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New York City Guide | What to see and what not to
I was in New York 8 days and, since I wanted to visit as many things as possible, I decided to get a list and calculate the cost. This step is important because if you buy a pass, you can save a lot. In this article, I want to give you some advice on what to buy, how to visit New York properly and what to see and what not to.
PS in many pictures I have my new bag from Rebecca Minkoff that I bought for a very small price! You already saw that HERE. But I will tell you more about this in the next article where I will talk about shopping in NYC!
New York Pass, City Pass etc. What to choose?
I decided to buy the New York pass. The New York pass is a card that you can choose being available 1, 2, 5, … etc days, depending on how much you pay, and for the period of validity gives you access to more than 90 attractions that you would otherwise have to pay out of your own pocket. There are other types of cards, such as the New York City Pass, which lasts for 30 days and gives you the chance to enter a total of attractions depending on how much you pay. One goes to attractions and the other goes in time. Which one to choose? It all depends on what you want to see and how much you want to stay in the city. We have chosen the City Pass for 5 days so we have had some free days to walk and do shopping. Buying the City Pass saved us more than 30% of the price we would have spent on seeing the attractions we absolutely wanted to do.
What to see/do
Below, my suggestions on what to see/do in New York.
- Empire State building: the most famous skyscraper in New York, the one that was once the tallest in the world. The observatory is very beautiful, the view is spectacular and it’s worth going.
- Rockfeller Center – Top of the Rock: better than the Empire for 3 reasons:
- You can see Central Park from there
- You can see the Empire – of course you cannot if you are on the Empire, uh? It’s a spectacular view.
- You can enter twice in the same day. It’s perfect so that you can see the view in the morning and then come back in the evening, admiring the sunset. Magical. If you have the city pass, come earlier in the morning, if not consider buying your slots online. the queue is really long.
- Central Park: keep with you a map of things to see. From the Strawberry Field to the bronze statue of Alice in Wonderland, to the statue of Balto. If you go towards the end of November, remember the ice skating rink!
- Times Square: I do not think I should add a comment to convince you to go to the hub of New York, the place where the lights of billboards are stronger than that of the sun.. No?
- Wall Street and Financial District going through the Memorial Center: New York historic places, remember to get to the little square where you can find the Charging Bull – the bronze bull. Touching the testicles brings good luck (at least hopefully). The Memorial is really nice, if you go, I leave to you the comments on the feelings that you could feel once there.
- One World trade Center: it is the new tallest skyscraper in New York, in the Financial District. Unfortunately I could not go but they told me that it is really worth getting to the observatory.
- Brooklyn Bridge: a walk on the pedestrian area of the historic Brooklyn Bridge can not be missed. At the entrance from Manhattan they also rent bikes if you want to do a quicker and a little faster ride, so you can also take a bike ride to Brooklyn in the Dumbo neighborhood, the one from which you can see Manhattan.
- Tip: as soon as you arrive in Brooklyn, on the right (coming from the bridge) there is a hotel called “1 One Hotel Brooklyn Bride”. That has a rooftop where you can enjoy the view of the skyline while enjoying a nice cocktail. At sunset the show is wonderful.
- Soho, Little Italy and Chinatown: very famous neighborhoods of Downtown New York. In Little Italy you can also find several really good Italian restaurants
- MoMA (Museum of Modern Art): only if you are really passionate about modern art. There is also a nice fashion exposition on the top floor.
- Madison Park e Bryant Park: accessible from 5th Avenue, at Bryant Park in the Christmas season there is a lovely ice skating rink. And it’s also full of squirrels!!!
- Liberty Statue and Ellis Island: very nice boat trip and visit to the Statue of Liberty. We didn’t buy the additional ticket to walk on the upper pedestrian walk, don’t think it’s worth the dial.
- Skyline cruise: There are several boat trips that you can do in NYC. We decided to do the complete one around Manhattan, where the guide will explain the skyscrapers, the parks and everything you see from the Hudson and beyond, enjoying a wonderful view of the skyline from the water.
- Coney Island: unfortunately we did not make it to go, but it is a historical amusement park in New York. Pay attention to the opening hours, it is not open every day and the hours are restricted, also considered an hour or so to get to the place, in the South part of Brooklyn.
- Museo di Storia Naturale: it is really it, the one of the movie “Night at the Museum”!! You’ll find everything inside, from the totem to the mega t-rex!
- Grand Central: historic New York train station. Look at the ceiling: it’s embroidered!
What to not see/do:
- Bike tour in Central Park: if you bought the New York pass, this is included, at this point I suggest you do it if you really want to see the whole park. Otherwise, it’s not really worth it. What you can see from the bike is a bit miserable, you are forced to go down every 3×2, also the most beautiful attractions are in the south of the park. I mean, it’s really nice if you have time, but otherwise you can simply skip it and have a walk by feet.
- Madame Tussauds: the wax museum. Fun if you have time to waist and to take pictures with the queen, Trump, etc. Even that one was included in the New York Pass, otherwise I would have not done it. If you’ve been to the one in London recently, you have no reason to go.
- Cabaret Show: while in Times Square, people will try to sell you tickets to attend a Cabaret or Magic show. Once inside, there will be two compulsory drinks to do – I’ll let you imagine the prices – and the show will be in a very small room and it will last one hour or less. The entrance for us was included in the New York pass, where the terms and conditions were clear and we knew we would have to pay for the drinks, but in the street they avoid revealing you. Beware!
- Sex Museum: nothing special, there is also an entire section on animal sex with photos and videos. If I want, you can watch them on Youtube, you do not have to go to NY!
- Boat trips: if you want to take a mini cruise, the New York pass gives you the chance to choose one of the many that are offered. I advise you to do only the Skyline Cruise, it is the most complete, you can discard the others.
In the next posts, I will give you my advices on where to go shopping and how to enjoy New York without giving up anything but saving some money.. Stay tuned!