New York City is a place that you might feel like you know well, even if you’ve never been. There are recognizable landmarks abound. They range from the Statue of Liberty to the Empire State Building. You can see it all the time in movies, TV shows, posters, and books.
But beyond the tourist traps, there are lots of hidden gems. Any visitor would be delighted to discover them. There’s much more to explore in the city, from historical landmarks to secret tunnels. If you’re planning a trip to NYC, here are some of the places you don’t want to miss out on.
Cultural and Historical
New York may have only been a single city since 1898. But it’ still brimming with history and culture going back to before that time. Of course, there are some incredible historical locations, museums and art galleries to visit. Instead of going to the MoMA or the Guggenheim, you can discover other places around the city.
Swap traipsing around museum and gallery spaces for the sights you can find outside. For example, there’s the Staten Island boat graveyard. Or you can try the Irish Hunger Memorial and the Roosevelt Island Smallpox Hospital.
Food and Drink
NYC is well-known for having some fantastic food and drink. It’s particularly celebrated for its bagels and traditional Jewish delis. It’s the ideal city break location for foodies, especially if you’re on the lookout for hidden gems. If there’s one thing you don’t want to be fooled by when you’re traveling, it’s touristy food and drink establishments.
What you really want to do is to go where the locals go. And where they go is to trendy hot spots like La Esquina. This Mexican restaurant serves authentic tacos. Or, for traditional American food, try Freemans to eat in the company of the stags on the wall. If you’re looking for a drink, you can discover secret speakeasies. They lie behind storefronts like The Blind Barber in the East Village.
Transport and Tunnels
New York has an extensive public transport network. So it may come as no surprise that it also has a lot of hidden tunnels. Many of the city’s hidden spots come in the form of disused subway tunnels or train stations. One of the best known is the Whispering Gallery at Grand Central Station.
You can stand in this special spot, facing the wall, and whisper so that someone on the other side of the arc can hear you. Other places to check out include the Freedom Tunnel and the modernist passage under 1251 Avenue of the Americas.
Gardens and Parks
Central Park is one of the city’s main attractions. But there’s more to explore outside of its sprawling expanse. For example, there’s the Garden of Stones at the Museum of Jewish Heritage.
The plants were planted in stones by Holocaust survivors and their families. Then there’s the quaint and quirky 1st Street Garden, which is owned and maintained by people in the neighborhood.
There’s so much to see in New York City, making it perfect for a city break. No matter what you enjoy, you’ll be able to discover a side of the city that you’ll love.