Sorry it has taken me a bit to get back to you. I have tons of
less-well-known things that I’d recommend to New York tourists. The first
thing I’d suggest is that you look at the “Attractions and Events” page of
the official New York City website
http://www.ci.nyc.ny.us/html/culture/home.html ), which has tons of great
links to all sorts of, well, attractions and events.
If you are going to be at the NYSE on Thursday morning, I would suggest you
visit the Ellis Island Immigration Museum ( http://www.ellisisland.org/ ),
which is reached from ferries from Battery Park (the same ones that take you
to the Statue of Liberty). I find it to be a very moving place (my
grandfather came through in 1906), and always try to take visitors there if
they haven’t seen it before. My cousin’s husband, who is an Italian (they
live in Florence) made the comment that he had been to many historic sites
commerating events affecting masses of people, but this was the first such
place that was a celebration of joy and new beginnings, rather than war and
Other interesting museums in the Financial District include the National
Museum of the American Indian ( http://www.nmai.si.edu/ ), a branch of the
Smithsonian, and the fairly new Museum of Jewish Heritage
http://www.mjhnyc.org/home.htm ), which I have not yet been to.
Another place that I would strongly recommend is the Cloisters, which is the
Mideval Art branch of the Metropolitan Museum ( http://www.metmuseum.org/ ).
The Cloisters is located in Fort Tyron Park, near the northern tip of
Manhattan, and though slightly awkward to get to, is really worth it. It
goes without saying that the main branch of the Met is worth seeing any time
you are in the City (and you could barely scratch the surface of it if you
spent a full week there).
There are also a number of neat museums on Museum Mile on Fifth Avenue above
the Met. There’s the Guggenheim, of course ( http://www.guggenheim.org/ ),
but many of the lesser-known museums are superb. El Museo del Barrio
http://www.elmuseo.org/ ) is always interesting, and I happen to love the
Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum (also part of the Smithsonian).
Another lesser-known treasure is the Brooklyn Museum of Art
http://www.brooklynart.org/ ), which would be much more celebrated if it
weren’t across the river from some of the greatest museums in the world.
It’s very easy to get to by subway, with the 2 and 3 trains stopping right
outside its door. The Gold of the Nomads: Sythian Art from Ancient Ukrane
exhibit (which closes January 21) is really interesting, and their permanent
exhibit of period rooms from American history (including some from South
Carolina) is worth seeing.
Right next door to the Brooklyn Museum is Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, though
this might not be the best time of the year to see them. In Brooklyn
Heights (which is a fair way away from the Brooklyn Museum) is the New York
City Transit Museum ( http://www.mta.nyc.ny.us/museum/index.html ), which
is housed in an unused subway station. If you’re in Brooklyn Heights (and
the weather is ok), you should consider seeing the Prominade and walking
across the Brooklyn Bridge, as well as exploring the area a bit.
Back in midtown Manhattan, I should just mention the Museum of Television
and Radio ( http://www.mtr.org/ ), the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum
http://www.intrepidmuseum.com/ ), and the Frick Collection
http://www.frick.org/ ), housed in the mansion of industrialist Henry Clay
Frick and centered around his extensive art collection.
If you’re tired of museums, perhaps you’d like a trip to the zoo. The Bronx
Zoo ( http://www.wcs.org ) is definately worth seeing, and their new Congo exhibit
is supposed to be spectactular.
Another recreational option this season is ice skating. There is the rink
in Rockefeller Plaza, which is small, crowded and expensive, though you
can’t beat its location. Wollman Rink, in Central Park is much larger,
still easy to get to, and also in a lovely location. Another sports
facility that might be worth checking out is Chelsea Piers
http://www.chelseapiers.com/ ) which has a wide variety of activities.
Carnegie Hall ( http://www.carnegiehall.org/ ) is beautiful, and if there
is something playing there that interests you, I would say to go. However,
I don’t see that the tour would be all that interesting (but perhaps that’s
Chinatown is not really to be seen but to be eaten in. I might suggest a
Dim Sum lunch one day. I don’t recall a good Dim Sum place off the top of
my head, but I can find one for you if you would like. Also near Chinatown
is Soho and Greenwich Village, with tons of galleries and interesting
This is a short (?) list of some of my New York City favorites, but if you
have something you’re particularly interested in, I can get find out about