New York City Guide

New York City dazzles at every turn - and is quite simply one of the most exciting places on the planet. Eight million people now live in the city, with Manhattan Island, at its centre, one of the most densely populated areas of the country.

A tour of the downtown Financial District and the Upper East Side confirms the success of New Yorkers in creating wealth, but the other story of New York is also one of immigrants struggling to survive in cramped Downtown tenements and gritty suburbs. With all this, New York is one of America's most 'European' and liberal-minded cities.

Boasting 150 world-class museums, 18,000 restaurants of all types and price ranges, scores of Broadway theaters, and an unbelievable array of shopping, New York City never fails to delight and entertain. The romance of the city is everywhere: in wandering the tree-lined Poet's Walk in Central Park, winter ice skating at the Rockefeller Center; taking in the imperious views atop the Empire State Building; shopping at Tiffany's; dining and unwinding in the city's elegant restaurants and bars; taking in a captivating Broadway show.

New York's retail scene offers luxuries galore: the revered emporiums of Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale's and other definitive department stores in Midtown; row upon row of exclusive Uptown boutiques showcasing striking designer fashions, stunning jewelry and the finest beauty products; prestige art galleries in Chelsea; purveyors of idiosyncratic antiques and collectibles all over the city.

Food is a constant preoccupation, and the city is home to some of the most varied cuisines in the world. Big Apple specialties like Manhattan clam chowder, cheesecake, Waldorf salad and Eggs Benedict; tasty, immigrant-era staples like stuffed bagels, pastrami, sauerkraut-laden hot dogs and pretzels - sold by Central Park street vendors or out of characterful delis and neighbourhood stores: just a few of the city's better known culinary creations.

Landmarks and museums abound. Standing in the harbour is the iconic Statue of Liberty; Downtown is base to the famous towering skyline, which extends northwards into Midtown, site of the Empire State Building and its rivals; grand, commercial Fifth Avenue runs straight north; off to one side of Fifth is the Museum of Modern Art, with its definitive modern art collection, as well as a reputed restaurant. Further up the Avenue, by the huge green space of Central Park, is the spellbinding art and historical collection of the Metropolitan Museum.

Entertainment comes in stunning variety: mainstream and fringe theatre productions range from the traditional and heavyweight to the daring and contemporary off-off Broadway. Sample the vibrant jazz scene in Greenwich Village, energetic dance clubs in the Meat Packing District or the finest performing arts at the Lincoln Center.

New York offers accommodation for every taste and budget, from distinctive, luxurious hotels housed in historic buildings to comfortable options in the Heart of Midtown or in the friendly Downtown neighbourhoods of Greenwich, Chelsea and Soho.

It's easy to tour this city in style. Splash out on a night time helicopter flight around the towering skyscrapers (an unmissable experience) or customize your own private limo tour. Harbour cruises, guided walking tours; culinary, showbiz, museum or borough excursions: you may want to try them all.

Whilst Manhattan tends to dominate visitor itineraries, New York City's four other boroughs all have distinctive appeal. Take the famous walk across majestic Brooklyn Bridge and visit the Botanical Gardens and Children's Museum. The Bronx has one of the world's finest zoos; Harlem always offers great live music and soul food, whilst Queens' is home to the baseball stars of the Mets at Shea Stadium.

© Copyright All rights reserved.
Unauthorized duplication in part or whole strictly prohibited by international copyright law.