Planning a trip to the Big Apple? Better make it a long one. With so much to see and do in this fast-paced city, you will need a lot of time. Globally known for its art, culture, fashion and finance districts, it's almost impossible to see everything in just one trip. But have no fear, we've narrowed down some of the most notable, as well as some of the more hidden gems, that this amazing city has to offer. From the Empire State Building to Times Square, you won't leave this city disappointed. So start packing those bags because one of the most exciting cities in the world is waiting for you.
Things to see and do in New York City, Which will you choose?
If you're a people watcher, this is the place to grab a seat and relax. Designed by Calvert Vaux and Frederick Law Olmsted, this park is home to 843 acres of beautiful views. You can walk through the park, take a bike ride or pay for a guided tour. You can stop to see the model sailboats at the Conservatory Water, the Alice in Wonderland sculpture, Belvedere Castle or the Bow Bridge, one of the park's most photographed locations. And during your excursions, you're bound to hear live music throughout the park. You can even visit the Imagine Mosaic, a tribute to John Lennon, in the park's Strawberry Fields.
It's not surprising to know that New York is a town for film lovers. At the Film Forum you will be able to see movies that you would likely only read about. You will be treated to films that range from Indie features and documentaries to some of the foreign art cinema that was featured in some of the world's top film festivals. So, if you're a film lover, this is the place for you.
New York is filled with some of the best pizzerias around. So if it's pizza you are after, you must visit Grimaldi's, a coal-fired pizzeria that sits under the shadow of the Brooklyn Bridge. You will be treated to some of the best pizza pie around as well as a great view of Manhattan. There is also a jukebox inside that is filled with Frank Sinatra classics. In fact, rumour has it that Sinatra actually had Grimaldi's pies flown to him while he was in Vegas.
Empire State Building
Yes, it's a touristy spot, but you can't possibly visit NYC without stopping at the Empire State Building. The massive structure is an architecture dream and the views – especially form the 86th floor – are breathtaking. Be prepared to wait in line and pay a price for the tour, about $22 for adults. Still, the price is worth it for the pictures you will get to add to your photo album, not to mention the fact that you get to visit a monument that has been featured in some of the best romantic movie scenes.
If it's shopping you are after, look no further than Bergdorf Goodman, the sole remaining New York-centric luxe department store. You may not be able to afford much here but it's still fun to roam the aisles and see where the rich and famous shop. If you don't have a lot of time to shop, you can always arrange for a personal shopper to help you find what you are looking for.
If you love music, you will love a stop at the Bowery Ballroom. This place is known as one of the best music spots in New York because it features up-and-coming national acts. The Ballroom is made up of the Bowery Presents chain of local venues, which includes the Music Hall of Williamsburg, Mercury Lounge for local, smaller acts and Terminal 5 and Webster Hall, which book bigger touring bands. So, no matter your taste, there is something here for everyone.
If you have time, you could roam the halls of the Metropolitan Museum of Art for days. It has more than two million works of art, representing 5,000 years of history. The Museum of Modern Art is also a great place to visit to see some of the most popular historical masterpieces such as Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon and Van Gogh's Starry Night. The American Museum of Natural History is considered the largest natural history museum in the world, mainly because it is built over four city blocks. With 45 exhibition halls, which hold more than 30 million artifacts from the land, sea and outer space, you won't leave disappointed.
One of the most exciting and lively places to visit in NYC is hands down, Times Square. You'll stand shoulder-to-shoulder with other onlookers and leave with a sensory overload thanks to all of the flashy billboards, television broadcasts and lively entertainment.
This is one of New York's most recognized landmarks, since it stretches over the East River, connecting Manhattan and Brooklyn. The walk across will take you about 40 minutes and will give you some of the most beautiful, breathtaking views of the city.
This memorial was completed just in time for the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and is a reminder to all of how fragile life can be. The 30-foot waterfalls sit where the Twin Towers once stood. The pools are said to be the largest man-made waterfalls in North America. There is also bronze panels nearby that are inscribed with the names of the 2,983 people who were killed in the terror attacks on the World Trade Center site, in Flight 93's crash in Pennsylvania, at the Pentagon and the six people who died in the World Trade Centre bombing in 1993.