Things To Do In New York City, NY
New York is perhaps one of my favorite cities in the world. I actually lived in Queens, NY in the late ’80s early ’90s. But most visitors don’t come to New York, to see the other boroughs, there are five in all (Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island), they come to see New York City (Manhattan), although Brooklyn is now very trendy which was not the case when I lived in New York.
I constantly get questions about where to go, what to do, where to stay, so it’s finally time to put this page together, so once and for all you get all the information that I take for granted as I’ve been to the city so many times.
But first, let’s look look at what is actually called New York City and how to get to this fine city.
Where is New York City
New York City is defined as the five borough indicated above; Brooklyn, The Bronx, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. They are all connected by either roadways, bridges, trains or ferry services.
How To Get To New York City
There are many ways to get to New York City, let’s take a look at them.
There are five airports serving the New York Area and if you’re in a pinch, you can fly into Philadelphia (PHL) or Boston (BOS) and take a bus into the city. You can find out which airline service which airports at https://www.passrider.com/reservations/airport-schedules/.
The five airports are:
Located on Long Island, the country next to Queens, it is served by American Airlines (AA) and Southwest Airlines (WN).
The Suffolk Bus and the Hampton Jitney serve the airport. Plus the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) station is a mile away. You can use the airport shuttle or take a taxi or a shared ride to the station.
LaGuardia International (LGA)
Located in Queens, NY, you can fly into here from the domestic U.S. and Canada. Getting into Manhattan or other parts of New York is pretty easy via the MTA bus service. The M60 will take you into Manhattan and connect with the 1, 2 and 3 or the 4, 5 or 6 trains and other buses. The Q70 will take you to Flushing for the 7 and E trains.
If you’re trying to get to say Newark Airport, head to Penn Station and then take the NJ Transit or Amtrak trains to Newark Airport Station and then take the AirTrain to the terminals.
If you’re headed to JFK Airport, take the Q70 to Flushing and then take the E train to Jamaican Station and then take the AirTrain to your terminal. You can also go to Kew Gardens station on the E and take the Q10 to the JFK airport.
There is a bus, the NYC Express Bus, that will take you to either airport. Check the Web site or ask at the airport for the current rates. You will have to change in Manhattan if you’re headed to Newark Airport, so factor that time in there.
Newark-Liberty International (EWR)
Located in Newark, NJ across the river, it’s not too difficult to get into Manhattan or other parts of New York City as the airport is served by the AirTrain which will take you to Newark Airport Station. From there, you can take Amtrak or NJ Transit into new York Penn Station. From here you can get buses to all parts of the country as well as to the other New York boroughs as well as the NYC subway and the LIRR, Long Island Railroad.
If you wish to go Upstate New York, you can take Metro North from Grand Central Station which is a walk, shared ride, bus, taxi or NYC Subway train away.
John F. Kennedy International (JFK)
Located in Queens, NY, this is one of the busiest airport in the U.S., so most airlines do serve the airport. Getting from JFK Airport to Manhattan is easy enough, but takes some time. The AirTrain runs to all terminals from the NYC Subway at Jamaica Station. There is no charge to get on the AirTrain, but if you leave the airport area and head to Jamaica Station, you have to pay $7.50 to exit the system. You can however take the Q10 and one other bus to the NYC Subway system paying only $2.75 and you can transfer to the system for free. So take your pick.
At Jamaica station, you can take the E Train, you can get to Manhattan and the other boroughs via connections throughout the system. You can also take the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) to Manhattan or out to Long Island (Nassau and Suffolk counties).
If you use Google Maps, you can see the schedules for each bit of transportation or you can use the MTA Web site at http://www.mta.info/nyct.
Stewart International, NY (SWF)
Located a bit upstate NY in Stewart, NY, you can reach the city of manhattan by taking Metro North from the Beacon station to Grand Central Station at 42nd Street. There is a shuttle or taxi that will take you from the airport to the station and vice versa.
There is also an express bus that takes 90 minutes that will take you to/from the Port Authority Bus Terminal at 42nd street.
Wester Chester County hite Plains, NY (HPN)
Located north of Manhattan not too far from the city. It’s an alternative if you can’t get into the other airports. You can find transportation options at http://www.whiteplainsairport.com/pages/transportation.shtml. You can take the Metro North to the White Plains Station, then take a local bus to the airport. The bus station is across the street. Of course you can always take a shared ride service.
There are several bus companies that serve New York City from all over the country. The major ones are:
- Bolt – Stop is at 36th St & 11th Ave
- Flixbus – Stop is at 31st St & 8th Ave
- Greyhound – Stop is at 42nd Street, Port Authority Bus Terminal
- Go Buses – Stop is at 30th St & 9th Ave
- Megabus – Stop is at 34th St b/t 11th Ave and 12th Ave
- Peter Pan – Stop is at 42nd Street, Port Authority Bus Terminal
Greyhound takes you into 42nd Street Port Authority Bus Terminal while Bolt and Megabus drops you on a street corner. Megabus is at 33rd street across from the Jacob Javitts Center in Manhattan. Bring a jacket an umbrella s there is no shelter from the elements; you are outside.
You can take Amtrak or NJ Transit trains into New York City. They both stop at Penn Station at 34th Street. There is also Metro North to upstate New York cities which stops at Grand Central Station which is located at 42nd Street and Long Island Railroad service out to Nassau and Suffolk counties in New York, that is located at 34th Street Penn Station.
By Cruise Ship
There are several cruise ships serving the New York area. Just check your favorite one for details. Try: Carnival Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America Line, MSC Cruises and Princess Cruises.
You can take the Staten Island Ferry from Staten Island as well as other ferries from around the city.
Getting Around New York City
Despite what you’ll hear, New York actually has a very good network of public transportation in the form of buses and trains. Take a look:
- Long Island Railroad – goes from the Long Islands suburbs to New York City stopping in Queens alongs the way.
- Metro North – heads north from Manhattan into the suburbs of upstate New York including the Bronx.
- NYC Transit Authority – runs the subway system around the boroughs of New York (The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens). They also offer bus service to areas both served by the Subway system and not served by the subway system.
- State Island Ferry – which runs from Manhattan to Staten Island and, its free. The view is amazing so I highly recommend it.
Things To Do
New York has a ton of stuff to do, here are just a few of them:
- Central Park
- Empire State Building
- New York Public Library in Manhattan at 6th Avenue and 42nd Street
- Rockefeller Center
- St. Patrick’s Cathedral
- Times Square
- World Trade Center
Also take a look at the Bronx.
Where To Stay
New York is expensive, just so you know this. Try this search box for hotels.
Please leave some questions below and/or your suggestions.