles upon miles of pathways to walk and hidden treasures like the Bramble and Belvedere Castle. The bright side to both of these? You can spend hours in both, exploring, snapping pics, maybe even taking a snooze in Sheeps Meadow, and it is all free! Unless of course you decide you want an ice cream or hot dog from a vendor. Which I do not recommend!
I actually finally just walked across this in the spring. Gasps! What? You heard that right. Since then I have done it three times. I admit I am not a huge fan of heights, but it seems to get better and better each time I do it (especially if their is no wind!) It has absolutely stunning views of the Manhattan skyline. It is also one of those bridges that invokes the old with the new in its architecture. I highly recommend doing it. And again it is free!
Side Note: One thing about New York. Is you will walk EVERYWHERE. Taxis are great but they are expensive. And sometimes it is just better to walk then wait for the train or have to walk under the subway station to switch lines. But bring comfortable shoes. Heels are great, but unless you have a considerate boyfriend who sends cars for you, they are not always the most practical.
Empire State Building:
Okay this is probably the most touristy of all and kinda pricey (at thirty-two dollars), but I kind of love the Empire State Building. You can’t help it. Every time I go up there (and I admit the first few times I needed some liquid courage the whole heights thing) I am in awe of my city. With panoramic views on all sides of the city, you are amazed at how vast, but also extraordinary it is. I have as yet, not gone up during the day. But in the city that never sleeps, with all the lights, it is absolutely spectacular to see at night. Also the lines are much (MUCH) shorter and less crowded. With views of One World Trade and the Chrysler building, it beckons you to see.
Now you might think The Met? Really? It is expensive and a museum. But alas my dear wanderlusts it is neither of those. While the Met has a suggested donation of twenty-five dollars, it is actually pay whatever you feel like. Whether it be the full amount or five dollars. With countless exhibits ranging from Egyptian which has real mummies and a temple to impressionism and yes even some modern art, their is something for everyone to enjoy. And every year from May until September they also have the fashion exhibit, which is always exciting.
Washington Square Park:
One of my favorites is a place that I go to a lot because it is right near my school. Washington Square Park is a rare gem always filled with eclecticness from street performers, to artists, to the famous water fountain right smack dab in the middle with the Washington Arch in the foreground. There is always something to see and it can’t help but put you in a great mood with the lively atmosphere.
Bryant Park is probably my favorite place in all of Manhattan. Regardless of what time of year there is always something to do or see from great restaurant scattered in and along the park. To movie nights, yoga, or just lounging on the lawn reading a book. It is an oasis amongst beautiful skyscrapers and in my opinion it embodies what New York really is about. A smorgasbord of everything. It is located in the back of the New York Public Library which I also recommend visiting and is also free!
What are some of your favorite things to do in the city?