New York City is not a city you can get to know in just a typical holiday span time frame. Two weeks, or often even far less, is just not enough time to truly have a chance at discovering what this glorious city is all about. Firstly, with a population of 8.4 million people (the most populous in the US) and an area of over 1,000 km2 you simply won’t be able to move around the city quick enough to see all the sights that make this city famous. There are 5 different boroughs that span many miles and each have their own unique culture. The further south you go toward Manhattan the more you see the wealthier neighborhoods and businesses. The further north you go the more you get a downtown vibe, where streets stalls and sporting events take place. Its not just Manhattan but far more so if you decide to stay longer there are tons of activities to explore.
If you’re eventually planning the stay a bit longer, here some more things and events you can’t miss out on. Oh, and by the way, if you’re planning on leaving home a bit longer you might want to make sure your post is taken care of. We found this service called physicaladdress.com where you can use their address to have any physical mail sent to you and they will scan and send the contents to your phone.
Visit the New York Film Festival
Maybe not a classic tourist destination but after all you’re a New Yorker now (at least you might feel like it as you’re not spending just a few ‘normal’ tourists days in town). So what do New Yorkers do? The New York City theater culture is well-known around the world. The famous Broadway is still alive and well but the New York Film Festival is also one of the best experiences the city has to offer. During the fall, the film festival is held in the Lincoln Center where new and independent films are screened for around 3 weeks. Some of the most powerful documentaries have been screened here first before being released to cinemas around the world. From September 27 to October 13 there will be all kinds of screenings, so if you want to see films and documentaries exclusively before the general public, make a visit to the New York Film Festival in the earliest days of autumn. So if you’re heading here during this time of the year make sure to check it out!
Take a Trip to Rockaway Beach
Yes, this is a thing that most New Yorkers do and that you should as well! When thinking about New York City you will never come up with going to the beach. Yet, a great summer or early Fall is always a great time to catch some sun and escape the busy city life for some sun bathing.
Its a great place to chill, surf and get some great food. And you can even reach it by subway.
Explore Central Park and Fort Tryon Park
I know Central Park is probably the most famous park in New York City. And you really have to take your time exploring it much more than a regular tourist should. Why? Because there are many interesting things to discover that you might not find out on a short visit. Such as the many quotes written on the thousands of benches across the park? You can find many beautiful stories and poems written on these benches, stories that provide a face to each bench. Take some time to read them, now that you have more of it.
Another beautiful park that is not on everybody’s list is the Fort Tryon Park which is located in the north of Manhattan. Definitely a more local park and another great and less touristic park to visit when staying in New York City.
Take a Tour in the Rockefeller Center
Yes, the Rockefeller is more than just a mere tower in the middle of the city. Many tourists just take to elevator to the top floor, take a few selfies and pictures and leave. But to know more about this historic building you must take a guided tour and find out about its vast history.
Also, if you happen to be here in Winter the The Rockefeller Center has the best Christmas tree light show in the country. Hands down, this is the place you want to be during this time of the year. However it’s not just the switching on of the Christmas lights, but there are ice rinks, live dance performances, singing and plenty of festive food. Going up to the top of the center, you’ll find a tremendous restaurant and view. These festive entities will last for 4-5 weeks.
Indulge in New York City Cafés
If you don’t have a laptop or tablet you can still use one of New York’s many internet cafes. There are plenty of internet cafes dotted around the city. These function as hangout spots for many people and subcultures. The city has one of the biggest video gaming communities in the country and they meet in such cafes to play competitively. Many times their events are held by the cafes because they are live streamed to hundreds of thousands of viewers on sites like Twitch and YouTube.
So if you want to play or simply get some work done outside of your stay you should explore the various cafes this city can offer.
If you want to discover the real NYC, you need to stay for longer than a fortnight. You just don’t get the true vibe of the city unless you live, travel and eat like the locals do.