If it’s summer in the city, head to this 172-acre island in New York Harbour. Here you can find a park, concert venue, adult playground and outdoor art space, as well as a nice ferry trip to get there. The island is open from May and the ferry goes from Manhattan’s South Street Seaport and Brooklyn’s Pier 69 (check timetables for seasonal timings).
Washington Square Park
Remember at the start of When Harry Met Sally when Meg Ryan drops Billy Crystal by the big arch in NYC? That’s Washington Square Park and an iconic location also featured in Inside Llewyn Davis with Carey Mulligan and as a mecca for rock stars and beat poets in the early 60s. Located in the middle of Greenwich village, it’s seen its far share of superheroes as a backdrop to battles in the Iron Man and Spider-Man flicks.
The High Line
Located on the west side of Manhattan, the High Line is a unique, 1.45-mile-long elevated linear public space created on a former New York Central Railroad spur. Here you can view art, walk through gardens and enjoy an unusual view of the city.
Top Of The Rock
The thrill of going 70 floors up to the top of the Rockefeller Centre is that you can take a photo of the city with the Empire State Building in it – instead of going up the Empire State. Sweeping view of Central Park, midtown and downtown make this visit a must-do to see the vast expanse of skyscrapers that make up Manhattan.
Brooklyn is cool and Williamsburg is the epicentre. The hipster vibe is jam-packed with great dining spots, music venues, cutting-edge labels and a young, fashionable crowd. There are distilleries and wineries showcasing the area’s passion for locally made spirits and galleries galore. It doesn’t have the brownstone charm of Brooklyn, instead a backdrop of old industrial buildings dominates, but it oozes creativity and charm.
On the west side of Manhattan is the Meatpacking District, formerly home to meatpacking plants. Here you’ll find the Whitney, the High Line and myriad trendy restaurants and clubs. Visit Gansevoot Market, Catch for dinner and the flagship store of Diane von Frustenberg, who trailblazed to set up shop here over a decade ago.
Grand Central Station
More than just a station, Grand Central is a dining, shopping and cultural hub, a popular film location, a music venue. There are jazz nights, holiday fairs and markets, as well as a vast range of shops including an Apple store. Meet under the iconic clock as you witness New York past and present merge.
Dumbo, short for ‘Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass’, is a neighbourhood in Brooklyn. Cobblestone streets and converted warehouses are home to independent coffee shops, boutiques and restaurants. Here is a professional creative community which you can see reflected in the trendy businesses and buzzing arts scene.
Walk over Brooklyn Bridge
Many agree that walking from Brooklyn to Manhattan gives you the best view from this iconic structure. There’s a dedicated pedestrian walkway and if you go at sunset you can see Brooklyn, Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty while it’s still light, then watch as all the major sights come to life as the lights come on.
NYC’s biggest park is an urban oasis of woodland and lakes. There are organised hikes through the North Woods where you can see tumbling waterfalls and rustic bridges, or just take a self-guided stroll and admire the fountains and sculptures. If you’re feeling romantic, book a table at the Loeb Boathouse – rent a row boat for a spell of true romance or take a ride in an authentic Venetian gondola. There’s also the iconic Tavern on the Green – a converted sheep fold from 1870 that now houses one of New York’s most popular restaurants.
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