Visiting New York? 8 Great Things to Do

The options in New York City are endless. When visiting New York this can be utterly overwhelming. Especially if you are only visiting for a couple days! Kaplan International, a leading provider for English courses has three schools in NYC. They polled 300 of their students asking them for feedback on eight areas of NYC interest.

Then they made a fabulous little videographic compiling the results:

How cute was that? I wish I could make my own adorable videographic as a response, but we’ll just have to settle for a blog post! The results of the survey are about as New York Cliché as you can get. All students polled had studied in NYC for at least four weeks. I’m gonna say it: none of those students know NYC as well as I do. Every thing mentioned in the video is a super popular tourist attraction. As someone who has lived in NYC for almost six years, my answers are sometimes a little different.

Favorite tourist attraction
Kaplan says: Times Square
New York Cliché says: Any one who lives in NYC will rant for about five minutes about how much the hate Times Square. It’s crowded as all get out, hard to move through, you’re constantly harassed to buy comedy tickets or take pictures with dirty costumed characters. But it is the #1 tourist destination in the world. If you visit NYC, you will go there. If you are visiting NYC, you should also see a Broadway show- in Times Square, so you can at least do both at the same time.
My favorite tourist attraction, as you know from last week’s post, is the Brooklyn Bridge.


Best loved shopping destination
Kaplan says: Soho
New York Cliché says: Soho is amazing if you have money. For all the reasons the video says. If you are like me and your time in NYC is strictly budgeted, I would recommend heading out to Brooklyn and exploring little boutiques and shops along Bedford Avenue. It’s a little hipster, you’ll find shops you can’t get anywhere else, and you’ll get a great taste of Brooklyn (but just one stop on the subway from Manhattan).

Favorite park or green space
Kaplan says: Central Park
New York Cliché agrees. You can’t beat Central Park. In the winter, go ice skating. In the summer see some Shakespeare in the Park. Strawberry Fields is great. Just take a walk, it’s one of my favorite activities. In the spring go boating– it’s actually really cheap, just $12 to rent a boat for an hour!


Most popular museum or gallery
Kaplan says: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York Cliché agrees. It’s the biggest museum in the USA! There is something here for everyone. If you’re not a big museum person, take lots of breaks and I highly encourage going at your own pace. Don’t be afraid to split up from the people you’re with. There’s nothing worse than feeling bored and waiting around for someone who wants to read every little plaque when you yourself aren’t into that.

Favorite place to eat out
Kaplan says: Little Italy
New York Cliché says: If you’re visiting the city, Little Italy is one of the more unique dining experiences you are likely to find. Does it have the best restaurants in NYC? No. But the neighborhood itself is an experience, picking a restaurant amongst so many persuasive maitre d’ is entirely unique. Don’t get me wrong, the food is great, but even more so the environment.

I’d also recommend trying this super fun Indian restaurant in the East Village! Click the image for more info.

Best loved on or off-Broadway musical
Kaplan says: The Lion King
New York Cliché says: Seeing The Lion King is pretty fool-proof. Even your dad who you have to drag to the theater will likely enjoy this show. It is unlike anything else, unlike any other show, and it is magical and breath-taking. The show I love most on Broadway right now is Cabaret. It is dark, sexy, and stars the incredible Alan Cumming. I saw the first preview just this past Friday and was enthralled.

Most popular music venue
Kaplan says: Madison Square Garden
New York Cliché says: I much prefer smaller, more intimate spaces. What’s great is NYC has so many. Honestly, I hate the arena atmosphere of MSG. Joe’s Pub is incredibly intimate, and though you may not have heard of the performers, they always put on a stellar show. Rockwood Music Hall is most likely where I would take someone visiting the city. There is live music every night, the line ups are eclectic, but I always have a good time when I go to this space and often there isn’t even a cover.

Favorite area for night life
Kaplan says: Meatpacking District
New York Cliché says: Meatpacking is infamous for girls in teeny tiny skirts and sky high heels. In the middle of January. On a Saturday night, there’s a chance you’ll get turned away by a bouncer for not being the look they want. Most local New Yorkers prefer the Lower East Side for night life. The scene is more chill, you are much more likely to find some killer live music, and ass-revealing ensembles are not the norm.

How do your opinions mesh with mine and with that of the average Kaplan student? If you’re thinking of visiting NYC, was this post helpful?

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**sponsored by Kaplan International**

About New York Cliche

NYC lifestyle blog by Mary Lane. Events, adventures, epic mistakes, dating, life, humor. A 20-something trying to make it (and make out) in the city of dreams.

6 thoughts on “Visiting New York? 8 Great Things to Do

  1. i’ve never gone out in the meat packing district, so i agree with your assessment 🙂 Also 54 below is my favorite music venue, but its mostly like broadway/artist-y types, but its got great food and is super ultimate!

  2. They said Madison Square Garden for music venue?! WHAT THE HELL!?

    There are so many better music venues than going and seeing a show in an arena. *headdesks repeatedly*

    Personally, I’d recommend somewhere classy to a tourist… like Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Appel Room (the room formerly known as the Allen Room) that overlooks Columbus Circle and Central Park or checking out Carnegie Hall or perhaps the Metropolitan Opera House.

  3. Great post. Always good to give the opinion as a New Yorker. I went to one party in the meat packing district and I had a good time but don’t know I would do it again. It’s such a pretentious area and definitely too high snobiety for me. I stay in the Lower East Side but I definitely need to explore some new places. i’m usually just in and out of dive bars.

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