Not just a major American city, New York is the epitome of a worldwide city. Thanks to the influx of immigrants in the 19th and early 20th centuries, there is a colorful array of neighborhoods and cultures that give New York the feel of being a microcosm of the entire world.
In addition, New York is the financial capital of the world, one of the top fashion hubs, and a major center for entertainment and culture. These factors make New York a top destination for travelers from all over the world.
Where to Stay
There are more lodging options in New York than ever before. Hotel rates in Manhattan, even the usually budget-friendly chains, are notoriously high. If you are looking to save some money on your trip, don’t discount staying in another borough like Brooklyn or Queens, where there are great deals to be found. And don’t worry, you will still be close enough to the center of all the action.
Lively and funky, yet comfortable, Aloft New York Brooklyn is a modern boutique hotel away from the chaos of midtown Manhattan, but close enough to enjoy it all. Kid and pet friendly, it’s a great place to stay with the family. It boasts comfortable rooms, and a fun rooftop bar with plenty of skyline views.
With a warm and inviting lobby, the Casablanca Hotel is a visual feast. Located in the Theater District, the room decor looks like it fits right in, with its dramatic woodwork and mosaics. It is in an excellent location, just steps away from Broadway and Times Square. Enjoy complimentary buffet breakfasts and evenings mingling over wine and cheese.
If the New York Public Library is like an amusement park for bookworms, then its neighbor, the Library Hotel Manhattan is its accompanying resort. Inspired by its bookish neighbor, the hotel features 10 floors, each of which is based on a different Dewey Decimal classification. Each room is filled with books, and the entire hotel is warm and comfortable, just like an old-fashioned wood paneled library in a stately manor. Enjoy complimentary breakfast, as well as close proximity to Bryant Park and Fifth Avenue.
Where to Eat
In a city filled with stars of fashion, theater, and art, the food in The Big Apple takes center stage. It is possible to eat your way through your New York holiday, and literally never eat at the same place, the same cuisine, or even in the same neighborhood twice. From street food to diners and delis to fancy four star restaurants, all you need to do is listen to what your appetite is asking for!
Legendary for its corned beef and pastrami, Katz’s Delicatessen is a New York landmark in its own right.
Established in 1888, when the Lower East Side of Manhattan was a predominantly Jewish neighborhood, nothing inside the deli has changed, and everyone seems fine with it. In addition to mouth watering sandwiches, they are famous for soups and hot dogs, along with unbeatable atmosphere.
If you are in the mood for authentic Chinese food, hit Chinatown. Great New York Noodletown features unforgettable Chinese soup and noodle dishes. Peking Duck House is famous for its Peking Duck, carved right at your table.
Italian cuisine is world famous in New York, and one of the most popular places to get some is at Carmine’s, located on the Upper West Side near Broadway. Huge portions of classics like linguini with clams sauce and chicken parmigiana make this a perfect spot to come with the family.
Cuisine from all four corners of the globe is faithfully and lovingly represented in each of New York’s neighborhoods. Sometimes the best way to find a place to eat is to simply stumble upon it. Some of New York’s best food is found behind a nondescript door!
What to Do
It is virtually impossible to see and do everything in one trip to New York. There are museums, galleries, historic landmarks, world famous stores, monuments, neighborhoods and more to browse.
Ground Zero is one sight that should not be skipped. The solemn reminder of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center is in a state of rebirth. The memorial sight, reflecting pools in the footprints of the twin towers featuring the names of all the victims, will overwhelm you.
The Statue of Liberty is currently closed indefinitely, but that doesn’t mean you can’t visit nearby Ellis Island and tour the facilities that served as the checkpoint for immigrants in the 19th and 20th centuries. Or take a ferry ride around Liberty Island for great views of Lady Liberty.
Visit the New York Public Library, a truly beautiful building. Take the kids to see the dinosaurs at the Museum of Natural History, and tour one of the world’s most extensive museums, the Metropolitan, whose architecture makes it a work of art on its own. Hit Fifth Avenue and tour Tiffany’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, and FAO Schwartz. Enjoy New York’s lively nightlife with a Broadway show or a trendy club. Unwind from the excitement with a relaxing stroll through Central Park or Battery Park.
When to Visit
They say autumn in New York is truly special. It is also the most expensive! Spring and Fall are the peak seasons, when the weather is most enjoyable. If you can tolerate the chill, January and February offer the lowest hotel rates of the year.