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Holidays in New York City

‘So good they named it twice’, New York isn’t just a city, but a fast-paced and energetic experience. The city’s five boroughs feature a wealth of exciting activities for all interests and age groups. Attractions like the Empire State Building Observatory or Top of the Rock afford breathtaking views of the skyline at dizzying heights, while NYC’s huge parks offer a much-needed sense of tranquility when your feet are back on the ground.

28-32 °C

Best time to visit New York City: Spring or autumn when the weather is mild.

7.5 hours

The main airports for New York City are John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), which is 24km southeast of Manhattan; Newark International Airport (EWR), which is 22.5km west of Manhattan and LaGuardia Airport (LGA) in Queens, which is 13km from Manhattan.

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If you’re keen to experience the glamorous atmosphere of the show business world, head west to the bright lights of the Theatre District. Downtown is Union Square, the place to be for people-watchers who love being in the thick of the action but want to experience New York life at its most authentic. See the city from its very top in Midtown – it’s the central hub to end all central hubs in NYC, and home of two of its most iconic skyscrapers: The Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building.

Hotels in Midtown put you right by the world-famous Chrysler Building and Empire State Building, Grand Central Terminal, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and the vast stores lining Fifth Avenue. Midtown is loosely marked out by Central Park to the north-west corner and East River to the east.

This historic square and popular meeting hub, near the Flatiron District, sits at the intersection of Broadway and Fourth Avenue. Its thriving Greenmarket sells locally grown fresh produce and flowers. Come for a coffee and a treat from a nearby stall or bakery, but stay for the people-watching (and free Wi-Fi).

The all-singing, all-dancing centre of the entertainment world. Get your tickets for the big-name musicals playing here, and the smaller ‘off-Broadway’ plays and comedies. Times Square’s famous lights look stunning against the night sky, and during the New Year’s Eve celebrations they add to the intense party atmosphere.

One of the top places to visit in New York City is Central Park and its Zoo—especially for those traveling with children, who will also love M&M’s World or Toys ‘R’ Us in Times Square. Adults will like to loosen up after dark at Latin-flavored venue S.O.B.’s in Soho, or sip cocktails at Irish-American pubs like The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog in the Financial District. Soak up the rich, diverse cultures of Harlem and the Lower East Side; take plenty of quarters for Rockefeller Center’s binoculars, and pack your camera for the sought-after view from the Statue of Liberty’s crown.

From hidden Prohibition-era speakeasies to summertime ice-cream trucks, New York City caters for every taste. Beyond the big fast-food chains are lots of tasty pizza places and Jewish delicatessens, perfect for keeping both kids and adults happy after a day’s sightseeing. By night, wash down a hearty stew or pie with a Guinness in an Irish pub, or catch a game at a lively sports bar. Sip fancy pre-theatre or clubbing cocktails on a rooftop bar in the summer, or in a cosy underground bar during the winter.

Whether you’re ‘thrifting’, blowing the budget, or just window shopping, there’s nothing quite like retail therapy in New York City. Macy’s is a landmark in its own right, taking up one entire block—which in Manhattan is huge. Bloomingdale’s is also an essential stop, followed by the upmarket Barneys New York, Saks Fifth Avenue, and the boutique-lined Madison Avenue. You’ll find most of those same designer names for less in outlet centres like Century 21, but if big names aren’t your bag, there are flea markets like the Brooklyn Flea and the Young Designer’s Market for one-of-a-kind finds, and East 67th Street Market for quirky collectibles.

With such an impressive skyline and diverse array of life at every turn, New York City needs to be seen way above eye level. The High Line is a cleverly designed urban oasis that runs along Manhattan's west side, from the Meatpacking District up through Chelsea. It’s built on an old freight railway line that sits high above Manhattan’s streets. In spring and summer, traipse through fields of flowers, then kick off your shoes and chill on lush green lawns while the city hums noisily beneath you. Keep working your way upwards, and fly over New York City and its skyscrapers in an exhilarating helicopter tour.

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Take a tour around the city’s most recognisable locations – from the romantic Grand Central Station to bright and brash Times Square.

Broadway is America’s glittering home of stage-based showbusiness.

From flea markets and designer discount villages to the high-end boutiques of Madison Avenue.

Fill your visit to New York with art, culture and entertainment.

Visitors of all ages will love the eats, history and views of New York City.


Language: The language spoken in the USA is English.

Currency: The currency used in the USA is the American Dollar ($).

Local time: New York City is 5 hours behind GMT/UK time.

Fly to: The main airports for New York City are John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), which is 24km southeast of Manhattan; Newark International Airport (EWR), which is 22.5km west of Manhattan and LaGuardia Airport (LGA) in Queens, which is 13km from Manhattan.

Flight time from UK: 7.5 hours

Tourist Information: Further New York tourist information can be found here.

Visa & Health: Before you travel click here for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to New York City


Temperatures: 28-32°C in July.

Best time to visit New York City: Spring or autumn when the weather is mild.

New York City’s weather ranges from hot and humid summers, nudging 28-32°C in July, to cold winters falling into minus figures (like -18°C!) in January. Pack a few extra layers if you’re going in spring or autumn – they’re generally mild, but can surprise you with a blast of unseasonal cold or heat.


By bus/subway: Take a shortcut to feeling like a native New Yorker - jump on NYC’s buses and 24-hour subway train system. A range of MetroCards to suit your travelling needs are available.

By taxi: Take a famous yellow taxi (which are metered) after a hard day’s shopping – whatever the cost of the journey, factor in an extra 15%-20% for the tip, and an extra $1 is added on weekdays between 4pm and 8pm.


Summer sunsets If you’re in NYC in late May or mid-July, head to 34th Street and look west to see ‘Manhattanhenge’, when the space between the buildings give you a stunning view of the sunset on the horizon.

Fourth of July Every Independence Day (July the 4th) Macy’s sets off some seriously impressive fireworks, best viewed along the Hudson River.

Street parades Enjoy the fantastic St. Patrick's Day Parade (Mid-March), and Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (fourth Thursday in November).

Ice skating For a sprinkle of winter magic, skate on Rockefeller Center’s famous ice rink from mid-October; in December the Center holds its Christmas Tree Lighting.

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