10 Best Things to Do in New York City

Because there are a million things to do in New York City, it’s not that hard to pick ten of them. The hard part, however, is to choose the best things to do, because that means that some stuff has to be left out. You see, there are more than just ten great activities in the ‘City that Never Sleeps’.

I’ve been there twice in the past, say, nine months and have visited all the major attractions, highlights, sites, what have you, but also some of the less-known places. I’ll save those less-known and therefore less-visited places for another post, and focus on the actual top 10 things to do in New York City for now.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City

10. Rockefeller Center

The Rockefeller Center is one of New York City’s many icons. The best time of year to visit is around Christmas time, when the huge Christmas tree is lit and people are skating on the rink.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: Rockefeller Center
Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree

9. Cocktails in a Rooftop Bar

Forget going up the Empire State Building or Rockefeller Center. Drinking cocktails in a rooftop bar is what you really want to do. The views are pretty much the same and usually there is a spectacular view of the two previously mentioned skyscrapers.

8. American Museum of Natural History

This massive museum – it has 32 million (!) artefacts – is impossible to see in a day. Honestly, I think it’s even impossible to see it all in a whole week. It consists of 25 buildings and 45 exhibition halls. It’s a truly extraordinary museum, in many ways, and, when visiting, it is best to focus on a few halls and subjects, rather than rushing to see everything.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City:  American Museum of Natural History
American Museum of Natural History

7. 9/11 Memorial

The National September 11 Memorial is located at the site where the Twin Towers once stood. Now it is a park with about 250 trees. Two large square pools lie at the very location of the towers. The names of the victims of the 2001 and 1993 attacks are inscribed on panels around the pools.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: 9/11 Memorial
One World Trade Center

6. Play on Broadway

There’s no activity more ‘New York’ than attending a play on Broadway. The blocks around Times Square and Broadway are home to many theaters and the selection of plays is huge. The ticket offices at Times Square always have discount tickets on offer.

5. Staten Island Ferry

This is one of my best things to do in New York City, especially because it’s totally free. The Staten Island Ferry runs between Lower Manhattan and Staten Island and passes by the Statue of Liberty. I say: don’t waste your money on ferry tickets to Liberty Island, but hitch a free ride on this one! The views of Lady Liberty and the Manhattan skyline are nothing less than fantastic.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: Staten Island Ferry
Staten Island Ferry and Lower Manhattan Skyline

4. Metropolitan Museum of Art

Okay, this is one of my favorite museums in the entire world. Just like the Museum of Natural History, the Met is huge. It is chock-full of masterpieces from all across the globe, spanning a period of about 5,000 years. Its vast collections include painting by European masters, sculptures from Ancient Greece, artefacts from Ancient Egypt, and modern art. It’s more than impressive. Again, you won’t be able to see it all in one day.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: Metropolitan Museum of Art
Metropolitan Museum of Art

3. Stroll through Central Park

Another New York City icon, Central Park should not be skipped. This is in fact where the Met is located. There’s also a zoo, theater, playgrounds, restaurants, bars, huge grassy lawns, ponds, lakes etcetera. Absolutely make sure to go for walk through Central Park when staying in New York City.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: Central Park
Ice Skating Rink in Central Park

2. Walk across Brooklyn Bridge

I love free activities – who doesn’t? – and this is another one. The large Brooklyn Bridge connects the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn. From Manhattan you can take the subway to Brooklyn and walk back across the bridge. The views of the skyline are phenomenal.

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge
Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge

1. Times Square

Times Square is probably my favorite place in the entire city. I’m fascinated by the flashing neon lights, the bright advertisements, the hustle and bustle and the amount of activity that is going on at all times on all days. Times Square is why New York City is called the ‘City that Never Sleeps’ .

10 Best Things to Do in New York City: Times Square
Times Square

There, this was my personal 10 best things to do in New York City , one of my favorite cities.

I realize that I’ve used a lot of superlatives here, but I meant it all!

About Bram

Website: http://www.travel-experience-live.com

Bram is a Belgian guy who's currently living in the USA. For over four years now, he has been wandering the globe, with jobs here and there in between. So far, his travels have taken him to four continents and twenty-two countries. Bram likes to try different styles of travelling: from backpacker and adventurer to tourist and local, he has been all those stereotypes and probably will be many more in the future. You can follow his adventures on his travel blog, on Twitter and on Facebook.

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