Stacy Talks & Reviews: Top 9 Things You Have to Do and See on a New York Vacation

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Top 9 Things You Have to Do and See on a New York Vacation


New York, New York; a city so good they named it twice. New York is a city that has somehow captured the imaginations of people all across the world. Whether you dream of shopping until you drop on Fifth Avenue, scaling the heights of its tallest skyscrapers, or seeing a show on Broadway, New York has to be on your list of ‘must-see’ destinations.

If you are planning a trip to New York, or hoping to one day make your dream journey, then we have put together this list of the top nine things that you absolutely have to see and do when you get there.

See All of New York – Visit the Tops of the Empire State Building and One World Trade Center

The best way to see New York is from the top of one of its biggest buildings, and few buildings come much bigger than the iconic Empire State Building or the One World Trade Center.

The Empire State Building doesn’t just have a good view from the top, but is an architectural delight itself. Its Art-Deco stylings make it stand out from the rest, with the possible exception of the nearby Chrysler Building. These two structures came to define the word skyscraper in the early 20th century.

The One World Trade complex was built on the site of the former World Trade Center, and stands as a testament to America’s resilience and its ability to rebuild and renew in the face of terror and conflict. The views of New York from the tops of these buildings are like no other view on Earth.

Take a Journey Through Time with a Ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty is one of the world’s most iconic structures. Lady Liberty is an icon herself, and a part of countless photos, movies and stories. She was also an important part of America’s story, and a part of the story of millions of immigrants and their families.

The Statue upon Liberty Island was the first sign of freedom and opportunity to millions of people from across the world, as they began their new lives in a new America. Taking a ferry trip to Liberty Island and Ellis Island is a must. On Ellis Island you will find a huge amount of history on the people that made America what it is today, and perhaps some history of your own family and their journey to these shores.

Visit Brooklyn – Walk the Brooklyn Bridge Like a Real New Yorker

The Brooklyn Bridge is another of New York’s iconic symbols and connects Lower Manhattan island with Brooklyn, one of the original boroughs of the old ‘New Amsterdam’.

To give you an idea of the scale of this huge bridge, it takes forty minutes to cross at a leisurely pace. The views of the New York city skyline from this bridge shouldn’t be missed, so give yourself an hour to cross it; you will sometimes just stop and marvel at the view.

You Can Find Some of the Best Museums in the World in New York

New York has some of the best museums in the world, but one of the highlights has to be the Metropolitan Museum of Art. You could spend weeks exploring its thousands of artifacts and still not see it all.

This museum houses Egyptian exhibits, and has a huge collection of pre-Columbian exhibits as well as a collection of Renaissance art masterpieces.

New York has a Rich Art History Too – Visit MoMA

Art and history go hand in hand in New York City, and at the Museum of Modern Art you can find contemporary works of art that will be treasured artifacts to future generations.

From Picasso to Warhol to Rothko, you will find some of the 20th and 21st Century’s premier works in this gallery; New York’s version of the Louvre in Paris.

No Trip to New York is Complete without a Stroll Through Central Park

Central Park is a green jewel in New York’s crown. This oasis of nature is a beautiful and welcome sight in the inner-city of New York’s sprawling, gothic buildings.

There is plenty to see and do here, but people-watching in the park is one of the best activities New York has to offer. Every type of New Yorker and tourist can be found in any New-York-Minute in Central Park.

This speck of green space stands out as you approach New York on a plane. Though it may seem small from the air, Central Park is huge and you can spend a whole day exploring it. If you are looking for flights to New York, consider these flights from Porter Airlines. They fly to New York from a number of North American cities regularly, and their superior service provides the perfect start to your New York vacation.

Go Downtown and Check Out the Art, Food and Culture
When you are in New York, if you’re alone and life is making you lonely you can always go... Downtown.

Here you can simply listen to the sounds of the city, or take in some of the latest food and culture that New York’s always trendy art scene has to offer. There is a huge range of independent art galleries here, as well as a range of pop-up restaurants and sidewalk cafes with the latest street food. The Whitney Museum of American Art is a great starting off point. There is a huge indoor gallery backed by an even larger outdoor space that is used for performance art and large sculptures.

Make Sure You Pay Your Respects at the Memorial to 9/11

For many people, the words New York will forever remind them of the events of September 11th 2001. The events of this day showed the worst, and the best, of humanity, and the memorial at the site is less of a tourist attraction, and more of a pilgrimage.

The calming, almost soothing waterfalls help ease the tension that surrounds the space, and also provides some background noise that allows people some privacy to grieve. The names of the 2,983 victims of the attacks are etched into bronze panels by the memorial pool, as are the names of six people who died in the previous World Trade Center attack in 1993.

New York Even Has an Amusement Park – Go Wild at Coney Island

At the turn of the twentieth century, Coney Island was one of America’s premier vacation destinations. Now it is a somewhat quaint and quirky, old-timey fairground that is a place that many tourists make the mistake of missing.

The area has been regenerated over time, and has a lot of new bars and restaurants, as well as more modern rides in the fairground. The is a lot of old-time charm here too though, with a long boardwalk along the shoreline that is backed by shops and stalls selling taffy and rock candy. Some of the rides have an old-time charm too, with the old wooden coaster ‘The Cyclone’ and a huge Ferris Wheel.

There are so many more things to see and do in the city of New York. These picks are our favorites, and we think you shouldn’t miss them when you make the trip, but don’t be afraid to add your own favorites to the list!

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