The 5 best ways to discover New York

By Steffen, 13. March 2017
3 ratings

There are so many ways to explore New York City, each one letting you see the city from a completely new angle. Each one of these suggestions has its own way of letting you experience New York, and each offers a new and unique perspective. We have tried all five and highly recommend that you do the same! 

Without further ado, here are the 5 best ways to discover New York City:

1. Discover New York from from an observation deck

This should be a part of any New York experience and it is rightfully included on most visitors’ must-do list! Visiting one of the popular observation platforms is definitely one of the top 5 ways to explore NYC. It is simply incredible to enjoy the view of the urban canyons of Manhattan from above! While the observation platform of the Empire State Building is hugely popular, my favourite is the Top of the Rock, which is located on top of Rockefeller Center. Why? Because from there, you will have a wonderful view of the Empire State Building and Central Park (and because it is less crowded!). Another helpful tip: visit Top of the Rock late in the afternoon and give yourself ample time, 2-3 hours. You will then see New York during the day and watch the city slowly transform into a sea of lights. Simply magical!

I am really looking forward to the 2015 opening of One World Observatory, occupying the 102nd through 104th floors of One World Trade Center.

19514Top of the Rock Observation DeckThe Top of the Rock observation deck, is one of the most popular attractions in more
18902One World ObservatoryOne World Observatory at the One World Trade Center Visiting the OWTC is a very more

2. Discover New York with a cruise

This is truly one of my top travel suggestions for all visitors to New York: take a boat tour around the city! This is truly a great way to discover NYC. The best boat tours (as well as our video) can be found on a separate page. We took a boat tour on each of our last few visits and always think of a cruise as a mini vacation within a vacation. Both the Semi-Circle Tour (1.5 hours) and the Full Island Cruise (3 hours) will show you New York from a brand new perspective – and will make you realise that Manhattan is indeed an island!

View cruises, sailing & water tours

3. New York views from a helicopter

A helicopter tour of New York is an epic experience! The exceptional views from the air over Manhattan, the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn, New Jersey and especially the southern tip featuring the financial district and One Word Trade Center, will leave a long-lasting impression on you. This is our top favourite when it comes to ways to explore NYC. On the way back from our tour, the pilot also played “New York, New York”, which put a perfect cap on this unforgettable experience!

Find the best helicopter ride

4. Discover New York with a bus tour


Since riding the bus is not exactly my style, I was rather skeptical about the popular hop-on-hop-off tours through New York. But what can I say? I was more than pleasantly surprised! With our entertaining tour guide, who shared many funny tidbits about the city and its buildings, the tour really turned out to be an interesting and relaxing way to see Manhattan! Find out what tours are available and more in our Hop-on Hop-Off Bus Guide.

See all Hop-on Hop-Off Bus Tours

5. Walk through New York to explore the rest

Don’t miss out on exploring New York by taking a walk! I really enjoy walking through the canyons of buildings, the local parks, to people watch, and just let the city work its magic on me. Recently, we walked through the Meatpacking District – we must have covered 15 km that day. Another good starting point for walking the city is the Brooklyn Bridge, which provides great views of Manhattan, and also, as the name implies, takes you into the borough of Brooklyn.

Our New York Neighbourhood Insider Guides


The 5 best ways to discover New York
Did you like this article?
✅ Check out our Savings Calculator – Which pass will save you the most money?

A comment

I will love to say that he article is too good. The shared photos are also nice. I am a huge fan of NYC and had been there many times. I am again going there after finishing my Acadia National Park bus tour package and very glad for it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


We use cookies (proprietary and third-party) to make it easier for you to use our website and to display advertising messages in line with your browser settings. By continuing to use our website, you agree to the use of cookies. For more information about cookies, please see our privacy policy.

More information OK