5 Activities Not to Be Missed in New York City

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New York City

New York City is a tourist’s haven with wonderful attractions and endless things to do. It is the city that never sleeps, after all. In fact, given all there is to see and do in the vast metropolis that is Gotham, it is helpful for tourists to have an insider’s guide to New York City. This article will give suggestions regarding Must-See attractions when traveling to The Big Apple and provide readers with tips and/or helpful hints to make their time in New York City unforgettable. Here are five activities not to be missed in New York City.

1. Shakespeare in the Park–This annual event is a hallmark of the New York City summer tourist season. It draws marquee stars, such as Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, and James Earl Jones, who perform modern interpretations of classic Shakespeare works at Central Park’s Delacorte Theater, which is a 1,800-seat, open-air theater. These performances are attended by nearly 100,000 people each season. This year’s cycle runs from May 24 – August 14, 2016. The first offering, “The Taming of the Shrew,” which was featured from May 24 – June 26, 2016, has already concluded. The second offering for the season, “Troilus and Cressida,” begins July 19 and finishes out the event on August 14, 2016.

Tickets for “Shakespeare in the Park” are free, however, they are very much in-demand and can be difficult to obtain. The tickets are only available the day of the show in one of four locations–in person at Central Park, in person at Astor Place, via an online lottery, or in person in one of the boroughs. There is also another option for those who really covet event tickets. People known as line-sitters will go to one of the four venues and procure tickets for others for a fee. These services can carry a hefty price tag but some are willing to pay it in order to experience this unique presentation while visiting New York City.

New York City

2. Ride the Staten Island Ferry–This mode of transportation is not only a unique experience, the Staten Island Ferry is a New York City attraction not to be missed. For no charge, tourists and locals alike can take a 25-minute journey by water from Lower Manhattan to Staten Island. During their ride, passengers will enjoy spectacular views of the Statue of Liberty, New York Harbor, and Manhattan skyline. The ferry docks at the St. George Ferry Terminal, which happens to be a short bus ride from the Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden. This cultural and entertainment destination is made up of several components whose diverse offerings should appeal to all ages and interests. This scenic hideaway includes the Noble Maritime Collection, Staten Island Children’s Museum, and Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art.

3. Free Music, Movies, and Concerts–The Big Apple is famous for its vibrant arts and culture scene. There are dozens of free outdoor concerts, cultural events, and movie festivals held throughout the summer in all five boroughs. Some of the more well-known events include the New York Philharmonic in the Park recitals, the “Today Show” Summer Concert Series, Central Park Film Festival, Brooklyn Bridge Park: Movies With a View, Met Museum Roof Martini Bar, Lincoln Center Festival, and the Metropolitan Opera Summer Recital Series.

Best of all, these events are generally free to the public, however, access and/or seating can often
pose an issue. As such, locals and tourists alike will scope out establishments close to the event locations in an attempt to get a bird’s eye view of the presentation from a nearby restaurant and/or local pub.

4. Travel to Chinatown–In the summertime, Chinatown is transformed into Manhattan’s most fragrant neighborhood. However, the pungent odors can be overwhelming and unpleasant for tourists who are unaccustomed to the area. Meanwhile, the aromas are far more subtle and less noxious in the winter months, which makes exploring the exotic neighborhood much more enjoyable. There are a wide variety of activities to see and do in this iconic hub including finding quality knock-offs of coveted designer items, exploring the diverse food options available in the region, and/or patrons can get a deep tissue massage while in the neighborhood.

5. Free Walking Tours of Manhattan–Walking tours are offered by nearly every neighborhood organization in Manhattan–free-of-charge. New York City is a walker’s paradise, so tourists can explore Gotham while getting their exercise for the day. Needless to say, this option is tailor-made for travelers who are fitness enthusiasts.

New York City

These tours are conducted year-round but summer is the optimal time to explore New York City thoroughly and on foot. Free New York City walking tours will introduce travelers to Greenwich Village, Times Square, Central Park, Lower Manhattan, Wall Street, Lower East Side, Upper West Side, and Grand Central Station, just to name a few.

New York City is a mecca for tourism with top-notch attractions and more than enough activities to keep travelers and locals alike occupied. After all, it is aptly nicknamed the city that never sleeps. Given the endless supply of activities that New York City offers, it is helpful for tourists to have an insider’s guide to Gotham during their stay. This article has offered suggestions regarding five activities not to be missed when traveling to the vast metropolis and provided readers with tips and/or helpful hints to make their time in New York City a memorable, as well as rewarding, experience.

Opinion Written and Edited by Leigh Haugh

Time Out–The Best New York Tourist Attractions That Locals Love
NYCgo–NYC: The Official Guide
Complex–25 NYC Tourist Activities That Are Actually Cool
All Article Images Courtesy of WikiMedia Commons – Creative Commons License