There’s No Place like New York City
What first comes to mind when you hear New York City? Do you think of bright lights in a sea of skyscrapers? How about world class shopping? Or what about a rich tradition of theatrical performances on Broadway? Being such a major cultural and economical hub, New York City lends a whole world of different experiences unlike any other place and offers something for everyone to enjoy.
The entire city is vibrant and magical and has been fascinating people across the world for decades. Each year, more than 50 million visitors descend upon this iconic city to explore the vast treasure chest of famous landmarks, world class shopping and some of the most sought after museums in the world. The hardest part of the entire trip will be fitting everything in!
Step 1: Orienting Yourself with the City
New York City, also commonly referred to as The Big Apple, is broken out into five boroughs: The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. Although Manhattan is typically the most sought after, the others inherently have their own distinctive flavor that should not be overlooked. For example, the world famous Bronx Zoo boasts over 250 acres of an urban jungle experience among skyscrapers and concrete while the amusement parks of Coney Island in southern Brooklyn provides hours of fun and entertainment.
However, when people say they are taking a vacation to New York City, more often than not they are referring to Manhattan. It is within this popular borough that many of the famous landmarks such as Times Square, Central Park, Rockefeller Center and Wall Street can be found. It’s where most visitors spend the majority of their time so make the most out of your stay and start your trip here.
Getting from Point A to Point B
Being the most densely populated city in the United States, on the surface it might seem getting around New York City would be a nightmare; however, contrary to what it may appear, transportation around the city is actually pretty easy.
The infrastructure is well equipped to handle not only the 8 million permanent inhabitants but also the influx of some 50 million visitors each year. The most economical way to travel and the most characteristic of any New Yorker is the subway. Jump on the subway and ride it all around town. It extends out to each borough so getting around is convenient and hassle free.
If you plan on staying several days and are feeling rather ambitious, consider buying the 7-day unlimited pass. For a fixed fee of $29, it allows you unlimited access to ride the subway at your leisure. Without a doubt, the subway is a budget-friendly way to explore all that the city has to offer!
World Class Shopping, Anyone?
If you have the stamina to shop till you drop, then New York City is the place for any well seasoned shopper. It has established itself as the fashion Mecca of the world and it’s easy to see why. With thousands of unique stores and boutique shops sprinkled throughout the city, New York is a shopper’s paradise.
For all the latest fashion trends, Fifth Avenue is the place to go. This famous stretch of road is historically known for its wealth, power and prestige and the shops located along this street stand as a testament. Many luxurious storefronts such as Tiffany & Co, Louis Vuitton, Prada and Harry Winston call Fifth Avenue home. Even if you’re thinking these stores are outside your price range, Fifth Avenue is an experience for all to witness and a historical area you do not want to miss!
Looking for an area slightly more affordable? Then be sure to explore the neighborhood shops of SoHo. This district of New York City is best known for its unique boutiques that offer everything from clothing and accessories to household decorative goods. It’s an area known for its artistic flavor and impressive architecture. The shops are nestled among large cast-iron buildings with charming cobblestone streets. Even if window shopping is all you had in mind the entire area is the perfect place to spend an afternoon. Many restaurants and cafes line the streets of SoHo and are just as rewarding as the boutiques themselves.
Passing Time in NYC
New York City has arguably the most attraction and activity packed scenes in the world. From Ellis Island, the World Trade Center Memorial and the Statue of Liberty to globally recognized sports franchises such as the New York Yankees, the hardest part of the entire trip will be fitting everything in.
However, on your next trip, spruce up your stay with something a little different. Pick a warm, sunny day and spend it relaxing in an area of Central Park known to the locals as Sheep Meadow. This 15 acre green pasture sits within the confines of large skyscrapers and provides an escape from the busy streets of New York City and grants entrance into a restful and relaxing oasis. It’s a popular spot for New Yorkers to pass the time and many enjoy it with a good book, throwing the ball around or just hanging out with friends on the weekend.
To best take advantage of your time in Sheep Meadow, prepare a picnic and plan the afternoon laying around and throwing the Frisbee. Sit back and take in the beautiful setting of the vibrant city in the forefront and lush green pasture at your feet. Once you’ve enjoyed all the sun you can, cap off the afternoon with a horse and carriage ride around Central Park. The entire afternoon will put you at ease and will prepare you for an evening out on the town!
Plan Your Trip Today
New York City is overflowing with a contagious energy that will make you never want to leave. Just one trip here and you will quickly discover the sights, sounds and tastes that have been pulling millions of people back for more and more each year. It is the quintessential American city and a place that will leave you with endless memories that will last a lifetime!
Marco travels all across the United States as well as internationally for work and leisure. He maintains Discover Your Honeymoon, a one-stop site that inspires destination ideas and pertinent travel tips and ideas to couples looking to enjoy a honeymoon together.