NEW YORK CITY, 19 December 2022 — NYC & Company, New York City’s official destination marketing organization and convention and visitors bureau for the five boroughs of New York City, invites locals and visitors alike to Manhattan Like a New Yorker as part of the organization’s Get Local NYC initiative.
No visit to New York City is complete without laying eyes on Manhattan’s world-famous attractions like the Empire State Building, Times Square, the Statue of Liberty, Central Park, Rockefeller Center and the 9/11 Memorial & Museum. Seeing a Broadway show; shopping on 34th Street, Madison Avenue or in Soho; and exploring the High Line are also quintessential Manhattan experiences.
But there’s so much more to Manhattan than any top 10 list could ever convey. Enjoy dim sum in Chinatown, cappuccino and cannoli in Little Italy or Ukrainian food on the Lower East Side. Take a ferry to Governors Island or the tram to Roosevelt Island. Look for Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night at the Museum of Modern Art, Madame X at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and T. rex at the American Museum of Natural History. Uncover the secrets of Grand Central Terminal and shop for jewelry in the Diamond District. Downtown, ride the SeaGlass Carousel and pay your respects to Alexander Hamilton. Uptown, experience African American culture and history in Harlem, then head to Washington Heights for Dominican food and The Met Cloisters’ famed unicorn tapestries.
“Manhattan is a one-of-a-kind, old-meets-new destination, unlike anywhere else in the world,” said Maria Torres-Springer, NYC Deputy Mayor for Economic & Workforce Development. “Locals and visitors alike could explore Manhattan time and time again and continue to discover new and unique multicultural experiences. From our precious small businesses to our iconic attractions and unrivaled arts and dining scenes, there is truly something for everyone in this borough of endless possibilities.”
“You could live here your entire life and never run out of things to do in Manhattan,” said NYC & Company President and CEO Fred Dixon. “This is not only the financial, cultural and entertainment capital of the world, but it’s also indisputably one of the world’s best travel destinations. From theater and the arts to shopping and restaurants, from high tea at 4pm to dancing until 4am, from rich history to cutting-edge tech, from yoga in Central Park to rooftop bars, Manhattan offers endlessly unique ways to experience NYC like a New Yorker.”
In 1624, Dutch seafarers established a trading post on the southern edge of what the native Lenape people called Manahatta. Two years later the colony of New Amsterdam was founded. In 1664, the British took over and renamed it New York. Today the City’s oldest neighborhood is a global hub for finance, layered with historic sites as well as contemporary attractions.
The Battery, a waterfront park at the southern tip of Manhattan, offers stunning views of New York Harbor. Take a ride on the SeaGlass Carousel and then take your pick of boat rides. The Staten Island Ferry is free and offers a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island as it crosses the harbor. To visit Liberty Island, where the statue is located, and Ellis Island, home to the National Museum of Immigration, you must buy a ticket from Statue City Cruises. (The same boat stops at both sites.)
Nearby is the World Trade Center complex. Head up to the One World Observatory on the 102nd floor of One World Trade for a bird’s-eye view of Lower Manhattan. Then spend some time at the 9/11 Memorial, which pays tribute to the nearly 3,000 people who perished in the terror attacks that unfolded on September 11, 2001. Two reflecting pools occupy the footprints of the twin towers that were destroyed that day. Bronze parapets around the pools bear the names of those who died. Amid the memorial’s many trees, be sure to look for the Survivor Tree. It was grown from an 8-foot stump found in the wreckage of the fallen buildings.
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum (180 Greenwich St.) tells the story of the construction, destruction and rebuilding of the World Trade Center through photos, videos and artifacts. A wall of blue squares symbolizing the color of the sky on 9/11 bears this quote from Virgil: “No day shall erase you from the memory of time.”
The Trade Center complex also includes the Oculus, a striking structure designed by famed architect Santiago Calatrava. The Oculus serves as a transit hub for 12 subway lines and the PATH train to New Jersey, but its interior ribbed white wings also offer a great backdrop for selfies.
Take the R train to Canal Street and head to Mott Street. This is the center of Chinatown, offering souvenir shops, sidewalk vendors and restaurants galore. Get an egg tart at Golden Steamer, seafood at Ping’s, dim sum at the Nom Wah Tea Parlor or the house specialty at Peking Duck House. For shopping, visit Ting’s Gift Shop, Yunhong Chopsticks and Ten Ren Tea.
Look for a statue of Confucius near Division Street and the Bowery, and a statue of Lin Ze Xu, who fought Britain’s opium trade in the 19th century, at Chatham Square. Learn about Buddha’s life story from a series of panels inside the Mahayana Buddhist Temple (133 Canal St.).
Just north of Chinatown lies Little Italy. Try the pizza at Rubirosa, stock up on imported goods at Di Palo’s Fine Foods and save room for dessert from Ferrara Bakery, which opened in 1892 and still serves some of the best gelato, cappuccino and cannoli anywhere. The Feast of San Gennaro takes over the neighborhood for 10 days in mid-September each year.
Pick from upscale Soho shops, including Alexander Wang, Balenciaga, Chanel, Céline, Burberry, Prada and Rag & Bone. For more affordable shopping, head to Broadway.
For those into the arts, check out The Earth Room, an interior earth sculpture at 141 Wooster St., and the Louis K. Meisel Gallery (141 Prince St.), which was featured in Sex and the City. See a play at The Public Theater (that’s where Hamilton premiered) or time a visit for the Tribeca Film Festival, held each June.
Other notable spots include the playground and mini-golf course at Pier 25; the fire station featured in the Ghostbusters movie (14 N. Moore St.); and the “Jenga” tower (56 Leonard St.), an architectural marvel of irregular stacks. Lombardi’s (32 Spring St.) claims to be the birthplace of pizza, while the “cronut” was born at Dominique Ansel Bakery (189 Spring St.). In Tribeca, Locanda Verde, Frenchette, Tiny’s and the Bar Upstairs, and Walker’s are among the neighborhood’s many eating and drinking establishments.
Long gone are the immigrant pushcarts of the early 20th century and the graffiti and rent strikes of the late 20th century. Even the legendary punk rock club CBGB is just a memory. But there are still plenty of ways to experience the Lower East Side’s diversity, creativity and bohemian spirit.
Cultural venues include the Nuyorican Poets Café (236 E. 3rd St.), hosting poetry slams, readings, plays, workshops, salsa, jazz and more; La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club (66 E. 4th St.); the New Museum (235 Bowery) for contemporary art, and the Tenement Museum on the Lower East Side for an unforgettable immersion in the neighborhood’s immigrant history.
Hang out with the locals in Tompkins Square Park, then head to St. Mark’s Place, where you’ll find Korean snacks and a K-pop shop at Oh K-Dog, used books at East Village Books, punk fashion at Search & Destroy and authentic Japanese food at Kenka.
Tattoo parlors include Daredevil Tattoo, East Side Ink and Bang Bang. For vintage clothing, check out L Train Vintage, Ritual Vintage, Buffalo Exchange, the legendary Trash & Vaudeville, Jane’s Exchange for children’s and maternity wear, and Pilgrim New York for designer vintage.
Classic eateries include Katz’s Delicatessen (205 E. Houston St.), known for massive pastrami sandwiches and the “I’ll have what she’s having” scene from the movie When Harry Met Sally; and Veselka (144 Second Ave.), serving hearty Ukrainian food like pierogi and borscht since the 1950s. Newer foodie favorites include Souvlaki GR, Spicy Village, The Bun Hut and Sidney’s Five, while popular bars range from Garfunkel’s Speakeasy and Attaboy to McSorley’s Old Ale House, a legendary Irish bar famous for refusing to allow women inside until 1970.
To reach the heart of Greenwich Village, take the A, B, C, D, E, F or M train to the West 4th Street station. Travel east to Washington Square Park, framed by a grand marble arch. Here visitors will find students from nearby New York University, buskers, skateboarders, hippies and hipsters. Travel west to Christopher Park and the Stonewall National Monument. This is where the gay rights movement began in 1969, when LGBTQ+ patrons fought back against a police raid at The Stonewall Inn.
It’s been six decades since Bob Dylan and other folk singers found fame in the Village, but the neighborhood is still a great place for live music with clubs like Cafe Wha?, The Bitter End, the Village Vanguard and the Blue Note. Marie’s Crisis Café is a lively piano bar, and the Cherry Lane hosts live theater.
Other places of note include the tranquil garden at The Church of St. Luke in the Fields (487 Hudson St.); White Horse Tavern (567 Hudson St.), where regular patrons included Jack Kerouac and Dylan Thomas; and 75½ Bedford St., one of the narrowest buildings in New York at less than 10 feet wide (poet Edna St. Vincent Millay lived there). Many people venture to the West Village to see the exterior shots from the TV shows Sex and the City and Friends. Full tours of movie and TV locations across New York City are available via On Location Tours.
Nearby is the entrance to the High Line, a linear park built on an elevated freight rail line 30 feet above street level. Its landscaping, art installations, historic features and ever-changing city views have made it one of the most popular attractions in New York City. The High Line runs about a mile north, to 34th Street.
Near 13th Street at Pier 55 is Little Island, a new and unique urban oasis that’s part of Hudson River Park.
Union Square, the Flatiron District and Nomad are located in Manhattan’s East 20s and teens. Union Square Park hosts its lively outdoor Greenmarket on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Area retailers include Fishs Eddy home goods, ABC Carpet & Home and more.
The landmarked triangular Flatiron Building is at 175 Fifth Ave. Nearby Madison Square Park offers art installations, landscaping and the original location for Shake Shack. The area is also home to two very different museums: the Museum of Sex (Fifth Avenue and 27th Street) and the National Museum of Mathematics (11 E. 26th St.). Fotografiska NYC is a photography museum in the area worth a visit.
Murray Hill is a residential neighborhood starting in the East 20s, but a stretch of Lexington Avenue from 25th to 30th streets is called Curry Hill thanks to its cluster of South Asian restaurants, including Kailash Parbat, 99 Lexington, and Dhaba at 108 Lexington. Kalustyan’s, at 123 Lexington, is an emporium for spices and ethnic foods.
Chelsea is home to some 200 art galleries, dozens of cafés, bars and restaurants, and unique venues for shopping, culture and just plain fun. There’s the famed David Zwirner Gallery (525 W. 19th St.); the Rubin Museum of Art (150 W. 17th St.), which is devoted to Himalayan culture; and the McKittrick Hotel, where you can have a drink at the Gallow Green rooftop garden bar and then immerse yourself in Sleep No More, a noir-ish participatory interpretation of Macbeth. Chelsea Piers has everything from ice-skating to a bowling alley; Chelsea Market is an indoor global food hall; Chelsea Flea is a market for antiques and vintage goods. Try Palestinian food at Qanoon and burgers at the kitschy Trailer Park Lounge.
HUDSON YARDS and HELL’S KITCHEN
Hudson Yards is a relatively new neighborhood in the West 30s along the Hudson River. Attractions include The Shed, an arts venue; Mercado Little Spain, with food stalls and a restaurant by chef José Andrés; and Edge, an observation deck with a glass floor and walls 100 stories above street level.
Manhattan West is a recently opened development nearby, including office space, retail, dining and hotel accommodations.
Hell’s Kitchen includes the Javits Center, at 34th Street and Eleventh Avenue; the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, at Pier 86 near 46th Street, and the embarkation point for Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises at 43rd Street and Twelfth Avenue. Hell’s Kitchen also offers LGBTQ+ nightlife including multilevel nightclub The Q NYC.
The Empire State Building, Times Square, Macy’s, Grand Central Terminal and Rockefeller Center: They’re all among New York’s most iconic attractions, and they’re all in Midtown Manhattan.
The Empire State Building, at 34th Street and Fifth Avenue, is one of the world’s most recognizable landmarks. Taking in the view from the open-air observatory on the 86th floor remains one of the City’s most exciting experiences, and the full observatory experience was recently reimagined.
Macy’s, the largest department store in the US, anchors the 34th Street shopping district. A few blocks west lie Penn Station, the Moynihan Train Hall and Madison Square Garden, where the New York Knicks and New York Rangers play. At Broadway and 32nd Street is Korea Way, known for Korean restaurants and karaoke bars.
Times Square is at Broadway and 42nd Street. Nighttime here is as bright as day, thanks to massive, colorful digital billboards.
The nearby Theatre District runs from 40th to 54th Street, with something for everyone, from Disney musicals to classic dramas to avant-garde plays. Look for deals on the TodayTix app, research rush and lottery tickets, and stop by the TKTS booth at 47th Street and Broadway for same-day discounts (while you’re there, take a selfie on the red glass bleacher-style steps). NYC Broadway WeekSM also takes place in September and January/February each year, offering 2-for-1 tickets. Among the neighborhood’s many places to drink and dine are the revolving rooftop bar at the Marriott Marquis hotel and classic restaurants like Joe Allen, Sardi’s, Chez Josephine and Carmine’s. And don’t forget The Drama Book Shop (266 W. 39th St.), which carries scripts and other theater-related work.
Head east from Times Square along 42nd Street to Bryant Park, a lovely urban oasis on 42nd and Sixth Avenue, with a carousel, skating rink, free games and activities. The main branch of the New York Public Library is in a landmark beaux arts building on Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street, guarded by stone lions named Patience and Fortitude. Pop inside to see the Rose Main Reading Room, with its wedding-cake chandeliers and ceiling mural of a sky, and check out the permanent exhibition of library treasures.
Continuing east along 42nd Street you’ll hit Grand Central Terminal, another beaux arts landmark. Go in to see the glittering chandeliers, marble floors, tiled arches, ornate staircases, cathedral windows, four-faced clock and famous ceiling depicting zodiac constellations in a night sky. Find the whispering gallery, where visitors can press their face into a corner and have their whisper heard by someone in a corner across the way.
The area’s newest skyscraper One Vanderbilt opened recently and includes immersive art experience Summit One Vanderbilt, which also includes New York City’s newest observation deck.
Rockefeller Center spans 48th to 51st streets between Fifth and Sixth avenues. It’s home to a stunning collection of art deco skyscrapers, the Prometheus and Atlas sculptures, the Top of the Rock observatory, the Rainbow Room, the skating rink (currently a roller rink for the spring, summer and fall months) and the famous Christmas tree in December. The Museum of Modern Art is two blocks away on 53rd Street. MoMA’s permanent collection is simply astounding, with one masterpiece after another, including van Gogh’s Starry Night, Monet’s Water Lilies, Wyeth’s Christina’s World and many other world-famous works.
Central Park starts at 59th Street, running east to west from Fifth to Eighth avenues and north to 110th Street. It’s a picturesque oasis smack in the middle of Manhattan, with winding paths, ponds and bridges, trees and boulders, gardens and fields. Attractions include the zoo, the carousel, a skating rink, the Conservatory Garden and Belvedere Castle. You can tour it by bike or in a horse-drawn carriage; you can rent a rowboat or sail a model boat.
Central Park is also known for its statues, including one of Balto, the sled dog that brought medicine to stem an epidemic in Alaska; the Women’s Rights Pioneer Monument depicting suffragists Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Sojourner Truth, and the Alice in Wonderland sculpture featuring the White Rabbit, Cheshire Cat, Dormouse and Mad Hatter.
Strawberry Fields, near 72nd Street and Central Park West, honors John Lennon, who lived in the nearby Dakota building. He was murdered on the street there in 1980 by a deranged fan.
Columbus Circle is located by the park’s 59th Street entrance on the west side. Across the way is an upscale mall, The Shops at Columbus Circle. Inside you’ll find Adam and Eve, two plump nude sculptures, 12 feet tall, by Fernando Botero.
The Upper West Side is west of Central Park. Attractions include The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, Grant’s Tomb, Riverside Park, the Beacon Theatre, the New-York Historical Society and Lincoln Center, home to the New York City Ballet, the New York Philharmonic, the Metropolitan Opera and many other arts-related entities.
The American Museum of Natural History, at 81st Street and Central Park West, has an enormous collection of specimens and artifacts. Treasures include the T. rex dinosaur, the Great Blue Whale and the skeleton of Lucy, an early hominid. Next winter, the museum will unveil the Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation. This major new space will include a research library and learning center, an insectarium, a permanent butterfly exhibit, a theater and more.
The Upper West Side is also just a great place to soak up the local vibe. Get a bagel from Absolute Bagels or Barney Greengrass. Have a fancy dinner at Per Se. Go for an Alice in Wonderland–themed tea at Alice’s Tea Cup. Shop for gourmet groceries at Zabar’s. Have a drink at the Empire Hotel’s rooftop bar.
Go to the Upper East Side for upscale shopping and museums. Bloomingdale’s flagship is at 59th Street and Lexington, while Madison Avenue is home to a string of high-end stores like Bottega Veneta Maison, Celine, Dolce & Gabbana, Hermès, Missoni, Tom Ford and Ralph Lauren.
Fifth Avenue north of 80th Street is known as Museum Mile. It includes the Neue Galerie (German and Austrian art); The Jewish Museum; El Museo del Barrio (Latin art); the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum; and the Guggenheim Museum, famous for its spiral building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The most visited museum of all is The Metropolitan Museum of Art, home to a massive collection from around the world and across history that includes Egyptian mummies, Renaissance paintings, Greek and Roman artifacts and The Costume Institute.
Other notable sites on the Upper East Side include Gracie Mansion, where the Mayor lives (tours are available); Carl Schurz Park, on the East River near 84th Street; and the 92nd Street Y, a community and cultural center that hosts a variety of events.
Amid the neighborhood’s luxury high-rise buildings and multimillion-dollar townhouses, a few spots recall simpler times. Lexington Candy Shop is an old-school soda fountain and luncheonette, and the Schaller & Weber market is one of the last holdouts from Yorkville, a once-bustling neighborhood for German immigrants.
Take the tram, a ferry or the F train to Roosevelt Island. In addition to panoramic views of Manhattan, the island’s attractions include Four Freedoms Park, a sleek, modernist plaza designed by architect Louis I. Kahn that honors President Franklin Delano Roosevelt; the Blackwell Island Lighthouse; the spooky Renwick Ruin, an abandoned smallpox hospital; and the recent addition of a one-of-a-kind hotel retreat, the Graduate Roosevelt Island.
Harlem holds an iconic place in African American history, politics and culture. This is where the Harlem Renaissance unfolded, nurturing writers, artists, activists and musicians like Zora Neale Hurston, Langston Hughes, Duke Ellington and Marcus Garvey.
Places to visit include the Apollo Theater (253 W. 125th St.), which will expand to include the Victoria Theater project in fall 2022; the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (515 Malcolm X Blvd.), which hosts exhibitions; The National Jazz Museum (58 W. 129th St.); and Marcus Garvey Park, where the Harlem Cultural Festival featured in the film Summer of Soul took place. The beautiful 1890s brick-and-stone townhouses along West 138th and 139th streets are known as Strivers Row, where successful Harlemites like musician Eubie Blake and Congressman Adam Clayton Powell lived. A sculpture of Harriet Tubman is located on St. Nicholas Avenue near 122nd Street.
At the northern tip of Manhattan lie Washington Heights and Inwood. The Broadway hit and Hollywood movie In the Heights was set in Washington Heights’ Dominican community, and there’s plenty of great Dominican food to be had. Go for chimi burgers at Chimi Luisa; tropical cocktails and mashed green plantains at La Casa Del Mofongo and rotisserie chicken at Malecon. Other places to eat and drink include Floridita, known for Cubano sandwiches; Tu Cachapa for Venezuelan street food; Fort Washington Public House for beer; and Locksmith for coladas, margaritas and mojitos.
United Palace, once a grand movie theater, is now a venue for Latino cultural events. It’s adjacent to La Plaza de las Americas, an outdoor community gathering space.
Fort Tryon Park offers beautiful views of the Hudson River, and it is home to The Met Cloisters, which is part of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Built to resemble a medieval monastery, The Cloisters’ collection consists of art from the Middle Ages. Its treasures include seven tapestries featuring unicorns, woven 600 years ago in Europe.
In Inwood, visit Manhattan’s oldest farmhouse, the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum, built in 1785, along with Manhattan’s last natural forest and salt marsh, in Inwood Hill Park.
For further information on exploring Manhattan, visit nycgo.com/manhattan.