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Top 10 tips for your first trip to New York

Planning your very first trip to New York can be a daunting prospect. With so many things to see, and so little time, it’s difficult to know where to start. In a city that claims to have 90,000 hotel rooms, just choosing where to stay can be a daunting prospect in itself. If you are only in town for a few days and, here are a few tips to help you make the most out of your trip. New York 1. The Gansevoort Park Avenue NYC Situated on the corner of 29th Street and Park Avenue, The Gansevoort couldn’t be more centrally located. With a roof top pool and terrace, offering spectacular views of The Empire State Building, this quirky, slightly edgy, but luxurious hotel is a world away from your average downtown corporate branded establishment. The rooms are generously proportioned too, which is a rarity in such a central location. 2. The Empire State Building The word “awesome” must have been invented to describe the views from the top of this iconic building. If you have never been to NYC before, you tend to think that you already know what it looks like, because you have seen it in so many movies and TV shows, but nothing can prepare you for the feeling you get when you look down onto the city from each side of the Observation Deck. If you are pushed for time, it is well worth booking the Express Pass which really does give you VIP status and entitles you to jump all the queues, whizzing you to the top in no time at all. Empire State Building 3. The Circle Line Cruise The Full Island Cruise which circumnavigates Manhattan Island will enable you to see 3 rivers, 7 major bridges, 5 boroughs, over 25 world renowned landmarks and a magnificent close up of the Statue of Liberty, all in 3 hours. The tour guide’s commentary is both interesting and informative, and it is hard to imagine any other way of seeing so many sights, and learning so many facts, in such a short space of time. 4. Shake Shack A trip to NYC wouldn’t be complete without consuming a least one burger. There are of course hundreds of burger restaurants to choose from, but for a simple, traditional New York style burger experience, Shake Shack in Madison Square Park takes some beating especially on a balmy summer’s evening. Don’t let the length of the queues faze you, as they move quite quickly and theses burgers are well worth waiting for. 5. Central Park Whether you choose to take a bike, Vespa, horse and carriage or gentle stroll through Central Park, its green meadows, sprawling waters, unique bridges and outstanding beauty are not to be missed. Its peace and tranquillity offer the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Central Park 6. Ground Zero The 9/11 Memorial which honours the lives of those who were lost, occupies 8 of the 16 acres at WTC and serves as a tribute to the past as well as a place of hope for the future. The names of every person who died in the terrorist attacks on September 11 are inscribed around the twin memorial pools. Free passes can be reserved in advance. The museum is due to open late spring. 7. Rockefeller Center With its 3 viewing decks and a 360 degree city views, a visit to the Top of the Rock at the Rockefeller Center is a must. The sweeping views of Central Park and the city skyline are quite spectacular. Tours of the Rockefeller Center and NBC Studios are also available. 8. Walk the High Line The High Line is a 2 km long green space which used to be an elevated railway line, but is now an art-filled public park. Extending alongside 10th Avenue from West 30th Street to Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District, the High Line gives you great views of the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building and the Statue of Liberty. 9. Grand Central Station It might be a train station, but it is indeed a very beautiful train station. Even if you just call in for a quick look while you are in the vicinity, it is well worth a visit. It is one of the nation’s most historic landmarks and remains the busiest train station in the country. Avoid visiting during rush hour as the thousands of commuters zigzagging across the concourse can be a little disconcerting. As the saying goes, stand here long enough and the whole world passes by. Grand Central Station 10. Times Square It’s brash and it’s busy, but no trip to New York would be complete without a visit to Times Square. There are enough restaurants, bars, and shops to keep you entertained all day, but if you have an aversion to neon and noise, perhaps a stroll through on your way to a Broadway show might be your best option. Times Square Ceri Tinley is the Co-Founder and MD of Consensio Holidays.

Ceri Tinley

Ceri Tinley is the Managing Director and Co-Founder of Consensio, the leading upmarket operator of the most luxurious catered chalets and villas in France. Each property comes with your private team of hospitality professionals, trained to look after your every need.

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  1. During your city tour, do not forget to stop by for Donald Trump Tower, located at corner of 5th Avenue and 56th East Street in Midtown Manhattan.

  2. Hello,
    Thank you for the advise! I will visit it all on my next trip to New York. My fist visit 2 years ago was too short to see all those places.

  3. Museum of Natural History, the MET, the Jewish Museum, the Firefighters Museum, The Guggenheim, Lincoln Center, a Broadway Show, The Museum of NYC,The Frick, Central Park Carousel, Ice Skating in Rockefeller Center, ….the list is endless

  4. Indeed it is. Two whole weeks in New York wouldn’t be enough time to see everything!Perhaps we should have made it s Top 20!

  5. Hi,
    great list. Yes this list could be endless….

    One of my top 10 tips for New York City with children at summer is Brooklyn Bridge Park – Pier 6.

  6. Thanks for your tip. I will check it out next time I am lucky enough to be in NYC. It certainly looks like a great place to take kids. And dogs!

  7. All great suggestions. I would also recommend visiting Brooklyn Bridge Park if you want to get a great view of the Manhattan skyline. At sunset it is particularly wonderful.

  8. Nice work, Ceri! It would be really helpful for people visiting NY for the first time.Thanks for the list.

  9. Have to say, Ellis Island should not be missed. I think it’s key to understanding the Americans and their attitude to life. A tremendous city that Will not disappoint.

  10. Unfortunately I could not see all things on my last visit to NYC :/ But next time I’ll not going to miss a single place to visit. :)

  11. New York is an amazing city. But it is a little bit scary , too. if you are not prepared to move there he will take your soul :) I am just kidding. Love this city. Best regards!

  12. Hey Ceri, what a lovely post it is. Thanks for sharing such a nice information with us. New york is such a beautiful city as I have ever seen. I was in new york last year with my family. Had lots of enjoyment with my family.

  13. Excellent tips! It’s impossible to experience everything New York has to offer in one visit. From world-class museums to iconic landmarks, there are more than enough reasons to visit New York and Free Event Finder can be used as your guide in searching for events that won’t hurt the pocket. It lists plenty of fun things to do for the kids and the entire family.

  14. I have been to New York many times and never visited the high line! Adding it to my list! I also always recommend a museum or two because there are so many good ones. My favorite is the Guggenheim.

  15. I just tried Shake Shack for the first time in New York. It was amazing!!!

    If you want away from the busy Manhattan, Woodbury Commons has the best shopping.

  16. Make sure to take a food tour or cocktail tour! Food tours in the West Village are awesome! Also, you need to visit Brooklyn!

  17. A potential client (flying in from Jnb, South Africa) would like a sight-seeing tour in NYC and also one in New Orleans. 4 nights NYC & 5 nights New Orleans. I believe that it will be their first time in both cities. Any recommendation which toiur to go on and most affordable accommodation (not hostel) would also be helpful.

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