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  • Aran Chandran
  • "How do New Yorkers spend a weekend in the city?"

Aran Chandran

Kuala Belait, Brunei

How do New Yorkers spend a weekend in the city?

Hi, I'll be in NYC for about 4 - 5 days in early June. I'm looking to explore what a typical day in a life of a New Yorker would be like on his/her day off. 

Budget can vary from the ultra cheap to slightly luxurious. The goal is to explore different sides of the city and its inhabitants, hence variety would be key. And I realize there are so many people and sub cultures in New York that there is NO typical day that would fit any one generalized version of a New Yorker. That said, every city has a vibe and I'm looking to tap into that. 

I'm essentially travelling alone. 

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  • Brooklyn Bridge (attraction)

    Brooklyn Bridge New York NY 10038 (212) 477-8150

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  • High Line Park (attraction)

    210 10th Avenue New York NY 10011 (212) 500-6035

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  • Central Park (attraction)

    14 E. 60th St New York NY 10023-6004 (212) 310-6600

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  • Ashleigh Haney

    top answer by

    The best thing you can possibly do in NYC on any day is walk around. Start on the Brooklyn side of the Brooklyn Bridge and walk across to lower Manhattan. Have breakfast in SoHo at Cafe Habana. walk up to Mud Coffee on 2nd Ave and 9th. Go to Central Park and lay in the grass while reading a book, or walk around the zoo. Pop into MOMA and catch the current featured exhibit. Have dinner at Gemma on the Bowery Hotel, and go for drinks at ACME.

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    • Jillian G.

      Jillian G.

      Great answer. Makes me really want to go and do exactly this. Thanks for sharing! · (0 likelikes)

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  • Desiree Furness

    answered by

    Check out Gothamist and Village Voice for events. Street festivals are common in early June and are scattered throughout Manhattan. TimeOut is also used quite a bit but is a weekly publication and won't allow you too much lead time if you're big on planning. Otherwise, Yelp can help you with popular shops, bars and restaurants.

    I'd recommend getting the 7-day unlimited MetroCard for $30. You can use it for both the subway as well as the buses.

    General Trippy Media
    Also, us locals avoid Times Square at all cost but if it's your first time in the city you're obligated to go. Along The High Line is a bit more legit but go in the early morning with the commuters to avoid the tourist crowds. Same goes for the Brooklyn Bridge. Once you experience both in near solitude then you can go back during normal hours and know that you've experienced them both like a local.

    Have a great time!

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  • Courtney Robinson

    answered first by

    Hey, Aran,

    To be honest, a true New Yorker would probably leave the city for a June weekend--that said, though, here's what I usually do when I'm home (I live in LA now, but I grew up in NYC) and have a free day.

    First, I'd start by getting a bagel at Ess-A-Bagel. There is no better bagel in New York. Period.

    Then I'd probably walk over to The Garage Flea Market for some shopping and people-watching.

    After that I'd probably hop on the bus and go up to the The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Yes, there are tons of tourists there but there are also tons of New Yorkers on the weekends.

    Assuming I'd still have energy left, I'd bus it back down to SOHO (although I'd probably mosey through Central Park a bit) and catch an off-beat movie at an art house like the Angelika Film Center & Cafe.

    Afterwards I'd probably choose a crowded restaurant (yes, I like crowds) like Morandi.

    I realize this isn't a wildly exciting agenda, but it's definitely what I would do with a free day and I think it's pretty typical!

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    • Aran C.

      Aran C.

      Thanks Courtney, this is prefect. It's exactly what I'm looking for. Also, if they go out of the city in June, where would that be to? · (0 likelikes)

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  • Scott Minor

    answered by

    If you decide to walk the Brooklyn Bridge do it on a Sunday because there is an amazing weekly food festival waiting for you on the other side. Start on the Manhattan side of the bridge and walk the entire bridge over to a great Brooklyn neighborhood called DUMBO. In DUMBO is a weekly food festival called Smorgasburg that includes around 50 NYC food& drink vendors and the venue is as amazing as the food. It's held in an old open aired tobacco warehouse and is located in Brooklyn Bridge Park. After you eat you should walk around the DUMBO neighborhood.

    Brooklyn Bridge

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  • Maggie Nugent

    answered by

    Hey Aran,

    Do you want to stay off the beaten path, or are you willing to do some "touristy" things as well? There are a few must-sees: The Metropolitan Museum of Artis definitely one of them, and the American Museum of Natural History is pretty cool too. For insight to a local New Yorkers life, definitely check out neighborhoods like Chinatown New York/Little Italy for the outdoor fish and fruit markets, and East Village and West Village for the music and culture.

    There's also this app called Stray Boots (Full Disclosure: I work here-not trying to plug, but it might be up your alley) that uses your phone to guide you on scavenger hunt-like tours around the various neighborhoods of New York. The whole point of Stray Boots is to get you to discover the local and "off the beaten path" places the city has to offer, so it might be a fun way for you to explore neighborhoods like SoHoor West Village. (www.strayboots.com)

    Overall, though, don't leave the city without going to the Met :)

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    • Aran C.

      Aran C.

      Thanks Maggie. The Met was definitely on the to do list but the Museum of Natural History is a great suggestion as well (as long as it's not in Washington as the map suggests ;) I'll check out stray boots as well, thanks. · (0 likelikes)

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  • Jaime Roth

    answered by

    Everyone wrote great recs..Here are a few more.

    option 1: Day in Nolita/Lower East Side:

    -Visit the New Museum and eat lunch at Fiat Café.

    - then walk downtown through Chinatown New York & the Lower East Side.

    -drinks at Sel Rrose

    Option 2: day on the westside... I would walk grab breakfast at The Jane Hotel - Café Gitane then walk through Chelsea + the High Line Park and check out some galleries... figure out how far you want to walk and here are some great places to eat at in the West Village while walking around the neighborhood:

    Ellary's Greens

    Employees Only (dinner / drinks and they take reservations)

    Kingswood- (great brunch)

    Hudson Clearwater- (great lunch and brunch)

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    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      Great suggestions, Jaime! · (0 likelikes)

    • Aran C.

      Aran C.

      Thanks Jaime. These look great. · (0 likelikes)

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  • coco mico

    answered by

    The suggestions you got are good ones... some weekends are for hanging about~ checking out the High Line Park, go to Central Park, MOMA, crossing the Brooklyn Bridge but that's what tourists do too and honestly, I cant remb the last time I made it to the MOMA or CP... but on a pretty day, New Yorkers are spoiled with options. A leisurely weekend would be eating at Noodle Village in Chinatown New York (or grabbing Dim Sum), taking a citibike over the Manhattan Bridge or exploring new neighborhoods, doing yoga in Brooklyn and NY, strolling or running in Brooklyn Bridge Park (the Piers are excellent), checking out out door flea markets in Cobble Hill or Fort Greene... one of these days I will take the ferry to Long Island City or go to Queens for some yummy food...

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  • Kathy Henry

    answered by

    Take the subway to Brooklyn and go to Smorgasburg, a huge food fair, every weekend and then walk back across the Brooklyn Bridge toward New York, great views.

    Go to Union Square Greenmarket on Sat. morning, go to Shake Shack or Eataly for lunch.

    Walk the High Line Park on West Side (elevated train tracks that have been turned into a park along the water).

    Look in New York Magazine for street fairs and weekly things to do.

    Get half price tickets for plays at the Ticket Booth (TKTS) in Times Square or Southstreet Seaport. Must see a play before you leave.

    Have a drink at the The Central Park Boathouse restaurant in Central Park after a long walk there.

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    • Debbie L.

      Debbie L.

      Great suggestions, Kathy! Thanks for sharing! By the way, I'm a community manager here and I've helped you highlight the places in your answer on a map! In the future, you can do this yourself as you answer a question by simply typing the @-symbol followed by the name of the place. Take a look at the cool map next to your answer! :) · (0 likelikes)

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  • Ari Duncan

    answered by

    There are parts of New York that make you feel like you're in another country, particularly Queens and South Brooklyn. If it's summer, biking out to Brighton Beach is lovely and invigorating. Cafe Glechik has great soups. MoMA PS1 is also really fun and worth the trip. You can also download podcasts to listen to as you walk under the 7 train aka "the International Express." Take it to the end, then walk towards Manhattan -- you will pass Latin American juice places where you can get fresh juices, little India, and wholesalers of all kinds. To me, it's the essence of New York. For a cool history of New York as a city of immigrants, I recommend the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. They are a bit pricey, but really help you know where you are. While you are down there, I'd walk to Nom Wah Tea Parlor for lunch.

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    • Aran C.

      Aran C.

      Thanks Ari. · (0 likelikes)

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  • heather palmeri

    answered by

    head to Brooklyn for the day- perhaps hit the Brooklyn Flea Market in Williamsburg where you can find yummy food, hand made goods as well as vintage pieces. Then head out to explore the 'hood. My favorite store is Mociun. have fun!

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    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      LOVE Brooklyn Flea!!! Great suggestion!!! · (0 likelikes)

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  • Diana Chang

    answered by

    I'd say grab a copy of that week's Time Out New York and see what's happening around the city. I've been living here for 5 years now and that's usually how I plan my weekends. Definitely try to catch a show at Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre because thats always a hilarious time.

    If you're out after hours and hungry, go to Coppelia (24/7 cuban diner on 14th st and 7th ave). The avocado milkshake + mac & cheese? SO GOOD 207 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

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    • Aran C.

      Aran C.

      Thanks Diana. · (0 likelikes)

    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      Great ideas, Diana! · (0 likelikes)

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  • Sona Sani

    answered by

    Penelope Brunch

    Bagatelle New York BRUNCH

    Rocky's Pizza Restaurant Lunch/ late night

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  • Diane gordin

    answered by

    I go to a museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art or Museum of Modern Artare my favorites, love to walk on the High Line Park, window shop in SoHoor the East Village (or actually shop). Eat at a really nice restaurant and see a show ( get tickets at 1/2 price booth) . Also great shows at 54 below. Just stop for coffee somewhere with outdoor seating and people watch. If you need a laugh there are many great inexpensive comedy clubs.

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  • Bonnie U

    answered by

    Enjoy parks and farmers markets. Go to a museum and then eat in Chinatown. If you're feeling adventurous go to Flushing: http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/10/where-to-eat-chinese-best-restaurants-flushing-queens-chinatown-nyc.html

    http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/10/where-to-eat-chinese-best-restaurants-flushing-queens-chinatown-nyc.html

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  • Noelle Boostani

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