The 43 must-do highlights in New York City (Big Apple)

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The 43 must-do highlights in New York City (Big Apple)

15 mei 2020 in New York0 reacties

New York City is one of the most popular destinations for a city trip. The City That Never Sleeps has a lot to offer: high skyscrapers, art deco architecture, an interesting history, famous shops, broadway shows and thousands of restaurants.

There's so much to do in New York, that is why it is hard to decide which highlights are worth a visit and which aren't. We've listed the best 43 highlights in New York City below to help you out.

Our tip: Buy a New York sightseeing pass

On a citytrip to New York City? Make sure to get yourself a Sightseeing pass, this will save you huge amounts of money if you are planning to visit many sights. Buy your Sightseeing pass online from € 57.

Would you like to visit the crown of the Statue of Liberty? Be sure to buy your tickets online. This is possible from 6 months in advance.

Prefer to onlyvisit the pedestal? (the lower part of the Statue of Liberty) This is possible with a priority ticket Pedestal. Overview of all possible tickets:


  1. The Statue of Liberty

1.1. A French statue

The Statue of Liberty, is the symbol of New York City. The Statue of Liberty, also called Lady Liberty, is located on Liberty Island in the harbor between New York City and Jersey City. The statue was designed at the end of the nineteenth century by the Frenchman Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi (born in Colmar) and represents the Roman goddess Libertas. The statue was a gift from France to the city to celebrate the friendship between France and the United States.

1.2. Symbol

The broken chain around her feet refers to the abolition of slavery and the tablet in her right hand, which bears the date of the Declaration of Independence, commemorates the country's independence. The torch in Lady Liberty's right hand represents the evolution to a new era, but for the immigrants who used to reach New York by boat, the torch was the symbol of freedom and the American Dream.

You can visit the Statue of Liberty every day between 09:30 and 17:15 from Battery Park in New York or from Liberty State Park in Jersey City.

There are different types of tickets based on the part you want to visit. With one ticket you can go to both Ellis Island and Liberty Island, while with another you can go to the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty or to the top of the the crown. Buy your ticket online to avoid long queues.
  1. Brooklyn Bridge

The Brooklyn Bridge across the East River is New York City's most famous bridge. The bridge, which connects Park Row in Manhattan with Brooklyn, is one of the most beautiful spots in the city. The bridge dates from 1883 and was built with stone arches and steel frames.

The Brooklyn Bridge consists of two stories. The bottom floor is the passing for cars while the upper floor is dedicated to pedestrians and cyclists. The bridge is almost two kilometers long and offers an impressive view of New York's skyline. Walk over the Brooklyn Bridge with an organized city walk of Brooklyn from € 29. If you prefer to cross the bridge by bike, rent your bike online from € 7.

  1. Central Park

New York City's largest park is located between the upper East Side and upper West Side. Every tourist likes to enjoy a walk through Central Park and it is therefore not strange that the city park is the most visited park in the United States.

In the 341 acres large Central park you can walk around for hours. Inside the park, there are walking lanes, cycle paths and even a hidden Zoo. Also don't forget to pass by the large lake, or enjoy a picnic on the extensive lawns. Hire a bike or go with a local guide for € 7 and explore the hidden spots of the park.

Bonus: If you come during the winter months, an ice skating rink is build inside the park.

  1. Strawberry Fields monument

Strawberry Fields is a monument that pays homage to the famous Beatle, John Lennon. The monument was designed by landscape architect Bruce Kelly and was officially opened on 9 October 1985, John Lennon's birthday. This area is a 'silent zone' within the park and is visited every year by many who come to pay homage and show respect for John Lennon.

John Lennon and his wife Yoko Ono lived in the nearby Dakota Appartments. It was here, on their way home, that Lennon was shot and killed on December 8, 1980.

  1. Times Square

Times Square is one of the most famous squares in the world. Every day thousands of people visit the square and its gigantic advertising screens on which the biggest brands advertise.

The square was actually called Longacre Square, but since establishment of the headquarters of the New York Times newspaper, the name changed to Times Square. Make sure to bring a visit to this busy but interesting place. Photos and videos won't transfer the magical feeling you get when standing there in real life.

  1. Empire State Building

The Empire State Building is located in Midtown Manhattan. The Empire is one of the most famous buildings in the city and the symbol of the state of New York, which is also called the Empire State. The Empire State Building was declared as one of the seven wonders of the modern world.

Click here to reserve a ticket for the empire

  • The Art Deco building is made up of 103 floors and is 443 meters high including the antenna.
  • In the evening, the upper part of the building is colorfully illuminated.
  • You can enjoy the view over the city from the viewing platforms on the 86th and 102nd floors.
  • For the best views of the Empire State Building itself, head to the Top of the Rock at the Rockefeller Center.
  • The Empire State Building is located on W 34th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue.
  • The building is open daily between 08:00 and 02:00.
Our tip: We advice you to pre-order your ticket for the Empire State Building online for € 41. This way, you will avoid the enormous waiting line at the entrance.

Would you like to visit several highlights in New York City? Then we advice you to buy a New York Pass. You will save a lot of money by doing so.

  1. Top of the Rock (Rockefeller)

The Rockefeller Center is New York City's media center. The skyscrapers in this complex include the Music Hall and various other studios, such as the NBC network. The literal highpoint of the site is the Top of the Rock, the 259 meter high tower of the Rockefeller Center.

  • Despite the fact that the Empire State Building is often seen as the place for a beautiful view over the city, it is actually better to go to the Top of the Rock.
  • The viewing platforms on the 67th, 69th and 70th floors are less busy compared to the Empire State Building.
  • In addition, from Top of the Rock you have a better view over the most iconic places of New York, including the Empire State Building itself and Central Park.
  • The Rockefeller Center is located between W 49th St and W 51st St between 5th and 6th Avenue.
  • The Top of the Rock is open between 08:00 and 24:00.
From here you have the best view of the Empire State Building and Central Park. Tickets for Top of the Rock are available online for € 37. When buying your ticket for the Top of the Rock, you have to decided upon an hour when you would like to visit the building, since they manage the visits with time slots.
  1. St Patrick's Cathedral

St Patrick's Cathedral was consecrated on 25th May 1879 by Archbishop John McCloskey. Its brick structure covered with marble was designed by architect James Renwick who got his inspiration from the cathedrals of Cologne and Amiens. Inside the church are two large organs, each with 9,838 pipes.
St Patrick's Cathedral can be found on 5th Avenue, opposite Rockefeller Center and the statue of Atlas. It is the largest neo-Gothic catholic cathedral in the USA, and there is room for 3,000 people.

  1. MoMa

MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art, is New York's most famous and largest art museum. Founded in 1929 by Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, wife of John D. Rockefeller Junior. the MoMa has been one of the most important modern art museums in the world ever since.

You can admire some of Picasso, Matisse, Warhol and Van Gogh's masterpieces in the museum. Along, you will find many photographs, drawings, installations and designs of modern architecture. In addition, dance and music performances are regularly held.

The MoMa is located at W 53rd between 5th and 6th Avenue. The museum is open daily between 10:30 and 17:30, but every Friday evening between 16:00 and 20:00 visitors can enter for free.

Our tip: Buy your ticket for the MoMA online for € 22 to avoid the long queues. You can cancel them 24 hours before entry.
  1. Guggenheim Museum

The art museum Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is a work of art in itself. The spiral-shaped structure was built by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1959. It was the first Guggenheim Museum. Nowadays you can also find exhibitions in, Bilbao, Venice and other places around the world.

The museum offers a large collection of modern and contemporary art. The masterpieces include Picasso, Kandinsky, Manet and Appel. Regularly, new temporary exhibitions are displayed her as well.

The Guggenheim Museum is located on 5th Avenue between E 88th St and E 89th St. The museum is open every Friday to Wednesday between 10:00 and 17:45 and on Saturdays until 19:45.

Buy your tickets online for € 22 to save some time. On Saturdays the museum works with free donations
  1. 9/11 Memorial Park

The attacks on the Twin Towers on 11 September 2001 are etched in everyone's memory. Nearly 3,000 people were killed. Today, on the spot where the two towers stood, you can find two fountains. On the edge of the fountains are the names engraved of all the people who lost their life during the event. This place commemorates an important piece of the city's history. It is definitely worth a visit.

Next to the fountains, the new One World Trade Center was built, the highest skyscraper of New York. You can visit the building and go to the observation deck from where you have an impressive view over Manhattan. The World Trade Center and the September 11 Memorial can be found between West St, Church St, Fulton St and Liberty St., which are located at the heart of the new World Trade Center.

Our tip: We advice you to book your ticket for the One World Observatory in advance online for € 25 You can do this even right before your visit. Part of the income goes to the families of the victims.
  1. Ellis Island

From the end of the nineteenth century to the middle of the twentieth century, many migrants entered the United States via New York. It is estimated that around 12 million migrants came to America between 1892 and 1954. The majority of the current American population is descended from these migrants.

In order to register the large number of newcomers, an immigration post was set up on Ellis Island, an island in the port of New York. On Ellis Island, right next to Liberty Island, you can now visit a museum about the migration and the procedure migrants had to go through to be admitted. You can visit Ellis Island daily between 09:30 and 17:15 from Battery Park in New York.

Click here to reserve your ticket for Ellis IslanD

To visit the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island you only need to buy 1 ticket. With that ticket you have access to the boat from Battery Park or Liberty State Park to Liberty Island and Ellis Island.
  1. The Vessel

The Vessel is one of the newest highlights in New York. You can find it on the Hudson River, around W33rd Street. It is designed by the English architect and designer Thomas Heatherwick. It looks very futuristic, some say it resembles a beehive or an alien.

After you climb up the 2500 steps you have a beautiful view over Manhattan and the Hudson River. Admission is free. Be aware: you have to have an entrance ticket, and there is a limited number of visitors who can enter the building at the same time.

  1. Flatiron Building

One of the most striking buildings in New York City is the Flatiron Building. This building was commissioned by Daniel Burnham in 1902. It served as the headquarters of the Fuller Construction Company. The remarkable building has a triangular shape and that's because of its location between W 23rd St, W 22nd St, 5th Avenue and Broadway. Some say it resembles an iron, hence why the building is called the Flatiron Building.

  1. Grand Central Station

You probably know the famous New York central station from all the dramatic farewell scenes or romantic reunions that were shot here. The building is absolutely beautiful and therefore it is understandable why it is used as a movie setting so often. We definitely recommend a visit to the station!

The station is large, however it is not hard to find the central hall. Don't forget to take a glance at the constellations painted on the ceiling. Grand Central Station is located at E 42nd St and Park Avenue.

  1. SoHo

The SoHo neighborhood in Lower Manhattan (an abbreviation of South of Houston Street and a reference to London's SoHo neighborhood) is best known as the city's shopping paradise. You can wander the shopping streets for hours on end which are filled with high- and low-end stores.

SoHo is home to many art galleries, however, what SoHo is best known for are its Art Deco buildings decorated with cast iron elements.
Because of all the beauty SoHo has to offer it is not surprising that SoHo was added to the list of the American National Register of Historical Places.

  1. High Line

This city park opened in 2009 after they decided to transform the old railway line near Chelsea into a beautiful park. Before the 1980s, the line was used to transport goods, however it lost its purpose after the railway fell into disrepair. Now it is transformed into a walking park and if you look closely you can still find the old tracks between the greenery. Make sure to enjoy the view over the city and the water while walking through the park.

The High Line runs from Gansevoort Street and Washington Street to W 34th St between 11th and 12th Avenue. The park is open almost daily between 07:00 and 22:00.

Would you like to explore New York City? Download our free New York travel guide with a complete city tour along the best highlights of the Big Apple!

  1. Gospel in Harlem NYC

Seeing the Harlem gospel choir perform during your vacation in New York is a unique experience. To do so, you will have to find your way to one of the gospel churches. Luckily there are many gospel churches in the Harlem district of New York where you are allowed to attend the service as an outsider.

Our tip: Would you like to be a part of the unique experience of a Gospel celebration? Join an experienced guide and visit the nicest churches among the locals. Guaranteed an experience that will be remembered for a long time. Check here and book your tour online.

  1. Broadway

Broadway, the only street that runs diagonally through Manhattan. If your English is good enough, we definitely recommend to go see a musical on Broadway. These performances are considered to be the best in the world, where the most famous musical actors give the best of themselves every day. Most of the theaters are located next to Times Square. Book your Aladdin of the Lion King musical tickets online.

You can try to get cheap tickets at the TCKTS store, but you will have to queue up for a long time. If you want to be sure of a ticket and you have some money for it, it is best to buy your tickets for the Broadway musicals online.

  1. Ellen's Stardust Diner

Ellen's Stardust Diner is a great place for a hearty dinner while enjoying a good portion of entertainment. Waiters and waitresses are dancing on tabels, singing and entertaining the guests. The atmosphere is so fun that it makes you feel like you're in a 50s Broadway show. Besides the entertainment the restaurant of course also serves food: old delicious American dishes.

You can find the restaurant at 1650 Broadway, New York, NY 10019 (see location on the map).

  1. Madison Square Garden and Penn Station

Madison Square Garden is located on top of the Pennsylvania Station (also known as Penn Station) and serves as an indoor arena for events. It is one of the most famous indoor arenas in the world. Buy a ticket in advance for a guided tour of the venue. The all-access tour takes you behind the scenes of the arena.

A knowledgeable guide will tell you all about the history of the hall, and with a bit of luck there will be a rehearsal while you're there. Madison Square Garden is home to the New York Rangers, the NYC ice hockey team and the NBA basketball team New York Knicks.

Would you like to take a tour of Madison Square Garden? You can book your tour here.

  1. Gimbel's Bridge

Now that you're close by, you can stroll down W 32nd Street to see Gimbel's Bridge: a three-story art deco skybridge between two buildings. This elegant skybridge is no longer open to the public, since it connects to the private floors of the buildings of Penn Station. However, it is still worth it to pass by and take a look at the outside of the bridge instead.

It was built in 1925 by the company that also created the Empire State Building a few years later, which you will see later that day.

  1. The department store Macy's

Macy's was founded in 1858 by Rowland Hussey Macy. The department store has over the years played an important role in New York's commercial scene. You might recognize the store from the movie Miracle on 34th street, where the store is transformed into the 'real' department store of Santa Claus.

This flagship store is one of the largest department stores in the world. Since 1924, the company has sponsored the Thanksgiving Day Parade every year and, since 1976, the fireworks on the 4th of July during the United States National Day.

Before you start shopping, pass by the visitor centre. There you can pick up a loyalty card for visitors to get a 10% discount on most items. During your visit to the store, be sure to check out the wooden escalators on the top two floors. They date back to the 1920s and 1930s.

  1. Bryant Park

Bryant Park is a pleasant place to relax before continuing your walk through New York City. If you come to NYC in the winter months, you will find an ice rink here. The park first opened in 1847, back then it was still called Reservoir Square.

Believe it or not, the public toilet here is worth a visit. It's not every day you end up in a high quality toilet that plays classical music and has a wall full of framed works of art, so make sure to check it out! (Bonus: The park provides free Wi-Fi)

Do you want to explore New York to its fullest potential? Then it's best to buy a New York city pass. It will save you a lot of money!

  1. Chrysler Building

The Chrysler Building was built by Walter Chrysler, the CEO of Chrysler Corporation. From 1930 to the mid-1950s it was Chrysler's headquarters. Although this art deco skyscraper was built and designed for the company, they never owned it themselves. Walter Chrysler decided to pay for the company building himself, so that his children could inherit it.

Although at that time, opinions regarding the architecture differed widely and some were loudly condemned, it is now viewed as a paragon of art deco and it is one of America's favorite buildings. This used to be the tallest building in the world until it was surpassed by the Empire State Building in 1931.

The building is not fully open to the public, but you can enter the lobby to admire the art deco interior along with a mural from the 1930s.

  1. Het Waldorf Astoria hotel

The Waldorf Astoria hotel was originally located on 5th Avenue, but those buildings were demolished to make way for the Empire State Building. The current building is an art deco monument completed in 1931.

The Waldorf was the residence of President Herbert Hoover for more than 30 years. Also Dwight D. Eisenhower lived here until his death in 1969, and Frank Sinatra had a suite from 1979 to 1988. Inside the hotel are three restaurants: Peacock Alley, A steak house and a Chinese restaurant. You can also have a drink in Harry's Bar. Would you like to stay here yourself? Book your room online.

Interesting fact: A copper door at street level leads you to Track 61. That is an old secret railway which is said to have been used by presidents and other important people for clandestine arrivals and departures. Some say it still serves as a secret escape route for presidents and other influential people.

  1. Morgan Library and Museum

The Morgan Library and Museum used to be the private collection of banker John Pierpont Morgan. Today, it is open to the general public and it houses an impressive collection of rare literary works. Alongside, there is also an exhibition space for visual arts, literature and music.

Be sure to visit the library, you will be amazed by the architecture, design and atmosphere of this place. Be sure to look up into the "rotunda", to see the graceful artistry. Also make sure to take a look at the extraordinary rare books and manuscripts of the East Room

  1. Oculus station

The World Trade Center Transportation Hub or the Oculus station was designed by Santiago Calatrava. He named his design 'A bird being released from a child's hand'. The previous station was destroyed during the 9/11 attacks, but in 2016 the new one opened and connects the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) with the metro network of New York City.

  1. The Woolworth Building

Woolworth Building is one of the oldest skyscrapers in the city. It was the tallest building in the world from 1913 to 1930 and is still one of the 30 tallest buildings in New York to this day. The building consists of a 30-storey tower that stands on top of a 30-storey building.

The exterior is decorated with terracotta and limestone. Many say it resembles Gothic cathedrals in Europe, which is why it is often called 'the Cathedral of Commerce'. The lobby has various sculptures, mosaics and interesting architectural elements.

  1. Trinity Church

At the intersection of Broadway and Wall Street, you can find Trinity Church. The church has a Gothic spire with a gilded cross. Back in time, when the spire was newly build, it dominated the skyline of Lower Manhattan and served as a welcome beacon for ships approaching New York Harbor. Until 1869 it was the tallest building in the United States and the highest point in New York. However, in 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge surpassed the record.

The attached cemetery is the resting place of a number of remarkable figures from American history, including founder Alexander Hamilton. The oldest sculpted tombstone of the city, belonging to Richard Churcher, is also located here. Richard died in 1681 at the tender age of 5. Would you like to explore southern New York with a guide? Book your tour online

  1. Wall Street and Wall Street Charging Bull

Wall Street is an 8-block neighborhood between Broadway and South Street, near East River. This is the epicenter of Western finance. Over time, it has become synonymous with the financial markets of the United States, the U.S. financial services industry and New York's major banks.

Another highlight is the Wall Street Charging Bull Sculpture near Lower Manhattan. In the past you could also find the statue "Fearless Girl" in front of the bull, but it was removed on November 28, 2018, after a lot of controversy arose around it.
On the spot where the statue stood, you'll find a text: "Fearless Girl is on the move to the New York Stock Exchange. Until she's there, stand for her." The plaque has footprints you can symbolically stand on.

Our tip: Would you like to explore southern Manhattan on a city walk? Download our free walk through Wall Street and South Manhattan.

  1. South Street Seaport

South Street Seaport is located along the intersection of Fulton Street and the East River. Along the port, you will find a lot of old architecture. There are many restored 19th century commercial properties, including old commercial buildings, refurbished sailing ships and the former Fulton Fish Market. There are also tourist shopping centers where you can shop, dine or drink.

  1. City Hall Station

Before crossing the Brooklyn Bridge, make sure to take a visit to the (now deserted) City Hall Station. The station is beautifully decorated with tiles and large chandeliers. Even though it was a beautiful station, the stop was always one of the least used in the metro network. This mainly due to the fact that the station didn't install turnstiles until 1923, and because the nearby Brooklyn Bridge stop was more convenient for public transport.

Our tip: Thanks to the New York Transit Museum, you can book a tour around the abandoned station. Book your ticket for the museum online.

  1. DUMBO district

Visit the DUMBO district (abbreviation of 'Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass'), formerly known as Gairville. The area has two parts - the first between Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridge, and the second from Manhattan Bridge to Vinegar Hill. DUMBO is known as an expensive neighborhood, and it is home to a lot of start-up technology companies.

For an iconic picture go to the intersection of Washington and Front Street.

  1. Street art in Bushwick

Buhwick is the place for street art in NYC. Here you will find works of art from many internationally-known and emerging artists. Everyone can discover the art for free since it is a public space. In the summer it is best to go earlier or later in the day to avoid the heat. On weekdays it is best to go during office hours, when it is less crowded.

To get to Bushwick, take the L-train to Morgan Avenue Station. This takes 20 to 30 minutes from Manhattan. You can also get off at Jefferson Street Station.

Our tip: Would you like to discover the best places in Bushwick? Join a street-art tour of Brooklyn.

A few places with fun street art in Bushwick

  1. Williamsburg, aka Little Berlin

Williamsburg is one of Brooklyn's best hotspots. Since the late 1990s, this diverse neighborhood has undergone a "gentrification" and is now a vibrant contemporary neighborhood with an art scene, hipster culture, and a thriving nightlife. Alongside, it is also a breeding ground for new bands and musicians. Internationally, Williamsburg has earned a reputation as 'Little Berlin'.

The best way to get to know the neighborhood is to stroll around and discover the streets, shops, cafes, restaurants and bars for yourself. Join a walk through Williamsburg, book a ticket online.

  1. Bowery Wall Mural

Bowery Wall Mural is a must do! Since the early 80's this street corner has been the canvas of many street artists. This is where Keith Haring painted his first major public work. This piece of wall is a constant changing work of art. Join a Rock 'n Rolling walk through the East Village.

  1. Little Italy

In Little Italy you're in the right place if you want to taste the Italian cuisine. Back in the 80s, Immigrants from Naples and Sicily came here, which left a strong Italian presence on Mulberry Street and the surrounding blocks. The authentic pastas and pizzas from the excellent restaurant in this area are a must.

The district is at its liveliest during the annual feast of San Gennaro. Every year in September Little Italy is transformed for 11 days with red, white and green decorations, colorful processions, lots of good food and a festive atmosphere with live entertainment.

Our tip: Want to taste the best of Little Italy? Join a food tour of Little Italy.

  1. Chinatown (or one of the 9 chinatown's)

Chinatown in Manhattan is one of the nine Chinatowns in the city. In the past, the largest number of Chinese from the Western cities lived here. Walk south from Little Italy if you prefer the Chinese cuisine instead (or do both). Besides eating, take some time to explore the area. Even though this is not the largest Chinatown in New York, it is one of the oldest Chinese neighborhoods.

Recommended: have dessert at the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory. (visit their website)

Jing Fong is another option if you would like something to eat. This is the most famous dim sum restaurant in New York. On the second floor, in a gigantic dining room of more than 120 tables, they serve the best of Cantonese cuisine. Book in advance, because it is often fully booked. More info on their website.

  1. Katz's Deli, pastrami on rye bread

Katz's Deli, is a famous delicatessen, famous for its pastrami on rye bread. The delicatessen is popular among locals and tourists and was founded in 1888. The shop might look familiar to you. Over the years, Katz's has appeared in numerous films and TV series. Perhaps the most famous film scene from here is Meg Ryan's 'orgasm' from 'When Harry Met Sally'.

Bring cash if you plan to buy something here, because no credit cards are accepted. And don't forget to hold on to your ticket which is given to you when you enter; don't lose it - you have to show it when you leave. Yeah, it's usually very busy, but the queue moves fast and the super-sized sandwiches are worth defying. They're not cheap, but definitely worth the experience. Visit their website for more info

  1. The Back Room café

Walk through the gate of Lower East Side Toy Company and follow the path to the Back Room, an authentic 1920's bar. With its dimly lit lounge, teacups and VIP area hidden behind a bookcase, The Back Room is one of the best places in town to go back in time. More info on their website.

  1. American Museum of the Moving Image

American Museum of the Moving Image is one of Queens' unmissable highlights, therefore make sure to take your time to visit it. This media museum is housed in a former building of the historic Astoria Studios and opened its doors in 1988.

There is a fantastic range of interactive exhibitions and a well-filled program of shows and entertainment. Book your ticket for this unqiue museum online.

  1. Roosevelt Island

With a standard subway ticket you can take the cable car at Tramway Plaza in Upper East Side of Manhattan to go to Roosevelt Island in the East River. The cable car rises to 76m above the East River and is an attraction in itself. The line was installed in 1976 as a temporary solution, but despite the fact that the subway has been running to the island since 1989, the cable car remains a popular way to reach the island.

  1. Coney Island

Coney Island is another nice island, especially in summer when the amusement park is open. This is a popular place for both New Yorkers and tourists. It has been a tourist resort since the 19th century. At the beginning of the 21st century a lot of improvements were made. Coney Island is located in the southwestern part of Brooklyn. The district is bordered by Gravesend in the north, Brighton Beach and Manhattan Beach in the east, Sea Gate in the west and Lower New York Bay in the south.

Take the F or Q train to the West 8th Street subway station. BTW, the station has an interesting architectural feature: a 'Wavewall' made by Vito Acconci in 2005. Make sure to take into account that this is the southernmost station of the entire New York metro network, therefore it will take about 1 hour to reach Coney Island from Manhattan.

The Wonder Wheel of Coney Island was inaugurated on Memorial Day in 1920. In 1948, Deno, who later bought the company, asked his wife Lula to marry him in front of the Miracle Wheel and promised that one day he would own the Ferris wheel and give her a "ring" so big that anyone in the world could see how much he loved her.

The annual Mermaid Parade is located on Surf Avenue and serves as the first event to heralds the summer. It is the largest art parade in the United States and encourages participants and bystanders to dress in nautical costumes.

Do you like a good hot dog? Nathan's Famous Hot Dogs is the perfect place to taste a hot dog before continuing your trip. This is the original Nathan's restaurant that was the beginning of the popular hot dog chain. Every year on the 4th of July there is a Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest.

  1. How to go from JFK Airport to Manhattan?

By taxi

To get from JFK to the heart of Manhattan, you can take a taxi for a fixed rate, including bridge and tunnel toll and tip. For more information call 212-NYC-TAXI. Taking a taxi is of course the most expensive option. You can also rent a car yourself, but if you are staying in the city, this is not recommended. Book your taxi online (fix price)

By AirTrain JFK and metro

The AirTrain JFK is connected to the New York metro network. With the subway you can reach Midtown Manhattan in about 60 to 75 minutes.

By Airtrain JFK and train

Another option is to take the AirTrain JFK to Jamaica Station Railroad Station. There you can take the Long Island Railroad from Jamaica Station to Penn Station (Pennsylvania station, Manhattan) which takes about 20 minutes.

  1. How to get from Newark Liberty Airport to Manhattan?

By taxi

Newark Liberty is in New Jersey, about 16 miles from Midtown Manhattan. You can take a cab or private car service. If you travel to Manhattan by taxi, you can use the yellow taxis in New York. You pay the meter fare, toll, tip, plus a surcharge.

The journey takes about 45-60 minutes, again depending on traffic. Book your taxi ride online (fixed price).

The AirTrain Newark followed by the train Amtrak

Just like the other airports, shuttle buses are available. You can also take the AirTrain Newark to connect to the NJ Transit line and Amtrak. On the AirTrain and NJ Transit line, it will take 45-90 minutes to reach Manhattan. (Be sure to keep your ticket if you switch between the two, as both airlines use it).

  1. Tipping in New York how much and when?

Tipping in New York can be confusing, especially if you're not used to it or it's not the norm in your home country. Here is some insight into how much you tip (and whether or not to tip):

Tipping in restaurants

A tip of 15-20% of the total bill is the norm if you received normal/good service. At a high-end restaurant 20% is expected.

Tipping in bars and cafes

  • It is standard to give the bartender a tip of 1 dollar per drink, or a 15-20% tip if served at a table.
  • At a luxury bar, a $15 drink may be worth a $2 tip. If you order drinks for everyone, then a $2 to $3 tip is customary.

Tipping taxi drivers

  • You usually tip a taxi driver 10-15% of the tariff, plus an extra $1 or $2 for help with your luggage.
  • Valet services and shuttle drivers usually get a $2 tip per person and travel bag.

Tipping guides and tours

  • 5 to 20 dollars or 10-15% of the ticket price (unless the tip was already included in the price)
  • 1 to 5 dollars per person for the driver of a tour bus.
  • 10% of the bill for couriers of e.g. pizzas or other deliveries
  • 15-20% of the bill at a barber, hairdresser, beauty salon, etc.
  1. Video: breathtaking footage of the city

Wondering what New York looks like from the air? Watch this movie and fly along the most famous spots of the city. If you want to admire all that beauty in real life, you will of course have to travel to New York yourself!

  1. Where to spend the night in New York City?

Would you like a budget-friendly overnight stay? A good option is to spend the night on Staten Island, you're close to Manhattan and can still spend the night considerably cheaper. Or choose a hotel in Brooklyn or Queens. With the subway you'll be at any location in minutes, check out our selection of favorite hotels in New York.

Our Tip: Would you like to spend the night in Manhattan? Our favorite is the Pod 51 Hotel in Midtown East Village, Manhattan. "Budget-friendly, everything you might need for a comfortable stay and a rooftop bar to enjoy a nice cocktail. All for € 86/night ! Book and find more info here
  1. Don't miss out on anything during your visit to New York with our travel guide

Like most of us, you don't want to miss out on anything during your visit to New York City. In our free travel guide New York, you can find a complete city walk totally for free. If you are interested in even more information? Buy our travel guide New York with 6 fully planned out walks, plenty of hidden jems and the best highlights of the Big Apple.

New York City

Gratis preview reisgids downloaden

Posted by

Wouter Coppens

Routes around here

Wil je elke week leuke reistips en voordelen ontvangen?