Tips For Your First or Tenth Trip to New York City
Money Saving Tips
Purchase a Broadway Show Ticket at 1/2 Price Theatre Booth
The staff is incredibly helpful and will answer any questions. Plus, they give great recommendations! There are box offices in Times Square, South Street Seaport and Brooklyn. I used the ticket box in South Street Seaport right as they opened and got great seats! View tickets here.
Favorite Broadway Show I’ve Seen in NYC: Kinky Boots
Others have been wonderful too: Phantom of the Opera, Wicked, Something Rotten, Waitress, Chicago, The Lion King.
Seattle shows: Hamilton & The Book of Mormon.
Plan Ahead and Book Statue of Liberty Tickets Months in Advance
I happened to look into Statue of Liberty tickets a few months before my first trip. All of the crown tickets were sold out (3+ months before my vacation). I booked pedestal tickets immediately. If you want to go up to the crown, be sure to book months in advance.
Visit Museums on Fridays
The Guggenheim (after 5 PM) and the Museum of Modern Art (after 4 PM) are free on Fridays. The Guggenheim museum asks to make a donation of your choice. Warning: there is usually a line wrapped around the building to get in. The line, however, isn’t terrible to stand in and moves at a decent pace.
Use the subway system to get into the city from the airport
This is quite the money saver, especially if you’re solo or with a small group. I’ve split a cost of $110 dollars for a ride into the city. Expensive! Plus, the taxi lines can be long and even booking private pickup with certain companies, you have to wait 30-45 minutes. Be sure to do some research at what stop you need to get off at when you take the subway.
Don’t want to deal with the subway & prefer to book a private car? Book with Precision NY Chauffeur and Airport Transportation. They track your flight and are ready to pick you up within 5 minutes of arriving for pickup.
Where to Eat – Tasty Treats
Every time I am in NYC, I always stop at these lovely bakeries! My list is in order from my most favorite.
1.) #1 Treat in NYC:
Chocolate Babka Bread at Bread’s Bakery. If this was the only treat I could get while visiting NYC, I would always choose this. The Cinnamon Raisin is also delicious for those who don’t like chocolate or have an allergy.
2.) Best Cake/ Cupcake
Two Little Red Hens – Brooklyn Blackout (this rivals our homemade chocolate cake!)
Molly’s Cupcake – Birthday Cake (I have tried a few from here, but this is the only one I have found that’s worth it)
3.) Magnolia Bakery
Banana Pudding is so delicious. Skip the cupcakes & go to one of the bakeries above.
4.) Most unique dessert
Cookie dough from DŌ. If you are a cookie dough lover, you should love this bakery. Chocolate chip is my favorite. While I can’t consume the entire 8 oz at once, I enjoy having a few bites here and there.
A few items from Dominique Ansel Bakery – They are known for their cronuts, but I like their milk & cookie shot & DKA best.
Note: I have tried the best of the best when it comes to bakeries in NYC. These are my favorite.
Lunch & Dinner Restaurant Recommendations
Best NYC Pizza By The Slice
Prince Street or Bleeker Street
Best Italian Restaurant
Carbone. I did enjoy L’Artusi too. Get reservations several weeks in advance.
Shake Shack Burger
Who would have thought a fast food burger would be worth it? This burger is worth it for me, however, the fries are not my favorite.
My Favorite Time of Year to Visit
I have been to NYC all four seasons and I think spring is my favorite! So many beautiful flowers are bloomed out and Central Park is gorgeous. I also really enjoyed Christmas time too. Although the crowds were much worse, seeing all the Christmas decorations was worth it!
First Visit To The City? Must Do List.
- Visit the Statue of Liberty / Ellis Island
- Rockefeller Center
- Walk the Brooklyn Bridge
- Watch a Broadway show
- Central Park
- Times Square
- Visit the Top of the Rockefeller or Empire State Building
- 9/11 Memorial + Museum (visit Wall Street while you’re there)
- St. Patrick’s Cathedral
- Public Library
- Choose a Museum(s) to Visit
When planning your first trip to NYC, I highly recommend building an itinerary based on location. Each day can be organized by what you want to see in a specific area (EX: a day in Midtown: Visit the Empire State Building, Public Library, Times Square, Rockefeller Center, Grand Central Station, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Magnolia Bakery, etc.)
Going During The Holiday Season?
- Buy Tickets to see The Nutcracker during Christmas time (book early!)
- Buy Tickets for the Christmas Lights in Brooklyn
- Seek Out The Decorations!
- Radio City Rockettes Show