New York is a city of dreams, life and above all, love. From Broadway to museums to beer gardens, this city has so much to offer. New York city incorporates ideas, beliefs or people from many different countries and cultural backgrounds. When people of different cultures come together to celebrate and share their different traditions, it gives a belief that humanity shares a single language — Love
During my Summer break in my graduate studies, I decided to go for a solo expedition to NYC. As a student, we do have budget constraints, and I tried my best to cover all the places at minimal expense. Hope this blog helps people to plan their travel.
What are the best ways to reach NYC?
If we can plan ahead of time, I would recommend flight directly to New York City as this saves a lot of time. The secondary option would be to travel via train services-Amtrack if there is a commute option available from your state. Personally, I recommend train travel because it gives a glimpse of each state while travelling. If you want to try an impromptu, then travelling via bus is the only viable option.
Places to visit in New York
Manhattan is the the heart of “The Big Apple” where in most of the attraction exists. In order to commute to all the locations, the most feasible option is NYC Metro rail. The city is well knitted with the metro which was planned and constructed in the pre-world war era. With an affordable weekly pass, we can have unlimited access to their metro.
The New York City Pass is the best option in terms of saving the time spent in waiting in line for the ticket queue at each site. The city pass is valid for 9 days from the first usage. The city pass covers 6 major attractions namely,
- Empire State Building
- American Museum of Natural History
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Top of the Rock Observation Deck — OR — Guggenheim Museum
- Ferry Access to Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island — OR — Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises
- 9/11 Memorial & Museum — OR — Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
The soul of a traveler is only refreshed if we visit the inner beauty of the destined location. As an ardent Wayfarer, keeping these epic sites as center, I decided to explore the nearby places. Irrespective of day, time and climate, Central park serves as a perfect location for people of all ages. We can always find people jogging/running around the lake with their darling dog. The small bow kind of bridges in-between the pathway makes it a perfect spot for any photo fanatic. The land area of the park is enormous that it is impossible to enter and exit through the same exit, after completing a round trip.
The central park is close to The MET and The American Museum of Natural History. Both of them are highly resourceful and has over-whelming content. The top of the rock (a) Rockefeller center has self explanatory structures built around the building. This site is famous for it Christmas Tree during the month of December and around 1 million people across the globe visit this place each day during those times. The view from top of the rock is quite stunning and mesmerizing. Try to book a slot late night, so that you can have a glimpse at the night life of New York from 67th floor.
Next comes The 9/11 Memorial built in the memory of the lost souls of 9/11 terror attack. The memorial relives the events as it happened on the day of disaster and emotionally moves any person who enters. I still get goosebumps when I pen down the name of the memorial.
In order to shift the mood, you can visit Washington Square Park which is quite happening and buzzy. There is a famous Dosa-wallah from Chennai who has a caravan in this park. Pondicherry Masala Dosa is a must try at this place.
Brooklyn bridge is the most famous spot shown in Indian movies. The bridge lives up to it’s expectation. The Skyline view from the bridge is exciting to watch. The sunset from this viewpoint is pleasant and soothing. The bridge extends to 1.6 miles and can be covered with ease. The Empire State building is the next on my list. This is the first time I reach the top of the building with more than 100 floors. I was excited about it and the lift took just 43 seconds to cover 87 floors. Awe-stuck at the view from the top, I spent my rest of the evening in the top floor. For the book lovers out there, do visit the The Strand Bookstore. The shop sells both new books as well as used one’s for rock-bottom price. For instance, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows book was on sale for 2$. It had books in all genres but the only problem is that it is cluttered and a bit messy.
There is a new attraction built in the city called as The Museum of Illusions. The museum offers an intriguing visual, sensory and educational experience with a handful of new, unexplored illusions.
On the final day of my journey, I visited Statue of Liberty. A small advice from my experience is that to reach this Battery park location by 9:30 am. It saves around 2 hours of standing in the queue for security check if we reach early. The trip takes 3 hours to visit and the audio tour at statue of liberty provides the history and brief information about the site. The near-by attractions are Wall street Bull and Friends series Apartment. Finally I ended my trip with a last visit to Time Square. The neon lighted buildings and the street brimming with people with shopping bags and taking selfies. The Hudson river spans Manhattan, which serves as a serene beauty for evening walk with your loved ones.
To conclude, the one word description of this city would be Diversity. There isn’t a city on the globe where you’ll find more cultural diversity. In New York City, every country, language and religion is well represented. In the streets of New York, you will find every sort of cuisine, from just about every country. Also, you will hear people on their cell phones, speaking every language from across the globe.