OUR TIPS FOR A WEEKEND IN NEW YORK
For us people of Montreal, a long weekend is often synonymous with New York . Being located only 6 hours away from home, we often think of going to spend a few days in this city. And it must be said, it’s always a good idea! We had the chance to go to the Big Apple for the first time last May and we absolutely loved it. It is certain that we will return as soon as we have a long weekend free. And for you, Europeans who read us, even if this city is overseas, you absolutely must visit it. You can combine your trip with a detour to Montreal or Boston . So follow us, we take you to visit our good plans in this city that never sleeps…
Where to stay?
It’s no secret that in Manhattan, hotel nights are very expensive. There is still a way to sleep in New York without breaking the bank too much. Here are some ideas:
- Airbnb.com : yes yes, we talk about it all the time, but it really is one of the cheapest ways to travel in big cities like New York. Especially since you can make your own meals, the savings will not be neglected.
- Sleep outside of Manhattan, either in Queen, Brooklyn or the Bronx. We had chosen this time to stay in Brooklyn in a really nice little hotel: The Nu Hotel .
- Sleeping in New Jersey: the price of rooms is much cheaper than in New York. You can find a room for $100 easily.
- Finally, there is always Couchsurfing which remains the most affordable option. It’s about going to sleep with a resident of the city for 0$. You just have to register on the website and you can start “couchsurfing” during your next trip or to receive people from all over the world at your place.
What to do ?
- Walk on the Brooklyn Bridge
It’s the first thing we did when we arrived in New York. Since our hotel was located very close to the bridge, we decided to cross to Manhattan on foot. The view of downtown is amazing from the Brooklyn Bridge. Admittedly, there are a lot of people, but the crossing, even in the beating sun, remains mythical. For photo enthusiasts, you will be served!
- Visit the Greenwich neighborhoods and the West Village
These neighborhoods literally made us fall in love with New York. They are not called villages for nothing, they really look like small villages in the big city. These neighborhoods, very popular with New Yorkers, are very charming and will entertain you from morning until nightfall. Whether it is to have a hearty breakfast, to find a piece of clothing that is out of the ordinary or to party until the wee hours of the morning, you will be pampered. This is also where New York’s gay community meets. On top of all that, the houses are downright sublime. Lose yourself in the small residential streets and you will not be disappointed.
- A walk on the Highline
The Highline is an old railway line that has recently been converted into an urban promenade. There are a few small green spaces, restaurants and bars. It is elevated and offers in several places, a very beautiful view of the streets of New York. The architecture of the buildings around is also quite impressive. There are several entrances to get there, from 14th street to 30th street you can use the stairs or the elevators. If you decide to do it from south to north, you will end up very close to Times Square and if on the contrary you go down it from north to south, you will end up in the Meatpacking district.
- Treat yourself to a lobster at Chelsea Market
We have already told you about it on the blog, the markets are our “dada” during our travels. We therefore could not miss the most popular of the Big Apple. Chelsea Market is in the Meatpacking district, very close to the Hudson River and right next to the 14th Street entrance to the Highline. There are shops, restaurants and above all everything you need to concoct the best of meals. It is also possible to eat on site and it is the famous lobster that is found in the greatest number of plates. It must be said that we were there in May, it was LOBSTER TIME. The Chelsea Market is one of our favorites in New York, you absolutely have to go there.
- Go to the Top of the Rock for an incredible view of Manhattan and the Empire State Building
As soon as we arrived in New York, we were wondering if we should climb to the top of the Empire State Building or the Rockefeller Center in order to see Manhattan from above. Since the price is still expensive ($30 per person), we thought we would choose only one. Our choice fell on the Rockefeller Center since we thought we would also have a beautiful view of Central Park. We can tell you with certainty that we were absolutely not disappointed with our choice. The view of southern Manhattan and the Empire State Building is simply majestic, and the view of Central Park is equally so. If you have the possibility, we advise you to go there at sunset. Apparently the show is breathtaking.
- Central Park
You simply can’t get to the Big Apple without spending some time in Central Park. New York’s lung is so big you’ll need a bike if you want to see it all. At the park entrance at the corner of 8th Avenue and 59th Street, you will easily find rental bikes. We paid $15
each for 2 hours. It allowed us to go much further than if we had been on foot.
- Upper East Side
The Upper East Side is where New York’s elite live, so don’t be surprised if you see several limos or Lincolns during your visit, it’s quite normal in this part of town. It’s their usual means of transport… The district is still worth a detour after a walk in Central Park if only to stroll down Madison Avenue and see all its luxury boutiques.
- Chinatown and Little Italy
New York’s Chinatown is the most authentic we’ve seen so far. Traders sell fish and all sorts of unusual foods in the middle of the street. Dumplings and Dim Sum restaurants are aplenty and fake Rolex watches are increasingly difficult to find… There is a special and above all a little chaotic atmosphere, but that’s exactly what we wanted to see when we left. going there. The district is quite large and is located right next to the Italian district, take the opportunity to go for a little walk. We found a really nice wine bar that we recommend: Italian Bar Center. It is located on the corner of Mulberry Street and Grand Street.
Brooklyn remains to this day a borough of New York that is too little known to tourists who go to stay in the Big Apple. Most people focus on seeing as many attractions as possible in Manhattan and completely forget about the other boroughs of the city. Dozens of art galleries, trendy cafes and more original restaurants fill the streets of Brooklyn. The atmosphere is more relaxed and above all very trendy. The neighborhood par excellence to discover during a first visit is undoubtedly that of Williamsburg. If we can afford to compare it with a district of Montreal, we would go with the Mile-End for its very hipster population. So don’t hesitate to leave Manhattan to spend half a day there, or even a full weekend…
- Take the ferry to Staten Island
There is a free way to get quite close to the Statue of Liberty without any reservations. This is the ferry to Staten Island. This huge orange boat shuttles between Manhattan and Staten Island. It’s part of New York’s public transit system, so if you have a subway pass, it won’t cost you a penny to board (you have to go to the South Ferry subway station). Besides seeing the Statue of Liberty up close, you’ll get a pretty awesome view of downtown Manhattan. We advise you to stay at the back of the boat, this is where you will have the best view. When you arrive in Staten Island, you can return with the next Ferry or take the opportunity to visit the surroundings.
- Times Square
Ahhh that famous Times Square! Even though it has been seen in photos and on television hundreds of times, the place still has a great effect when you set foot there. Obviously, we went there in the evening to see all these illuminated advertisements. And we’ll tell each other, even if it’s one of the most touristic places in the world and it’s practically only pubs, it’s still great.
So there you have it, after just one visit to New York, this is what we were most hooked on. It is certain that we will come back to you in the near future with other ideas since there is so much to see in this city and we are certain that we will rediscover it each time.