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Best Places To Visit in New York

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The United Nations Building in New York CIty


New York has a wealth of attractions and it would take weeks to see all of the ones that are worthy of your attention.  In this section of our Guide to New York, we describe a number of outstanding places to visit  that include: attractions, neighborhoods and things-to-do.

The United Nations 

Tours of  the United Nations are available to those who might find this activity interesting. 

The tours last forty-five minutes to one hour and are conducted seven days a week (except holidays and  the months of January and February when the UN is closed on weekends). Tours are available  between 9:30 a.m. and 4:45 p.m. and from 10 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. on weekends.

Children under 5 are not permitted on the tour and the United Nations may close on short notice due to issues related to international emergencies.

For information on tours (guided or audio), purchasing tickets and what you can expect to  see  during your visit, see the official UN Website section on touring the facility. 

The United Nations Headquarters in New York is located on First Avenue between 42nd Street and 48th Street.

Wall Street 

          The New York Stock Exchange draped with the American Flag from Washington's statue at the Federal Hall on Wall Street

Wall Street and the area surrounding it (the Financial District) represents the center of investment activity and financial matters in the United States.  Home of the New York Stock Exchange (11 Wall Street - between New and Broad Streets) and the NASDAQ,  the Financial District offers little to see, but still attracts tourists who want to see this center of economic power.  Many give the Financial District a quick look while on their way to  the nearby 9/11 Memorial at the site of ground zero and the World Trade Center.

Starting at Battery Park and running along Broadway until you reach the City Hall at Chambers Street is an area of New York known as the "Canyon of the Heroes."  This is where New York holds its  famous "ticker-tape" parades for those the city regards as "Heroes" .  Along the route, the sidewalks contain black granite plaques listing the honorees of past parades.

Carnegie Hall 

Since its opening in 1891 Carnegie Hall has been regarded as one of the leading classical music centers in the United States. 

The facility has three active stages (the  Isaac Stern Auditorium/Ronald O. Perelman Stage, the Joan and Sanford I. Weill Recital Hall and the Judy and Arthur Zankel Hall. The three venues offer a wide variety of music and attending a concert at Carnegie Hall is a treat.  For more details see the official website.

Carnegie Hall is located at 57th Street and Seventh Avenue.

We realize that many would argue that Lincoln Center is the leading center for the performing arts, and that may be true - but there is something magical about Carnegie Hall.  If you want to see Lincoln Center, home of the Metropolitan Opera, the New York Philharmonic and several noted ballet companies, it is a large complex of theaters bounded by  62nd Street on the south, 65th Street on the north, Amsterdam Avenue on the west and Columbus Avenue on the east.

Yankee Stadium 

Yankee Stadium, home of the "Bronx Bombers" is located across the Harlem River, which separates Manhattan from the Bronx. If you are interested in attending a game during your visit to New York, start at the official website of the New York Yankees  where you can find their schedule and information on attending a game. 

Tickets can be arranged in a variety of manners, but see if the concierge of your hotel can be of assistance.  Note, you can also tour the stadium.  If interested, see this page of the official New York Yankee's website.

The stadium is located at One East 161st Street in the Bronx, about 25 minutes by subway from Midtown, Manhattan.

Bronx Zoo 

The Bronx Zoo offers world-class exhibits such as the Congo Gorilla Forest, The Wild Asia Monorail, Tiger Mountain and Madagascar! There is a world of excitement here for children and those young at heart. Check the official website for more information on the animals you can see during your visit.  Feeding sessions are always popular and the zoo provides a menu of feedings that rotates daily. See the official website of the Bronx Zoo for details.

The Zoo is open from 10  a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and a half hour later on weekend and holidays. From November 1 to April 1 the zoo closes at 4:30 p.m.  The facility is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Day and Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Note some of the outdoor attractions are closed in winter. 

The Bronx Zoo is located at Fordham Road and the Bronx River Parkway.  Details on transportation can be found at the Zoo's website.


The largest and oldest Chinatown in the United States is located on the Lower East Side of Manhattan and it is here that you can find numerous examples of Chinese culture. Chinatown is bounded (approximately) by Delancey on the north,  Worth Street on the south, Essex Street on the east and Broadway on the west.   Canal Street, east of Broadway at its intersection with Walker and Baxter Streets,  will put  you in the heart of Chinatown.

The New York Magazine Guide to Chinatown  has details on what you can find to do and recommendations for places to eat in this interesting section of New York.

Little Italy 

Although still popular with tourists, Little Italy  is now a shadow of its former self, but if you want a taste of the Old World, this may be the section of the city for you.. See the official website of Manhattan’s Little Italy District for information on where you can eat, as well as what there is to see and do.

Greenwich Village 

To the west of Broadway, south of 14th Street and surrounding Washington Square Park, the Village has a long history of art and bohemian lifestyles.

Greenwich Village was the center of the Beat Generation (Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg and others) in the United states in the 1950s. However, today’s more gentrified Village remains an attraction for many, perhaps because it is home to many of the celebrities who prefer to New York City.  In addition, the Village is well-regarded as the home to many off-Broadway theaters and numerous venues for music (particularly jazz) and comedy.

See this website  (informative but not "official"), as it provides good coverage of “what’s on” in the Village.

South Street Seaport 

The Seaport and Pier 17 have become a popular marketplace on the Lower Manhattan waterfront.  Offering shops, concerts, street performers and a friendly atmosphere, the Seaport is one of the places to be in Manhattan.  See the official website for details on what’s on and whether this is a stop for you. 

The Seaport is normally open seven days a week.  Although the area was flooded by Hurricane Sandy, many  shops and restaurants have reopened, although not all. Sunday hours start at 11 a.m. with closing at 6 p.m.  The rest of the week the action starts at 10 a.m. and ends at 7 p.m.  Location, Fulton and South Streets, Pier 17.    Call (212) SEA-PORT for information of what's open when.

Another good reason to visit the South Street Seaport is to take a cruise on the Circle Line to see the New York Harbor from the water.  If you want a great view of the Statue of Liberty, New York's skyscrapers or the Brooklyn Bridge, your best view might just be from one of the many Circle Line cruises.  See the official website  for details on the cruises available, their pricing and schedules.  Most Circle Line cruises depart from Pier 16 at South Street Seaport.

Coney Island 

Built in 1920, Deno's Wonder Wheel was named and official New York CityLandmark in 1989Although Coney Island is long past its prime, it continues to attract visitors nostalgic for an old-time amusement park.  If you are looking for a piece of the past and any number of places to have a tasty New York hot dog (including Nathan's), Coney Island may be just the ticket for you. By the way, Coney Island is a collection of rides and attractions, rather than a unified theme park,   In essence, there is no general admission ticket and you pay for the rides individually.

Located on a peninsula at the southern end of Brooklyn, Coney Island can be reached by train or bus from Manhattan in about an hour. The park is open seasonally, usually between Easter and Labor Day.  Due to damage by Hurricane Sandy and a planned renovation, Coney Island may not open until Memorial Day 2013.

See the unofficial website of Coney Island  for information on visiting and hours of operation.

Saint Patrick's Day Parade

New York's famous Saint Patrick's Day Parade is held annually on March 17, except when the date falls on a Sunday and is the parade is held the day before.  The Parade usually starts at 11 a.m. and marches along Fifth Avenue from approximately 44th Street to 86th Street.

 See the official website of the Saint Patrick's Day Parade  for details on attending.

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (yes, it is held on Thanksgiving Day) traditionally begins at 77th Street and Central Park West, passes down 7th Avenue through the Times Square area and eventually terminating at 34th Street and 7th Avenue, near Macy's  Herald Square. 

For 2012 it has been proposed that the Parade will turn on 6th Avenue instead, bypassing Times Square and its hotels, which are prime, warm,  viewing platforms for observing the parade.  Needless to say, the proposed change is being  hotly debated in New York.  Check local websites for details on the actual parade route or Google "Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Speaking of Macy's - Herald Square, the store's Christmas window unveiling usually occurs in mid-November, followed later in the month by the opening of its Santaland on the 8th floor.  Both events are a delight for kids of all ages and you should take advantage of the opportunity to see the store, if visiting New York in November or December.

Television Show Tapings

If you are interested in seeing one of the many TV shows produced in New York City, there are several major ones that feature a live audience.  The most popular shows and links to their websites where ticket information is available are as follows:

Good Morning America
The Letterman Show
Jimmy Fallon show
John Stewart
Stephen Colbert
Saturday Night Live
Dr. Oz Show  

All shows listed  are extremely popular but the free tickets to attend a taping are often difficult to acquire due to the high demand (particularly  for Saturday Night Live). If you plan on being in New York and want to see one of these shows, attempt to reserve your tickets as far in advance as possible.  Note, we used the phrase "attempt to reserve your tickets", as many of the shows award their tickets based on a lottery.

If you need information about another travel destination, try our Destination Guide Index  or Googling ThereArePlaces.

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Places  Described On This Page

The United Nations
Wall Street
Carnegie Hall
Yankee Stadium
Bronx Zoo
Little Italy
Greenwich Village
Coney Island
St. Patrick's Day Parade
Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Television Show Tapings



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