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Kate Bove

Ask Approved: Our Top Picks for Must-Visit City Parks in the United States

best cities to visit new york

There’s no doubt about it: New York City’s Central Park is impressive. An 840-acre slab of green space, right in the heart of Manhattan. But while Central Park may be the most famous of urban parks, that doesn’t mean it’s the only one worth visiting. From San Francisco to Boston, some of the United States’ most metropolitan areas are also home to some of the country’s most breathtaking bits of nature. Excluding the all-too-obvious Central Park, here are our favorites.

30. Dolores Park, San Francisco, California

Located in the Mission District’s sunny microclimate, just two blocks from the iconic Mission Dolores, this San Francisco park is a long-standing favorite amongst Bay Area locals. In recent years, foot traffic has bloomed with roughly 7,000 to 10,000 people flocking to Dolores Park on a sunny weekend day.

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The city’s Recreation and Parks department notes that the nearly 16-acre park is “one of San Francisco’s most popular parks” and serves as “the vibrant heart of its equally vibrant, culturally diverse neighborhood.” With stunning views of the city, off-leash dog areas, playgrounds, tennis courts and plenty of green space to unroll a beach blanket on, Dolores Park is an all-occasion hangout spot.

29. Rock Creek Park, Washington, D.C.

Located in the northwest quadrant of Washington, D.C., this park dates back to 1890. In fact, Rock Creek Park was just the third national park established by the United States government, following in the footsteps of Yellowstone and Mackinac National Park. In autumn, the valley puts on a stunning foliage show — all within miles of the National Mall.

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In total, Rock Creek Park encompasses roughly 2,000 acres, and all that acreage is filled with equestrian and hiking trails, sports venues, an amphitheater, an outdoor concert venue, a golf course, a planetarium, a picnic area and more. Cultural and historic landmarks are also scattered throughout the park, with the most notable being the water-powered grist mill, Pierce Mill.

28. World’s End, Hingham, Massachusetts

Okay, so admittedly some people might consider this one a bit of a stretch. Technically, the ominously named World’s End isn’t located in Boston proper. Instead, it lies just across Boston Harbor in Hingham, Massachusetts. That means this park offers some of the best views of the Boston skyline and Emerald Necklace.

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In 1889, renowned landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted was asked to design a residential subdivision on the peninsula. As such, the park includes carriage paths — though no homes were ever erected. Composed of drumlins — elongated hills formed by the movement of glacial ice — World’s End offers sweeping grasslands and nearly five miles of tree-lined trails.

27. Forsyth Park, Savannah, Georgia

Occupying 30 acres of Savannah, Georgia’s historic district, Forsyth Park is perhaps best known for its fountain in the park’s north end. Added in 1858, the fountain is similar to the one located in Paris’ Place de la Concorde — probably because Parisian urban planning was all the rage at the time of the park’s construction.

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Featured in films like Cape Fear (1962) and The Longest Yard (1974), the fountain’s water is dyed green each St. Patrick’s Day in honor of the city’s Irish heritage. In addition to the iconic fountain, Forsyth Park contains numerous walking paths, play areas for kids, various courts and fields and the Fragrant Garden for blind visitors.

26. LeBauer City Park, Greensboro, North Carolina

Although Greensboro’s LeBauer City Park is a mere four acres, it cost a whopping $10 million — a gift from the will of the late Carolyn LeBauer, for whom the park is named. The park’s project coordinator remarked that the new space, located near the city’s cultural center, history museum and public library, would serve as “an anchor for the cultural campus.”

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Perhaps the most stunning — and recognizable — feature of the park is the Janet Echelman sculpture titled Where We Met . Hailed as the largest outdoor art installation in the Southeast, the grant-funded sculpture looks like a net of colors, measuring 200 by 130 feet, and is suspended over the park’s main lawn. Although the sculpture is made of various stronger-than-steel polyethylene compounds, it was inspired by the city’s vibrant textile industry.

25. Scioto Audubon Metro Park, The Metro Parks, Columbus, Ohio

Columbus, Ohio’s, Metro Parks are made up of 19 sprawling urban parks in and around the city. In total, the Parks encompass a staggering 27,500 acres of both land and water and touch over seven counties in Central Ohio. Chock full of trails, educational facilities and land for resource management and recreational activities, the parks system is diverse.

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Although all of the parks have a unique vibe, the most metropolitan of them all is the Scioto Audubon Metro Park, which is located near Downtown Columbus in the Brewery District. As a major stopover for bird migration, the park features wetlands, in addition to a climbing wall, trails and an old water tower that melds the natural and manmade.

24. Container Park, Las Vegas, Nevada

Located in Downtown Las Vegas — the old Vegas — this park is part of the city’s ongoing effort to revitalize some off-the-Strip locales. Built using around 30 shipping containers and 41 modular cubes, the park is filled with kid-friendly play areas and 39 boutique shops, restaurants, cafes and bars.

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Although it spans just 19,000 square feet, which doesn’t feel like a whole lot in the ever-expansive desert, Downtown Container Park certainly makes an impression. That impression is, in part, thanks to the reclaimed shipping containers — and thanks in part to the 55-foot-tall steel praying mantis sculpture at the entrance.

23. The Lawn on D, Boston, Massachusetts

Located on the city’s thriving waterfront, Boston’s Lawn on D bills itself as “an unforgettable venue that’s full of life.” In a sense, the Lawn has rebranded itself — more of a gathering place than your typical park. The outdoor venue boasts a pavilion, tons of green space and quite a few innovative features.

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In addition to solar-powered phone chargers and food trucks, the Lawn on D provides visitors with lounge chairs, interactive art exhibitions, bocce, table tennis and free Wi-Fi. Perhaps the most recognizable (and Instagrammable) element of this South Boston staple, however, is the light-up swings, pictured here. Ever-popular, the installation, called Swing Time , is a set of swings “outfitted with solar-powered LED lights that change color when swung at varying speeds and heights.”

22. Maggie Daley Park, Chicago, Illinois

This 20-acre park is located near the shores of Lake Michigan in northeastern Grant Park and connects to Chicago’s Millennium Park via a pedestrian footbridge. Named after the city’s former first lady, the park was built where the Daley Bicentennial Plaza once stood.

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In remaking the park — a process that took two years and $60 million — the city created an ice skating ribbon, climbing walls, children’s play area (complete with water features) and a garden that honors cancer survivors. One of the most stunning features of the park? The Enchanted Forest. The interconnected network of footpaths is flanked by upside-down trees and archways and features a mirror maze.

21. White River State Park, Indianapolis, Indiana

Covering 250 acres of Indianapolis, White River State Park is also in one of the city’s seven cultural districts. The park boasts the Indiana State Museum, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, the Indianapolis Zoo, beautiful gardens, sports and entertainment venues and even an IMAX Theater.

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The area on which the park now stands was revitalized in the 1980s, when the good people of Indianapolis realized the Indiana Central Canal, which was never properly finished, was just sitting there, partly dug. Soon enough, the area was restored, becoming the multi-faceted park it is today. Originally, folks behind the project wanted to add something special to the park to complement the city’s skyline. Although plans for what was dubbed the Indiana Tower were drawn up, it was never built.

20. Fairmount Park, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Featuring public art and historic homes, Fairmount Park is split into two sections — the oh-so-creatively named East Park and West Park. The Schuylkill River bisects the two sections, which together compose an area totaling a whopping 2,052 acres. As Philadelphia’s first park, Fairmount is also rich in history.

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Originally, the park was divided into three sections: South Park, known for its gardens; Old Park, which encompassed several estates; and West Park, the area that contained the Philadelphia Zoo and played host to the Centennial Exposition — also known as the 1876 World’s Fair. That means it was on the grounds of Fairmount Park that such iconic items as Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone, the Remington typewriter and Heinz Ketchup first debuted.

19. Queen Kapi’olani Regional Park, Honolulu, Hawaii

Known as the largest and second-oldest park in Hawaii, Queen Kapi’olani Regional Park is located in Honolulu near Kuhio Beach Park. Named after the Queen consort of King David Kalākaua, the park contains everything from soccer fields to archery ranges and hosts international rugby and lacrosse tournaments annually.

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The Honolulu Cricket Club, also nestled in the park, is noted by Guinness World Records as being the oldest sporting club in the Pacific, dating back to 1893. Beyond its natural beauty and incredible vistas, the 300-acre park lures locals and tourists alike thanks to attractions such as the Honolulu Zoo and the Waikiki Shell, an outdoor concert venue.

18. Falls Park on the Reedy, Greenville, South Carolina

In downtown Greenville’s historic West End district, outdoor enthusiasts will find themselves mesmerized by Falls Park on the Reedy, so named for its location on the Reedy River. Known as the birthplace of Greenville, the park was officially founded in 1967 when a local garden club reclaimed 26 acres of green space that’d previously been used by textile mills.

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Featuring public gardens, the wall from an 18th-century grist mill, public art and even a restaurant, Falls Park offers visitors a unique mix of history and nature. Of course, the park’s namesake is also its most striking feature: The falls are made even more impressive thanks to the Liberty Bridge, a 355-foot-long suspension bridge that curves around said falls.

17. City Park, New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans’ 1,300-acre public park is reportedly the 20th-most-visited urban public park in the country. To put its size in perspective, City Park is roughly 50% larger than Central Park. Other stats? Well, the park is the 48th oldest in the United States, dating back to 1854 — although some of its residents are even older.

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Known for housing the world’s oldest collection of mature oak trees, City Park’s oldest oaks are over 600 years old. That’s a lot of rings. Unfortunately, hurricanes have posed a huge threat to the green space: In 1949, one of the two “dueling oaks,” which derived their name from the fact that men would literally duel each other beneath the trees back in the 19th century, was decimated by a storm.

16. Theodore Wirth Regional Park, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Shared by the city of Minneapolis and the suburb Golden Valley, Theodore Wirth Regional Park is the city’s largest green space. The park was named after the former superintendent of Minneapolis parks, who served in his position for 30 years. Although Minnesota is the land of a thousand lakes, Theodore Wirth Regional Park contains just one lake, Wirth Lake, and one pond.

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Its original 66 acres grew to a whopping 759 acres — and, now, it even contains two golf courses. As part of the Grand Rounds Scenic Byway, the park also links the Chain of Lakes area with one of the state’s larger parkways. On the grounds, sharp-eyed visitors can spot a plaque that marks the 45-degrees latitude line, which demarcates the halfway point between the North Pole and the equator.

15. Zilker Park, Austin, Texas

Situated at the juncture of the Colorado River and Barton Creek, Zilker Park is made up of roughly 350 acres of green space that were donated to the city of Austin by a wealthy benefactor in 1917. The park’s size makes it a fitting venue for large-scale events like the ever-popular Austin City Limits Music Festival.

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As more and more tech companies set up hubs in the city, Zilker is quickly becoming city-dwellers’ go-to escape. Filled with hiking and biking trails, Zilker Park also features sports fields, picnic areas, the Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum and the Austin Nature & Science Center. Looking to soak your feet after a long trek? Barton Springs pool offers public swimming — and a lovely look at Austin’s growing skyline.

14. Lands End, San Francisco, California

After the Gold Rush in California, entrepreneurs designed the Cliff House — a resort for the wealthy — on the very edge of San Francisco. Every Sunday, a horse-drawn stagecoach carried visitors from downtown San Francisco to the Pacific’s shores at Lands End. Eventually, millionaire Adolph Sutro built a steam train to transport guests and constructed an enormous bathhouse on the beach.

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These days, a version of the Cliff House still stands, but the Sutro Baths are ruins of a bygone era. Situated right at the mouth of the Golden Gate, Lands End is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and offers views of San Francisco’s most iconic bridge. The old rail beds have been turned into hiking trails, allowing visitors to explore the rugged coastline, public art installations and more.

13. Lincoln Park, Chicago, Illinois

Chicago’s Lincoln Park takes up an impressive 1,200 acres, bordered by Lake Michigan as well as quite a few of the city’s neighborhoods — Edgewater, Uptown, Gold Coast, Lakeview, Streeterville and, of course, Lincoln Park. The park’s Lakefront Trail offers up a scenic 18-mile-long stretch that’s perfect for joggers, strollers and cyclists alike.

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During the summer months, the park’s beaches are a popular destination. And, during the winter, folks only pop up on the sandy shores to snap a cool picture or two of the city’s skyline. For those who’d rather not lounge on the lake, Lincoln Park also offers a nature boardwalk, conservatory, history museum and zoo.

12. Griffith Park, Los Angeles, California

Located in Los Angeles, Griffith Park is an impressive 4,310 acres, which means it’s one of the largest urban parks in North America and the second-largest urban park in the state after San Diego’s Mission Trails Preserve. Although it’s more rugged than Central Park, Griffith Park is almost as iconic, especially when it comes to filming locales.

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One of the most iconic movie moments filmed at the park? In The Terminator , Arnold Schwarzenegger arrives in 1984 and emerges from the Griffith Observatory. (Nice night for a walk, eh?) We could go on about the park’s movie connections, but there’s so much more to it than that. With equestrian trails, hiking paths, a zoo, an art museum and a train enthusiasts’ club with connections to Walt Disney, Griffith Park is certainly one of the more unique places on our list.

11. Forest Park, St. Louis, Missouri

Although it opened in 1876, Forest Park hosted two of its most significant events in its history in 1904 — the Louisiana Purchase Exposition and the Summer Olympics. At 1,326 acres, locals have dubbed the park the “Heart of St. Louis” and, as such, it features quite a few big-name attractions, including the St. Louis Zoo, the St. Louis Art Museum and the St. Louis Science Center.

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About two decades ago, the park began a restoration project that ended up totaling $100 million. This pricey facelift improved Forest Park’s landscaping and habitats, such as meadows, a variety of ponds, wetlands, prairie land and freshwater streams, all of which provide a wonderful home for migratory birds and animals. One of its most iconic features? The Jewel Box, an Art Deco-style greenhouse.

10. The Gathering Place, Tulsa, Oklahoma

The Gathering Place stretches over 100 of Tulsa, Oklahoma’s, precious acres. Thanks to the George Kaiser Family Foundation and 80 other private contributors, the largest private donation — a whopping $465 million — to a public park in America’s history was made to this unique green space. According to Thrillist, the chairs at The Gathering Place cost a whopping $5,500 apiece.

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The vision? “A Park For All.” That means the organizers of The Gathering Place were keen on putting diversity and equality first, meaning the park and its many features value accessibility. From playgrounds and lawns to wetlands and a skate park, this park is clearly the Place to be. In fact, National Geographic listed it as one of the world’s 12 most mind-bending playgrounds, while Time magazine dubbed it one of The World’s 100 Greatest Places of 2019.

9. Balboa Park, San Diego, California

Home to the world-famous San Diego Zoo, Balboa Park covers 1,200 acres of open spaces, gardens, paths, museums, restaurants and theaters. Dating back to 1835, the site of the present-day park is one of the oldest areas in the country to be dedicated solely to public recreational use. But that’s not where its rich history stops.

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In 1915–16, the park hosted the Panama–California Exposition and, two decades later, it housed another world’s fair — the California Pacific International Exposition. As is the case in cities the world over, these fairs were the cause of several of Balboa Park’s most recognizable landmarks, including the Spreckels Organ Pavilion, an outdoor concert venue, and the Botanical Building (pictured), which houses the park’s beautiful gardens.

8. South Mountain Park, Phoenix, Arizona

Phoenix’s South Mountain Park wins the title of largest municipal park in the country — and it nabs a spot on the list as one of the largest urban parks in the world. Encompassing a truly astounding 16,283 acres, the mountainous park is chock full of desert vegetation and the native chuckwalla, a large lizard that loves arid climates.

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The park was established in 1924 when President Calvin Coolidge sold the city the park’s then-13,000 acres for a mere $17,000. Although a bit of suburban sprawl flanks the park land, visitors are still utterly transported to a place that feels anything but metropolitan. With over 58 miles of trails, a 1,000-foot-tall lookout point and a landmark known only as Mystery Castle, South Mountain Park is definitely worth a visit.

7. Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York

As we’ve previously noted, Central Park is great and all, but, if you find yourself on the other side of the river, we highly recommend Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. Situated near quite a few popular neighborhoods, including Park Slope, Flatbush and Prospect Heights, the park encompasses an impressive 526 acres, making it the borough’s second-largest public park behind Marine Park.

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Laid out by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, who also helped design Manhattan’s Central Park, Prospect Park opened in 1867. The nearby Brooklyn Museum, Grand Army Plaza and Brooklyn Botanic Gardens are all located just outside the park’s grounds, but this green space still has a lot to offer, from a zoo and outdoor concert venues to a Quaker cemetery. In fact, the park boasts the borough’s largest remaining forest and its only lake.

6. Forest Park, Portland, Oregon

If you still have time to kill after checking out Portland’s oh-so-tiny Mill Ends Park, we highly recommend Forest Park, which stretches an impressive eight miles across the city’s hillsides. Unsurprisingly, this scenic stretch offers quite the view of the Willamette River and makes the park one of the country’s largest urban forest reserves.

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Covering 5,100 acres, the park is mainly composed of second-growth forest and features over 70 miles of trails. Thanks to civic leaders back in 1860s who wanted to preserve the woods near the city, the Olmsted brothers — sons of the prestigious Frederick Law Olmsted — were brought in to develop a plan for Forest Park. Thanks to these early conservation efforts, more than 122 bird species and over 60 mammal species enjoy the park alongside human visitors.

5. Falls Park, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

While South Dakota is certainly known for national parks and your typical natural sprawl, folks don’t always associate city life with the state. Likely, visitors think of the Black Hills and the sacred Tunkasila Sakpe Paha , or Six Grandfathers Mountain , formation. But, as the park’s name suggests, it is centered around a beautiful splay of falls on the Big Sioux River.

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There’s no admission fee to see the 123-acre park’s namesake. The falls themselves cascade 100 feet over the state’s famous black rock formations. And if that isn’t enough for you, other highlights include tons of outdoor sculptures, an observation tower and even the remains of the old Queen Bee Mill, which was built in the late 1800s.

4. Gas Works Park, Seattle, Washington

With just 19 acres under its belt, Seattle’s Gas Works Park may not be as large a green space as some of the other public parks on our list, but it has a lot of personality. And by that we mean it would play really well on your Flickr account. Home to the Seattle Gas Light Company’s old coal gasification plant, the park brings urban decay right to the shores of Lake Union.

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The plant operated for a good 50 years before shuttering in 1956 and, by 1962, the city scooped up the land with plans to give it a second life as a public green space. Richard Haag, the landscape architect behind Gas Works, won an award for design excellence, highlighting the way in which cities have the ability to meld the old and new — the manmade and the natural.

3. Belle Isle, Detroit, Michigan

Located in the Detroit River, this 982-acre island park is owned by the city of Detroit — though it’s situated quite close to our Canadian neighbors. After Grosse Ile and Fighting Island, Belle Isle is the third-largest island in the river — and it’s the largest city-owned island park in the United States. Both a cool and very specific feat.

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A quick drive across the MacArthur Bridge will land visitors on the isle, which is home to an aquarium, a conservatory, a golf course, a nature center and the Dossin Great Lakes Museum. If you choose to swim along its half-mile stretch of beach, you’ll most likely spot the island’s Coast Guard station and Detroit’s Yacht Club. But our favorite landmark on the island is the William Livingstone Memorial Light, the only marble lighthouse in the United States (pictured).

2. High Line, Manhattan, New York

Built on a disused section of the New York Central Railroad line known as the West Side Line, the High Line is a 1.45-mile-long elevated park that runs from the Meatpacking District (a few blocks below 14th Street) through Chelsea and to the West Side Yard on 34th Street. In the old days, freight trains got into so many collisions with traffic on 10th and 11th Avenues that the area was nicknamed “Death Avenue.”

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Now, the High Line, which opened in 2009, is considered a remarkable feat of contemporary landscape architecture. Filled with plant and animal life, it’s becoming its own ecosystem — and, certainly, anything but another Death Avenue. This park in the sky welcomes over five million visitors each year, and it nabs such a high spot on our list for inspiring countless other cities in the United States to reclaim abandoned infrastructure in order to create public spaces.

1. The Presidio, San Francisco, California

In 1776, Spain gained a foothold in California and colonized the area, setting up a military base — or presidio — right on the San Francisco Bay. Later on, the United States used the area as an army base, building barracks, hospitals and weapons stores. In 1989, Congress voted to end the Presidio’s status as an active military installation, and by 1994 the National Park Service took over the land.

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Part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, the Presidio is one of the world’s largest national parks situated in an urban setting. In addition to offering camping sites, extensive trails, public art and unbeatable views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the park is also home to many businesses, from nonprofit organizations and private residences to restaurants and museums. With an eye toward ecological restoration; honoring the Ohlone and Costanoan people who lived on the land before colonial invaders ; and reclaiming abandoned infrastructure, the Presidio proves just how amazing it is to have a national park folded into one of the country’s most iconic cities.

Honorable Mention: Mill Ends Park, Portland, Oregon

Okay, so this park doesn’t involve any hiking — nor can you sunbathe or fire up a grill. Instead, Mill Ends Park in Portland, Oregon, is one of those bucket list-type attractions. And why’s that? Well, at two feet across — with a total area of 452 square inches — this little circle of a spot is the smallest park in the world.

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Given its unique distinction in 1971 by the Guinness Book of Records , Mill Ends Park was initially meant to be the site of a new light pole. When construction came to a standstill, Oregon Journal columnist Dick Fagan planted flowers in the hole and dubbed it Mill Ends. Now, tourists flock to the median strip near the Willamette for a chance to spot this record-setting park.


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What's Your Question?

10 Insane Facts About New York City’s History

New York City has perhaps more history than any other in the nation. But how much NYC history do you really know? Here are 10 tidbits that few have heard.

Mayday Moving

Think moving to a new apartment in New York City is tough today? Actually, it might be easier than it used to be. Up until the Second World War, every New Yorker who wanted to move had to do so on May 1.

Toilet Paper Breakthrough

Did you know the world’s first toilet paper was created in New York City? Invented by Joseph Gayetty in 1857, it was a lot fancier than most TP we use today. Not only was it made from eco-friendly hemp fibers, it was also infused with aloe vera and dispensed from a box like Kleenex.

Transit by pneumatic tube isn’t as futuristic as you might think. In fact, it went out of fashion in NYC as early as 1957. Before then, up to 97,000 letters a day zipped around the city in subterranean tubes. It took just four minutes for a piece of mail to cross the East River between Brooklyn and the Church Street Post Office.

The Dangers of Gotham…

New York has long been a dangerous place. Even today, it’s rare for a day to pass without some kind of violent crime. On November 28, 2012 not a single crime was reported.

Terrorism for Almost a Century

One of the first domestic terror attacks in the United States took place in New York City in 1920. It took place on Wall Street and involved the detonation of a horse-drawn carriage loaded with powerful explosives. The incident killed 30 people.

Misogyny at McSorley’s

Women have been excluded from a lot of establishments over the years. But New York City’s oldest Irish bar, McSorley’s, banned women right up until 1970.

Necropolitan Parks

Never mind a metropolis; New York was once a necropolis. Some of the city’s most thriving parks used to be little more than cemeteries. Madison, Washington and Union Square Parks, as well as Bryant Park, were all once assigned to the dead. Where did the bodies go, you ask? Nowhere. Washington Square Park, for example, still has 20,000 corpses underfoot. And unclaimed bodies are still buried in their hundreds of thousands on Hart Island off the Bronx.

Behind the Times

Times Square, perhaps the best known location of New York City and a hub for New York City information, was once called Longacre Square. The name was changed in 1904 when The New York Times relocated there.

New York City Weather Warning

New York City weather can sometimes be pretty severe. The hurricane of 1893, for instance, completely wiped Hog Island (a one-mile stretch south of Rockaway Beach) off the map. And in 1780, the winter was so cold that New Yorkers could walk between Manhattan and Staten Island on the ice of the frozen harbor.


New York City has a long history of some of the worst kind of racism. In 1906, for example, the Bronx Zoo exhibited an African man alongside other primates in the monkey house.


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Protect Your Trip »

Best places to visit in new york state in 2024.

New York state captivates both domestic and international travelers with the most populated city in the United States, sprawling state parks and a few beach communities. Whether you want to visit New York City to see Times Square and go ice skating at Rockefeller Center, or retreat to the mountains of upstate New York, there are plenty of one-of-a-kind vacation spots in the Empire State. U.S. News considered sights, culture, adventurous pursuits and the opinions of experts and readers to compile this ranking of the best places to visit in New York state. Read on for vacation inspiration, and don't forget to vote below for the destinations you think belong on this list.

Niagara Falls

Adirondacks, thousand islands, new york city, the finger lakes, the catskills, bear mountain state park, letchworth state park, long island, fire island, saratoga springs, cooperstown, shelter island.

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The tumbling, frothy falls – more than 3,100 tons of water flows over the edge every second – are the star tourist attraction in this New York destination that borders Canada. The best way to see Niagara Falls is on a Maid of the Mist boat tour, which takes poncho-clad visitors on an electric tour boat to the base of the falls. Or, more daring visitors can experience this natural wonder on a thrilling whirlpool jet boat tour. Just don't forget to check out the area's other unforgettable attractions, such as Niagara Falls State Park's hiking trails, Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens & Butterfly Conservatory or the nearby casinos.

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The Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York span roughly 6 million acres and are home to hundreds of communities, lakes, valleys and trails. Water lovers can canoe or kayak on Saranac Lake or go boating on Tupper Lake; hikers can tackle the area's 2,000-plus miles of trails; and skiers can shred powder on Whiteface Mountain near Lake Placid. Visitors will also want to save some time for checking out history-focused sights like the Lake Placid Olympic Museum and Fort Ticonderoga, as well as sampling regional beverages at local wineries and breweries.

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Despite its name, the Thousand Islands region is composed of more than 1,800 islands. The best way to see this vast area, which also stretches into Canada, is during an open-air boat tour. A scenic cruise here will take you past lighthouses, mansions and castles and include commentary about the real-life pirates who used to roam the islands' waters and the Gilded Age magnates who once called the region home. When you're ready to return to land, hike the trails in Wellesley Island State Park or fish in Mary Island State Park, both on Wellesley Island.

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A hub for culture, the arts, food and sightseeing, New York City is a must-visit on many travelers' bucket lists – and for good reason. Everyone can find something to enjoy in the Big Apple. You can see a Broadway show, visit the world-famous Empire State Building, walk the High Line, check out the dozens of museums, eat your way through Manhattan's distinct neighborhoods on a food tour or shop till you drop along Fifth Avenue. Don't forget to stroll through iconic Central Park and visit its can't-miss attractions, including the Central Park Zoo and Conservatory Garden.

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A romantic New York getaway , the Finger Lakes region appeals to travelers seeking a relaxing retreat with lovely scenery. Skiing at the area's resorts, wine tasting at the Seneca Lake Wine Trail's wineries and boating and hiking at local state parks are all popular activities to enjoy in this part of northwestern New York. The Finger Lakes are known for their spectacular fall foliage, but with their wealth of charming towns and variety of seasonal attractions, the lakes are excellent to visit year-round.

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With 98 peaks, southeastern New York's Catskill Mountains beckon to nature enthusiasts. About 40% of Catskill Park's 700,000-plus acres are designated as "forever wild," meaning you'll have access to sprawling spaces ideal for outdoor activities. In winter, the Catskills offer ample opportunities to ski and snowboard. Meanwhile, summer is perfect for hunting, hiking, boating and zip lining, among other activities. After a busy day outdoors, you can check out the region's art scene (the Catskills were home to America's first art movement – the Hudson River School) or enjoy the amenities at one of the area's top resorts .

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Located on the western banks of the Hudson River in the Palisades region of New York, Bear Mountain State Park offers sweeping views of the Hudson Valley and the surrounding highlands. The forested park's trails (including a stretch of the Appalachian Trail) take hikers through lakes, gorges and valleys. What's more, Bear Mountain State Park features a zoo, a swimming pool, a hand-painted merry-go-round and a seasonal outdoor ice skating rink, ensuring family fun both on and off the trails. (Note: Portions of this park are closed due to storm damage sustained in July 2023. Please check the park's website for the current operating status.)

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Nicknamed the Grand Canyon of the East because of its impressive gorge, Letchworth State Park is a hidden gem for travelers who love the outdoors. The park is home to three large waterfalls and dozens more on tributaries, many of which you can see as you trek some of Letchworth's 66 miles of hiking trails. Additionally, the park offers ample opportunities to go whitewater rafting, kayaking, horseback riding, biking and even hot air ballooning. If you prefer winter sports instead of summer pursuits, arrive when temperatures fall to go cross-country skiing or snowmobiling.

best cities to visit new york

This 118-mile-long island is frequented by New Yorkers looking to escape the city to relax on white sand beaches with a glass of wine. Summer hot spots like the Hamptons and Montauk boast charming seaside allure and can't-miss stretches of sand, like Ditch Plains Beach, a popular place to surf. Meanwhile, family-friendly Jones Beach State Park is a more approachable option with a swimming pool, a mini-golf course and shuffleboard areas, among other amenities. Beyond beaches, Long Island boasts more than 50 wineries and tasting rooms, some of which are part of the island's North Fork Wine Trail.

best cities to visit new york

The presence of two renowned institutions – Ithaca College and Cornell University – makes Ithaca a true college town. But this small town in New York's Finger Lakes region is also known for its stunning natural beauty, so much so that its slogan is "Ithaca is gorges." Ithaca is surrounded by more than 150 waterfalls, as well as gorges and dense forests with hiking and biking trails. What's more, the town overlooks the southern shore of Cayuga Lake, a superb spot for boating, fishing and swimming. For groups with budding naturalists, follow Ithaca's Discovery Trail to must-see attractions like the Sciencenter and the Cornell Botanic Gardens.

best cities to visit new york

Those looking to get away from skyscrapers can travel about 60 miles southeast of New York City to reach this 32-mile-long, car-free barrier island. On Fire Island, you'll find several charming communities, including Ocean Beach (where most of the island's hotels, restaurants and shops are located) and Cherry Grove and Fire Island Pines (two of the island's top LGBTQ-friendly areas). Plus, Fire Island is home to Fire Island National Seashore, a protected area that welcomes bird-watchers and campers in droves. If you'd rather spend your vacation swimming, surfing or sunbathing, head to Robert Moses State Park in summer to enjoy its beautiful beaches.

best cities to visit new york

Ever since the Mohawk people came to Saratoga Springs and discovered its mineral waters, which were believed to have restorative properties, the town has blossomed into a popular vacation destination. Visitors can still drink from or soak in the town's mineral springs, 12 of which are located in Saratoga Spa State Park. However, many travelers now flock to Saratoga Springs to see one of the country's oldest racetracks, the Saratoga Race Course. Take a walking tour of the facility to learn more about its history and horseracing, or visit in August to attend the venue's premier event, the Travers Stakes.

best cities to visit new york

Cooperstown may be small, but it attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors every year thanks to its ties to America's pastime. Although most experts agree that baseball wasn't invented here, Cooperstown remains a mecca for sports lovers because of its must-visit sight, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. However, the village offers other kinds of attractions, too. Travelers can visit the Fenimore Art Museum to see impressive works of art or check out The Farmers' Museum's exhibits about local agriculture. Cooperstown also features beautiful neoclassical buildings, such as Hyde Hall, and a variety of breweries and wineries.

best cities to visit new york

Situated between the North and South forks of Long Island, Shelter Island features a quiet, laid-back atmosphere perfect for escaping the hustle and bustle of New York City. One-third of the island is occupied by the Mashomack Preserve, a protected area with more than 200 bird species and hiking trails through meadows and salt marshes. The rest of Shelter Island boasts charming Victorian-era buildings that house boutiques and eateries, plus stunning stretches of sand with calm waves ideal for swimming, such as Crescent Beach and Wades Beach.

best cities to visit new york

New York's capital city teems with culture and history. Visitors can admire the elaborate beauty of the New York State Capitol building on a tour and observe natural history exhibits at the New York State Museum (both of which are free), or explore Albany's Dutch heritage at Crailo State Historic Site and the Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site. Meanwhile, art enthusiasts can view landscape paintings from the Hudson River School at the Albany Institute of History & Art. Beyond the tourist attractions, travelers can stretch their legs in Washington Park, grab a local craft beer or catch a show at The Egg.

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16 Best Cities in New York to Live and Visit

Last updated on October 3, 2023 by Jamie Gambetta - Leave a Comment

When people think of New York, minds often jump straight to the spellbinding high rises of Manhattan. But that is just a mere corner of a state that runs all the way north to be on the cusp of both Toronto and Montreal.

When it comes to living and visiting New York, the variety of towns will leave a lot on your plate. Like much of the northeast, the state has a vast history, with many towns having kept their gorgeous 19th century architecture and not been a burden on the local nature.

Travelers will have New York City and Niagara Falls on their list. But they should join those on the move in exploring the many other quaint towns and cities to discover a new side to the Empire State.

In this post, we'll cover:

16. Kingston


Neatly tucked away in the Hudson Valley, Kingston has a population of around 35,000 people and a thriving arts community that has changed the course of the town. Kingston was New York’s original capital. Today it’s one of the country’s top art towns, which is complemented by a colorful downtown.

Kingston was a bustling river port in the 19th century. While its history and beauty remain intact, it provides locals and visitors with wonderful attractions and a lively calendar of events. You could cruise down the river, explore the Rondout National Historic District, the Trolley Museum and the Hudson River Maritime Museum, or visit the Performing Arts Center.

15. Poughkeepsie


In the heart of the Hudson Valley, Poughkeepsie is a small city with large historical significance. Around two hours from New York City, Poughkeepsie has an effortless appeal, best explained by the leafy streets, beautiful homes and the surging Hudson River.

For city slickers, the Hudson Valley has been a popular choice for local travel and to move permanently. Poughkeepsie has been at the center of this movement, and provides all who come with a long list of fun things to do. The downtown area is laden with delightful restaurants and pubs, there are 17 public parks, a dozen museums (including the Roosevelt Presidential Library) and an abundance of local nature.

14. Garden City

Garden City

Just east of Manhattan, Garden City is often overlooked by those looking to live in or visit New York City. You’ll find Garden City not far from Brooklyn on Long Island, which provides locals and travelers alike with a nice balance between the “big smoke” and suburban life.

Garden City’s name is well earned, thanks to its plethora of tree-lined streets that provide shade for the rows of beautiful Tudor and Colonial homes. Those in town can shop one of the largest regional malls, Roosevelt Field, tee off at the local country club and enjoy the nearby parks. All the while Manhattan and the wineries on Long Island await.

13. Woodstock


Forever associated with the famous festival (though it was actually held 65 miles away), Woodstock is a gorgeous small town with some big city influence. Life here is decidedly quiet, with many residents moving out from more populous areas to enjoy their retirement on the edge of the Catskills.

The quaint “downtown” has shops, cozy cafes and some delicious restaurants with the town surrounded by fields of farms and the nearby mountains. For young families, they have to navigate the “lack” of things to do in town by venturing further afield. But those who do will have adventures on the Aesopus River, hiking trails and nearby ski resorts.

12. Cooperstown


Despite only having a population of around 2,000 people, Cooperstown is one of the most famous cities in New York. It was here, in 1939, that the nation’s pastime of baseball was invented. Today, travelers come from far and wide in numbers that eclipse the local population to visit the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Those who visit will admire not just the complex and its history but the charming nature of the small community, its leafy streets and old architecture. It’s a sleepy, beautiful town and, owing to its reliance on tourism, the atmosphere ebbs and flows with the seasons. This leads to fun summers and quiet winters.

11. Binghamton


Near the Pennsylvania border in southern New York, Binghamton is one of the best places to live in the state. For travelers who don’t yet have it on their radar, then one of the many reasons to visit is to try the original spiedie sandwich at Spiedie and Rib Pit.

Residents on Binghamton get to enjoy one of the cheapest metro areas in the state, while students can make the most of the high expenditure in elementary and secondary schools.

All visitors and locals will admire some of the quirky aspects of life in Binghamton, which includes being the Carousel Capital of the World. Here, you’ll find six antique carousels that are as beautiful as you’d think.

10. Buffalo


On the edge of Lake Erie, Buffalo is the second biggest city in the state. It’s a city that offers great food (hello Buffalo wings), a busy live sports schedule and a revitalized waterfront that has become the center of local life.

For travelers, Buffalo doesn’t have to be a short stop on the way to Niagara Falls . Take your time exploring a lively downtown, home to delicious chicken wings, a burgeoning craft beer scene, art galleries and wonderful architecture. Later, join locals for the iconic tailgate at a Buffalo Bills game or watch the Sabres carve up the ice in the National Hockey League.

Residents can enjoy all this and access to nearby ski and hiking trails and a low cost of living compared to much of New York.

9. Rochester


On the southern shore of Lake Ontario in northern New York, Rochester is a city that blends the old and the new. For years, residents lived in the surrounding suburbs, but life continues to move inward, providing a fresh burst of energy to a growing downtown.

The inner city has maintained much of its original infrastructure, with rows of 19th and early 20th century buildings. Today they house shops, restaurants and bars while old factory buildings have transformed into eclectic lofts.

The many festivals and parks, along with minor league baseball and amusement parks, help keep travelers and locals entertained. While the strength of local education and great quality of life are just two reasons to stick around.

8. Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

Living next to one of the most remarkable natural landmarks on earth is just one of the many reasons to reside in Niagara Falls. For travelers, the 150,000 gallons of water that topples off the cliff every second is more than enough reason to visit. The surrounding tourist attractions and family friendly fun are the icing on the cake.

But beyond the falls is a town travelers are unlikely to see, but for locals there’s plenty to enjoy. Niagara Falls has all the big city amenities you need while the diverse surrounding neighborhoods provide for a great lifestyle for single folk, couples and families.

Those in town also enjoy easy access to nearby Buffalo, while Toronto is just over an hour away.


The state capital of New York ticks all the boxes. It may not have the fame of Manhattan, but what it does offer is a well-balance way of life along with beautiful scenery and rich history that will take the interest of many visitors.

Locals in Albany get to make the most of the handful of leafy parks, boat rides down the Hudson River and the many surrounding craft breweries. When they aren’t having fun around town, they form a part of a strong and growing local economy.

Those who visit the beautiful capital will want to explore the historic downtown, home to the New York State Museum and Empire State Plaza. You’ll also find yourself on the precipice of the Adirondack Mountains.

6. Syracuse


There aren’t many big towns in New York that get as much snow as Syracuse . It’s no surprise the Upstate city is the punchline of many a weather joke. In Syracuse, over 120 inches of snow falls annually, but for locals it’s an easy trade off as they enjoy a strong communal culture and some fantastic outdoor opportunities.

After the skis are put away, you’ll be able to go boating and kayaking on the nearby lakes and waterways. There are great hiking trails through the surrounding woods, an adventure that works at any time of year. Those that move to Syracuse quickly weave into the local fabric, which includes bleeding orange and supporting the sports teams of Syracuse University.

5. Lake Placid

Lake Placid

One of the best places to stay to avoid the big city rush is Lake Placid . Here, the mountains roll across the scenery like waves and the glassy lake shimmers under the summer sun. Lake Placid is well, placid. It’s a tranquil experience that is a great opportunity for travelers to take a deep breath and for residents to enjoy a relaxed, outdoor lifestyle.

In the warmer months, you can wander the streets that are lined with charming boutiques and thrift stores. Sit out on the patios and sample seasonal produce before wandering along the edge of the aptly named Mirror Lake.

However, it was skiing the put Lake Placid on the map. After all, it has hosted two Winter Olympics. When the snow falls, trade the hiking shoes for skis and head to Whiteface Mountain.


On the banks of the vast Long Island Sound, Montauk is an idyllic place to be, especially in the warmer months. With a half-dozen state parks, miles of beachfront and some of the best golf courses in the region, when the sun is out, you’ll quickly find yourself outside.

Montauk has an old-time character, boasting historic lighthouses, epic scenery and 19th century homes. The lighthouse itself is the oldest working lighthouse in the country, the cliffs drop without fear into the Atlantic and the town has maintained its rustic fishing roots.

For visitors it’s all this and more that attracts them to the “East End”. There are great breweries here, excellent dining and the summer atmosphere brings events, outdoor concerts and fun nightlife.

3. Saratoga Springs

Saratoga Springs

Known as Spa City, Saratoga Springs straddles the line between tourist destination and a get place for families to live. It’s home to the oldest racetrack in the country, a historic performing arts center and a natural beauty that will be a boon for lovers of the outdoors.

For travelers and locals alike, one of the draws of Saratoga Springs is the springs themselves. Age old legend tells tales of the spring’s healing qualities which lead to a 19th century tourism boom. Today, you can get in on the attraction at one of the several local spas, including the Saratoga Springs Spa State Park.


A progressive town on the southern banks of Cayuga Lake, Ithaca is popular among students and creatives. Boasting Cornell and Ithaca College, there is a strong layer of higher education, culture and youthfulness in town. While the rich art scene brings together the wider community.

It’s a charming town but far from sleepy. As adorable and colorful as Ithaca is, there’s much to do here. Beyond the galleries and chic cafes, there is fantastic hiking to embark on in the city’s surrounds, including the 100+ gorges and waterfalls within minutes of downtown.

There is a wine trail and local festivals that will fill up your calendar. The nearby lakes are great for paddleboarding while on rainy days the local museums will keep you entertained.

1. New York City

New York City

The Big Apple needs no introduction. It’s one of the most famous cities in the world, home to the Statue of Liberty, Central Park and the New York Yankees. New York City has transcended all else to be at the forefront of pop culture and for travelers, it’s often at the top of the list of places to visit in the United States.

There are many parts of New York City. There are five boroughs, which include Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx. Each offers their own take on the NYC experience. For travelers Manhattan and “DUMBO” are the most common spots to explore, from amazing food to historic, towering skyscrapers.

But for those who choose to reside in the beyond bustling city, it’s easier to get your foot in the door in places like Brooklyn, Queens and even Staten Island compared to the expensive Manhattan.

Map of Cities in New York to Live and Visit

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19 Best Cities in New York

Written by Shandley McMurray Updated Mar 22, 2022

While most visit the Empire State to catch some of that one-of-a-kind, New York City vibe, this East Coast gem boasts so much more than its largest, noisiest, and most iconic metropolis. From Long Island City's mini MoMA to Lake Placid's tranquil beauty to Ithaca 's perfect mix of nature and culture, New York state boasts a long list of great cities to explore, and they are all packed with exciting tourist attractions.

No matter what you fancy – from eating good food to antiquing to hiking, you'll find it in lovely New York state. Go skiing in the Adirondack and Catskill Mountains , swim in the Finger Lakes , or mow down on excellent dishes in foodie-friendly Rochester. Love to shop? You can practice some retail therapy in each of the best cities on this list, with the best city for shopping being the Big Apple, of course.

Choose the perfect places to visit with our list of the best cities in New York.

1. New York City

2. lake placid, 5. saratoga springs, 6. rochester, 7. niagara falls, 8. syracuse, 10. yonkers, 11. binghamton, 12. new rochelle, 13. schenectady, 14. white plains, 15. montauk, 16. long island city, 17. poughkeepsie, 18. mount vernon, 19. cooperstown.

Sunset over New York City

The proverbial apple of New York State's eye, Manhattan is the most popular tourist destination, not to mention one of the best places to visit in New York State. It's also one of the best cities in New York and, arguably, the world.

It's in New York City that you'll find literally everything your heart desires – from the rarest antique cufflinks to the most delicious entrée to grace your lips.

The Big Apple also offers unbeatable museums. The Metropolitan Museum of Art , Guggenheim Museum , and American Museum of Natural History are three of the best museums in New York City .

You can run laps in Central Park , get lost in the Ramble , watch the sea lions perform at the Central Park Zoo , catch a show on Broadway , admire the view from atop the Empire State Building , board the Staten Island Ferry to see the Statue of Liberty close up, and shop till you drop on Madison or Park Avenue . Head to SoHo for more eclectic finds among the bespoke shops and galleries.

When hunger pangs hit, grab a bite in Hell's Kitchen or break the bank with a meal at the Momofuku Ko or Jean-Georges . A stay at the divine The St. Regis New York hotel will top off your vacay in style, though it may leave you with little cash left to get home.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in New York City

Adirondack chairs on the shore of Mirror Lake, Lake Placid

Technically more of a village than a city, Lake Placid is perhaps the most beautiful town in New York State. If you're looking for a scenic spot to eat good food, shop in small boutiques, and spend the day skiing down hills or kayaking on a lake, Lake Placid is the place to be.

Lush forests and giant, craggy mountains replace the tall skyscrapers found in bigger cities (ahem, Manhattan). The cacophony of horn-honking and shouting is traded for serene sounds of snow falling or birds chirping in trees. With such a tranquil and stunning backdrop, Lake Placid is the place where worries melt away. No wonder it was chosen to host the Winter Olympics in 1932 and 1980.

Not surprisingly, the top things to do in Lake Placid are Olympic based. We dare you not to hold your breath while watching young skiers practice jumping and flying (as far as the length of a football field) at the impressive Olympic Jumping Complex . In the center of town, you'll find the massive Olympic Center . It boasts skating rinks and a museum dedicated to past Olympic athletes.

The Olympic Sports Complex is an amazing place. This is where bobsled, luge, and skeleton events take place. The best part? You don't have to be an athlete to participate. Sign up for a turn on the track or jump on the soon-to-be-opened, Lake Placid Mountain Coaster , which is a bit more controlled.

When you're not being immersed in sports knowledge, head to nearby Mirror Lake . A stunner in all seasons, this crisp, clear, sparkling lake is especially picture-perfect during the colorful fall. This is by far one of the best places to visit in New York state .

Accommodation: Top-Rated Resorts in Lake Placid

McKinley Monument on Niagara Square in Buffalo

For years, Buffalo has had a bit of a bad rap. Once an economic powerhouse (it literally got its power from Niagara Falls), this big city in New York fell upon hard times, which resulted in empty buildings and a few less than stellar areas of town.

Today, those times are far behind this bustling city, the second largest in the state. Architectural masterpieces by Frank Lloyd Wright, HH Richardson, and Louis Sullivan have been restored, and its professional sports teams entice fans to visit from across the country.

Located on the shores of Lake Erie, Buffalo attractions include inspiring art galleries and museums, a vibrant entertainment scene, and fabulous restaurants. Keep the kids happy with a trip to the Buffalo Zoo . Try the city's namesake chicken wings and add a trip to the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens to your sightseeing itinerary.

Discover more about the city's brief history as a leader in the auto industry at the Pierce-Arrow Museum . And if you're an art lover, hit the Albright-Knox Art Gallery .

Insider's tip: Most visitors add a trip to the nearby Niagara Falls to their journey (the famous landmark is only a half-hour drive north).

View over Cornell University in Ithaca

Ithaca offers visitors a truly inclusive vacation filled with shopping, entertainment, academia, and some of the most gorgeous scenery in the state. This fun college city is set on the stunning southern edge of Cayuga Lake , the largest of New York's Finger Lakes. A tranquil city, so beautiful, your camera will quiver with excitement, you'll want to spend days, not hours, in this picturesque spot.

Ithaca is most notably home to Ivy League Cornell University and Ithaca College . Imagine being surrounded by deep gorges and cascading waterfalls as you hit the books. Not a bad backdrop to help quell exam worries.

Feeling stressed? Hit the lake on a paddleboard, head out for a hike, or try your hand at fishing. No wonder the city's slogan, "Ithaca is gorges," is stuck on bumper stickers everywhere.

As a college town, you can expect to be amazed by Ithaca's bevy of impressive museums and art galleries. Cornell's historic clock tower and Johnson Art Museum draw visitors, as do the city's Museum of the Earth , Sciencenter , Cornell Lab of Ornithology , and Cayuga Nature Center .

When wandering the streets, though, travelers will notice something even more eclectic than the artifacts they toured – an atmosphere that mixes creativity with academia and an ultimate bohemian vibe. You'll find festivals galore, a pedestrian mall (a.k.a. Ithaca Commons ), and canoe and kayak rentals.

Read More: Top-Rated Things to Do in the Finger Lakes Region, NY

Saratoga Springs

Want to feel young again? Take a dip in the waters of Saratoga Springs. Believed by the Mohawk and Iroquois tribes to have healing powers, the waters from the springs in this pretty city in New York were once thought to cure diabetes, heartburn, and kidney ailments, among others. While none of these claims have been proven, they did help turn Saratoga Springs into a top New York State tourist destination by the 19 th century.

Today, visitors get a chance to test these theories themselves at the Roosevelt Baths & Spa , located in Saratoga Springs Spa State Park . Not a fan of spas or the hefty price tags that often accompany a visit? You can find nearly 21 mineral springs among the top tourist attractions in the city.

When you aren't trying to sip from or bathe in the fountain of youth, head to the city's beautiful Yaddo Gardens or thrill your inner car lover at The Saratoga Automobile Museum .

Read More: Top-Rated Things to Do in Saratoga, NY


Rochester is a city built for fun, especially if you're a kid. First off, it boasts a thundering, 96-foot waterfall (a.k.a. High Falls ), one of the best waterfalls in New York state . If you ever want to feel small, stand next to this beauty!

Next up on the list of fun things to do in Rochester is visit the youthful and super fun Strong National Museum of Play . Who wouldn't want to visit a museum dedicated to toys and games? This awesome spot even boasts the National Toy Hall of Fame and World Video Game Hall of Fame.

Seabreeze Amusement Park is another winner with families, as is the expansive Seneca Park Zoo and Rochester Museum & Science Center .

Traveling without little ones in tow? You'll have a blast at the historic homes, George Eastman Museum , and Highland Park . Head out for a hike, admire the nearby waterfalls, or play a round of golf. You won't get bored. We promise!

A hub for foodies, this fun city in New York also offers a vast array of fantastic restaurants. Be sure to try a bunch of them to get a taste of all the city has to offer. The food at Sinbad's Mediterranean Cuisine is divine, as is the fine fare served at Pasta Villa .

View of Niagara Falls from the USA side

Pretty much everyone has heard of Niagara Falls. A cool, 150,000 gallons of water plunge over this famous landmark waterfall every second. Yes, you read that right. Every SECOND! Everyone should really see these exceptional falls at least once in their life.

While the Canadian Niagara Falls is deemed to have the best view of the watery wonder, the American city of the same name offers a quieter, more resplendent experience. It's been touted the "Honeymoon Capital of the World" for good reason.

Obviously, the main tourist draw is the remarkable falls. Whether you take a boat tour to the base, visit the Cave of the Winds for a wet and up-close view of Bridal Veil Falls , or book a helicopter tour to view the falls from above, you won't be disappointed by the amazing opportunities for sightseeing in this small, yet impressive city in New York.

The falls aren't the only beauty to be had in this gorgeous region. While in town, be sure to schedule time to visit Goat Island and walk the Niagara Gorge Trail .

Downtown Syracuse

The fourth largest city in New York state, Syracuse boasts all the impressive elements of a big city: interesting museums (i.e. the Erie Canal Museum and the Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science & Technology ), good restaurants, and boutique shops. It's also home to the 43-acre Rosamond Gifford Zoo , which offers enough indoor attractions to make it a good bet for keeping kids entertained in all types of weather. With so many great tourist attractions on offer, it's no wonder Syracuse is deemed one of the best cities in New York.

The downtown core features shops, cafés, and restaurants, as well as beautiful historic buildings that have been lovingly restored to evoke the simpler days of old. Outdoorsy folks may be more taken with Onondaga Lake Park , Clark Reservation State Park , and Hiawatha Lake , where they can swim, fish, boat, climb cliffs, or hike through the woods.

For many, one of the highlights of a Syracuse visit is a trip to Destiny USA , a humongous shopping mall and entertainment complex. In addition to shopping till you drop, visitors to this retail utopia can drive a go-kart or swing through a rope suspension course.

New York State Capitol in Albany

Beautiful Albany is a historic haven mixed with modern architectural marvels (we're looking at you, The Egg and Empire State Plaza) . The New York State Capitol is perhaps its most famous structure, a majestic building set atop State Street Hill . It took over 32 years to build this masterpiece during the late 1800s.

Walking around the city's streets is like traveling through a history book. You'll spot remarkable homes, churches, and other noteworthy buildings peppered throughout. Don't miss the incredible New York State Museum . It's been deemed the oldest state museum in the U.S. and sits in the most unique and striking building. It is also one of the top attractions in the Hudson Valley .

Insider's tip: Board a river cruise to see the city from the water. It's set upon the west bank of the Hudson River, and there are numerous cruises to choose from.

Yonkers, NY along the Hudson River

Yonkers is the fourth largest, and one of the best, cities in New York. Set on the east bank of the Hudson River, this New York City neighbor is a commuter haven for those with Manhattan-based jobs.

In addition to falling asleep without the cacophony found in the big city, Yonkers offers its residents (and visitors) views of both the river and Palisades so stunning, they've inspired many a work of art.

Its most famous residents have included, Ella Fitzgerald, Jon Voight, W.C. Handy, and Mary J. Blige. Elisha Otis designed the first "safety" elevator here in 1853.

Among the city's most unmissable tourist attractions are the Hudson River Museum (don't miss the planetarium or period house) and Untermyer Gardens Conservancy (the Walled Garden is particularly stunning, as are the Temple of Love and the Greek-inspired amphitheater).

Aerial view of Binghamton, NY

Science and technology buffs will love Binghamton. Touring its streets, you can virtually feel the creativity seep into your soul. This is the city where IBM was born, not to mention the technology behind virtual reality.

Binghamton is at the meeting place of the Chenango and Susquehanna rivers. Creative thinkers from the mid-1800s built a 97-mile canal, the Chenango Canal, to join Binghamton to Utica . Today, visitors can hike along the five-mile Towpath Trail and visit the self-guided museum in nearby Hamilton .

The Phelps Mansion Museum (once home to successful businessman and mayor, Sherman D. Phelps) is a grandiose, 19 th -century masterpiece that begs to be photographed. Inside, you'll get a glimpse into what life was like in the gilded era.

While in town, be sure to picnic in Otsiningo Park after entertaining the kids at the Discovery Cente r or Ross Park Zoo .

New Rochelle Harbor

Located about 25 minutes from midtown Manhattan, New Rochelle is another popular city in New York for commuters. It's also one of the oldest communities in the state. Nestled in Westchester County, you'll find vast waterfront estates lining the Long Island Sound, and historic homes peppering the streets of this seventh-largest city in New York.

The downtown is charming and features enough local shops and restaurants to help you while away at least a few hours. In warmer months, sailboats and other watercraft bob their hellos from the New Rochelle Harbor .

Visiting Glen Island Park is one of the best things to do in New Rochelle, especially during summer. Bring beach gear, as you'll want to park yourself on the soft sand for an entire afternoon. The park is housed on a 105-acre island that is reached via drawbridge.

If you're in search of history, you'll find it here in spades. The heart of the city is home to "the largest designated historic district in Westchester" and the charming Thomas Paine Cottage Museum features interesting displays about the area's storied past.

Aerial view of Schenectady

A small city in what is known as the "Capital Region" of upstate New York, Schenectady sure knows how to pack a lot of fun within its borders. From top restaurants to impressive tourist attractions to a charming historic district, there is no lack of fun things to do in this popular city in New York.

Catch an evening show at Proctor's Theater . The well-lighted heart of downtown, this iconic spot has hosted live concerts, musicals, plays, dance performances, and so much more inside its historic walls.

The Schenectady County Historical Society always has something interesting planned at its three area sites. The Mabee Farm Historic Site , Museum & Library , and Brouwer House Creative are all worth a visit.

If the weather cooperates, be sure to carve out time for a walk around the Central Park Rose Garden . One of the best places to visit in Schenectady, this natural wonder boasts thousands of bushes featuring hundreds of varieties of roses. It's truly stunning, especially when the flowers are in bloom (usually in early June).

White Plains

No matter what you're looking for, you'll find it in White Plains–from fine dining to upscale shopping to farmers markets to golf to skating, this vibrant city in New York has it all. A mere 35 miles from New York (just over an hour by car if you hit traffic), this inner suburb is one of the main cultural hubs of Westchester County.

ArtsWestchester is the place to visit if you're hoping to unleash your inner Picasso. Get inspired by the unique art exhibitions and performances of everything from music to dance.

Cranberry Lake Preserve , on the other hand, will help you get lost for a while. A 190-acre park, this serene spot is the perfect place to unwind and appreciate nature.

Looking for more outdoor fun? Wander the trails and forests of Silver Lake Preserve , or play a game on the Maple Moor Golf Course .

Montauk Lighthouse

Talk about idyllic. Montauk is the place where worries disappear. Flanked by the shimmering Long Island Sound, spotted with sandy (yet slightly pebbly) beaches, and overflowing with charm, this lovely slice of heaven is a weekender's dream destination. It's located on the eastern tip of the South Fork in East Hampton .

A laid-back, seaside haven, the small city of Montauk is a popular summer destination, especially for frazzled New Yorkers looking for an escape. Popular things to do in Montauk include beachin', seal watching in Montauk Point State Park , swimming, visiting the iconic Montauk Lighthouse , and eating lots and lots of delicious food.

Camp Hero State Park is another must-see. Once a WWII military base, the park is home to trails that traipse through wetlands and forests.

Long Island City

Long Island City is the Big Apple's smaller, quieter cousin, which technically resides in one of its boroughs: Queens. To get here, hop on the G train from Brooklyn, or the W, N or 7 trains from Manhattan.

Gantry Plaza State Park is one of the city's main attractions. It offers visitors a place to stretch out, walk, run, play basketball, or sip on a coffee. The best part? All this is done with an incredible backdrop of the New York City skyline and 59 th street Bridge.

The MoMA PS1 is a treat for art lovers. It's a much smaller, more scaled back version of Manhattan's MoMA where you'll be treated to experimental and contemporary art. Still craving creativity? Head to Sculpture Center , a contemporary arts museum that's sure to inspire.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Attractions & Things to Do in Queens, NY


The largest city in the Hudson River Valley, Poughkeepsie is a keeper (sorry, we had to) filled with interesting things to do . Once home to Franklin D. Roosevelt, it's also a hub of historical significance. Tourists flock here to visit his prior house and the FDR Presidential Library and Museum . They're located in Springwood , a suburb where the iconic president was once based.

Even more popular than FDR's house, though, is the outstanding (and super long) Walkaway Over the Hudson (or Walkway, as it's known to locals) attraction. The world's longest footbridge, the Walkway was first built as a railroad in 1889. It was rebuilt after a fire destroyed the tracks in 1974 and opened as a State Historic Park in 2009. You can't beat the views of the Catskills and Hudson Highlands from this gorgeous spot, which hovers 212 meters above the Hudson River.

While in town, be sure to visit the expansive and picturesque Locus Grove Estate , a museum and nature preserve featuring an Italian Villa built in the mid-1850s.

Insider's tip: Save time for a show at the historic Bardavon Opera House (circa 1869).

  • Read More: Top Attractions & Things to Do in the Hudson Valley, NY

Mount Vernon, New York

Mount Vernon hugs both the Bronx and Hutchinson Rivers, offering its guests plenty of opportunities to enjoy pretty water views. Also situated in Westchester County, this fun city in New York is just north of the Bronx and technically considered an inner suburb of New York City. As such, it's also one of the most populated cities in New York state.

Mount Vernon's most popular tourist attraction is the Saint Paul's Church National Historic Site . Used as a hospital for British military during the American Revolutionary War, this iconic spot is the most visited site in the city. If you're looking for food, cute shops, and quaint cafés, head downtown.

Those hoping to enjoy a little nature with their city experience should take some time out for a hike or picnic in Hunt's Woods or Willson's Woods Park . The latter boats access to swimming, fishing, plenty of green space, and a water park.

Pitcher and catcher statues at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Cooperstown

You'll want to spend at least two days in charming Cooperstown. Most notable as being home to the National Baseball Hall of Fame , this small city in New York is a hit with baseball aficionados and children of all ages.

Catch a game at Doubleday Field , which some have dubbed the birthplace of baseball. Then knock it out of the park by treating your kids to a day riding bumper boats, driving go-carts, and playing mini golf at Cooperstown Fun Park . Cool off with a dip in Ostego Lake , where you can fish, boat, or kayak.

You'll feel the artsy vibe oozing through the walls of this tiny town's well-established shops, cafés, and restaurants. Be sure to take the time to sit back, relax, and let it all seep in. Part small town, part city, Cooperstown is an enjoyable place to visit.

More Related Articles on PlanetWare.com


Get Outside in New York State: It's easy to stay active and enjoy the outdoors in New York. With a bevy of beautiful lakes in which to swim, kayak, and fish, you'll be set for summer. In winter, head for the hills and hit the slopes at the numerous first-rate ski resorts . You're assured outdoor fun in every season.


Where to Stay in New York : Now that you know where you want to go, it's time to figure out where you'll stay. From top-notch luxury to more affordable small-town inns, you're sure to find a perfect place among these top resorts in New York State . Looking to spend more of your time checking out the scenery of the Adirondacks and Catskills? Try one of these lovely resorts in upstate New York .

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10 Best Cities Near New York to Visit + MAP

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While visiting NYC, consider checking out one or two of the best cities near New York . The Big Apple’s convenient location is just a few hours from several awesome destinations, like Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Boston.

Whether you only have time for a day trip from NYC , or you have a couple of days, I recommend taking advantage of it. Visiting one of the cities near Manhattan will give you a breath of fresh air from the hustle and bustle of NYC, and it’s a great way to maximize your time, especially if you won’t return to the area anytime soon.

Also, since there are several big cities near NYC , it’s quite easy to visit one or two of them. You can rent a car in NYC or, depending on which town you want to visit, take an organized tour. In this guide, I’ll help you choose a city to explore, although I’ll tell you now that they all offer something different.

1. Philadelphia, PA, a historic city near New York

Just a two-hour drive from NYC, Philadelphia’s top attractions are waiting. As one of the most historic cities near New York, you’ll find no shortage of things to do here.

Of course, you must do the touristy things, especially if it’s your first time here. Be sure to visit Independence Hall , the Liberty Bell , the Betsy Ross House , and Penn’s Landing , which often hosts events, vendors, and activities.

Philly also has amazing museums, like the Franklin Institute and the Mutter Museum . The Philadelphia Museum of Art is one of the best, but even if you don’t go inside, you should still run up the Rocky Steps and get a photo of the Rocky statue .

Philadelphia Museum of Art, nearby cities to new york

There are all kinds of dining options here, from Reading Terminal Market to the iconic Philly cheesesteaks at Pat’s and Geno’s. You can also find lots of gourmet restaurants in Rittenhouse Square , along with high-end shops and casual stores.

We have a whole guide on how to plan a Philadelphia day trip from NYC , but if you’re short on time, I recommend this day tour . It includes a visit to Philly and Lancaster , a Pennsylvania city near New York that’s known for its Amish community.

  • Recommended accommodation : The Windsor Suites Philadelphia is right on the Ben Franklin Parkway and has an outdoor terrace and rooftop pool. You can find other great hotels in our guide on where to stay in Philadelphia .

2. Washington, D.C., one of the best cities near NYC

Washington, D.C. is another major city near New York City that you must visit, and we have a complete guide on taking a Washington, D.C. daytrip from NYC .

It’s worth the 4.5-hour drive to see the historic attractions in Washington, D.C. , which range from presidential monuments and state buildings to internationally recognized museums and institutions. For starters, the Smithsonian institutes appeal to all interests, although some of the most popular are the National Air and Space Museum , the Museum of Natural History , the National Museum of the American Indian , and the National Museum of American History .

Jefferson Memorial, closest town to nyc

You’ll also love seeing the impressive memorials and monuments here, like the Lincoln Memorial . The Jefferson Memorial is by the Tidal Basin and looks beautiful in the spring when the cherry blossoms bloom. Year-round, you can get a lovely view of the Washington Monument and the Reflecting Pool , and there are several war memorials where you can pay your respects.

Don’t forget to stop by the U.S. Capitol building and the White House , which offers free (reserved) tours. I also recommend adding Arlington National Cemetery , the Library of Congress , and the U.S. Botanic Garden to your list.

If you’re short on time or overwhelmed by everything in D.C., this day tour from NYC will cover the highlights and take care of transportation for you.

  • Recommended accommodation : The Melrose Georgetown Hotel is a beautiful hotel less than a mile from the National Mall. You can find other great hotels in Washington, D.C. in our guide.

3. Boston, MA, a beautiful city near New York

Boston is a sophisticated city near NYC to visit , either on your own or with a day tour from NYC to Boston like this one . This city is a four-hour drive from New York and has a distinct atmosphere full of history and charm.

You can see a handful of historic landmarks along the Freedom Trail , which starts downtown at the Boston Common . This former cow pasture is one of the oldest parks in the country, so it’s a great starting point. Along the trail, you’ll see the Paul Revere House , Old North Church , the Massachusetts State House , and much more.

The Freedom Trail also goes through the North End , Boston’s oldest neighborhood and home to the city’s Little Italy community. Another neighborhood you should visit is Beacon Hill , which has quaint cobblestone roads and gas street lamps.

Boston Seaport, day trip from NYC to Boston

If you like museums, you’ll have plenty to choose from in Boston. A few of the most popular ones are the Museum of Fine Arts , the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum , the Museum of Science , the Boston Children’s Museum , and the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum .

Of course, you don’t have to stay inside all day. The Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway , Boston Public Garden , and Fenway Park are all awesome outdoor venues. Also, don’t miss the Faneuil Hall Marketplace for food, shopping, and more history.

  • Recommended accommodation : The Club Quarters Hotel Faneuil Hall has a great downtown location as well as modern rooms, a restaurant, and a gym.

4. Baltimore, MD, a city near New York with lots to do

Baltimore is one of New York’s nearby cities , specifically 3.5 hours to the southwest. One of the biggest draws of this port city is its Inner Harbor , where you’ll find the National Aquarium and seafood restaurants where you can try Maryland crab cakes. Water taxis and cruises are also popular, so consider something like this lunch cruise through the Inner Harbor and along the Patapsco River.

There are other attractions on the waterfront, including the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture , the Maryland Science Center , Federal Hill Park , and the American Visionary Art Museum .

Baltimore, MD, major cities near new york

Downtown Baltimore’s Arts District is a great place to hang out and explore since it’s the site of the Walters Art Museum , the George Peabody Library , and other institutions.

Along the Patapsco River is the Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine . Here, you can see an important site from the War of 1812, which inspired the lyrics to the Star-Spangled Banner .

Another photogenic spot is Graffiti Alley , north of downtown. If you keep traveling north, you can visit the hipster neighborhood of Hampden and the beautiful Sherwood Gardens .

  • Recommended accommodation : Staybridge Suites Baltimore is a comfortable waterfront hotel with views of the Inner Harbor and downtown Baltimore.

5. Atlantic City, NJ, one of the best coastal cities near New York

Atlantic City is a coastal city near NY with history, entertainment, dining, and more. Plus, it’s just a 2.5-hour drive from the Big Apple, so you can easily make this a couple’s day trip or weekend getaway.

AC’s famous boardwalk is its most popular attraction, and it even inspired the Monopoly boardwalk. Since 1870, the 5.5-mile boardwalk has been attracting tourists and beachgoers. While you’ll find typical boardwalk features like shops and food stalls, Atlantic City stands out for the 124-year-old Steel Pier , its rolling chairs, and the Entrance to the Stars with handprints from celebrity visitors like Cher, Johnny Carson, and Frank Sinatra.

Atlantic City, NJ, cities to visit near new york

The boardwalk is also lined with glitzy casinos, and you don’t have to be a gambler to have fun at one of them. These casino resorts are full of gourmet restaurants, luxury shops, and intimate theaters where you can watch a concert or show.

Towards the northern end of the boardwalk, you can admire the views from the 171-foot-tall Absecon Lighthouse . It’s also worth the 20-minute drive to Margate , another New Jersey city close to NYC . There, you can visit Lucy the Elephant , a 65-foot novelty statue.

Atlantic City is one of the best places to visit in New Jersey , and it’s close to other beaches like Ocean City and Cape May .

  • Recommended accommodation : The beachfront Hard Rock Hotel & Casino has a pool, sun terrace, gym, restaurant, and bar.

6. Providence, RI, one of the best cities near New York for families

In just under four hours, you can experience the New England charm of Providence , Rhode Island. This major city near New York City is worth the drive thanks to its historical landmarks, entertainment options, and cultural institutions. It’s no wonder it makes for one of the best road trips from NYC .

Providence is home to several universities, including Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), so it has that vibrant college town vibe. At the same time, it’s one of the oldest cities in New England, so there is a lot of history to discover.

For example, you can take in the culture and legacy of Providence at the RISD Museum , the Providence Performing Arts Center , and the Providence Athenaeum , one of the oldest libraries in the U.S.

Providence, RI, towns close to nyc

For a great overview of the city’s history, walk along Benefit Street , which is lined with Federal period homes, the Governor Stephen Hopkins House , and the John Brown House .

Back in the downtown (or “Downcity”) area, you’ll find amazing Art Deco and Beaux-Arts architecture as well as Victorian facades. Cross the Woonasquatucket River and visit Waterplace Park and the famous WaterFire sculpture.

You can discover the different neighborhoods of Providence and some hidden gems with this small group tour . You’ll visit the Rhode Island State House , see the views from Prospect Terrace Park , go to Providence’s Little Italy, Federal Hill , and more.

  • Recommended accommodation : Hampton Inn & Suites Providence Downtown offers a shuttle service, complimentary breakfast, and comfy rooms.

7. Albany, NY, another interesting city near New York

Albany is another cool city outside New York City that you should visit. It’s three hours north of NYC and serves as the state capitol, so it’s full of impressive governmental buildings.

Besides the New York State Capitol , I recommend visiting the Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza , which consists of several offices, government buildings, and The Egg Performing Arts Center .

Speaking of the arts, Albany is home to the Albany Institute of History & Art as well as the New York State Museum , which has 12 million artifacts like gems, minerals, fossils, and ancient artwork. It’s also worth visiting the museum and planetarium at the Albany Heritage Area Visitors Center .

Albany, NY, nearby cities to new york

If you prefer the outdoors, be sure to check out Washington Park and the Albany Pine Bush Preserve . Also, Albany is near the Adirondack Mountains , one of the best things to see in NY state .

Back in the city proper, I also recommend some historic estates that were built in the late 18 th century. Cherry Hill was built in 1787 for the noble Van Rensselaer family, while the Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site dates back to the 1760s. More recently, the USS Slater is a destroyer escort ship that launched in 1944 and today serves as a museum.

  • Recommended accommodation : The Renaissance Albany Hotel is right downtown and has elegant rooms, private parking, a gym, and a restaurant.

8. New Haven, CT, one of the best cities near New York for couples

New Haven , CT is a little over two hours northeast of NYC, so it’s the perfect place to visit for a weekend. This city near New York is along Long Island Sound, so it’ll give you a different viewpoint of Long Island.

You can get a beautiful panorama of the water from East Rock Park , which also has a rose garden and hiking trails. Downtown, New Haven Green is a lovely park and National Historic Landmark with several 19 th -century churches. I also recommend Lighthouse Point Park , a picturesque area with nice views, a playground, and a carousel.

New Haven, CT, closest cities to new york

If you’re into art and culture, New Haven is one of the best cities near New York to visit. It’s home to Yale University , which has its own Art Gallery, Center for British Art, and the Peabody Museum . Off-campus, there are other institutions like the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library , the New Haven Museum , and Shubert Theater . The Shore Line Trolley Museum and the Connecticut Science Center are great places to visit with kids.

Finally, take a walk down Wooster Street in the city center, which is known as New Haven’s Little Italy. Here, you can pop into Italian bakeries and pizza shops to try New Haven-style pizza, which is coal-fired and has a thin crust.

  • Recommended accommodation : Stay in the heart of the city at Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale , where you can walk to Yale and several downtown attractions.

9. Hartford, CT, another one of the best cities to visit near New York

Hartford , CT is another city to visit near New York , and it’s just 45 minutes north of New Haven. As the capital city of Connecticut, Hartford has lots of attractions as well as shopping and dining venues.

First, the Connecticut State Capitol features beautiful Victorian Gothic architecture and offers guided and self-guided tours. You can also see amazing Gothic Revival structures in the Coltsville Historic District , including the Church of the Good Shepherd .

Hartford, CT, big cities near nyc

Hartford was incorporated in 1784, so some of the oldest buildings in the country are here. For example, you can visit author Harriet Beecher Stowe ’s former home and the Ancient Burying Ground , which has gravestones dating back to 1648. Mark Twain lived in the city in the late 1800s, and you can take a tour of his Victorian mansion.

If you’re traveling with family, check out the Connecticut Science Center and Bushnell Park . The latter is the site of a 1914 Stein and Goldstein carousel and the Museum of Connecticut History . Not far is Riverside Park , an outdoor space with walking trails and playgrounds. There, you can enjoy the fresh air or take a cruise along the Connecticut River .

Finally, I recommend the Elizabeth Park Rose Garden outside the city center, especially if you’re traveling as a couple.

  • Recommended accommodation : The Goodwin is in the middle of downtown Hartford and has an intimate vibe with cozy rooms and an Italian restaurant.

10. Syracuse, NY, the best city near New York to visit with friends

The last city near New York that I recommend is Syracuse , NY. It’s about 4.5 hours from NYC, and it’s in the Finger Lakes region , specifically near Onondaga Lake.

While you’re here, be sure to stop by Onondaga Lake Park , also known as the Central Park of Central New York. This waterfront area has over seven miles of walking paths and trails, a dog park, a playground, and a Salt Museum .

Syracuse, NY, cities near new york city

Over in the city center, check out Clinton Square , a downtown park surrounded by beautiful buildings. The park is within walking distance of several popular attractions like the Erie Canal Museum , the Museum of Science and Technology , and the Landmark Theatre . It’s also close to the Niagara Mohawk Building , an Art Deco “cathedral of light” that served as the headquarters for the Niagara Hudson Electric Company.

If it’s a rainy day or you want to pick up some souvenirs, you’ll find everything you’re looking for at Destiny USA , the largest mall in New York. The Everson Museum of Art and the Community Folk Art Center are also worth visiting.

  • Recommended accommodation : Stay at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown , where you can get a good night’s sleep after a full day exploring this city outside New York .

That’s it for the best cities near New York. Don’t forget to check out the map below to see each city’s location in relation to NYC.

I’d love to hear about your favorite city near New York or any questions you may have. Leave me a comment below and I’ll get back to you! Until then, have fun!

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New York State is  historic . It's untamed. It's iconic. But more importantly, it's anything you want it to be. From the lights of Times Square to the mists of Niagara Falls , Lake Placid 's Olympic legacy to Cooperstown 's baseball roots,   Albany's 400-year history to Jamestown 's comedy treasures, the castles of the Thousand Islands to Long Island 's Gold Coast mansions, the  Hudson Valley 's inspiring landscapes to the Catskills' sweeping mountain views and stunning  Finger Lakes  wine country— there’s something for everyone. Whether you're looking for a day trip,  weekend escape , romantic getaway , or budget-friendly trips idea , find travel inspiration and itineraries by exploring our 11 unique vacation regions below and discover what it is that you LOVE about New York.

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From state parks to a National Hall of Fame, an extraordinary beverage trail and caverns! more


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Eleven pristine lakes surrounded by natural beauty, top attractions, events, and wine trails! more

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Full of awesome adventures and cultural treasures; there's so much to see and do in Western NY! more

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74 Best Places to Visit in New York City

best places to visit in New York City

The poster child of America and the beating heart of the East Coast’s culture, art, and foodie scenes, vibrant and skyscraper-laden New York City needs no introduction .

Home to over eight million people across its five diverse boroughs, and welcoming over 60 million more every year in search of selfies with Lady Liberty, the Empire State Building, and the buzzing billboards of Times Square, the Big Apple is a melting pot where you’ll find a never-ending list of tourist attractions and fascinating insights into cultures and traditions from all around the world.

Whether you’re in the Big Apple to catch a Broadway show , explore Central Park’s movie-famous greenery, or check out the nation’s finest collection of museums , the concrete jungle that is New York has something for everyone .

So, what are you waiting for? Check out the best places to visit in New York City and start planning your next adventure!

1 – Central Park

Central Park in New York City

Easily the world’s most famous park , New York City’s Central Park spans over 800 acres, is skirted by skyscrapers on all sides, and is a top spot to spend an afternoon no matter the season (yep, even in winter, this natural oasis is stunning).

While there are countless activities on offer in Central Park (just to name a few: Turtle Lake, Central Park Zoo, check out Shakespeare in the Park, snap some selfies at the architecturally brilliant Bethesda Terrace and Fountains, or grab a cheeky souvenir or hot dog) a simple stroll or bike ride around one of the pathways — whether solo or as part of a guided tour — takes in non-stop beautiful sights of the city skyline.

Deserving of its own mention, Belvedere Castle (which houses Central Park’s official weather station) sits atop Vista Rock and offers not only a rich slice of history but some seriously breathtaking views too.

Traveling with youngsters? Bring them along to one of Central Park’s 21 playgrounds — full of oversized chess sets, boat ponds, and Alice in Wonderland statues — for hours of fun!

  • Central Park tours

2 – Grand Central Terminal

Grand Central Terminal, New York City

The intersection of 42nd Street and Park Avenue is one of the most famous landmarks in New York City , a bustling hub of activity where commuters, travelers and locals alike come together to travel across the city.

Built at the turn of the 20th century by railroad tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt II, this Beaux-Arts structure has an impressive history, playing a pivotal role in the city’s development , and being used as the backdrop for countless popular films and TV shows over the years (did someone say film tour?).

Aside from its status as an architectural masterpiece , Grand Central also dishes up shopping and dining opportunities aplenty, with over 60 stores and restaurants to explore (plus the lovely Whispering Gallery).

Tip: make sure to take a moment to look up and admire the constellation-ridden ceiling — it’s out of this world.

3 – Bryant Park

Bryant Park, New York City

A vibrant green oasis in the heart of Midtown Manhattan , Bryant Park is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike to relax, take a break from sightseeing or shopping, and simply unwind and people-watch .

What was once an unsightly parking lot has been beautifully redesigned and landscaped; these days you’ll find a sleuth of shady picnic spots , comfortable benches (plus Wi-Fi!), ping pong tables , art installations , food kiosks , and a whole lot more.

In the winter months, the park transforms into a festive wonderland with an ice skating rink, Christmas market, and a towering tree, while in the summer you’ll find a calendar of open-air movie screenings , free concerts, and friendly street performers aplenty.

4 – Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge, New York City

Synonymous with the city, the Brooklyn Bridge has long been one of the best places to visit in New York City — especially when it comes to snapping a jealousy-evoking photo or two.

The first suspension bridge built across the East River connects Lower Manhattan with Brooklyn over a span of nearly 1600 feet; it was constructed in 1883 and has been a popular tourist attraction and means of transportation ever since.

In addition to being one of the best spots for soaking in the beauty of Lower Manhattan’s skyline , walking or cycling along this structure also gives you access to the DUMBO neighborhood in Brooklyn , which not only offers magnificent views but a sleuth of delicious food options too.

  • Brooklyn Bridge tours

5 – Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Long Island

Tucked away in the charming neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights , the Brooklyn Botanic Garden is a 52-acre oasis that’s home to over 12,000 different types of plants of all shapes, sizes, and colors, from pockets and climates all over the world.

The garden has something for everyone, whether you’re an avid gardener or just looking for a pretty place to take a peaceful walk ; highlights include the Japanese garden, herb garden, Shakespeare garden (featuring more than 80 herbs and plants mentioned in his plays), ever-colorful Cranford Rose Garden, and the interactive children’s garden with interactive exhibits,

With regular events to boot (that teach you things like how to keep that pesky houseplant alive), a postcard-worthy Cherry Esplanade, and pay-what-you-wish winter Tuesdays, it’s a notable addition to any NYC bucket list .

See also: Best Things do Do in Brooklyn

6 – Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty, New York City

Emblematic not only of America but of the journey millions of immigrants made to the United States in search of a better life, the Statue of Liberty is one of New York’s most recognizable landmarks .

Gifted to America by France in 1886, this colossal copper statue stands at over 300 feet tall and has long been associated with freedom and democracy , and stands as a welcoming, educational, and beautiful sight to newcomers to the city.

Ferries from Battery Park to Liberty and Ellis Islands depart regularly (both islands are open for tours), the latter of which houses a fascinating museum that chronicles all eras of American immigration and the 12+ million people who arrived via this small post.

However, if you’re just after a quick glimpse of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, consider hopping on the free Staten Island Ferry for a round-trip of killer Harbor and Lady Liberty views.

  • Statue of Liberty tours

Hot tip: Tickets are sold out? Learn how to book Statue of Liberty last-minute tickets .

7 – New York Hall Of Science

New York Hall Of Science, New York City

A family-friendly, highly interactive, and enormous science museum located in Queens , the New York Hall of Science acts as a magnet for anyone with an inquisitive mind (or anyone with kids in tow).

Boasting more than 450 exhibits on topics ranging from human biology to outer space , the environment, evolution, and amazing technology, this museum is sure to spark intrigue no matter your age and interests .

Hands-on and immersive, the interactive exhibits allow you to control robotic arms, step into virtual reality worlds, dig for fossils, and burn off some energy at the nation’s largest outdoor science playground, whose features are curated around the scientific principles of motion, balance, sound, and sight.

In addition to its permanent exhibitions (not to mention add-ons like mini-golf and a 3D theater), the NYSC also regularly hosts temporary shows as well as classes and workshops ; and, thanks to its location in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, the Queens Zoo and New York Mets stadium are both just a short walk away!

8 – Greenwich Village

Greenwich Village, New York City

Constantly buzzing with energy and creativity, Greenwich Village is a beloved, charming, and certainly eccentric New York City neighborhood that is packed to the brim with historic architecture, art galleries, trendy restaurants and bars, beautiful parks, and a lively music scene — there’s something for everyone to love in this hipster ‘hood.

Whether solo or as part of a guided tour (which is full of curious tidbits and hidden gems), wandering its streets is an experience in itself ; you never quite know what you’ll stumble upon next.

A local focal point, Washington Square Park (next to NYU) is abuzz with street performers and musicians; the picturesque cobblestone lanes and Brownstone buildings make for a wonderful insight into the area’s rich history, while the Off-Broadway Theaters are always putting on exciting and affordable evenings of entertainment.

  • Greenwich Village tours

9 – Rockefeller Center

Rockefeller Center, New York City

Never mind the hordes of tourists, Rockefeller Center is an awe-inspiring New York City landmark that should not be missed.

Home to Radio City Music Hall, the GE Building (where you’ll find sublime observation deck views from Top of the Rock), art galleries, high-end shopping in the underground Concourse, and some of the most delicious restaurants in town (don’t miss the cheesecake at Magnolia Bakery), this Midtown complex is a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach .

For entertainment buffs, NBC Studios offers fascinating studio tours, while free audience tickets are available for live tapings of TV shows like Saturday Night Live!

And, as the snow falls in the colder months, the Center morphs into a winter wonderland complete with its famous ice skating rink and annual bedazzled Christmas tree!

10 – Top of the Rock Observation Deck

Top of the Rock, New York City

If you’re looking for a great place to take in New York City’s spectacular skyline , check out the Top of the Rock Observation Deck at 30 Rockefeller Plaza.

From 70 floors up in the GE Building , you can see Manhattan’s postcard-worthy landmarks from every angle — all the way across Central Park to the north and into Harlem, down to Times Square, Broadway, and the Hudson River to the west, and past the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings to the south toward Lower Manhattan!

And if you time it right, arriving about an hour before sundown , you can catch the glowing sunset as the orange hues rebound off the cityscape. It’s an unforgettable experience (made all the more enjoyable by a fresh cocktail at Bar SixtyFive!).

  • Top of the Rock tickets

See also: Top of the Rock Tickets Price – Everything you Need to Know

11 – Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden

Snug Harbor Cultural Center, New York City

Underrated and off the beaten track, located on Staten Island, Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden is an impressive former 19th-century retirement home for sailors that has been transformed into a museum, performance space, botanic garden, and arts complex.

The magnificent campus consists of dozens of historic buildings as well as 83 acres of lawns, woodlands — lined with sculptures — and lush gardens with an endless variety of stunning plants to discover.

A true hidden gem , this New York City attraction offers everything from award-winning plays by the resident theater company to art exhibitions at the Chinese Scholar’s Garden ; you can even stroll through its beautifully manicured grounds totally FREE.

And, for all you history buffs, don’t miss the museums: check out the Staten Island Museum (Building A), the Noble Maritime Collection (Building D), the Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art (Buildings C & G), the Staten Island Children’s Museum (Building M), and the Green Gallery (Building P).

12 – Union Square

Union Square, New York City

Constantly buzzing with energy, Union Square is one of New York City’s most popular public squares .

Home to a gorgeous park, upscale shopping, some of the best restaurants in town on its neighboring streets, and an ever-changing line-up of street performers, this downtown meeting spot is always alive with activity.

Take a break from the crowds by lounging on a bench in the park, people-watch as you enjoy a delicious picnic lunch, check out the George Washington Statue , or browse through the shops which flank the Square on every side.

And don’t forget to visit the locally adored Union Square Greenmarket ! Held Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays & Saturdays year-round; and showcasing over 140 regional farmers, fishers, and bakers selling farm-fresh produce, artisanal cheeses, homemade jams, and just-baked bread, it’s a chance to stock up on delicious, seasonal eats!

13 – Museum of Modern Art

Museum of Modern Art, New York City

Guaranteed to inspire and delight art lovers of all ages (and leave you scratching your head at some of the more out-there pieces), the Museum of Modern Art houses a world-renowned collection that includes masterpieces by Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Frida Kahlo, and Andy Warhol , to name just a few.

Regarding as one of the best places to visit in New York City, with over 200,000 pieces from all around the world on display , the MoMA is simply a non-negotiable pit stop for anyone interested in 20th century and contemporary art .

In addition to its permanent collection, MoMA also presents rotating exhibitions on a wide variety of topics throughout the year (from fashion to architecture, photography, and avant-garde film screenings), so there’s always something new to see.

Plus, with free admission every Friday night from 5.30 pm till 9 pm, it’s an affordable option too if you plan your schedule ahead of time!

  • Museum of Modern Art tickets

14 – Metropolitan Opera

Metropolitan Opera House, New York City

Located in the iconic Lincoln Center on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, The Metropolitan Opera House is (quite literally) blissful music to the ears of any classical music lover.

As the world’s largest repertory opera company , with over 3,800 seats in its theater, the Met Opera offers an extensive repertoire from September to May each year, with over 200 performances featuring some of opera’s most renowned singers (do any of Luciano Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Anna Netrebko or Renée Fleming ring a bell?) as well as ballets and concerts to boot.

Simply check the website to see who’s gracing the center stage during your visit — and even if you don’t fancy a night dressed to the nines at the opera, the grandiose balcony and lobby, complete with grand staircases and glistening chandeliers, is still open to guests searching for a magical Manhattan souvenir photo.

See also: Fun Things to Do in New York City at Night

15 – New York Aquarium

New York Aquarium, Brooklyn

A surefire delight for voyaging families, the New York Aquarium on Coney Island’s celebrated boardwalk has been entertaining guests of all ages since it opened its doors in 1896.

Featuring a wide array of marine mammals, fish, plants, and sea-themed exhibits , there’s plenty to see as you stroll along its many pathways, experience the thrill of touch tanks, walk-through ocean tunnels, and live feedings along the way!

Admire the aquarium’s impressive collection of sharks , take a trip through Ocean Wonders: Sharks! — where you’ll find over 18 different kinds of sharks and rays — or catch one of the penguin demonstrations , or learn about oceanic conservation and the environment at Conservation Hall.

And for little ones who want an even more hands-on experience with these majestic creatures, check out the VIP Animal Encounters where kids (and adults) can meet some furry and scaly residents face to face.

  • New York Aquarium tickets

16 – Carnegie Hall

Carnegie Hall, Manhattan

Iconic being an understatement, Carnegie Hall is one of the world’s most famous concert venues .

Opened in 1891 and located in Midtown Manhattan on 7th Ave, a couple of blocks away from Central Park, this historic music hall has hosted some of the biggest names (from Tchaikovsky to Frank Zappa and Judy Garland) and best performances from across a variety of different music genres — classical symphonies, jazz ensembles, pop concerts, you name it!

Even today, thousands flock each year for its eclectic program featuring over 200 shows per season (jazz and classical for the most part), so be sure to check out what’s on during your visit.

If Carnegie Hall tickles your fancy and you want to level up your experience (or avoid buying a concert ticket) then book yourself onto a guided tour to learn all about its history and explore behind the scenes , and don’t forget to pop into the free Rose Museum.

17 – Children’s Museum Of Manhattan

Children’s Museum Of Manhattan, New York City

Built to ignite curiosity, inspire creativity, and burn off some energy along the way, the Children’s Museum of Manhattan has long been a beloved cultural institution for kids and families from all over NYC.

Boasting interactive exhibits on science, history, art, culture, and more (plus no shortage of play areas), and a host of small-group classes (like Gross Biology!), there’s something to keep everyone entertained during a visit — even the adults!

Located on the Upper West Side, this museum makes for a perfect rainy day activity or afternoon out with the little ones .

Hot tip: if it’s not raining, stroll over to Central Park for a post-visit picnic!

18 – Luna Park in Coney Island

Luna Park, Coney Island, New York City

A longstanding summer vacation destination for New Yorkers, Coney Island has been a revolving door of amusements, attractions, and rides since the late 1800s.

And, today, at its center, lies Luna Park — the most well-known amusement park in the city and one of the best family-friendly attractions in New York City !

Open each year for three of the four seasons (excluding winter for obvious reasons), this park is home to more than 30 rides , including a few heart-stopping roller coasters, as well as old-school arcades and classic carnie food options.

Thrillseekers, hop on one of the park’s adrenaline-pumping coasters like the Cyclone , Zenobio, or Soarin’ Eagle; for a more relaxing day out, take things slow on the carousel before trying your luck at a few midway games.

Best of all, the park is free to enter — just chip in for whatever rides or treats you fancy.

19 – Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

Arguably New York’s premier museum (sorry, MoMa, not this time), the Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the world’s largest and most renowned art institutions .

Featuring collections from continents near and far, from ancient Egyptian to contemporary American artwork , as well as a huge library and extensive research facilities, there’s something for everyone at this institution — no matter your age or artistic taste!

What’s more, general admission is suggested (although some exhibitions may require an entrance fee), so a visit is always possible even when you’re pinching pennies.

Plus, with its central location on the Upper East Side, skirting the eastern side of Central Park, and easy access by subway, there’s really no excuse not to pay it a visit!

Pro tip: with literally millions of artifacts to see (close to 2 million), a guided tour can really help you get the most out of your visit and is well worth the extra few bucks to avoid getting lost in this colossal attraction.

  • Metropolitan Museum of Art tickets

See also: Metropolitan Museum of Art Tickets Price – All you Need to Know

20 – Apollo Theater

Apollo Theater, New York City

A Harlem entertainment staple, having kickstarted the careers of countless African-American performers over the years, the Apollo Theater is a historic landmark and one of the East Coast’s most infamous music venues .

Hosting everything from gospel to R&B concerts, dance performances, comedy nights, and more , from both renowned artists as well as up-and-comers at their famous Amateur Night contests (how do you think Jimi Hendrix and Ella Fitzgerald got their big breaks?), this richly-historic, 1500-seat theater is definitely worth a visit — if not for a show, then for a history-themed tour of the area.

Located in the heart of Harlem on 125th Street, it’s surrounded by authentic eateries and quirky shops , making for a perfect day (or night) out in this vibrant and oft-misunderstood neighborhood.

21 – Chinatown

Chinatown, New York City

Where drool-worthy restaurants, eastern museums, and specialty shops all converge, Chinatown is a vibrant neighborhood that attracts locals looking for a hearty meal, and visitors looking for a unique slice of international culture.

Filled with colorful street art, bustling markets, and a host of cheap eats (dumplings anyone?), it’s a must-visit for any first-time visitor to New York City — especially if you’re on a budget!

With such a storied history of immigration and development , the area’s historic buildings are interspersed with signs and billboards in Mandarin, making it feel more like you’re walking through China than New York City — all best appreciated with a locally-led walking (or biking) tour.

Plus, thanks to its central location on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, you can walk 10 minutes and find yourself transported to Little Italy in a heartbeat .

  • Chinatown tours in New York City

22 – The Met Cloisters

The Met Cloisters, New York City

Often swept under the rug in favor of its big sister, The Met itself, The Cloisters is a separate museum located in Fort Tryon Park, dedicated exclusively to the art and architecture of the European Middle Ages — and, in fact, it’s the only spot in the country that does so!

Featuring everything from stained glass windows to tapestries , as well as an extensive collection of medieval sculpture and painting , it makes for quintessential viewing for anyone interested in history or art (or both!).

Beyond its captivating collection of artifacts, what makes this attraction so unique is its location: the museum is housed in four distinct monasteries and abbeys — Cuxa, Saint-Guilhem, Bonnefont, and Trie – that were transported from Europe in the early 1900s. Talk about historical preservation!

Bonus: since it’s located way up in Washington Heights, overlooking the Hudson River, on a clear day you can see all the way to New Jersey. Score!

23 – Edge Observation Deck

Edge Observation Deck, Manhattan

Move over, Empire State Building! There’s a new sky-high kid on the block.

In March 2020, the brand new Edge Observation Deck opened its doors to visitors looking for an otherworldly view of New York City and beyond. Located at 30 Hudson Yards on Manhattan’s West Side, this exciting observation deck sits a whopping 100 stories high (just one floor below the very top of the building) and offers stunning 360-degree views , making it the highest open-air observation deck in the entire Western Hemisphere.

Along with jaw-dropping vistas of Central Park, Times Square, the Hudson River, the Midtown Skyline and more, Edge also boasts several interactive features that allow you to learn more about the cityscape — made all the more exciting by the fact you’re about 1,100 feet off the ground.

  • Edge Observation Deck tickets

See also: Edge Tickets Price – Everything You Need to Know

24 – Times Square

Times Square, Manhattan, New York City

Dubbed the Intersection of the Universe (and, as anyone who’s ever visited will tell you, it’s a pretty accurate moniker), Times Square is one of the most famous and frenetic places on earth . From the giant billboards to the costumed characters, there’s no mistaking you’re in the heart of NYC .

And while it can be overwhelming for first-timers, there’s also something undeniably electric about the place. If you’re looking to catch a show or just take in all the sights and sounds, this is definitely where you want to be.

For an evening of entertainment, head to the TKTS booth for some last-minute discounted Broadway tickets . Or, if it’s family entertainment you’re after, a sleuth of notable attractions await (Madame Tussauds, M&Ms World, and Ripley’s Believe it or Not, to name but a few).

For a spot of toe-tapping music, head to one of the jazz clubs (The Rum House is iconic) or grab a seat for some improv comedy at one of the underground theaters.

Of course, if you happen to be visiting on New Year’s Eve, the ball-drop, however chaotic, is a once-in-a-lifetime event.

Make sure to check out our complete list of fun things to do in Times Square .

25 – The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine

The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, New York City

Despite receiving far less attention than the city’s plethora of skyscrapers, the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine is one of the five largest in the world . In fact, it’s so big that even after being under construction for over a century (it began building in 1892) it still has yet to be completed!

But what’s been done so far makes for one of New York City’s most incredible architectural marvels — and its interior is truly magnificent. With stained glass as well as statues, your inner art connoisseur will come out to play.

And if you’re lucky enough to catch musical performances during your visit (which range from traditional organists to classical orchestras or the annual New Year’s Eve Concert for Peace), or readings of classics like Dante’s Inferno in The American Poets Corner , all the better!

26 – Riverside Park

Riverside Park, New York City

Quiet and suburban compared to most of Manhattan’s green spaces, and forever sitting in the shadow of Central Park, unheralded Riverside Park is one of the city’s best-kept secrets . Flanked by the Hudson River to its west, it stretches all the way from 59th (expanded from 72nd) to 158th Street, spanning more than 330 acres of parkland along the way .

Not only a wonderful place for nature-lovers , but history buffs too, the elongated park features more than 25 monuments, plaques, and statues , and commemorates significant spots; like where Edgar Allen Poe composed “The Raven”, or the 60-year-old No. 25 locomotive engine.

Along the blissful paths, you’ll find dog parks, the Hamilton Fountain, the Hippo Playground (which includes a Hippopotamus Fountain), tennis courts, and plenty of riverfront promenades where you can soak in the fresh air (and maybe snag some Instagram-worthy shots).

27 – Empire State Building

Empire State Building, New York City

At the time of its construction, the Empire State Building was the tallest in the world. (It held that title for nearly 40 years!) And even today, at a mere 102 stories and 1,454 feet high , it’s still up there with America’s most iconic structures and remains one of the best places to visit in New York City for romantics, architecture buffs, and history aficionados alike.

Not only is it an architectural marvel but it offers some pretty great views too. Whether you’re up top on the 86th-floor main observation deck or the prestigious 102nd-floor Top Deck, there are plenty of angles to take in all five boroughs of NYC laid out before you (can’t forget Jersey too).

Located on 34th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, amidst the hustle and bustle of Midtown Manhattan, it’s quintessential New York — even if only for a stroll underneath its base.

If you’re visiting during the summertime, skip-the-line tickets come highly recommended .

  • Empire State Building tickets

See also: Empire State Building Tickets Price – Everything you Should Know

28 – Wave Hill Public Garden & Cultural Center

Wave Hill Public Garden, New York City

A 28-acre public garden and cultural center in the Bronx, Wave Hill is a lesser-known local favorite ; with stunning gardens that change with the seasons (from tulips and daffodils in the springtime to chrysanthemums in the fall), it’s a photographers dream.

But even if you’re not into snapping pictures, there are plenty of other things to do here too. From taking art classes or touring the neo-Georgian stone mansion , to wandering the heritage greenhouse complex or enjoying the view of the New Jersey Palisades over a spot of lunch.

Located atop a hill overlooking the Hudson River, it makes for an idyllic day off the beaten track!

29 – Federal Hall

Federal Hall, New York City

Found smack-bang in the middle of Wall Street on the original site of George Washington’s inauguration as America’s first president in 1789 , Federal Hall is now a National Memorial operated by the National Park Services that takes visitors on a journey back through time.

It’s also one of New York City’s most historic landmarks — complete with an iconic Greek Revival facade emblematic of Europe’s most postcarded buildings — and features museum exhibitions on the American Revolution, U.S. Constitution, financial system (and more) inside its cool marble walls.

If you’re interested in learning about American history or want to see rare artifacts like the Bill of Rights  in the place where the Continental Congress met way back in 1787, it makes for a great place to visit!

30 – Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, New York City

Considered to be up there with the best places to visit in New York City for anyone intrigued by science and transport — we’re talkin’ planes, jets, spacecraft, helicopters, submarines, and a whole lot more — the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum creates an experience that manages to be educational as well as immersive , giving visitors a close look at rare vehicles often kept away from the public eye.

F ormerly an aircraft carrier that saw action during WWII and Vietnam , the USS Intrepid now houses over two dozen restored vintage planes on its flight deck — including the record-breaking British Airways Concorde! — as well as the retired Enterprise space shuttle .

Inside you’ll also find exhibits dedicated to maritime history and U.S Navy SEALs, plus NASA and the Marine Corps; with regular guided tours and outdoor movie screenings worth checking out!

  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum tickets

31 – The Brooklyn Heights Promenade

Brooklyn Heights Promenade

Fancy a stroll with a view? The Brooklyn Heights Promenade is one of the best places to visit in New York City to do just that.

A half-mile walkway built right on top of Brooklyn Bridge Park, it offers sweeping panoramas over the East River, Brooklyn Bridge, and Lower Manhattan skyline too!

Even if you’re not into photography or architecture (though it’s an absolute Instagrammer’s delight), this popular spot for tourists and lovey-dubby couples makes for a great place to simply sit back and watch New York go by .

While you’re in the area, the Pier 2 Roller Rink, Pier 4 Beach, and DUMBO neighborhood each plead their case for a little detour.

32 – Guggenheim Museum

Guggenheim Museum, New York City

A UNESCO World Heritage Site and Frank Lloyd Wright masterpiece that dates back to 1959, this immediately-recognizable cylindrical building on the Upper East Side is a must-visit for any art lovers.

The Guggenheim Museum boasts an exclusive permanent collection of Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, and contemporary art from America and beyond, regularly impressing guests with its diverse collection of Monet, Van Gogh, Kandinsky, Pollock and Magritte pieces (and that’s just the tip of the iceberg).

Complementing its unique shape, as you step inside you’ll find a spiraling ramp that’s become emblematic of the Guggenheim museum itself, designed by Wright as a way to encourage visitors to take their time and explore every nook and cranny of the exhibition.

  • Guggenheim Museum tickets

33 – Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Flushing Meadows Corona Park, New York City

Edging out Manhattan’s Central Park by about 50 acres in size, this Queens gem is one of the most underrated places to visit in New York City .

Besides boasting a huge variety of sports facilities (including Citi Field around the corner, home of the Mets), playgrounds, and ponds ; as well as being the location of both the US Open tennis tournaments and both the 1939 and 1964 World Fair, Corona Park is also where you’ll find some seriously impressive architectural feats.

The Unisphere, for example, is an iconic 140 feet steel globe that once served as the centerpiece of the 1964-65 World’s Fair (and still looks pretty darn cool today). The New York State Pavilion meanwhile — designed by Philip Johnson for the ’64 fair too — features a circle of sixteen 100-foot columns, making for a spectacular sight.

Throw in regular events, mini-golf, an ice rink in the wintertime , kayak launch sites, walking trails, indoor pools, paddleboat rentals, barbecue areas , and you’ve got yourself a day full of outdoor fun!

34 – Queens Museum

Queens Museum, New York City

While you’re galavanting about New York’s biggest borough, why not take an hour or two to check out the Queens Museum ?

Formerly known as the New York City Building, this art deco gem was originally constructed for the 1939 World’s Fair and has been restored to its former glory, with exhibitions on everything from the history of Queens itself to a collection of contemporary art , and insights into the stories and history of the Big Apple.

The undeniable highlight, however, is the Panorama of the City of New York , an enormous replica of all five boroughs (complete with parks, skyscrapers, riverways, highways, and more) that covers nearly 10 thousand feet of exhibition space!

Hint: if you’re a first-time NYC visitor, this scale model will help you get your bearings.

35 – United Nations Headquarters

United Nations Headquarters, New York City

A meeting place for world leaders, a center for diplomatic activity, and an understated Manhattan must-see; the UN Headquarters overlooks the East River in Manhattan’s Turtle Bay area, not only providing excellent views over into Queens, but also highlighting the importance of international diplomacy and cooperation .

While you’re here, visitors can explore the General Assembly Hall (which is where most official meetings take place), visit educational exhibits that explore peace, human rights, and activism , browse the Dag Hammarskjöld Library, or even go on a guided tour to learn more about addressing global challenges!

36 – Madison Square Garden

Madison Square Garden, New York City

Where the sports crowds are roaring and the music fans are diehard, Madison Square Garden — otherwise known as The World’s Most Famous Arena — has long been the Big Apple’s premier sports and entertainment venue.

Located conveniently atop Pennsylvania Station and home to both the NBA’s Knicks and the NHL’s Rangers , as well as hosting some of the biggest names in music (read: we’re talkin’ everyone from The Beatles to Elton John!), this arena is a must-see for any fan of live entertainment , with a range of events (including UFC, wrestling, boxing, and more) and ticket options to suit all budgets.

  • Madison Square Garden tickets

Even if you’re not here to see a game or concert, there’s still plenty to do and explore at MSG; from grabbing a bite at one of the many restaurants on offer, to joining a guided tour that explores the locker rooms and press areas, taking a walk around its iconic statues, or simply soaking up the atmosphere and energy of this legendary venue.

  • Madison Square Garden tours

37 – The Vessel

A modern and certainly eyecatching addition to the Hudson Yards area, Vessel is a 150-foot tall structure that has been designed to look like a honeycomb — with over two thousand steps and 80 landings! It’s an incredible sight when you see it in person, especially when standing in its center with your neck tilted skyward.

A public landmark project meant to “provide multiple perspectives on the city”, the structure officially opened in late 2019 and has quickly become one of New York City’s most iconic attractions ; drawing visitors from all over the world who are eager to climb its many stairs for sweeping views over Manhattan .

The up-and-coming area is also home to shopping at The Shops & Restaurants at Hudson Yards, as well as several art galleries, a connection to the High Line, and the stomach-churning observation deck at 30 Hudson Yards.

38 – Yankee Stadium

Yankee Stadium, New York City

Baseball is a beloved American pastime. And Yankee Stadium is a national treasure . Home to the legendary New York Yankees , this iconic stadium is located in The Bronx, and not only delivers an exhilarating gameday experience when its 50,000+ seats are full , but also provides a walk down memory lane with its crowd-favorite museum and in-depth behind-the-scenes tours.

Featuring some of the most impressive baseball memorabilia in the world (including Babe Ruth’s jersey, Lou Gehrig’s jersey, Mickey Mantle and Joe DiMaggio’s bats, and Babe Ruth’s 1927 World Series Ring), the museum — as well as the statue-lined Monument Park — is a must for any fan of America’s favorite pastime , while guided tours offer an up-close look at this historic stadium, from its locker rooms to the dugout.

39 – Museum of Natural History

American Museum of Natural History, New York City

Like stepping into a time machine, the Museum of Natural History on Central Park’s western edge promises to be a wonderful way to spend several hours; from exploring its world-class collections and exhibitions on biology, geology, anthropology, history, and evolution , to taking a break in its lovely Rose Center for Earth and Space.

Boasting everything from dinosaur fossils to plant specimens and an impressive collection of meteorites , as well as ancient animals like wooly mammoths and saber-toothed cats across its 45 permanent exhibition halls , this museum is perfect for visitors of all ages who want to learn more about our planet and the creatures that have called it home.

And if you’re looking for an even more immersive experience beyond the 34 million specimens on display, the Rose Center features a high-tech Hayden Planetarium with state-of-the-art digital projection systems and star theaters that will take you on a journey through the universe ; from the Milky Way to distant galaxies.

  • Museum of Natural History tickets

40 – The Battery

The Battery, New York City

Regularly delivering one mighty pleasant surprise, located at the southern tip of Manhattan, The Battery is a historic 25-acre park that merges killer views with rich history and a sleuth of events.

Overlooking New York Harbor, Ellis Island, and the Statue of Liberty, the waterfront oasis that it The Battery was named for its former use as an artillery fort that protected the city in days gone by ; but today it’s one of NYC’s most popular places to visit with its gorgeous gardens, multiple memorials, meandering pathways, and lovely views — not to mention it’s home to Castle Clinton National Monument which once served as America’s first immigration station.

If you’re looking for other things to do here beyond simply enjoying the tranquility of your surroundings, however pretty they may be; you can also take advantage of kayaking opportunities on The Battery Boathouse, take the youngsters to Playscape or the ShowBox amphitheater (where you’ll find regular improv performances), or admire the ever-changing art installations !

41 – Chelsea Market

Chelsea Market, Manhattan

A melting pot of flavors and knick-knacks in the Meatpacking District (just next to the High Line), Chelsea Market is a quirky food hall that promises to satiate your stomach and sweet tooth.

Located inside an iron building that was once home to the National Biscuit Company , this market features everything from artisanal bread and cheeses, to seasonal produce and much more — all of which you’ll find at its host of boutique eateries including Amy’s Bread, Los Tacos No.1 – as well as some fantastic coffee shops .

As soon as you step through those doors on Ninth Avenue between 15th and 16th Streets, prepare yourself for a sensory overload; because in peak times, things get busy pretty quickly!

Be sure to venture upstairs to Chelsea Local where you’ll discover even more treats at places like the Manhattan Fruit Exchange, Dickson’s Farmstand Meats, and Buon’Italia — all in all, a foodie’s paradise awaits.

42 – World Trade Center

World Trade Center, New York City

Infamous for being the site of the worst terrorist attack on American soil, the World Trade Center has been rebuilt and revolutionized over the decades since, now home to a stunning complex of buildings that commemorate those who lost their lives on September 11th, 2001.

Despite being most known for One World Observatory atop the Freedom Tower, and the powerful and moving memorial , the World Trade Center offers far more to see and do than initially meets the eye.

Make your way to the architecturally marvelous Oculus (Transportation Hub), a magnet for photographers ; find a new wardrobe as you browse the 1.5 million square feet of the Center’s shopping space, dine at an award-winning restaurant , or wander down the Battery Park Esplanade. If you’re not sure where to start, a locally-led guided tour is hard to pass up , fusing local education with rich historic stories and hidden gems along the way.

  • World Trade Center tours

43 – New York Transit Museum

New York Transit Museum

As the world’s most famous subway system (move over, London, not this time), New York City’s MTA is the largest mass transit railway in the world and a proud representation of American innovation. For this reason, it makes perfect sense that there should be an entire museum dedicated to its history!

Found in a former Brooklyn subway station (decommissioned in 1936) and housings all kinds of artifacts from as far back 100 years ago , at New York Transit Museum you’ll learn about how one of America’s most important public transportation networks came into being; how it has evolved over the decades; and what plans are on track for future growth.

Aside from getting up close with subway cars, busses, signal lights, historic maps, and old fare boxes — not forgetting plenty of cool old photographs — you can also pick up a handful of unique MTA-themed gifts.

Hot tip: if it’s more convenient, check out the Museum Annex in Grand Central Terminal for a taste of what’s on offer before committing to the trip out to Brooklyn.

44 – Wall Street

Wall Street in New York City

Full of suits and chaos and the beating heart of America’s stock market (home to the New York Stock Exchange), Lower Manhattan’s Wall Street is flanked by towering skyscrapers, churches, and other historic buildings such as the 1842 Greek Revival–style Federal Hall.

If you’re a business or finance buff, hop on a guided Wall Street tour to learn all about the history of its most famous institutions (hello: JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and BoA), the New York Stock Exchange, and how exactly everything works in this little corner of NYC.

While it can be pretty daunting (and crowded) during business hours, there’s something undeniably awe-inspiring about standing in the footsteps of American capitalism’s most famous street .

Or if you’re keen for more than just trading stocks, make sure you pay Trinity Church — built way back in 1846 — and the iconic charging bull statue a visit too.

  • Wall Street tours in New York City

45 – Tenement Museum

Tenement Museum, New York City

Brilliantly documenting the immigrant experience in America , the Tenement Museum is one of the best places to visit in New York City to understand the country’s history and multicultural heritage.

Located in a pair of old tenement buildings (from the 1800s) on the Lower East Side of Manhattan — an area that became a vibrant and iconic immigrant neighborhood — this small museum has been painstakingly restored and now tells the stories of those who lived there and helped form New York’s diverse identity during the 19th and 20th centuries.

What makes it so special is that you can actually walk through the apartments and see where families from all over the world — including Ireland, Italy, Germany, Poland, and Hungary — made their homes in one of the most difficult periods in American history.

With interactive exhibits and guided tours available (plus neighborhood walking tours), it’s an incredibly powerful way to connect with the city’s heritage or simply learn more about what makes the Big Apple so unique.

46 – Brooklyn Flea

Brooklyn Flea market

Thrift-shoppers, listen up! The Brooklyn Flea is a vibrant mishmash of vintage collectibles , quirky art, yummy treats, one-of-a-kind hand-me-downs, and vibrant people that deserve a spot high upon your weekend to-do list.

Taking place on weekends throughout the year at 80 Pearl St in DUMBO, this cool flea market has more than 100 vendors selling everything from old furniture, antiques, and jewelry to artwork, clothing, crafts, and musical instruments.

With well-curated displays varying by season — often with a focus on local designers or crafters — you never know what treasure you might find here!

47 – Whitney Museum of American Art

Whitney Museum of American Art, Manhattan

Showcasing a fine collection of 19th and 20th-century works , the Whitney Museum honors, above all else, homegrown American artists, with an impressive permanent collection featuring more than 23,000 paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, and other pieces by over 3000 artists — including Louise Bourgeois, Jackson Pollock, and Georgia O’Keefe.

Sitting on the shores of the Hudson River in the Meatpacking District, the Whitney dives deep into the contemporary world, starting with pre-eminent figures like George Luks all the up to pop icons like Andy Warhol , putting it up there as one of the city’s premier attractions for art lovers!

After admiring the collection, make your way to the top-floor bar where spellbinding views of the West Village await.

Keep in mind: A notable (and unique) feature of the museum is its Youth Insights program — a week of FREE classes, workshops, and performances aimed at teenagers to help them learn new skills.

  • Whitney Museum of American Art tickets

48 – Citi Field

Citi Field, New York City

While often overlooking in favor of the historic Yankee Stadium, 42,000-seat Citi Field remains a sports nut’s haven ; home to the Mets, this modern stadium at the top of the enormous Flushing Meadows–Corona Park opened its doors in 2009.

Boasting an impressive array of high-tech features, including dozens of luxury suites, food options from some of NYC’s most finger-lickin’ restaurants , the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum and a top-of-the-line scoreboard.

Better yet, with tickets often easier to come by than those for the Yankees , the open-air ballpark remains one of the best places to visit in New York City when you want to see some good ol’ fashioned baseball!

A favorite among diehard fans, Outside of game days, hour-long tours operate through the stadium, exploring usually off-limits spots like the Scoreboard Control Room, Piazza 31 Club, Press Conference Room, and the Bullpens.

49 – Time Out Market

Time Out Market, New York City

Foodies, rejoice! Serving up a smorgasbord of delicious eats and quintessential New York dishes, Time Out Market is the latest culinary sensation to hit Brooklyn .

Housing waterfront restaurants and cheeky sweet treats at a purpose-built facility in between the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges (where killer views await), Time Out Market is an eclectic mix of everything that makes NYC cuisine so famous — from authentic bagels and wood-fired pizza to juicy burgers, crispy fried chicken and moreish ice cream.

There’s plenty for vegetarians and vegans to devour , and it makes for a wonderful date night spot thanks to occasional cultural events and its proximity to the waterfront!

50 – Central Park Zoo

Central Park Zoo, New York City

Conveniently located, and beloved by families, the Central Park Zoo is a compact but exuberant escape into the natural world.

Housing more than 130 species of animals — including snow leopards, penguins, and seals — this old-school zoo is entertaining as well as educational , with regularly-run programs from the Wildlife Conservation Society.

Take your time exploring its well-manicured sections: the tropical rainforest zone is home to colorful birds , cheeky monkeys, sloths, and lemurs; the Temperate Territory has adorable red pandas and snow monkeys, while the Polar Circle area introduces guests to friendly and playful penguins and puffins !

  • Central Park Zoo tickets

51 – Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, New York City

One of the world’s leading cultural institutions dating back to the 1950s, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts is a 16-acre Manhattan campus of a dozen buildings that features some of New York City’s most iconic venues and institutions .

From the Metropolitan Opera House and David Geffen Hall to Alice Tully Hall and The Juilliard School , there’s something for everyone at this performing arts landmark — whether you’re a fan of opera, ballet, jazz, or classical music !

Take in a show by the likes of The Metropolitan Opera or The New York Philharmonic Orchestra, attend a masterclass or just marvel at the architecture : whatever your poison, make sure to add Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts to your list of places to visit in NYC !

52 – Roosevelt Island

Roosevelt Island, New York City

Steeped in controversial history, Roosevelt Island is a narrow strip of land in the East River that’s connected to Manhattan by way of two bridges.

Formerly known as Blackwell’s Island , this was where New York City’s first psychiatric hospital (now abandoned) and prison were located; it also served as a quarantine station for immigrants.

Today, Roosevelt Island is a peaceful oasis away from the hustle and bustle of Manhattan with lovely river views, plenty of green space and some interesting architecture (including an abandoned smallpox hospital).

Take the tramway over from Lexington Avenue/59th Street or wander along the riverside esplanade on a sunny day — either way, wonderful views and a breath of fresh air await .

53 – The High Line

The High Line, Manhattan

Built atop a disused section of elevated railway (the West Side Line), the High Line is a unique public park that winds its way through the Meatpacking District and Chelsea neighborhoods in Manhattan .

Since opening in 2009, this linear green space has become one of NYC’s most popular attractions , thanks to its combination of art installations, gardens, viewpoints, and trendy restaurants and bars .

Full of excellent viewpoints along its 30 block stretch (including cocktails with a view from The Standard High Line’s rooftop bar), this quintessential walkway makes for a great afternoon stroll with friends (or a date, perhaps?), so take your time meandering along its length and enjoying the fantastic vistas over the Hudson River!

54 – Little Italy

Soho & Little Italy New York City

Where the smell of open-baked pizza, the sound of Italian chatter, and the sight of colorful street art come together in perfect harmony, Little Italy is a charming area that should be on everyone’s list of places to visit in New York City .

Home to some excellent restaurants and bakeries (plus Di Palo’s, one of the area’s most esteemed gourmet shops), this former bustling hub for Italian immigrants has shrunk over time as Chinatown expanded its borders but remains a worthwhile place to explore — if only for an authentic cannoli or espresso!

Start your visit at the corner of Mulberry Street and Grand Street where you’ll find the historic Ferrara Bakery & Café; from there, walk south down Mulberry Street past all the cute bakery stands and consider stopping for lunch at Il Piccolo Buffalo or a quick slice at Manero’s Pizza.

That said, with so many drool-worthy establishments in the area, each of them with a fascinating story to tell, a food-centric walking tour comes highly recommended.

  • Little Italy tours

55 – Prospect Park

Prospect Park, New York City

Brooklyn’s response to Central Park, Prospect Park is a bustling green space that’s every bit as exciting and enjoyable to visit.

In fact, many consider it even prettier than its Manhattan counterpart thanks to the surrounding architecture (especially the Litchfield Villa) and more intimate feel — no wonder Brooklynites are so protective of it!

Aside from being home to Brooklyn’s last remaining forest , this well-kept park has plenty of activities on offer including boating on Lake Prospect , visiting the 18th-century Lefferts Historic House , or the Prospect Park Zoo , popping into the Brooklyn Museum of Art , or just strolling along its picturesque paths.

56 – Fifth Avenue

Fifth Avenue, New York City

Credit card at the ready! A high-end shopper’s paradise , full of flagship stores and luxury brands, Fifth Avenue is the place to go if you’re looking to splash out on some serious retail therapy.

Home to Saks Fifth Avenue, Tiffany & Co., Cartier, Hermes, Prada, Gucci, and more , this prestigious avenue in Midtown Manhattan is a must for any fashion-savvy traveler.

Even if you’re not planning on buying anything, it’s still great fun to window shop and admire the lavish shoppers who aren’t afraid to drop serious cash on new wardrobes and accessories on this world-famous street.

Shopping aside, Fifth Avenue also plays host to postcard-worthy landmarks like the 19th-century Neo-gothic St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the ATLAS statue at the Rockefeller Center, not to mention the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building (New York Public Library’s flagship location) at 5th and 42nd.

57 – New York Botanical Garden

New York Botanical Garden

Crazing an hour or two of zen? The New York Botanical Garden is a lush oasis that’s perfect for an afternoon of escape.

Home to over a million plants and 12,000 different species , as well as the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory (an Italian Renaissance glasshouse), this 250-acre botanical garden on Bronx River Parkway has something for everyone; whether you’re into native plants, orchids, colorful roses or more exotic varieties like carnivorous plants!

Don’t forget to check the calendar to see which hands-on workshops and special events line up with your visit.

  • New York Botanical Garden tickets

58 – Manhattan Bridge

Brooklyn’s Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass - DUMBO, Brooklyn

Despite sitting in the shadow of its more famous neighbor, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge remains a noteworthy attraction — if, of nothing else, for the view it provides of the Brooklyn Bridge!

Originally opened in 1909, this steel suspension bridge connects Lower Manhattan with DUMBO in Brooklyn , stretching nearly 7000 feet all up!

Take a walk on the pedestrian path (or better yet, bike it!) for some amazing views of downtown NYC and the East River, and be sure to snap a few pics while you’re at it (hint: for the iconic Manhattan Bridge photo , head to the intersection of Water Street and Washington Street in Dumbo ).

59 – Governors Island

Governors Island, New York City

Covering a whopping 172 acres of understated and underestimated greenery, Governors Island is a tranquil getaway (read: no cars!) that’s just a short boat ride from Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridge Park .

Formerly an important military base , this now revitalized island has been open to the public since 2004 and makes for a great day (or weekend) trip during the summer months.

Pack your sunscreen for a picnic lunch at Hammock Grove, and spend the day wandering around the pretty gardens, art galleries, museums, and lavender farms , taking in the views of Lady Liberty and downtown Manhattan in between each stop from atop one of the hills. Or, if you’re up for it, rent a bike or kayak to explore more of the island !

If you’re feeling festive, check out the Winter Village in Colonels Row ; meanwhile, during the summer, a sleuth of lawn parties and DJ nights await!

60 – 9-11 Memorial & Museum

9-11 Memorial & Museum, New York City

Eye-opening, heart-breaking, yet incredible in its power, layout, and architecture, the September 11 Memorial & Museum, while evocative for many, stands as one of New York’s unmissable sights from an educational, historical, and architectural standpoint .

Located at the foundations of the former Twin Tower, the memorial consists of two infinite waterfalls that honor those who lost their lives on September 11th, 2001.

Beyond the memorial lies the indoor museum — a miraculously detailed and moving collection that the story of that fateful day through exhibits and artifacts from both before, during, and after the attacks. It’s an emotional visit full of heartbreak and heroism , but one that everyone should make at least once in their lifetime.

  • 9-11 Memorial & Museum tickets

See also: 9/11 Memorial & Museum Tickets Price – All you Should Know

61 – Hudson River Park Trust

Hudson River Park Trust, New York City

For a more serene way to pass the time, make your way down to Hudson River Park.

Extending from 59th Street all the way down to Battery Park, this lovely stretch of open-air greenery runs along Manhattan’s west side and provides plenty of opportunity for relaxation and recreation — with over 550 acres of open space and dozens of different piers!

Spend an afternoon enjoying one of the many events that take place here (think music festivals, yoga classes, film screenings, dance lessons, and the like), or simply walk around and enjoy the views of New Jersey across the river.

Directions in Google Maps

62 – St. Patrick’s Cathedral

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York City

Arguably the most famous Neo-Gothic Catholic cathedral in the United States , St. Patrick’s Cathedral is a superb example of traditional religious architecture amidst an otherwise concrete mega-jungle!

Located at Fifth Avenue between 50th and 51st Streets, facing the Rockefeller Center , this historic church dates back to 1878 and is home to daily masses as well as special services during holidays like Christmas.

Even if you’re not interested in visiting for spiritual reasons, it’s worth popping by for a look — even if it’s only for 10 minutes — simply to admire the incredible stained glass windows that adorn both sides of the interior hallways as well as the city’s largest organ .

63 – Brookfield Place

Brookfield Place, New York City

Craving a little retail therapy? Then make your way over to Brookfield Place — an upscale shopping and dining destination tucked away in Battery Park overlooking the Hudson River and New Jersey’s skyline beyond.

Here you’ll find all sorts of luxury shops (think Gucci, Burberry, Salvatore Ferragamo), art galleries as well as restaurants such as Le District (a French-inspired food hall) or Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill for those looking for a bite after a long day.

Sitting a stone’s throw from the World Trade Center Memorial and Museum and Wall Street, it’s an easy addition to any day of Lower Manhattan exploring.

64 – One World Observatory

One World Observatory, Manhattan

Perched on the top floors of the Freedom Tower (aka One World Trade Center), this modern observatory offers guests spectacular panoramic views from a whopping 1266 (286 meters) above street level.

The tourist-favorite observation deck — which is located on floors 100, 101, and 102 — has several different viewing areas to soak in the Statue of Liberty in one direction, Midtown in the other, or Brooklyn and its namesake iconic Bridge.

With a state-of-the-art elevator (called Sky Pods) that used augmented reality to show how the city’s skyline has developed over the decades , even the trip to the top is an attraction.

Feeling fancy? Book a table at One Dine , where the upscale food is just as good as the view!

  • One World Observatory tickets

See also: One World Observatory Tickets Price – All you Need to Know

65 – Radio City Music Hall

Radio City Music Hall, Manhattan

Home to the beloved Rockettes, Radio City Music Hall is an Art Deco masterpiece that’s been wowing audiences since it first opened its doors in 1932.

Located on Sixth Avenue between 50th and 51st Streets, this iconic theater has seen just about everything over the years, from the premieres of Hollywood movies to live performances by some of the world’s biggest stars (Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Madonna).

The so-called Showplace of the Nation still hosts events to this day — most notably the annual Christmas Spectacular — so if you’re in town during December (or any time, really) be sure to check out what’s on! Or, better yet, sign up for a daily guided tour !

  • Radio City stage door tour tickets

66 – Flatiron Building

Flatiron Building, Manhattan

Finding itself of many a postcard for more than 120 years, the 285-foot-tall Flatiron Building is Gilded Age NYC in a nutshell — the triangular, 22-story masterpiece was one of Manhattan’s earlier skyscrapers and still draws millions of gobsmacked onlookers to this day.

Designed by Daniel Burnham and taking its name from its unusual shape , which looks like — you guessed it — an old-fashioned flatiron, the longstanding building is a testament to NYC architectural ingenuity (fun fact: despite this, it was originally called the Fuller Building).

After admiring the Beaux-Arts facade, wander around the lobby to soak in the exhibits about the building’s history and construction.

67 – Ellis Island

Ellis Island, New York City

Famous for being the point of entry for more than 12 million immigrants to North America between 1892 and 1954 , Ellis Island still has plenty of stories to tell.

Now a national monument under the protection of the National Park Service, this piece of land — which is about 22 acres in size — is also home to a museum that chronicles its history as both an immigration station and military fortification during WWI.

Hot tip: combine a visit with Lady Liberty next door for the best bang for your buck.

  • Ellis Island tours

68 – Liberty State Park

Liberty State Park, New York City

One of the most underrated parks in the NYC area (because technically it’s outside the city limits in Jersey City), Liberty State Park offers stunning views and a typically unseen perspective of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the downtown skyline.

Located across the Hudson River from Lower Manhattan, this 1,212-acre green space — that’s about 1.5 times that of Central Park! — is perfect for a picnic lunch, a jog, or a simple stroll on a sunny day, camera in hand.

Make sure to visit the powerful and symbolic “Empty Sky” 9/11 Memorial, and feel free to pop into the Liberty Science Center for an exciting hour or two of interactive science exhibits.

69 – Brooklyn Bridge Park

Brooklyn Bridge Park, New York City

Created in the early 2010s on 85 acres of then-neglected waterfront, Brooklyn Bridge Park is a modern treasure , welcoming thousands of locals and tourists alike daily in search of peace, quiet, and spectacular riverside views.

And it’s easy to see why: stretching through Brooklyn Heights, DUMBO, and Cobble Hill , this lush pier-lined oasis features something for everyone , including a carousel, playgrounds, basketball courts, kayaking, and more.

Foodies, don’t miss the famous lobster rolls from Luke’s Lobster ; shopaholics, make a beeline for Empire Stores (next to which you’ll also find the Time Out Market if you’re still hungry); and exercise junkies, take your pick from the array of walking, jogging and biking routes .

70 – Bronx Zoo

Bronx Zoo, New York City

Enormous and utterly awesome, the Bronx Zoo is up there with America’s oldest zoos . Opened for business way back in 1899 (when admission was a quarter!), it’s home to over 6000 species spread across 265 acres . You could easily spend an entire day here without running out of entertainment.

Amongst top highlights are world-famous attractions like Tiger Mountain and Congo Gorilla Forest as well as lesser-known but no less impressive spots like the Butterfly Garden and World of Reptiles !

Want to take your experience to the next level and meet these friendly critters face to face? For an extra few bucks, you can sign up for a Wild Encounters and hang out with penguins, cheetahs, sloths, and more!

  • Bronx Zoo tickets

71 – Socrates Sculpture Park

Socrates Sculpture Park, New York City

As you might expect, this Long Island City park is dedicated to the art of sculpture .

But it’s also so much more than that: Socrates Sculpture Park is a community space overlooking the water, a place where people come to hang out and relax , take in some culture, and enjoy the outdoors away from the hustle and bustle.

Itinerary tip: since it’s off the beaten path, consider pairing the park with a visit to the Noguchi Museum or MOMA PS1 and a relaxing water taxi ride!

72 – Blue Note NYC

Blue Note NYC, New York City

Sure to have you tapping your toes, bobbing your head to the beats, and even humming along, Blue Note and NYC jazz are two peas in a pod.

It’s hard not to get carried away by the sheer energy that exudes from this Greenwich Village staple: since the early ’80s, Blue Note has been welcoming legendary jazz names (think Dave Brubeck, Wynton Marsalis, and Keith Jarrett) as well as up-and-coming hip-hop, R&B, and funk artists .

Typically, shows run nightly at 8 and 10, however, the Sunday brunch is certainly worth booking for ahead of time .

73 – Washington Square Park

Washington Square Park, New York City

Ever buzzing with NYU students, street performers, first daters, and tourists snapping photos of the famed Arc-de-Triomphe lookalike, Washington Square Park is the place to be for people-watching , casual picnics, and a good old game of chess.

While the main attraction is undoubtedly the arch built to honor honoring George Washington , the park also hosts regular events like Tai Chi in the Park, and is a frequent stop on history-themed walking tours of Greenwich, Noho, and Soho .

74 – Broadway

Broadway, New York City

Whether you’re staying a day or a year, no trip to the Big Apple is complete without a Broadway show . From the dazzling Lion King to groundbreaking Hamilton , side-splitting Book of Mormon, or longstanding staples like Chicago , Phantom of the Opera , or Wicked , all of New York’s best musicals are nestled around this famous diagonal street in Midtown Manhattan .

Throw in Jersey Boys , Aladdin , Kinky Boots, Avenue Q, the ever-relevant and satirical Newsical the Music, just to name but a small sliver, and you’ve got yourself quite the selection to choose from!

  • Broadway tickets

Looking for a hotel in New York?

With hundreds and hundreds of options all over the boroughs — the bulk of which are scattered around Manhattan — it can feel a little daunting to pick the right one.

That’s where we can help! If you’re after all-out luxury , look no further than the Ritz-Carlton , Lotte New York Palace , or the iconic Plaza .

If you’re after a trendy boutique stay that’s more affordable but packed with amenities and conveniently located, consider the W in Times Square , Embassy Suites by Hilton or The Standard (near the High Line).

And if you’re after something no-frills, there’s no shortage of choices there too.

  • best hotels in New York City

Travel hack — NYC attractions passes

New York City tourist attractions pass comparison guide

If you’re planning on ticking off as many of the best places to visit in New York City as possible in a short period of time, the selection of made-for-tourists New York City attractions passes can be a lifesaver .

Whether you opt for the CityPass, New York Explorer Pass®, Sightseeing FLEX pass, Go City, or Freestyle Pass (they all have their advantages, it just depends on your budget and preferred landmarks), you’ll be able to pocket up to 50% in savings compared to the usual prices .

Choose from dozens of iconic attractions like the Empire State Building observation deck, Top of the Rock, 9-11 Memorial, the MoMA, Metropolitan Museum of Art, river cruises, biking tours of Central Park, and plenty more.

Even better, travel around down is usually included (be that a hop-on-hop-off bus, boat cruise, or metro card), so it’s one less thing to worry about!

  • Attractions Passes in New York City

Hot tip: make sure to check out our New York City Attractions Pass Price Comparison Guide .

Arriving by plane? Get an airport transfer!

If you’re not up for lugging your luggage around on public transport or trying to navigate your way to your accommodation, a pre-booked airport transfer can take all the hassle out of getting from A to B. With a host of services available (some more affordable, others more focused on luxury), you can rest assured that you’ll be starting your vacation on the right foot.

Why make your trip more stressful than it needs to be?

Final thoughts

Thanks for checking out our collection of the best places to visit in New York City! If you have anything you’d love to add to the list, go ahead and leave a comment below.

Enjoy the trip!

Best Day Trips from New York

  • Top Attractions

Best Day Trips from New York

New York City is relatively close to other major destinations that can be visited during a day or a weekend. These day trips are only worth doing if you’re in the city for over five days .

Top Places to Visit Near New York

Washington d.c., niagara falls, philadelphia, atlantic city, the amish in lancaster, how to book these day trips.

Except if you want to go by car or want to go at your leisure, you can book these day trips on our website and many other excursions with an English-speaking tour guide. For example, the day trip to Washington only costs US$ 120.

  • New York activities, guided tours and excursions

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20 Towns and Cities in New York State

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There is so much more to New York State than its namesake city. The state is filled with exciting cities to explore, history to uncover and art to inspire. Within New York State are the stunning Fingerlakes, a region surrounded by mountains, forests and of course the lakes themselves. On the shores of these lakes, you will find bustling cities Syracuse and Ithaca, which perfectly pair the rugged outdoor lifestyle with the cosmopolitan way of life in a city. Each city in New York is filled with impressive museum collections where you can uncover the history of salt, revisit your childhood at Play or simply marvel at some of the country’s best works of art and sculpture.

Due to their diverse populations, the food is an eclectic blend of cultures and cuisines. With many cities in New York state having seen an influx of European immigrants, expect to find traditional American dishes with a twist. Here, you’ll find some of the best European dishes outside of the continent and plenty of cosy family-run restaurants. Each city offers its own unique blend of culture, activity, food and adventure. Here are 20 cities in New York State that you cannot miss.

1- New York City

3- rochester, 4- syracuse, 7- watertown, 8- saratoga springs, 10- new rochelle, 11- mount vernon, 12- schenectady, 14- niagara falls, 15- binghamton, 16- white plains, 17- montauk, 18- poughkeepsie, 19- cooperstown, towns and cities in new york state, 20 towns and cities in new york state to visit.

view to New York City from Empire State Building

No trip to New York State would be complete without spending some time in the Big Apple.

With its bright lights and big city energy, New York has plenty of things to do and see.

Explore some of the best shopping opportunities in the USA at Macy’s, Bergdorf Goodman and Bloomingdales, or look for vintage finds and treasures at one of the city’s independent boutiques.

Book lovers should visit The Morgan Library and Museum, an impressive, cosy, yet awe-inspiring collection of rare books, artefacts and paintings.

Inside are handwritten scores from Mozart, the manuscript for A Christmas Carol and plenty of ancient texts.

Indulge your senses further by dining in Chinatown in Lower Manhattan in one of the many restaurants or grabbing authentic Chinese cuisine from a street vendor as you continue to explore. 

For some baseball, book your Yankee tickets well in advance to make sure you grab the best seats.

Buffalo New York Skyline

Buffalo is New York State’s second-largest city and one of the state’s most popular destinations due to its location on Lake Erie, close to Niagara Falls.

Marvel at the beauty of flowers and plants at Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens.

The botanical gardens feature lavish and ornately designed gardens filled with colourful flowers and a beautiful European-style domed glass house filled with tropical plants.

Canalside Buffalo is a waterfront area of the city filled with restaurants, bars, cafes, spaces to relax and opportunities to get onto the water.

This area is popular during summer when the weather is warmer, with people enjoying taking a paddle boat down the canal, simply enjoying a cold beer, or sipping a glass of wine with a view.

Beautiful Rochester city skyline from river canyon

Rochester has fascinating museums and historical sites, plenty of culture and delicious dining opportunities.

Learn about women’s rights and the fight to get the vote at Susan B. Anthony House on a guided tour.

Inside the home are many things from Susan B. Anthony’s life and her campaign to make democracy fairer.

If you are visiting with children, let them have fun at the Strong Museum of Play, the largest children’s museum in the state.

Here they will find many interactive exhibits, play areas, games and more all linked to play.

view of syracuse vertical

Syracuse is in the Finger Lakes region and is a city surrounded by immense natural beauty.

Pair city life with a trip into the outdoors to make the most of this lakeside metropolis.

Syracuse is a city filled with museums offering insights into everything from classical landscape paintings to the history of canals.

A unique museum-going experience can be found at the Museum of Salt, as the city once provided salt for the entire USA.

After getting your fill of education, head to the famous Dinosaur Bar-B-Que to fill up on delicious grilled meats.

This BBQ restaurant has appeared on the Food Network and Good Morning America, and has several locations across the state, Syracuse being their original spot.

Try the crisp and spicy Cajun Fried Catfish, or keep it classic with Bar-B-Que pork ribs in a smoky, sticky sauce.

On Cayuga Lake in the Finger Lakes region lies the city of Ithaca, famous for being the home of Cornell University.

As Ithaca is in the Finger Lakes region, access to nature is easy and plentiful.

Take a gentle hike to Taughannock Falls State Park to see the tallest single-drop waterfall on America’s east coast.

The waterfall emerges from a thick forest, falling over a harsh cliff into a pool below.

Hikes take you to the water’s edge or enjoy the views over the falls by taking a few steps from the parking lot.

Indulge in a scoop or two of locally made ice cream at Purity Ice Cream, which has served sweet-toothed locals since 1936.

Choose from various flavours, toppings and sauces, including chocolate raspberry truffle, pumpkin praline and classics like vanilla or strawberry.

For more about New York State, read:

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Alfred E. Smith Building and One Commerce Plaza

One of the most famous sights in Albany is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, with its two towering red-brick spires that are unmistakable pieces of architecture in the city’s skyline.

If visiting in spring, be sure to make time in your day to admire the tulips and other spring flowers in Washington Park.

Frederick Olmstead and Calvery Vaux, the designers of NYC’s Central Park, designed Washington Park and filled its 81 acres (33 ha) with pleasant walks, vibrant flowers and beautifully presented flowerbeds.

Wander around the historical Schuyler Mansion on the banks of the Hudson River to step back in time to the 1800s.

The mansion has rooms decorated and furnished to reflect its history and range of artefacts from its owners, which included Philip Schuyler, a general from the Revolutionary War.

Watertown is the perfect New York State to enjoy various outdoor activities and water sports.

Take a guided tour of the water and raft along the Black River.

The river has seven miles (11.2 km) of water, perfect for whitewater rafting.

If land-based outdoor activities are more for you, spend some time in Marble Street Park. The trails in the park are short and perfect for a quick hike.

As you explore the city on foot, call into the Paddock Arcade, an 1850s shopping arcade filled with stores, cafes and restaurants, including one specialising in European cakes.

Blurred Road Through Saratoga Springs

Saratoga Springs is a beautiful, quaint, leafy city in New York State.

The city is famous for its natural springs, which can be seen and drunk at Saratoga Spa State Park.

To experience the power of the city’s spas in a truly relaxing and meditative environment, head to Roosevelt Baths and Spa.

The spa includes a range of treatments using the 55-degree spring water, including bathing options in sunken tubs and a range of massages.

Continue to relax by sampling a range of crisp, fresh and full-bodied wines at Galway Rock Vineyard and Winery.

Enjoy your wine with a cheese plate filled with local cheeses that perfectly pair with your drink as you enjoy the views.

Flag of Yonkers, USA

Sitting on the banks of the Hudson River is the city of Yonkers, which is often overlooked due to its proximity to New York City, however, it is well worth a visit.

Spend some time wandering around the pristinely manicured gardens of Untermyer Gardens, a beautiful green space in the city filled with some of the best plants in the state.

The gardens are divided into themed areas, including the Temple of Love and the Rock Garden.

On a visit to the Hudson River Museum, take the time to explore the Glenview Mansion, which sits on the museum’s grounds.

The mansion is beautifully preserved inside and out and filled with items and decor from the mansion’s history.

The Westchester city of New Rochelle lies alongside the Long Island Sound and is the perfect city destination with a small-town atmosphere.

New Rochelle has many excellent restaurants, including plenty of Michelin Guide winners.

Head to award-winning Maria, a family-owned Italian restaurant for some of the tastiest dishes.

Enjoy a range of fresh pasta with delicious sauces, including black linguine with lobster and shrimp, to Roman classic cacio e pepe.

Get outdoors and enjoy the views across the Long Island Sound from Hudson Park. The park also has a beach which is ideal for relaxing in the sun during the summer.

Immerse yourself in the history of America at the Bill of Rights Museum.

The museum outlines how the Bill of Rights was formed and features an 18th-century printing press, the original legislative journal from Congress’ first session, and plenty of historical artefacts about the city.

Get to know the city by exploring Downtown on foot, taking in the farmers market, plenty of bars for a drink and various independent stores.

If you are visiting with children, a must-visit is Wilson’s Waves, an exciting waterpark.

Bodysurf down the waterparks’ 5.5m (18 ft) waterslide, ride a wave in the wave pool and encourage little ones to enjoy the water at the small pool play area.

Schenectady’s roots go back to 1765 and the city is filled with historical buildings and references to its founding.

The city’s name is originally Mohawk Indian and means ‘Over the Pine Plains’.

One of the city’s oldest buildings is the Mabee Farm Historic Site. Jan Mabee built the farm in 1705 and it has been passed down through the generations for more than 300 years.

Explore the farmhouse to uncover the town’s history and how life was back in the late 1700s.

Sample delicious food in the city at Arthur’s Market, a historical cafe.

The cafe building dates to the late 1700s, and it has been serving delicious dishes for more than 225 years.

Enjoy traditional American bakery items such as rich chocolate chip cookies, sweet and sticky cinnamon rolls, or treat yourself to one of their many ‘Take and Bake’ dishes to enjoy savoury comfort food at home.

Take and Bake dishes include pot pies, hearty roast chicken and, of course, the classic mac and cheese.

The city of Utica sits at the foot of the Adirondack and Catskill mountains and is filled with old American charm, beautiful buildings and stunning scenery.

One of the best places to explore the city and the surrounding natural beauty is the Adirondack Scenic Railroad.

The train departs from Utica station and winds through thick leafy forests and past glistening streams.

A range of journeys take in this beautiful landscape with destinations including Old Forge and Remsen on a shorter hop, or head out to Big Moose on a nine-hour journey in pristine natural surroundings.

Relax and unwind with a cold beer from FX Matt Brewing Company, a Utica brewery that has been making an award-winning beer, Saranac, since 1888.

Learn about the company’s brewing process on a guided tour before sampling some of their best beers.

View of Niagara Falls from Made of the Mist boat

When visiting the city of Niagara Falls, only one tourist destination springs to mind; the falls themselves.

Wander around New York States’ oldest park and take in its many hiking and nature trails, enjoy a picnic in one of many scenic picnic areas, and of course, take in the immense views of the falls.

Uncover the secrets of 18th-century Old Fort Niagara for something a little more historical.

The fort was a crucial outpost during the colonial wars, with soldier’s and locals’ stories told through interactive exhibits and, during the summer, live reenactments.

Binghamton is ideally placed for access to nature and is filled with Victorian charm.

Head out on foot and explore the city streets or venture into nature on one of the city’s many hiking trails.

While exploring one of the city’s parks, look out for Binghamton’s collection of antique carousels, of which there are six in total, all dating to the early 1900s.

The largest carousel is in C. Fred Johnson Park and dates to 1923.

The carousel is ornately decorated with 72 carved figures to ride, gold-framed mirrors and plenty of hand-painted decorative panels.

white plains ny city street scenes and skyline

White Plains offers big-city vibes with a small-town feel.

The city is the epitome of suburban life with plenty of family-friendly attractions, a slower pace, and cosy restaurants while offering the hustle and bustle of the big city.

If you spend time in White Plains during spring, a must-visit spot is J Harvey Turner Memorial Park to see its spectacular cherry blossom.

Over 100 Japanese cherry blossom trees bloom in vivid shades of pink yearly.

When the trees are in full bloom, the park throws a Cherry Blossom Festival.

Grab a bite in interactive surroundings at Melting Pot, a tasty fondue restaurant offering plenty of rich melted cheese with succulent meats, crisp vegetables and fresh fish.

Picture taken in Montauk on a sunny morning

Montauk lies at the end of the Long Island Peninsula, surrounded by sandy dunes, lighthouses and plenty of Atlantic waves.

Whilst exploring this East Hampton gem, venture onto the bluffs and beaches where you may find harbour seals and catch a glimpse of humpback whales in the water.

Climb to the top of the oldest lighthouse in the state, the Montauk Point Lighthouse.

George Washington commissioned the lighthouse in 1796, and since then, its light has protected ships sailing close to the peninsula.

The views from the top, particularly at sunrise, offer a romantic glimpse over Montauk State Park and out to the ocean beyond.

Nestled in the Hudson River Valley is the city of Poughkeepsie. Poughkeepsie is easily commutable from New York City as it is the last stop on the northern Hudson line.

Lose yourself in the beauty of Locust Grove estate, a historical estate dating back to the early 1900s.

The park covers 200 acres (81 ha) and has streams, waterfalls and beautiful greenery.

Explore the home of the first governor of New York State, George Clinton, at the beautiful Georgian Clinton House State Historic Site.

The home was built in 1765 and, following a devastating fire, was rebuilt by soldiers in 1783.

bench by sidewalk in Cooperstown, New York

Cooperstown sits on the southern edges of Otsego Lake and is surrounded by woodland, grassy meadows and tranquillity.

Many visitors flock to Cooperstown to visit the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, which shares historical artefacts, including photographs and memorabilia of its players, managers and umpires.

There are plenty of opportunities for photographs with statues of the greats at the Baseball Wax Museum, located close by.

Explore Fenimore Art Museum and learn more about American Indian culture through works of art.

The museum also includes fine and folk art collections and photography from the 19th and 20th centuries.

Troy is the perfect blend of vibrant city life and history and is known locally as the home of Uncle Sam.

Step back in time at the unique and incredibly well-preserved Troy Savings Bank Music Hall.

Troy Savings Bank built the hall in 1823, where it operated as a local bank before being transformed into an elegant music hall in 1875.

Inside the hall is a large stage, plenty of red velvet seats, and pastel pink and blue walls.

Enjoy a cosy meal in Naughter’s, a diner with a neighbourhood vibe.

Expect emerald green booths, a long wooden bar and plenty of delicious food.

Order the Reuben with Naughter’s house-corned beef with a side of crisp home fries, or opt for the delicious vegan Industry Eggplant burger, filled with a golden hash brown and topped with pesto mayonnaise. 

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Places to Visit in New York City

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Tourist Places In New York City

Here are some the best places to visit in new york city:.

Rent a bike to explore New York

Statue Of Liberty

Statue Of Liberty

A colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor, the Statue of Liberty is one of the most iconic places to visit in New York City. It is a copper statue; the Statue of Liberty Enlightening the world was gifted by France to the United States for friendship. 

Times Square

Times Square

Located at Broadway, 7th Avenue cornered by 42nd and 47th Streets, Times Square is a major commercial intersection, tourist destination, entertainment hub, and one of the major New York City attractions. Dating back to the 1880s, its original name was Long Acre Square. However, the mayor of New York renamed it Times Square, in 1904, after the popular daily The New York Times took up residence in the building. 

Central Park

Central Park

Central Park is the fifth largest urban park in New York City and is located between the Upper West and Upper East sides of Manhattan. The park has lots of popular attractions for its visitors. Some attractions are historically significant but all of them are beautiful, such as artificial lakes, meadows, waterfalls, and wooded areas. These attractions also include Belvedere Castle, and Blockhouse, a remaining Fort from the War of 1812.


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Metropolitan Museum Of Art

Metropolitan Museum Of Art

Locally known as “the met,” the Metropolitan Museum of Art is the largest art museum in America. It has a rich collection of over two million words, divided among seventeen curatorial departments. One of the world’s largest and finest art museums, you get the artworks of over 5,000 years representing the world’s culture, from prehistory to the present and from every corner of the Earth. 

Broadway And The Theater District

Broadway And The Theater District

Broadway is the name of the oldest north-south running, diagonal road that begins from State Street at Bowling Green. The Theater District is an area in Midtown Manhattan, New York, where 41 major Broadway theatres are located. Also known as the Broadway Theater district, it is amongst the prominent New York City attractions, especially for theatre lovers. Home to the city’s best theatres, it is recognized as the heart of the entertainment industry.  

The Museum Of Modern Art

The Museum Of Modern Art

MoMA or the Museum of Modern Art is one of the most popular places to Visit in New York City known for its world’s largest collection of artefacts. A fusion of creativity, the museum plays a crucial role in preservation, development and collection of modern art. MoMA was established in 1929 and a permanent collection was brought into the realm in 1952.


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World Trade Center

World Trade Center

A large complex of several buildings, the World Trade Center is located in the Financial district of Lower Manhattan in New York City. The twin towers of the World Trade Center, the north and south, were devastated to an extent sufficient to shake the nation’s spirit in the 9/11 attack. The buildings were then rebuilt and opened to people in 2014. 

Rockefeller Center

Rockefeller Center

The Centre is a complex of nineteen commercial buildings in Midtown Manhattan, as well as one of the major New York City Attractions. Named after John D. Rockefeller Jr., the centre was created over 100 years ago. To bring his idea of a “city within a city” to ground reality, a fusion of art, style, and entertainment, the centre has every bit to offer what the city has.

Empire State Building

Empire State Building

A 102-storey Art Deco modernist skyscraper in the heart of New York, Midtown Manhattan, the building is named after the nickname of New York, ‘Empire State’. One of the most distinctive and famous buildings in the United States of America, the Empire State building is listed amongst the renowned New York tourist attractions. It also tops America's favourite architecture list, and stands tall at 1250 feet.


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9/11 Memorial And Museum

9/11 Memorial And Museum

The memorial and museum commemorates the terrorist attacks on September 9th, 2001, in which the Al Qaeda terrorist organisation hijacked four passenger-laided aeroplanes. During the rebuilding of the devastated twin towers of the World Trade Center, the 9/11 memorial and museum was established.

High Line

High line is a 1.45 mile long elevated linear park on the West Side of Manhattan. It is maintained by Friends of the High line, a non-profit organisation. The organisation is dedicated to reimagining the public spaces and its role to create connections, healthy neighbourhoods and cities. Walk through the garden, explore artworks, experience performances, cherish delicious food, and build connections with friends and neighbours. 

Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge

The first fixed crossing of the East river, the Brooklyn bridge is a cable-stayed/ suspension bridge that connects the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn. It was the first bridge to use steel for cable wires. It is also considered as an amazing feat of the nineteenth century engineering marvels. 


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Fifth Avenue

Fifth Avenue

Also known as the shopping district, Fifth Avenue is the area between 49th and 60th streets in Manhattan. It does not fail to reserve its name in ‘places to visit in New York City’. Fifth Avenue is one of the most expensive shopping districts on the Earth. It is also one of the most picturesque streets and avenues in Manhattan with museums, hotels, restaurants and luxurious buildings.

One World Observatory

One World Observatory

It is basically an observation deck at the top of One World Trade Center. The observatory floors were located on 100-102 floors of the centre, with dining options at the ONE Dine and exhibits. The Observatory provides space to host events, for example, ASPIRE, a 9000 square foot space, which provides an unparalleled vantage point in the city to enjoy and host events. 

Wall Street

Wall Street

An eight-block long street located in the financial district of Lower Manhattan in New York City, the Wall Street is a 800 metre long stretch. The Wall Street extends in the West from Broadway to South Street and the East river in the east. Since ages, Wall Street has been headquarters of some of the largest Brokerages and Investment banks of the United States of America.


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New York Public Library

New York Public Library

Home to 53 million items and spread over 92 locations, the public library is listed as one of the most popular places to visit in New York City. It is also the second largest public library in the United States and the fourth largest in the world. People from anywhere can attend the public programs and access the facilities available in the Library, by showing an ID proof.

St. Patricks Cathedral

St. Patricks Cathedral

A Catholic Cathedral in Midtown Manhattan, St. Patrick’s Cathedral is the seat of the Archbishop of New York and the Parish Church. Enjoy the stunning architecture of the Cathedral, and pray the rosary during evening hours. The largest neo-Gothic Cathedral spreads over an entire city block and is visited by millions of visitors annually. 

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is an art museum that exhibits collections of modern and contemporary art, presenting new ideas on modernism. The museum has housed the art-collecting activities of Solomon R. Guggenheim and is part of UNESCO World Heritage . It’s one of the most famous places to visit in New York City attracting visitors with its unique architecture and collection.

Washington D.C.

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Bryant Park

Bryant Park

The park is a recreational area with walking paths, cycling paths, artificial lakes, and boat rentals for its visitors. One of the busiest public places in the World, Bryant Park is famous for its winter village theme, with cosy igloos and other winter sports activities. Mecca for arts and culture, the Park has engaging and captivating events, festive, delicious food, and fitness classes to offer its visitors.

Carnegie Hall

Carnegie Hall

A concert venue in Midtown Manhattan, Carnegie Hall is famous for its history, rooted in its acoustics, beautiful interiors, and concert halls.One of the most prestigious facilities in the world, the gallery has been one of the ultimate badges of musical honour. The mission of Carnegie Hall has been to present music and musicians and to transform the power of music.

American Museum Of Natural History

American Museum Of Natural History

As the name suggests, the American Museum Of Natural History is a natural history museum situated on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Home to around fifty exhibits, the museum is considered one of the world’s largest and most notable museums. The museum is a renowned institution and offers both education and entertainment. Explore the museum’s landmark, the rose centre for Earth and Space. 


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Washington Square Park

Washington Square Park

The Greenwich Village neighbourhood of Lower Manhattan has this beautiful Washington Square Park that stretches over 9.75 acres. It is one of the New York City attractions, a well known public park, is used for meetings and as a centre for cultural activities. The greenery around the park, walkways and the beautiful stone-rimmed fountain has spectacular views and sights to offer its visitors.

Radio City Music Hall

Radio City Music Hall

An entertainment venue and theatre, the Radio City Music Hall falls within the Rockefeller Center. Located in Midtown Manhattan, it is nicknamed “The Showplace of the Nation” and it is the Headquarters for the Rockettes. The night shows, performances, comedian shows, and chart-tapping musical art, the Hall has everything to offer to its attendees.

Liberty Island

Liberty Island

An island owned by the federal government, Liberty Island is one of the famous New York tourist attractions that holds historical and national significance. It is located in Upper New York Bay in the United States. The island is dedicated to the notable Statue of Liberty, which is also its most notable feature. 

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New York Harbor

New York Harbor

The opening of the Hudson river, the New York harbour empties into New York Bay near the East River Estuary. One of the most beautiful places to visit in New York City, the harbour is one of the largest natural harbours in the world. It plays a vital role in the region's economy, wherein it transports millions of kilograms of cargo, through thousands of water vessels.

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    MoMA or the Museum of Modern Art is one of the most popular places to Visit in New York City known for its world's largest collection of artefacts. A fusion of