NYC + Brooklyn City Guide: To Do

August 2, 2012 § 1 Comment

1. Central Park – Manhattan

Central Park is my #1 recommendation for anyone visiting New York. It’s huge, beautiful, and like no park I’ve ever seen. Wander around the various paths, over footbridges, and visit the John Lennon tribute Strawberry Fields. See the reservoir, the zoo, the carousel, and in the winter, the skating rink.

2. New York Public Library (Main Branch) – Manhattan

Quite possibly the most beautiful library ever . This building feels like a castle. Even if you don’t borrow any library books, you’ll leave feeling inspired.

Bonus: this is where Carrie & Big’s wedding was set to be in the beginning of the Sex & The City movie.

3. DUMBO and the Brooklyn Bridge – Brooklyn

There’s something very special about this area of Brooklyn. It sits in the shadows of the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges and is filled with restaurants and shops in very old buildings, but has become a hotspot for creatives in NYC.

Wander the streets then go for a walk in the new Brooklyn Bridge Park. If you have a child with you or love nostalgia, visit Jane’s Carousel. Finally, walk over the Brooklyn Bridge into the City Hall neighborhood of Manhattan.

If possible, I highly suggest taking the East River Ferry there.

4. Art Galleries in Chelsea and The Highline – Manhattan

Chelsea is home to countless art galleries! If you’re into any sort of artist expression, there is surely a gallery right for you. My favourites are the Joshua Liner Gallery and the Jonathan Levine Gallery.

While you’re over there, check out the High Line, an elevated park built on an old railroad track.

5. Greenwich Village – Manhattan

Take a break from suffocating Soho and walk west to this breathtaking neighbourhood. So many beautiful brownstones, cute shops, and great places to eat. Daydream about living here while watching the young and hip parents cart around their adorable kids with ease!

If you’re a Sex & The City fan, see Carrie Bradshaw’s house at 64 Perry Street.

6. The Lower East Side – Manhattan

It’s amazing how different each neighbourhood can feel and look in New York. Even though CBGB’s is gone, a visit to the Lower East side will bring you back to the 1970s punk scene. Check out the bars, restaurants, and music venues. If you’re a carnivore, stop into Katz’s Deli (of When Harry Met Sally fame) for a pastrami sandwich stuffed with enough meat for three sandwiches.

7. Grand Central Station – Manhattan

The most beautiful train station I’ve ever seen in North America. Visit the Oyster Bar, the Whispering Gallery, and the Transit Museum and shop. Oh, and take lots of photos, especially of the ceiling!

8. Coney Island – Brooklyn

When I first started coming to New York, Nick would ask me what I wanted to do and (to his chagrin) my answer would always be visit Coney Island. It’s a bit of a trek by subway, but once you arrive it’s like a whole other world! Eat some junky carnival food, walk the boardwalk, dip your toes in the ocean, play at the carnival, and if you’re feeling brave, ride the Wonder Wheel or the Cyclone.

9. Times Square – Manhattan

As much as I hate it when I have to try and walk through Times Square, I have to admit it’s an amazing spot and definitely worth seeing at least once in your life. You don’t even have to go anywhere or do anything, just stand there and marvel at the scene!

10. American Museum of Natural History – Manhattan

The perfect way to spend a rainy day in New York. Feel like a kid again and take in all the exhibits here. You might even learn something! Don’t miss the giant blue whale.

Bonusmy first ever trip to New York!

{photos: Central Park 1,2, NY Public Library, Brooklyn Bridge, Art Gallery, Highline, Greenwich Village, LES 1, 2, Grand Central, Coney Island, Museum}

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