Planning a trip to NYC in mid-Oct

Awesome. That is EXACTLY the sort of thing I (and I hope) my wife are hoping for.

My wife is more into this trip than I. Nothing against NYC, but I’ve got plenty of experience w/ big(gish) cities, such that they aren’t my favorite vacay destinations. My preferences tend more towards the nature/solitude. :wink: And I pretty quickly get my fill of museums and crowds. So “sort of off the beaten track but still neat things that will make for a good part of a day” are the kinds of things that will really make this trip pleasurable for me. Hell - for me - is a tightly scheduled course from church to museum to show to restaurant.

I could pass a good part of each day just walking the streets - probably w/ a dining destination, and checking things out. Or I could sit in a park and read a book, seeing what happens around me. I bet I could easily spend an entire day walking around Central Park and the streets immediately adjoining it. I guess I’m a pretty boring vacationer! :smiley:

It’s actually outdoors in a covered courtyard built around a medieval garden and fountain.

We’ve enjoyed our stays at the Citizen M hotel in midtown west. The rooms are not big, but they are clean and well-designed - kind of a Scandinavian design meets Apple feel - very hip. Good location on 52nd Street IIRC - can walk to Times Square and the TKTS booth as well as the Met. Maybe a 15 minute walk from the southwest corner of Central Park. The excellent Circle in the Square off-Broadway theatre is right across the street.

Free Tours by Foot has good tours. They’re pay-what-you-wish rather than free. I’ve done a couple of their tours, in Chicago and Savannah, and thought they were well worth it. They have a wide range of tours of NYC neighborhoods: The Best Walking Tours in NYC

Except for the major museums, like the Met, the Museum of Natural History, the MoMA, or the Guggenheim. most of the smaller museums are not going to be crowded unless it’s a special exhibition or a free/reduced-rate day. I’ve been in some museums where I could count the people there with me on one hand.

I did a bunch of posts in the NYC in August thread which cover more of what you are looking for, including neighborhood walking tours. You’d probably like Governor’s Island.

Other walking neighborhoods would be Greenwich Village and the East Village, but they are built more around small shops and restaurants. Haven’t been to either in a while and I really can’t say after COVID what is still around. I noticed a few of my favorite restaurants in those areas have closed.

I would say that if you just aim to walk around, pick a starting point and an ending point, plan to hit an interesting place or two on the way and walk. Have a general idea of what’s in the area and what route to take. Some people might tell you that there are no bad walks in Manhattan, but there are definitely stretches of blocks where the storefronts are empty because the landlord is trying to put together some sort of Hudson Yards-type deal or the rents are so high that only major chains (Starbucks, Duane Reed, Citibank) line the street.

Sorry, I just realized I screwed this up and said Met when I meant MoMa. Sorry about that.

Yes, I’ve read your posts there bmoak. Thanks. I’ve heard others speak highly about such walking tours. Definitely going to suggest it to my wife.

I’ve never done a walking tour in NY, but I’ve done them in Hong Kong, Copenhagen, Berlin and even San Francisco, and they’ve been uniformly excellent.
There are decks of flash card with short walking tours. I’ve never looked at the New York one (but it exists) but I’ve done the San Francisco one and it was good. Too many to cover in a day, and not as good as a guided tour, but a possibility.

I’ve never actually taken any of the Free Tours by Foot walking tours. I just suggested some areas to walk around in and listed the attractions. I have taken one of the tour given by Central Park staff. They are pretty good, but each tour only does a fraction of the park.

If you go to any place staffed by a National Park Service Ranger, take the tour if the timing is right. They are very good guides.

Of course, NYC has an immense number of restaurants of all shapes, sizes, cuisines, and price ranges so I almost don’t think it would be worthwhile to make a bunch of specific recommendations. .

However, every visit to NYC should eat at a good deli like Katz’s or the 2nd Avenue Deli. Also a visitor should eat at an appetizing/bagel&bialy place like Barney Greengrass or Russ & Daughters.

The other thing you have to eat in NYC is, of course, pizza. You can certainly get plenty of mediocre pizza in NYC if you’re not careful (Don’t eat at Sbarro’s), but there is a lot of really good pizza in NYC. Here’s a list of the 30 Best Pizza Places in NYC. A lot of the very best places are out in Brooklyn, but one place not on that list is the original and oldest pizzeria in New York: Lombardi’s on Spring Street in SoHo, established in 1905. No pizza by-the-slice there, though.

Across the street from Lombardi’s is a possible dessert option. Rice to Riches is a shop selling nothing but rice pudding in multiple forms and flavors.

You don’t have to eat Chinese food in NYC, but New York has the best options east of the Mississippi, especially in the newer Chinatown in Flushing/ Queens, which has a lot of regional and speciality restaurants with options you’re not going to see in other city’s Chinatowns.

If you can’t get all the way out to Flushing, there’s plenty to see and do in NYC’s original Chinatown in lower Manhattan. You’ve got old school classics like Nom Wah Tea Parlor, a dim sum place dating back to 1920, or Wo Hop, a no-frills basement restaurant dating back to 1938.

Man - great info. We are going to start planning this trip mid-June. Have a trip to Denver before then. This is great.