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- Posted:Friday, August 5, 2016
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New York City in 24 hours
Guest blogger Anita Dykstra is a travel writer from New Zealand. You can read her great blog on her website.
New York City is a buzzing metropolis that draws creative minds and anyone who loves a challenge. It’s a one-of-a-kind city full of trendy bars, award-winning restaurants and lots of famous attractions that bring in more than 50 million tourists a year. Twenty-four hours is nowhere near enough time to take in this city as there’s simply so much to do, see and experience—but if you’re on a time limit then don’t fear. Here’s how to make the best of the little time you have in the Big Apple.
Start the day by making your way to Tom’s Diner, a quintessentially American restaurant. If you’re a Seinfeld fan then this place might look familiar to you as the exterior was used as ‘Monk’s Café’ in the series. Tom’s Diner has been running since 1936, making it of the oldest-running restaurants in the city.
It’s time to hit one of the most popular and beautiful parks in New York, Central Park. The best way to enjoy this 843-acre park is by hiring a bicycle. Exploring by bike is perfect if you’re on a time limit in New York City! Plus, it’s always good to get the blood pumping for the busy day ahead.
There’s no rest for the wicked, so it's time to head to one of the busiest spots in the city, Times Square. Here you’ll find street performers, TV billboards and LOTS of people. It may not be one of the most relaxing places, but it’s a must-do when coming to NY.
To get to the perfect lunch spot you need to walk along the High Line. It’s one of the most underrated places in the city. The High Line used to be an old freight railway, but by 1980 it was no longer running. It was going to be torn down but instead they decided to preserve it and make it into an elevated park, and now it’s definitely one of the most unique sites in a city spoilt for choice. Start at the entrance in between 34th street and 12th avenue and walk along enjoying the beautiful garden and views you get from here.
At the other end of the High Line is the Chelsea Market where you can grab yourself a tasty bite to eat for lunch. This spot has become one of the best indoor food halls in the world—definitely worth a gander. There are more than 35 shop vendors selling everything from cheese and dessert to sandwiches and soup. There’s an array of different food for you to marvel at and enjoy.
You’re already halfway through the day so now it’s time to get moving. Hop on the subway at 14th Street and get off at World Trade Center. Here you’ll find the impressive 9/11 Memorial. From the memorial, head south towards the charging bull where you can take a quick selfie, then to the Whitehall Ferry Terminal so you can take the free ferry to Staten Island. You get the best view of the Statue of Liberty from the boat so make sure you have your camera at the ready! When you get to Staten Island you can either take a quick look around or head back to Whitehall terminal via the same boat so you can check off the next location on your New York City Bucket list.
Now it’s time to grab the best sunset shot from Brooklyn Bridge. The best way to experience this is to get a taxi or train to Brooklyn and then walk to Manhattan over the 1.6km bridge so you can get the best skyline view of the city.
From the end of the bridge on the Manhattan side, get yourself to one of the trendiest spots in the city, the Meat Packing District. The name might not sound glamorous but it is one of the top spots in the region and the nightlife is spot-on. Grab a bite to eat at Bills Bar and Burgers; CNN have named their ‘Fat Cat’ burger one of the best burgers in America! If you don’t feel like a juicy burger tonight then go to Dos Caminos where you can find mouth-watering guacamole, interesting cocktails and more than 100 types of tequila…that’s bound to get your night going!
Into the night
As mentioned earlier, the Meat Packing District is filled with trendy bars and cocktail lounges—in fact, if you look hard enough, you may be able to slurp that cocktail from a hot tub! For a good casual drink from a rooftop then go to Brass Monkey, or if you’re looking for a more full-on glamorised NYC experience, then try to get yourself into the Plunge Bar and Lounge at the Gansevoort Hotel, make sure you’re dressed the part otherwise you won’t be allowed in. Here you can expect champagne as the norm along with a rooftop pool and an astonishing view of New York City. Spend your night bar-hopping and enjoying the nightlife before you have to head home and say goodbye to this lively city.
Where to stay?
The New York Budget Inn is a quirky, cosy and great-value hostel right in Manhattan. There’s free Wi-Fi, security lockers and clean, comfortable rooms.