I recently made a list of my top ten things to do in NYC, but there are plenty more amazing things to do in NYC that aren’t on the “beaten track”. Here are 10 of my favorite slightly different things to do in the city. What different things would you add to the list?
1. The Hammock Grove on Governors Island
This very nearly makes my top ten list. Governors Island is a 10 minute ferry ride from Manhattan (also accessible from Brooklyn) and the perfect summer escape. The island gives picturesque views of Manhattan and is the perfect chance to spread out and have a picnic on the grass without a million other New Yorkers joining you. The best part, of course, is the Hammock Grove. Hammocks, on an island, with a view of Lady Liberty – what more could one ask for?
2. Roosevelt Island
Clearly I have a thing for Islands, but when the island has an amazing view of Manhattan – who doesn’t? Roosevelt Island is another opportunity to escape all the tourists and fellow New Yorkers for some time in the sun.
3. Lobster Cruise
I told my colleagues I was going on a Lobster Cruise and everyones first question was “What is a Lobster Cruise?” Well, I’m glad you asked. The lobster cruise – North River Lobster Company is a boat cruise which serves copious quantities of lobster and other amazing seafood while it sails in 45 minutes stints up the northern end of the Hudson River. I generally don’t like boats, but when a cruise involves amazing views, seafood and sunshine I can’t complain.
4. See the Ballet at the MET
I am not a lover of ballet (or so I thought). When I was offered free tickets to see Cinderella at the MET I nearly passed because “it’s not really my thing”. Turns out you can’t say something isn’t your thing unless you’ve tried it – maybe with the exception of crack cocaine. I was lucky enough to be seated four rows from the front of an incredible performance of athleticism and art. Besides the show, the performance space itself is worth the trip alone.
5. Central Park Conservatory Garden
This place has to be one of New York’s best kept secrets. Admittedly there are some other people in on the secret as the gardens can get fairly busy on a warm day, but it took me around 9 months of living in the City before I knew this place even existed. The conservatory garden is one of the most beautiful parts of Central Park yet it, presumably because of it’s northern location, often gets overlooked.
6. Cupcake Tour
It sounds like the most random thing ever, and it is. A friend offered me a spare ticket and, even though it was the middle of winter, I took up the offer. Although my feet were numb for the entire duration of the two hour walking tour, it was one of the most fun things I have ever done in the city. If cupcakes aren’t your thing, there are plenty of other walking tours, which I am sure are just as enjoyable.
P.S. be prepared for a sugar hangover.
7. Take a bus to Chinatown
Chinatown is the closest thing to China I have ever come across – funny that. It really is hard to believe you’re still in Manhattan once you found yourself in the middle of Chinatown getting an extremely painful reflexology massage, with a bubble tea hangover and a surprising desire to buy a turtle or other inconvenient pet from a street corner.
8. Walk the Hudson at Sunset
Walking the Hudson River from Soho right down to Battery Park is one of my favorite after work activities. Plenty of runners and bikers speed their way down the island, but barely anyone stops to take in the view. It’s definitely worth a look.
9. Carl Shultz Park
If you’ve already visited Central Park, Prospect Park, DUMBO, Brooklyn Bridge Park & Washington Square Park, then Carl Shultz Park is a cute getaway from the city, without actually getting away from the city at all. What it lacks in amazing views it makes up for with cute walkways, a bridge and seating areas which most NYC residents seem to be unaware of.
10. Discover Street Art on the Lower East Side
I lived in the Lower East Side for 3 months when I first moved to the city. Besides all of the rats & bad smell there was an upside to the grungy feel of the area – the street art. The wall photographed below makes the perfect backdrop for tourist pics. Find this wall on East Houston & Bowery.
What other different things do you like to do in NYC? Let me know in the comments below & don’t forget to follow me on Instagram.
Safe travels xx